Paige has been exploring lately, wherever I will let her. And wherever it is, she seems to relish in running her fingers through new textures — just-cut grass, warm sand, salt water . . . She’s curious and intrepid, unafraid. I hope she stays that way.
Meanwhile, I’ve been observing and thinking. It’s funny how you can fall into a period of retrospect and lose yourself in moments, memories . . . but we all need that inner movie once in a while, I think. And Will? He’s discovering everyday.
Three girls walked along the shoreline where Will, Paige and I were relaxing the other day. One was much taller with wind scattered hair pulled haphazardly into a ponytail. Another was medium height with straight, shiny raven locks. The third was smaller, shorter, with a sunkissed ponytail. Fifteen years ago, I was one of those girls, carefree, curious and believing that summer truly was just a collection of days spent walking with bare feet across hot sand.
Even as I saw myself in them, I realized that it’s not the past I want to reclaim, but a happy future that includes many scenes like that for my children. That’s what this week has been about: playing, enjoying the outdoors and embracing the relaxation that should come with summer.
Later, I walked behind Will as he chased seagulls on the beach. The gulls would hold firm to their spots until he was just out of reach, then they would spread their massive wings and fly away. That’s part of the fun of chasing the birds though, the thrill of almost reaching them, but then not.
I am cooking this week, and making some great stuff, but I put down the camera and just let us eat for a change, enjoying lemony chicken on top of a delicious Swiss chard mixture that I’ve been making frequently, salmon, poached in wine and slathered in pesto, and the best breakfast sandwich sans eggs ever . . . But more on all that will come soon.
In the meantime, we are putting lots of miles on the double stroller. I worried it was an impulse buy when I purchased it, but it’s a trusted and essential tool that lets us take long, quiet walks. Okay, admittedly, they usually aren’t that quiet.
And Will’s learned to pump the peddles on his tricycle, riding back and forth along the driveway. I think there is a special freedom that you first enjoy on a bike, even at almost three.
Sometimes, you just need to just stop — stop working, stop thinking, stop worrying — and just enjoy what’s right in front of you. Happy summer!