Anyone who regularly comes to my classes knows how much I dislike summer. First there is the heat which completely sends me into tizzies and frustrations and discomfort and rage. Then there is the lack of a regular schedule for the elves which eternally is a challenge. And of course I miss soup, sweaters and snow. It is in a few words: my least favorite time of the year. However normally we have one or two vacations planned to break up this ick for me.
This year as you know one of our vacations turned into a time of sorrow and loss. The second vacation we had planned, this week in fact, was cancelled because it was organized by my father in law (see sentence one). So everything associated with vacation time had become a bummer, a bummer summer vacation.
I had to pull myself away from Facebook today because I was so frustrated with others having amazing times on seemingly deserted beaches or exploring National Parks or Europe. The pictures of fun in backyard pools (we do not have one), exotic locations and more just further emphasized the stuck stickiness we were feeling. I started to feel sorry for my family, my elves and myself.
Bummer. Summer. Vacation.
But then later this afternoon I drove my girl elf and a friend to pick up my boy elf at his friend’s house. We cranked up Flo Rida’s “I don’t like it, I love it” and were all dancing and singing in the car to the song. Then it hit me: we did have some amazing summer memories together. We drove 6+ hours in the car from UT -> ID and kept swapping out the phones to play songs for each other that would make us dance and be crazy on the way. We took silly selfies in front of the “Bates Motel” at our usual truck stop and ate Twizzlers and Hot Tamales as we laughed to tears. We celebrated the Elf’s 10th birthday along with a serenade from my brother’s dog. We stalked moose and collected owl feathers. We bought geodes and peacock rocks. We drove 6+ hours from ID -> UT and jammed some more to tunes between stops to Hell’s Half Acre and The Idaho Potato Museum. We ate too many french fries and fried chicken. We bought so many beanies and socks it was silly. We sent text messages to each other from across the table as we tried to guess what emoticon the other was demonstrating. We flew on the plane sharing a whole row and getting along. We raced like bats out of hell screaming four letter words when we went the wrong way in the parking garage so we could get the furry elf out of the kennel on time. We slept on our own beds and ate our own favorite foods. We drank from our favorite cups and had great WIFI finally at home.
Some days vacations are far away on beaches and in beautiful places. Other times you have to really appreciate what you have and where you are and who is with you to feel the escape. Those little moments added up to a summer of silliness and strength. Those little moments were a vacation of family, and patience, laughing and loss. Those little moments became a lifetime of memories.
Tonight I sit at my computer at home, on my couch looking at the furry elf who is here and not at the kennel. I am not on Cape Cod as was the plan, but it is cool and I can breathe and I am at ease. I laughed to tears twice today thanks to my guy and I jammed out to pop music thanks to the elves.
I enjoyed not living vicariously, but living. Period.
p.s. check out a mini spotify playlist of our road trip ditties. these made us smile big.