Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Mandatory slow down.

While I don't consider our family to necessarily be super busy people, it feels like we always have something.  Some of those things are necessities (always trying to catch up on laundry, housework, etc. on the weekends) and some are voluntary (kids activities, birthday parties, getting together with friends)  It's a catch 22 for us....we really enjoy doing all of that kind of fun stuff, but sometimes we just look at each other after collapsing on the couch on Sunday and say "where did our weekend go??" when it felt like all we did was run from one thing to the next.

Summer especially tends to feel like this (I'm not sure who invented the phrase "the lazy days of summer"....probably the same person who invented the phrase "sleeps like a baby"...lies all lies)  Summer time is great, but it also brings weddings, showers, parties, vacation, and of course, yard work. Sometimes I feel just about as tired as these two look after a long day at summer camp:


Unfortunately, we've had 2 things happen that have kind of caused a mandatory slow down for all of us.  First, Brian found out he tore his rotator cuff and will be having surgery next month.  It's a total bummer for him, especially since he has a hard time not doing things like obsessively mowing neat lines into our yard with the mower and spreading mulch to perfection.  We quickly realized that we would need to majorly lower our standards this year and do the bare minimum in terms of outside landscaping.

Then a few weeks ago, I found out I had pneumonia and I've basically been trying to get over it ever since.  Getting old is HARD, my friends, this thing has been kicking my butt.  It's been over 3 weeks now and while I had a brief period of feeling better last week and returned to all of my normal activities, I was paying for that choice over the weekend and started to feel bad again.

So because of these things combined, we haven't done a lot of the stuff we normally do in the summer. We haven't gone to "big" pool (as the kids say--aka, the community pool), we haven't gone to the zoo a bunch of times, we haven't done a backyard camp out with the kids as we were hoping to do, our flowers are half dead, our bushes are overgrown, and there are so many handprints all over the glass doors and windows of our house it looks like someone was trying to escape out of the house in a frantic manner.  Let's not even discuss the fact that there is still a fallen tree taking up a whole side of my yard as well.

I had a brief panic attack last week when I realized that our annual luau party is just around the corner, and that the thought of decorating, cleaning and making a ton of stuff was enough to make me want to curl up and take a nap.  So I decided that the party will go on without quite as much effort.  I'm not going to spend hours the day before cleaning (only to have everyone in the house the next day anyway, I'm not actually sure why I ever bothered to clean in previous years!), I'm going to order some of the food, and I'll put up the decorations that are easy to do and require the least amount of tear-down/clean-up effort.

And you know what?  I don't think that anyone really cares about these things at the end of the day.  The kids aren't asking to go to the zoo.  They have mentioned once or twice wanting to go to the big pool, but are also perfectly content with the blow up pool in our backyard.  No one (but me) cares that our flowers are wilted, or that our mulch sat in the driveway for over a month before we finally broke down and paid a neighborhood kid to finish spreading it, since neither one of us were in any shape to be doing so.  No one is going to care that I don't have a thousand luau decorations up or that my house isn't clean for the day of the party.

We haven't committed to a bunch of things, and we are doing the bare minimum around the house....it was kind of a mandatory thing this year, but maybe we're on to something for the future.
Brian and I said going into this new year that we wanted our mantra to be simplify, simplify, simplify.  Maybe this is the universe's way of making sure we do just that.

So how about you?  Do you feel like you get to embrace the lazy days of summer, or are you too busy to do that?  

image courtesy of divaaniblogit.fi

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