Saturday, August 16, 2014

What will my children remember of their childhood summers?

At the beginning of the summer, I did a writing exercise with a friend. We brainstormed about what we were hoping for the summer. My list included things like valuable time spent with family and friends, but it also included things like organization, getting the house in order, getting my high school senior to become more independent, etc.

So here we are, with only a few weeks of summer remaining. What did I not do this summer, which I intended to do?
  • Paint (the walls)
  • Get the garage door fixed
  • Clean the study
  • Beautify the yard
  • Take out the carpet in our bedroom and refinish the floor
  • Put new flooring in the kitchen and repaint the cabinets
  • Have Chris study for the SATs and learn how to drive
  • Train all my kids to cook!
  • Get back to the gym at least twice a week...and lose weight

And oh my, there's so much I can find to criticize myself for...have I done any of these things? No! We have hired my brother to do some cleanup in the yard, so that's something, but I haven't accomplished half of what I hoped for. C'est la vie!

Nick and our puppy Romie at Multnomah Days
So I can't begin to express how grateful I felt to read Glennon Doyle Melton's article, "Give me Gratitude or Give Me Debt," in which she writes about how we should be grateful for having the things we do, instead of wanting more. We are truly privileged. Reading this blog post could not have come at a better time!

Nick rock climbing
It reminds me of when I was in a women's group in the early '90s. Many of the women in the group had more money than I did, and it seemed that they were OBSESSED with their kitchens. Many women's group meetings seemed to focus on remodeling, and I could not have been more bored. But I sat there and listened, eyes glazed over. I think I'm more evolved now, and if this happened now I would have made a decision not to continue participating. Not only was I bored, but I also found myself wishing for things that I could not have...or things that were not worth going into debt to obtain. There's a reason why I've never been into window shopping for things I couldn't afford. Being around these remodeling- and house-minded women made me want more than what I had or that I needed.

Which brings me to my title. I don't think my kids will remember that our house is not pristine and in the latest, greatest style. If they could have anything, they'd request more electronics, dinners out, and vacations!

This weekend, instead of spending time upgrading our house, we decided to soak up the last of summer. Last night we went to a free concert in the park. This morning we went to a parade in Multnomah Village, the annual "Multnomah Days." This afternoon we went to see "Midsummer's Night Dream" in Shakespeare in the Park, and then we had dinner al fresco in the backyard. These types of memories are worth so much more than a fancy kitchen!
My little adventurer

Mike talking to our friend David at Multnomah Days

Midsummer's Night Dream in the park

Kieran at dinner

My three beautiful boys

Dining al fresco
 Teriyaki chicken, rice, and summer squash--yum!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for reminding me to have an attitude of gratitude.