Today was the first day in a long time that there was nothing on our calendar. Nothing. And so, of course, I started dreaming up ideas to fill it up: Smithsonian visits, the zoo, local playgrounds, finding a beach, and so on and so on. My kids are teaching me a lesson today. They slept in (bliss!), had late breakfasts, lounged around watching a TV show in pajamas, and then proceeded to start in on daily fun: family room tents made of blankets and sheets, playing pet shop and making rabbit homes from our wooden blocks (for stuffed animal rabbits, not real ones!). They did so all morning.
Pretty soon, I realized that there was absolutely no interest in going anywhere. And thus we stayed. I opened the windows and turned off the air conditioning, to enjoy a clear day in the 80's, a wonderful break before tomorrow's forecasted 100F. I finished a book I was reading, did some laundry and cleaned a bathroom. We had lunch. We spent an hour in the pool, and off to quiet time/nap time they went and are still. Breathe in. Breathe out.
"The years are short, the days are long." I've heard it along this parenting journey. And today I hope was a "long day" in my kids memories...long because it was filled with good, clean fun. With relaxing. With no schedules to meet, no errands that mommy must do now, no tasks that fill the hours. Just being. Being together. Being kids and enjoying summer.
A few weeks ago, I was pointed to an article on NYTimes.com, "The 'busy' trap". I hope you will read it. It has reminded me of the life I want, for myself, for my children. For our family. It doesn't matter whether we live in a city, on a farm, in a suburb or in some exotic locale. We can live an authentic, joyful life right where we are. I am trying not to fall into the busy trap.