Technically, I LOVE every season of the year – which is one reason I love living in Utah. But. Summer is by far my favorite. It just makes me happier than any of the other seasons, and one of my favorite favorite things is the time we spend outside as a family.
As each summer approaches I try to plan just a few things for each kid that they want to do. Just enough to keep them active, engaged, and yet enjoy as many lazy mornings and downtime as they can in-between. I’ve always veered away from “summer bucket lists” just to not feel like we have to be doing something planned all the time. With older kids I’ve found that they prefer the freedom and because I live for warm spontaneous moments. However, I do mentally create seasonal inspiraction boards – like an invisible mood board.
And this photo shoot was in my mental mood board all summer. Thanks to Mindy Johnson – on IG as @mindymoveit, she captured our outside family time perfectly.
This past Easter, our kids received hamboards (me thinking: ha! that’s the perfect EASTER surprise, get it? Dorky, I know. But that’s how my mind works…) and a good portion of our summer time has been spent trying to master them. My kiddos all love long boards, penny boards – but the hamboards are an all new game. Land surfing. WAY trickier. First of all, some of them are HUGE. The smaller boards – like the biscuit (Sela’s) and the fish (KJ’s) are easy to use – like traditional boards.
Kiana bear has spent her summer working at Pro Look Sports, and she also worked at Sundance mountain resort for their summer events. She spends lots of time by a pool with friends and endless outdoor adventures – she’s always hiking, long boarding down the canyon, or doing something fun somewhere with LOTS of friends. I think we hosted at least ten teenager volleyball/party nights at our house – I’m sorry (again) to our neighbors and all the noise that comes from our dwelling at times. late at night. Just try to remember – these kids could be doing worse things and we’re keeping them in one spot having clean good fun!!!
Laughing with my girls is the best thing in the world. I drink it all in, this could be the last summer they are all home with me if Kiana leaves for school somewhere else next year…
Myla Moosey. She’s had an increbible summer – our trip to Africa plus two weeks at BYU tennis camps and more. She also splits her time between golfing and working at Pro Look Sports. This summer she was trained how to design uniforms on our company software and she absolutely loves it. Anything techy and this girl is hooked. She had her wisdom teeth taken out a month ago followed by getting dry socket but is doing much much better and her swollen cheeks are almost gone!
Myla made a deal with our family about a month ago – she offered to pay for a good puppy training program for Welleslley Baloo if she could then be considered the “family dog” and not just Myla’s dog freeing Myla of some of the responsibility. We took the deal. It’s a win-win. Everyone was already helping with Wellesley and now she’s more behaved and learning the coolest things week by week! For those of you interested – we’re using Dog Training Elite
KJ….. This dude is having the best summer. Due to certain situations, KJ was grounded from technology before the end of the school year. While this was taking place I realized I really liked his break from electronics and I decided to extend this punishment/idea into summer. Not to extend the punishment for extra discipline but to encourage other activities. This can be hard for this tech loving generation. We also limited his TV time to two hours/day. Which when you’re home from school all day those two hours go by quick! So I made a huge effort to help him plan his days and time to make sure he’d have enough to keep him stimulated and happy throughout summer.
First, he likes to golf so we signed him up for a few clinics, and lessons plus on our own golfed more as a family with him. Each day he started his mornings with golfing. Then a girlfriend of mine told me about local robotics camp with Robotics Utah. He went to three weeks of this and absolutely loved it. One week he was in a robo soccer tournament and his robot was the champion – it was very exciting!!! Each afternoon he’d spend time playing baseball with friends at our house and then he also worked at Pro look. Like his sister Myla, KJ learned how to design uniforms and some nights he worked late till 10pm with big papi he liked it so much! Still no extra time on electronics. It’s been a very refreshing change of pace.
One thing we also did was take all the extra apps off our kiddos phones – so they only had access to the phone, texting, camera, the basics offered on iPhones. No games or social media. Of course they still sneak it at times via their parents iphones. And, as I mentioned in this post our kids turn their phones in to us at night still to make sure everyone is sleeping. It’s good.
All in all, our buddy has had a great summer. Lots of time outside, doing things he loves, and learning some new skills. With plenty of lazy time mixed in. And I’m just going to pause here a moment for some clapping and confetti. Because I really didn’t know if we’d stay committed all summer like we did.
Sela Bella boo. If goodness creates goodness, this girl is good and sweet and genuine to the core and brings it out in all of us. Her summer has been filled with DAILY play dates, swimming, snow cones, Sundance kids camps, Disney TV shows, some golfing, some tennis, and more swimming.
She is the easiest going soul as long as she is with all of us – all the time. She is filled to the brim with FOMO (fear of missing out) on the highest setting possible.
As a family, we’ve had a few more 5K races together, spent as much time as we can in the mountains – especially Park City and Sundance. And I love our casual evenings at home.
Dusty and I made a goal this past year to spend more time together, sans kids. Which is supported by everyone but Sela. ::winks:: Now that I’ve shared the situation that we went through with Kiana – we had gone almost three years without a trip alone and very few dates nights because we were on alert and keeping out schedules open in case she needed us. Now… we make a very conscious effort to plan date nights and it’s been a beautiful, needed focus. Our very favorite summer dates are the Bluebird Cafe concerts at Sundance. They are truly something special. If you’ve never been, I can’t recommend it enough!
This past June I started an art internship for the summer with Pro Look Sports – overnight it quickly turned in to me being the official creative director! I absolutely LOVE my time there and the projects I’m involved with – I’ve definitely been fighting the “time to work” dragon this summer with everyone home, but I hope it improves with some creative planning this fall. It will be tricky when I’m in my last semester of school + Pro Look creative director + family, but holy moly I love it all and I’m going to do my best to make it all work.
Dusty continues to be the president and CEO of Pro Look Sports (hence, why we are all there! in case you didn’t know, it’s a team sportswear company my husband founded and owns.) and an avid Red Sox fan. There has never been another human who has given me more support than this man. He’s so good to all of us.
And, this is slightly off topic but something I’ve been meaning to say for quite some time. And it goes something like this…
Thank you. Gratitude is so ever present in our home right now. So much has changed over the past couple of years and yet, things seem so much the same. In a good way.
Thank you every one of you for your comments, your e-mails, your support, your readership, the beautiful kind things you have said and done and for finding it worthwhile to read my blog regardless of how unreliable my posts have been over the years. I’ve gone through phases of not blogging at all, taking my blog private, returning – and through it all I’ve had some of the most loyal readers. This blog has opened up a lot of great opportunities for me but it’s still just the place I go to put it all down… To share my corner of the world. Thank you, for someone who doesn’t have a lot of family – it means so much.
And, I guess that’s all.
Oh, that and the fact that it’s magic outside right now – sunny and beautiful, I hope you all enjoy every minute summer still shines for you this year. xo.