My I Should Summer

I do it to myself every year.

The month of May rolls around and I know that school will be out in a few weeks and we’re going to have days filled with nothing but time, time and more time. No more hurrying out the door in the morning all the while barking orders…

“Put your shoes on!”

“Stop hitting each other with stuffed animals!” 

“Why are you taking that hair clip out that I just put in?”

“How could you get in the car without your backpack after I said 20 times ‘don’t forget your backpack!’?”

I’m starting to hyperventilate a little bit just typing that out and thinking about how that will be our life again here soon.

Deep breaths!


But in May, well, in May the desperation for a slower pace has reached it’s climax and I’m giddy with thoughts of endless hours of nothing. And not having to sign my initials on one more reading chart, permission slip or lunch calendar.

So I start a list in my head of all of the things I’m going to accomplish with all of that time. I can hear you laughing at me already.;-)

I should organize my craft supplies.

I really should sort through the toys in the playroom closet.

I know I should finally get around to giving the kitchen island that makeover I’ve been talking about forever.

And I’m quite certain, when I’m thinking about all of this in the month of May, that I will accomplish all of those things and sooooooo much more! I mean, after all, summer break is 3 months long, right? That’s plenty of time to check them off my ‘I should’ list.

Then June rolls around and I’m so thrilled to be spending time with my kiddos. We’re going to the library and the farmer’s market. There’s swim camp and play-dates with friends. And just that glorious feeling of waking up in the morning and knowing that we really don’t have to be anywhere right away….or maybe not at all!

And I should start tackling some of those projects. Really, I should.

But, why would I organize my craft supplies when the kids could use them to make fairy houses?

making a fairy house

And why would I sort through toys when I can hang out with Agatha Christie and a glass of wine out on our new deck?

book and wine

Why would I spend weekends on making over the kitchen island when I could cheer on my son whose dream finally came true of being on the swim team?


Because here’s what else happens every year. I get to this point in the summer and realize that not only was I ca-razy to think that between all of the summertime comings and goings I would have chunks of time to get projects done, but also that I don’t even WANT to get projects done!

So, I’ve decided that my ‘I should’ list needs some tweaking. In fact, it needs to be thrown out and replaced with a brand new one.

Wanna know what’s on my new ‘I should’ list?

Well, I should let my daughter decorate her own birthday cake.

Ariel cake

I should watch her playing in the sand and wish there were a pause button for my life so I could freeze this moment.


 I should make sure to chronicle the progress being made on the tree house being built in Nonna and Poppa’s woods. It’s going to be awesome and magical and there are going to be some serious sleepovers happening up there!

building a tree house

 I should be ready to come running when my girl says, “Hey Mommy, look what I’m doing!”

And then be ready to push her in her new contraption and laugh hysterically together at the sheer silliness of it all.

inner tubes on swing

I will never look back and be glad that I spent these months organizing my craft supplies or cleaning out the playroom closet or even giving the kitchen island a makeover (but that will get done in the Fall!).

These moments, this summer, will never come again.

So, what I really should be be doing is embracing them. Drinking them in. Reveling in these precious, fleeting days.

Leaning my head back, closing my eyes and letting the warmth of the sun wash over me. Being still.

Now, that’s my kind of ‘I should’ list! How about you?

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  1. I couldn’t agree with you more! You have your priorities straight. Enjoy your summer.

  2. Great post, Vanessa — we’re sadly already back in school here and my to-do list was left to collect dust during our short summer. Maybe next year… or maybe not. :)
    xo Heidi
    heidi @ Decor & More recently posted..I Can’t Resist… Black Frame WindowsMy Profile

  3. Vanessa,

    You are doing it right!! Trust me… I would do anything to sit and watch my boys play sports, dig in the dirt or even take swimming lessons (even though I’m a bit shy around the water). They are now 20 and 24 and summer has a much different meaning. For one it is working on his Doctorate out of state and the other doing research at the college he attends…also out of state.

    So for mom even though I have projects and do work PT outside the home, I find myself sitting and remembering our summers past. Craving those craft making days, fun movie outings, super soaker gatherings to name a few.

    So sit back and enjoy this chapter of your life. After all, a good friend told me long ago, “you are never done”. Those projects will still be there.

  4. I love and admire your “I should list”….you are a great mom and have your priorities in order…they grow up so fast…treasure the memories! Have a great weekend!
    Shirley@Housepitality Designs recently posted..Southern Living 2014 Idea House Tour, It’s a WrapMy Profile

  5. Vanessa, this is so beautiful. I should think more like you. :-)

  6. This is so very true and such a great reminder of how fleeting it all really is. Embrace the moment. I really should have a tattoo of that :)
    Jessica Griffin recently posted..The Summer Of QuietMy Profile

  7. Soon enough they’ll be off to college and your home will be far too quiet! And they will actually have their own lives! So, YES! Be in the moment with them and your husband. Blessings, Karen

  8. So wise, sharing life and making memories … We should always live like this!
    Many blessings,

  9. As I read this post, my children are all grown up and have children of their own…it goes in the blink of an eye! Vanessa you are a wise mommy!

  10. Just goes to show you Vanessa, you are a gal with her priorities in the right place! Believe me your kitchen island will still be there when you are my age!!! LOVE these posts, they take me back and I always get a little misty eyed! xo

  11. This is perfect, and my “I should” list has been very neglected as well. Maybe when they start school I can get around to those things. Maybe. ;) xo
    Claire @ A Little Claireification recently posted..DIY Ocean Sunset Painted Pallet Art & More | Best Of The Weekend PartyMy Profile

  12. What a great post Vanessa! Our kiddos grow up to quickly we need to embrace all these memories!! Have a great week!
    martina recently posted..Flea Market FindsMy Profile

  13. This is a great reminder, Vanessa. It’s so important cherish the NOW, and remember that every day is a gift, which is why it is called the Present. Thanks for sharing :)
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