My summer happiness list

photo-67After a long cold winter, there’s nothing like being able to spend long, lovely days getting outside as much as possible. Here’s what’s making me happy now:

Trail runs. There’s a 3-mile loop near my house that goes through the woods. I have to pay enough attention to the roots, mud, and occasional fallen tree that my mind pretty much goes blank as I run along, which is kind of nice. The sunlight streams through patches between the leaves. I cross a creek. The other day when I ran the route, the whole woods smelled of honeysuckle. 

Strawberry picking. We went last weekend to Linvilla Orchards, about 25 minutes from the house. The strawberry season is short and sweet. We’ve been gorging our selves ever since on berries so ripe they’re red all the way through.

Sitting on the porch. With the trees all filled in, I can barely see the neighbors. Up on my porch — on what seems like the second floor over the walk-out basement — there’s a nice view of the trees, the sky, and the hill down to the river. Sunset is especially nice. Sometimes my 3-year-old will snuggle with me on the sofa as we watch the sky turn red and pink, much like the roses and peonies now in full bloom.

Working at home. Even a third edit on a piece I’m sick of feels nicer sitting on the porch (see above).

Dips in the pool. My 6-year-old has turned into a little fish. I think my 3-year-old will be soon. My toddler has become quite enamored with the “quack quack” — an inflatable penguin she rides around in.

Quick bike rides. Thanks to the Memorial Day bike purchase, in 15 minutes, I can do a 2-mile loop through the neighborhood. It’s an exhilarating way to clear my head.

Barbecue leftovers. We’ve grilled the past two weekends for guests, and had enough leftovers that I’ve been eating grilled steak and fresh strawberries for lunch most days. How decadent is that?

Little girls’ sundresses with diaper covers. 

Knowing there are still three months of summer left to go. All the beach trips and seafood dinners and get togethers are yet to come. Each day — each 16-hour sunlit day — is full of possibility.

What about the new season is making you happy these days?

(Apologies to my Australian readers. You can tell me what about winter is making you happy…)

7 thoughts on “My summer happiness list

  1. I’m having a love affair right now – with jasmine. It’s in full bloom (and a full month early this year, too) and everywhere I go, the scent wafts through the air.

    Being from the east coast, I’m accustomed to (and wistfully miss) the smell of lilacs tinting the early spring air but here in Northern California, the jasmine is taking over. And take over it does – literally growing on sides of fences and forming jasmine walls!

    Definitely enjoying that as well as my backyard hammock – complete with its own drink holder!

  2. I’m always confused by people talking about summer so early because here in Seattle it doesn’t start until after July 4 😉 We have gotten some nice weather here and there, so we’re not totally deprived this year.


  3. June is the Friday night of summer !!!!

    Life is also in the details and small stuff !

    Like this post !
    BBQ leftovers rock ! — nothing like a next-day hamburger from a 9 p.m. cookout – especially if it is home made with good meat !

  4. ROAD TRIP! Ever since 2009 when I started having ‘summers off’ due to change in employment, the kids and I pick an area of the country and hit the road. We get great books from the library so everyone gets a chance to pick their own favorites. We also try and secure lodging with as many friends & family as possible to keep costs way down. This summer we’re doing the Carolina’s over the course of 5 weeks with brief stops in GA & VA. Oh, and of course catching up on my reading…so many books, so little time.

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