We Aren’t Doing Anything This Summer…

We were sitting in the barber’s shop.
I heard the barber ask our youngest son: So, what have you done so far this summer?

Our son: Done?

The barber: Did you take any classes?

Our son: Nope.

The barber: Did you fly anywhere?

Our son: Nuh-uh…

The barber: Go to the zoo?

Our son: Not yet…

The barber: Take any swim lessons?

Our son: No…but I know how to swim.

The barber: Are you going away to camp?

Our son: We’re going to go camping…

The barber: No…I meant one of those camps where you go away for the week…

I started to calculate how much his tip was decreasing with each question.

The barber: So are you having any fun this summer?

Our son: Yeah…it’s really fun!!!

The barber: Doin’ what?

Our son: We’re doin’ everything.

I smiled.

Because…

We actually are taking swimming lessons…
…and the park is full of amusement.
We are taking surfing lessons too…
(on the grass hill behind our house)
…and an entomology (bug) class.
There is definitely art enlightenment…
…and reading-skills advancement…
…studies in nature survival…
…and life skills instruction.
(summer chore charts)
We are taking in some excellent literary readings…
…and we passed a course on economics.
We’re thwarting obstacle challenges…
…and we are even taking time to get pedicures.
Besides all that…
we pretty much have our own zoo.

So…

While we may not be doing–anything–this summer.

We’re doing enough to call it– everything…

That really matters.

And sometimes you just need a Selah Summer.

Selah–”to pause and value”

We’re pausing.

We’re valuing.

We’re resting.

We’re doing a bit that is planned.

A bit that includes structure.

A bit that involves travel.

But for the most part, we’re just hanging around.

And there are a few days when I feel a little guilty about that.

That’s why our little guy’s response made me smile.

Because it’s true–

When you just stick around and do a lot of nothing….

There’s a whole lot of time for everything else.

So if you’re already a bit wiped out by trying to do it all….

There’s still time…

For you to do nothing.

And a whole lot of everything too.

 

May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face to shine upon us,
Selah

that (His) way may be known on earth, (His) saving power among all nations.

~Psalm 67

 

Sharing with thanks over at: Jenni Mullinix
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Comments

  1. Yes yes yes! We are too. Thanks for the validation of doing everything and nothing .

    • Yes! You got it!
      That’s the whole point for me in this!..not that the classes are bad (we do those sometimes too) and trips can be super meaningful…but that I don’t want to buy into thinking summer is only “successful” if our schedules are crazy packed.

      And I do think it’s true that if we are “on the go” all the time…the kiddos have a hard time wanting to dig in and be creative around here.

      This is what I shared with Kim (above) and I know it wouldn’t be happening if we were super busy. And I love that it is happening :)

      They are making a “spy movie” (I haven’t seen it yet) with the neighbor kiddos (and anyone else who happens to be around that day) and they’ve probably logged 40+ hours working on it. Writing the script, doing retake after retake…even have their own “bloopers”…but it takes time to set up and take down the “set” and if we were always on the go, I don’t think they’d dig in and work on something like that.

      And on Monday, they literally worked on their tree fort (with friends) from 10am until around 4:30 (except for lunch and when they got busted for an incident involving the mud-”cement” they were using for their “landscaping” :)

  2. HopeUnbroken says:

    love this, kara!!! and much the same here. although a lot more indoor stuff, as it’s been so stinkin’ hot!
    looks like you’re having the best sort of summer there is to be had. and it feels like it’s passing by all too quickly!
    have a great day!
    steph

    • The kiddos and were just saying the same thing…feels like it’s flying by.
      Saw the “school-supply-area” in Target yesterday and felt the panic set in :)
      Really? Can’t we just enjoy it without jumping ahead for at least a few more weeks? :)

      I wanted to email you about something Steph…going to look for your email.

      • HopeUnbroken says:

        know what you mean, although i have to admit a not-so-secret love for school supplies. brings back warm memories. plus i’m just that kind of person. my kids know this about me and have to keep me from over-buying and spending too much time in the aisles :-)
        my e-mail is on my blog, if you can’t find it elsewhere. would love to hear from you, of course!

        • Heading to the park, but will catch ya at naptime.
          Yet another way we are connected.
          I have “issues” with school supply hoarding.
          Last year 2 friends came and did their “shopping” from my overstock of the previous year. Who wouldn’t by 40 boxes of crayons when they are 12 cents a box. :)

  3. I don’t like this-I love it. I am trying to enjoy summer. I have been purposeful about doing not much for all but 5 weeks of it. We are taking 3-1/2 months off, so, 5 weeks is about 1/3 nuts. Oh well.=)

    • Thanks friend :)
      We’ve had those summers too…
      I’m glad you’re taking that much time off though.
      For me, it’s more about the mentality…not that we absolutely WON’T sign up for stuff-classes-activites (we’re meeting friends at the park this morning) but just that I don’t want to buy into the idea that activity = a meaningful summer.

  4. keltrinswife says:

    I love your sign–welcome to our zoo. Do you charge admission? :) be blessed and enjoy your summer

  5. This is music to my ears, Kara! I know too many families who think a summer is absolutely incomplete unless their kids are enrolled in activities every hour of every day. I find it exhausting to even think about!

    I grew up in the country with 6 siblings. We had three tv channels and of course no computers or electronic toys. We had so much fun, though. We bicycled, we walked, we played, we made things. I have never considered that our summers were bad because they weren’t full of scheduled activities.

    • I love your description of your summers Kim… :)
      It sounds WONDERFUL to me!

      We’ve done classes from time to time and we’ll take road trips every so often and every Wed. we meet some friends at a local park, but there’s just something really good (from my perspective) about that lengthy “down time” when they can really dig in and invest in creative projects.

      They are making a “spy movie” (I haven’t seen it yet) with the neighbor kiddos (and anyone else who happens to be around that day) and they’ve probably logged 40+ hours working on it. Writing the script, doing retake after retake…even have their own “bloopers”…but it takes time to set up and take down the “set” and if we were always on the go, I don’t think they’d dig in and work on something like that.

      And on Monday, they literally worked on their tree fort (with friends) from 10am until around 4:30 (except for lunch and when they got busted for an incident involving the mud-”cement” they were using for their “landscaping” :)

      I love that!

      • A spy movie-how awesomely fun! My brothers spent hours and days creating a Claymation movie, a la Gumby, the California Raisins, and Wallace & Grommet.

        Make sure you put a copy of that movie somewhere safe for viewing many, many years down the road. It will be priceless! :-)

  6. I love this! You really are doing everything! What wonderful memories your family is making. :)

  7. Oh how I loved this!!! So true! And your children will someday be grateful for all that “nothing” that is a whole lot of everything!

  8. So fun, Kara! I love all the nothing you guys are doing!

  9. I love this :) we are doing *everything* this summer as well!!

  10. I love the conversation with the Barber. I think you are indeed having a great summer and making many memories. Blessings to you all!

  11. Kara, I just love this post. More than that, I love the nurturing, motherly heart behind it! “To doing nothing!”

  12. keri lytle says:

    LOL! I just loved this ~> “I started to calculate how much his tip was decreasing with each question.” Sounds like me ;)
    We are also enjoing our summer by doing NOTHING & EVERYTHING too :)

    Keri – A Roadschooling mom of 2 lil explorers

  13. Beautiful reminder to slow down, pause, and delight in the Lord and in each other!

  14. Kara, this was a beautiful post! It was so fun to read. I recently quit one of my jobs due to ethical reasons, but also because it was so overwhelming. I’ve had so much more time to just “be” and take life as the Lord brings it to me. I had the opportunity to babysit for my cousin-in-law’s kids and give him a day off and I couldn’t have just upped and gone if I had been working. I got to work at VBS at church for a week. I’ve had the opportunity to spend more time with my in-laws and to invest in quality Bible-reading time with my husband…all because I stopped trying to do everything and just rested, relaxed, and let the Lord lead. Great lessons!

    • I have a “Hannah Williams” in my life and I tell her over and over she can’t ever get a paying job because she helps me make it through life with all of her support :)
      I love the way you’ve chosen to use this season…

  15. messymarriage says:

    Sounds like you’ve provided the perfect summer for your family. I think there’s so much more joy to be experienced by “surfing” down a nearby hill than riding a roller coaster at an amusement park or finding creatures to discover in the grass of your own backyard than creatures that are caged in a concrete jungle. Keep on doing exactly what you’re doing, Kara! And thanks for sharing a bit about your summer with all of us!

  16. I loved this! Thanks so much for sharing! My heart and our summer is exactly in the same place…doing a whole lot of nothing, but able to do everything! Beautiful!

  17. Amy Ward says:

    Nice! I love your summer! Way to inspire me to take the last few days of summer to Selah. Thanks!

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