Friday, May 11, 2012
I had a pretty idyllic childhood, growing up in Minnesota.
And as summer approaches, I keep thinking and dreaming of all the things I want my boys to do throughout their summer times.
I want them to fish on quiet, lonely lakes with their grandpa and play t-ball and soccer with their brother.
I want them to run through the sprinklers in their underwear and get sticky from homemade Popsicles.
To get as brown as little Indians, and spend every day in a lake or pool, the ocean when possible.
I want them to go shirtless.
To play in gutter water.
To catch frogs in dark window wells and muddy ponds.
Float homemade boats down streams.
Bike by themselves to buy slushies and snow cones.
To catch candy on the sidelines of parades and eat corndogs at the fourth of July carnival.
I want them to go to family barbecues and picnics, and oh! The road trips!
Listening to books on tape and eating pretzels, driving to visit cousins in California and Minnesota.
Visiting grandparents in Virginia and Arizona. And all the time they're there, just soaking up more sun and getting blonder by the minute.
Those things are important to me.
Patiently turning that first marshmallow until its a perfect, blistering golden brown. Then sticking every consequent marshmallow straight into the fire, because you can't wait another 15 minutes to cook it slowly.
You'll take it, black and chalky on the outside, sticky and hot in the middle. Until you believe that you prefer your marshmallows that way.
So the boys are only 14 months old.
It's too early for naps on the floating dock and learning to bait your own fishing hook.
Not quite time for tree forts or sleeping on the trampoline, catching fireflies and smearing your body with their sticky, glowing juice.
But it's not too early to be barefoot.
To eat bowls of fresh picked strawberries, and drink homemade lemonade by the gallon.
Road trip to California? Check.
Interest bordering on obsession with bugs and worms? Check.
Morning time walks, before breakfast, with pjs still on? Check.
Swamping the canoe in the middle of the lake, and pushing it home underwater?
We'll wait until next year, I guess.
But it's coming.
And I can feel it. I'm excited for it.
Today is my mom's birthday. She and my dad gave me exactly that kind of childhood.
One with happy parents who loved me and each other.
Who gardened in our yard, and made fresh salsa and jam from what they grew.
Who taught me the proper way to dive off the dock, and that anything (anything) off the grill is delicious.
I was, and am, happy.
And I want my boys to be, too.
I want to be a mom like you, Mom.
I love you.