Our Wild & free summer

Do you remember how vast and infinite summer felt as a child?

I wish the same for my children: the sense that they have an endless string of free days stretching out before them.

Unstructured playtime.

Staying up late, sleeping in.

Getting to be a kid.

We’ve kept outside commitments to a minimum. A week of VBS. T-ball (just an hour a week). And swim lessons next month.

We’ve done little concerted school work. Spontaneous math in the car. Reading lots of books. And for the fun of it, memorizing poetry, starting with “Summer Sun” by Robert Louis Stevenson.

What I’ll remember about this summer are the times we felt wild and free.

Catching frogs, picking berries, riding in a canoe.

Homemade popsicles. Watercolor paint. Forts made of boxes and blankets.

A moonlit walk to the pond.

Mother-daughter drawing lessons in the quiet of morning, before the siblings stir.

“Blue and glowing days.”

Summer Sun

Great is the sun, and wide he goes
Through empty heaven without repose;
And in the blue and glowing days
More thick than rain he showers his rays.

Though closer still the blinds we pull
To keep the shady parlour cool,
Yet he will find a chink or two
To slip his golden fingers through.

The dusty attic spider-clad
He, through the keyhole, maketh glad;
And through the broken edge of tiles
Into the laddered hay-loft smiles.

Meantime his golden face around
He bares to all the garden ground,
And sheds a warm and glittering look
Among the ivy’s inmost nook.

Above the hills, along the blue,
Round the bright air with footing true,
To please the child, to paint the rose,
The gardener of the World, he goes.

-Robert Louis Stevenson