Violet, my 7-month-old granddaughter, and I lie on the ground in the backyard, a worn orange polka dot bedspread beneath us. Vibrant green grass surrounds the orange and Violet’s eyes reflect the color of the clear blue sky… or is it the other way around? Awe sinks in and I gasp at the beauty of this moment. This is who I am. This is how life is meant to be lived. This is the perfect essence of summer.
But wait? How can I be resting here with my granddaughter when only moments before I was five-years-old lying on my back watching the clouds drift by? Can you see me? I’m the kid in the green-checked halter top and cut-off jean shorts climbing on my 10-speed bicycle—no helmet or sunscreen—heading to the community pool to cool off with my pals. Where did the girl in the yellow VW convertible go—the one heading to the ball field to watch her lanky boyfriend play summer league? And what about the college cadet driving to South Padre Island with ZZ Top blaring on the radio? Or the married one working in a steno pool, underpaid and under-loved, with a divorce waiting around the corner?
I was twenty-five years old the grueling summer I finished my accounting degree and had to wear panty hose to “dress for success” as the Tulsa temperatures topped 100 degrees for more than 40 days in a row. Summers seemed to melt away after that. Caught up in snippets of company golf outings and ski trips to the lake—obligatory and empty. Decades flew by and I forgot to savor summer.
Even with my own children, I was harried and always in need of getting something done. What could possibly have been more important than lying on the grass under the summer sky? I wish I knew, but today I offer no regrets, only gratitude for now.
Side-by-side, Violet and I touch the grass and let it tickle our toes. I lie on my back and watch the wind blow sunlight and shadows through the maple leaves. Violet flips onto her back into a full-bodied happy dance. I join her. No shoulds or obligations. No fancy toys or iPhones. Only us. Here. Now. Arm in arm with the essentials—sky, earth, wind, sun, and love.
Savoring this perfect summer day.
About the Author – Kayce Stevens Hughlett
Kayce Stevens Hughlett: author, life muse, ponderer extraordinaire, speaker, joy monger, soulstroller.
I prefer to read novels in the summer and non-fiction/memoirs in winter.
I prefer writing with a fountain pen over computer keyboards.
I prefer summer in Seattle over winter almost anywhere.
I prefer Paris over Rome. Big dogs over small. Fluffy cats over sleek.
I abhor that the world is filled with suffering, and I know affliction has helped create the individual I am today.
I thrive on new experiences, adore reading, blogging, and movies ranging from romantic to contemplative.
One of my favorite authors, Anne Lamott, calls laughter “carbonated holiness” and I couldn’t agree more. Belly laughs are manna from heaven and there is nothing better than a well-timed temper tantrum.
Play time with friends and family is sacred, as is quiet space and solitude.
Exciting news! My debut novel, BLUE is releasing on September 10, 2015. I invite you to celebrate this fulfillment of a dream that I never imagined while reading Nancy Drew books on hot summer days.
BLUE—a subtle psychological mind-bender where each heroine is her own worst enemy. Eccentric. Lovable. Unforgettable. Available now for pre-order through Amazon, BQB Publishing, and Independent BookSellers. Release date: September 10, 2015
**Special Offer for Summer Love Notes readers***
Send me a copy of your receipt(s) for 3 or more purchases of BLUE and I will schedule a complimentary Skype Book Club Discussion with your favorite group. Contact me at email@example.com
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