June 14, 2013

Summer So Far

We are almost two weeks in to summer and in some ways I can't believe it has already been two weeks but on the other hand it feels much longer.

Before I get to summer though, let me just take a moment to brag on Emma who finished up the school year by making High Honor Roll. I'm not much of a bragger because bragging is obnoxious. So prepare for my obnoxiousness. I've never mentioned that this girl has been in the High Ability program at school since third grade and is an A student. This year brought some extra challenges with having some not great teachers and really challenging changes. She really worked to accomplish her goal of straight A's and I'm very proud of her hard work and determination. To me it's not so much about the grades, it's about putting in the full effort! Way to go Emma Grace!

We are getting used to our new routine here, having small adventures and enjoying the relaxed schedule. We are finding time for tree climbing and exploring the river that runs behind our house.

We spent some time at Grandpa's farm in Missouri where we get to experience a completely different kind of life and spend some quality time with this guy.

Em is in her element there, driving the gator, exploring

 and eating as many strawberries as she can pick.

We've also carved out time for gazing at the clouds on a quilt in the backyard

 and for picnic lunches, don't forget the lemon bars please!

There have been rousing games of trouble on the front porch where everyone is required to participate, including dogs and college age daughters who no longer live at home, take summer classes, work 2 jobs but who still find time to come home and eat regularly every week!

There has been plenty of crafting, but sadly it has all been from Emma who is currently obsessed with all things dollhouse and miniature and can be found making a mess in my studio every day. I plan on spending the afternoon in there today while she is playing at a friend's house to balance things out.

There has even been time for cat naps.

We are not people who enjoy being busy. We love our small, quiet life. Last night we sat on the back porch listening to the trees rustling and the noises of our little Village and were just perfectly content to stay right there. So far this summer has been everything I had hoped it would be. For me, the small moments are actually the big moments. They are the bits that gather up to tell the story of our lives.

I hope you are also enjoying your summer so far.


  1. Jen,
    It all sounds perfectly lovely - I am hoping for days like that for us....TODAY is the last day of school!

  2. I'm with you! Being busy is so overrated!

  3. Looks like a great summer already! Ours begins in 12 days ( I'm not counting or anything!) and I can't wait to o a whole lot of nothing ( except camping, painting, crafting, hiking, picnic-ing.....) too.
    Congrats to Emma on a successful year at school!

  4. you captured that summer chasing fireflies across the lawn feeling and put it in a blue mason jar for your readers with this post. thank you!

  5. I wish for a whole long summer just as you have described. Emma is a lovely girl, very Jane Austin-like. I am glad you have time to enjoy your girls. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Congratulations to Miss Emma-Brava! Am glad your summer is off to such a great start...with hopefully many more beautiful days to come~ENJOY!

  7. Jen, I love your comment, we are not people who enjoy being busy.
    That describes my hubbie and I perfectly too. (may have to change it a bit
    and use it with a lazy blog post of my own). Happy weekend!

  8. Time at grandpas, crafting, just sitting and enjoying life . . . sounds pretty good. Cherish the time - she will be off to college before you blink.

  9. I love the " laziness" of summer. I have to ask, what part of the country says "brag ON," instead of " brag ABOUT? I have to admit, Iam not familiar with that expression.

  10. I love the " laziness" of summer. I have to ask, what part of the country says "brag ON," instead of " brag ABOUT? I have to admit, Iam not familiar with that expression.

  11. I don't know about other areas, but, in the South, "brag on" is used interchangeably with "brag about." I think it is so interesting that there are still dialects that are particular to only certain regions of the country.

  12. Sounds like a perfect summer so far, though technically it's not summer - it's still spring! Like you, I'd much rather have a quiet life than a busy one. xoxo

  13. I love those making memories days. Such fun to be had with your daughter! I love the picnic, I wish I was there!

    I loved your comment on my blog about doing the pots when I come ;)) I wish I could!!


  14. I love your celebration of the simple life. I am working myself on trying to simplify more and more. I really don't like to be busy, and yet somehow I always am. You inspire me. Oh yes, and those lemon bars look sooooooo good! ~Angela~

  15. hey momma...everything is as pretty and delightful as always. i used to never "brag" about my children....until i read a lot about how much children love to be praised by their parents in front of others....and what a good feeling it is for them to know their parents are proud of them and that they want to share it with others....it's a fine line, huh? especially praise for doing things....but then i praise them for good character traits too, which are more important to me anyway. i still kinda worry about it, but i found myself worrying more about what other adults think of me instead of focusing on how much joy and self-satisfaction of accomplishment i see on my children's faces when i share their braggable moments. i decided i care more about how my kids feel than what adults think about me....but i still worry a little. each child is different, of course....but it's something to think about it. just another "way" of looking at it. certainly not the "right" way, but it's my way...today. (feel free not to publish....but this topic is something i'd love to discuss over tea!!! on my hypothetical visit with you!! haha!) love and blessings!!! xoxo.

  16. p.s. i'm pretty sure i could eat a whole pan of lemon bars. yum!

  17. This is something to "brag about!" Congrats to your sweet Em!! Enjoy all those slow moments - they are worth celebrating!


  18. Emma, you're amazing! Keep up the great work and it will pay off ten fold someday! Thank you for taking me on your dollhouse tour last week, I was so inspired and impressed!

    Sis, I hope your back feels better soon, I miss you like chocolate cake!=)

  19. Oh what a lovely summer you are having, I love it! You know how to celebrate the season. :) Kit

  20. glad you are having a wonderful summer! i am finding mine way too busy already and am yearning to slow down. i'm hoping for more of that in july and august! hope you continue to have a relaxing, happy summer!


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  22. I'm not a fan of "busy" either...hard to slow it down somedays. Happy Summer!

  23. hi jen,

    i love to read your writing. it's beautiful.

    i am stunned at how emma has grown! i believe she's 12, like my jonah, correct (who also made high-honor roll, thank you very much). wow. time flies.

    swooning over the floral fabric on the embroidery hoop and that lemon square thing. yum!

    happiest summer wishes


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  25. Congrats to Emma for such a successful school year. She looks so happy and pleased with herself. It must be so wonderful to have natural growing strawberries to feed your little Emma with. Thanks for the update.

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