If you’ve followed this blog for a while you have probably heard me say a number of times how much I love Summer. It is my FAVORITE season, by far. I love the heat of the sun on me, love to go swimming, love warm summer evenings outside, cookouts, extra sunlight to spend with family, ect. I just love it all!
So, typically when September rolls around I start feeling a bit sad. Well, last year I set out to change that. I feel like what I began has been working and I’m going to share that today, but first, let me back up and tell you how our summer went.
Summer was full of trips to the pool, gardening (boy I still have a lot to learn there), and a staycation that ended up REALLY being a staycation when our family caught hand, foot, and mouth. Yuck! I love the laid-back pace of summer. We break from formal school lessons and shift gears to life lessons.
Since Matthias was born at the end of the summer last year, right as we started up a new school year, there were a lot of things that needed to be done around our house that had fallen behind. I spent a good bit of my free time this summer working on those things, things like organizing my closet, purging out clothes the kids no longer wore, ect.
Speaking of Matthias, he turned a year old at the end of August. I can NOT believe it. His first year was SO fast! He has 7 teeth now, is walking more than crawling, and can say “DaDa” very well. He can also play peek-a-boo and it’s absolutely adorable!
Matthias is the last of the kids to have birthdays in the year, so now I have kids ages 13, 11, 9, 7, 5, 3, and 1.
To be honest, it didn’t feel like we really did anything big this summer. No big vacations or large things to note, but we did a lot of small, everyday life things that felt good. We spent more time with friends and more time with family. It was a good summer that seemed to just fly by.
Oh, we did take family pictures this summer that were way overdue. I am very pleased with how they turned out! The pictures in this post are from our photo shoot with Jael Cheek Photography.
We also had a stray cat show up in July – pregnant. We already had 2 cats and I had(have?) no intention of adding any more but I also just can’t let a hungry animal starve, especially a pregnant one. So, for now this cat has found her way into our home (she kept BEGGING at the door) and we are all on kitten watch. They should be born any day now.
Another notable milestone from this summer – Maggie got braces! It doesn’t seem possible that I could already have a child old enough for orthodontics, but here we are.
Finding Ways to Embrace and Enjoy All of the Seasons
As I mentioned above, I have always hated to see summer come to an end. Last year I decided something had to change. I had been learning a lot about living hygge and decided I needed to work on forming traditions for our family for each season that we could look forward to.
Winter is cold but we all look forward to it for Christmas, right? Well, I decided to take that concept and run with it, with a goal to make every season an exciting and great time.
Fall Movie Traditions
First I wanted to start a tradition of watching a few specific movies every fall. The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown is one we’ve always watched around Halloween/Reformation Day. I also introduced my kids to The Ghost and Mr. Chicken, an old Don Knotts movie.
Growing up in an evangelical Christian family, I was never allowed to watch the Harry Potter films. Now as an adult, my husband and I have decided that we don’t feel convicted to avoid Harry Potter. We have allowed our children to watch the movies (the ones we feel they are old enough for, it varies based on the child). We decided last year that fall would also be the time we watch through the Harry Potter films.
Orin makes butter beer for us and last year we bought gummy frogs that we dipped in chocolate fondue to make chocolate frogs (from the movie). I’m sure we will do that again this year!
Fall Food Traditions
Besides movies, I also wanted to start learning to make a few good recipes that we have frequently in the fall. Our family LOVE football, so almost every Sunday we make these potato chip nachos and this rotel dip recipe to munch on while we watch the games. I also like to make a big pot of this chili recipe throughout the fall months.
More Fall Traditions
Other fall traditions I am looking forward to include getting out our warm, cuddly blankets, hanging out by the fire pit on cool evenings, and trick-or-treating with the kids. I like making these kids Halloween party foods for the kids to eat on Halloween.
This year we are headed to Williamsburg in October. We’re super excited to get away for the week and spend time together as a family. We have been to Williamsburg one other time to visit the Great Wolf Lodge Williamsburg, but we have never done anything else in the area as a family. If you like to visit there, what should we check out?
That’s what’s new in our lives right now. What about yours?