While many people mark Labor Day as the official "end of summer", I always associate "end of summer" with the Clay County Fair. Most county fairs occur during the dog days of summer but Clay county (my hometown) always hosts its fair in the middle of September. It actually comes after the state fair, which is pretty unusual.
Anyway, the CCF wound down this past weekend and now I can reflect a bit about our summer.
This summer I continued to take C to daycare in the mornings for a few hours. I struggled with this decision for the majority of the summer. I felt guilty about taking him to someone else when I was going to be home. I felt guilty pulling weeds, exercising, painting, cleaning, re-organizing, etc. because it was time I could be with my kid and was choosing not to. Sooooo many people have told me to enjoy every second of tiny toddler time because it's gone so quickly. Soooo many people have told me, "Long days, Short years! Enjoy them!" Sooooo many people have told me that once he can ride a bike, he'll never want to be around and I'll miss him. But few people have ever said "Take some time to really clean your house. Take some time to work in your yard. Take some time to actually get back in shape." And really, those things help me feel like "ME". [And I know a LOT of mothers (and fathers) who "love having their kids around" but really don't spend much time with them-- as the parents are busy getting things accomplished while their children entertain themselves elsewhere in the house.] But honestly, being away for C for a few hours each day made the minutes I spent with him that much sweeter in the afternoon.
So what did we do? Well.....
June: Cousin's B-day party, 3 days in St. Louis area, Maddy got stitches, I went to a counselor conference in Mnpls for 3 days, Maddy got a cone on her head, I completed a sprint triathlon, C & I were in a parade.
July: M went to our cottage for a guy's fishing trip, C & I went to DM for a weekend & Icubs game, C & I met Sister & cousin in Ia City for a weekend, the 3 of us hung out at a friends' lake & C had his first boat ride, the 3 of us went to an art festival, C & I went to W'loo Children's museum, C & I went to Spencer & Arnold's Park, C & I were in a parade.
August: Mom & Dad visited, went to a W'loo baseball game, the three of us went to our cottage in Wisc, and school started.
Sept: M & I went up to Mnpls, C went to Spencer, C was in another (final) parade, C & I started Kindermusik, the 3 of us went to a baby b-day party, I completed another sprint tri, the 3 of us headed up to Spencer for a family photo and some CCF time! This week I'm scrapbooking with friends on Friday night, we have Kindergym on Saturday, I have my High School Speech Association Judge renewal class next Wednesday, and the family ISU tailgate is on the 29th.
And randomly throughout the summer we: had picnics, went to the pool, went on walks, played on the swing set, made cookies, made pancakes, ate ice cream cones, rode a balance bike, rode a tricycle, went for bike rides, played basketball, played baseball, ran on the tennis courts, slid down slides, went barefoot (a lot!), read tons of books, painted rocks, painted toe nails, did crafts, visited 3 different libraries, went out to eat, and took naps. Lots of naps.
So even though C spent time with his friends almost every morning this summer, we have definitely had plenty of time to capture memories together and finally, I'm getting over the guilt.