Friday, June 10, 2005

A warm breeze

Did you ever have one of those days or even moments when you say, “Wow, my life sure has changed....”

I’m having one of those moments now.

DS John is down at the lake fishing with a friend.
DD Colleen just put on her suit and said See ya, mom. I’m going for a swim.

Then a warm breeze floated in through the door and I got a flash back to our earlier lake days....

First of all, everyone had to have their naps. No cranky kids were going to the lake... But before nap time was over, and it was time to pack the car (sand toys, chairs, drinks, floaty things, etc). Then after nap time everyone found a clean swimsuit, (well - kinda) slathered on lots of sunscreen, grabbed towels, got buckled into the car seats, rode down to the lake, and tumbled out of the car. (Not a far drive, but too long to walk hauling all that gear and two toddlers) Once at the lake, the kids were warned not to set even a tiny toe in the water until I had the car unpacked. OK, the beach essentials were finally on the beach, the inflatable’s were all inflated, and it was only - what - maybe 4:00. And it was finally time to get in the water. I’ll tell you, some days I was tired before I got there!

Is it easier now? You betcha! Do I have as much fun? Sometimes - like I enjoy a nice leisurely swim with my husband, without worrying if someone is watching the kids. And I love being able to grab a beach chair and a towel and a book and walk down to the water. It’s like being a teenager again! But I have really great memories of when the kids were little, too.

The thing I miss the most is the group of families we used to hang out with. We were all mothers with young kids, and we had very similar schedules, so around 3PM you’d start to see this family or that family heading to the lake. It was the place to meet - for the kids and us. And dinner? Who worried about dinner? Some nights, if enough husbands were on a late shift, we’d order dinner together and have it delivered to the beach. Or we’d have a clean-out-the-fridge night and we’d all bring down whatever leftovers were handy. Then there was cocktail hour...Need I say more? We wouldn’t get loaded (we had small children in the water, after all) but we’d get loose. Sometimes we’d stay till almost dark. Then put everyone and everything back in the car till the next day. Herd some tired kids into the house, drop them into the tub to get off the lake sand and whatever else they got into that day off, then a little TV watching and bedtime.

Now the kids are still up and I’m in bed! They probably want to send me to the lake so I’ll go off to sleep earlier and quit bugging them.

Now we moms just don’t see each other as much. Most of us have gone back to work, and our kids are going in so many directions... those lazy weekdays together are few and far between. Weekends we work around the house and since there are no little ones clamoring to swim, sometimes we just kind of forget to go. Pitiful, I know. Especially since I see the lake from almost any window in my house. But my life had changed.

Funny that it took a warm breeze coming in the window to make me think of that.

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