Forever Young – Joan Baez
There is a tradition in South Africa of finding a beautiful scenic spot and having a sundowner. It can be as simple as chips and a gin and tonic, or a full appetizer braai (barbecue) and drink selection. There is only one common denominator, a beautiful location in which to take in God’s beauty in a painted sunset in the mountains. On days like Sunday when I paused to watch the sun set here in Texas, I realize how much I miss of each day. Why does it take different surroundings to cause us to appreciate the magnificence of a sunset or the smell of rain, or the sweetness of cold watermelon?

I keep going back to a place in my mind when every day was like that. I remember the smells. I remember the good feelings of being hot, tired, and magnificently satisfied with my sweaty self at the end of a day. It was summertime. Days were filled with work and errands in the morning, then playing outside with Kool Aid and balls and forts and bikes. We’d come in for dinner, and go right back outside until “dark-thirty,” a few minutes before the darkness actually set in. I remember crickets and fireflies, and good days when the boys didn’t pick me last for the kickball game in the neighbor’s front yard. Summertime was about friends and fun and family.

Today, school is officially out. I don’t see a lot of kids out playing like that anymore. I understand they have Wii© instead, where they exercise virtually to the TV, and spend days more structured, but I do wish the fullness of those sweet days of summer for our children. I think I will plan now to have my own summer vacation and shake things up around here a little. I might start with a sundowner then head out to catch some fireflies in a jar. What are your favorite memories as a child? What do you like to do now in the summer? Do you have plans for a vacation, or maybe one you can take in your own backyard, watching the sun go down and slowing down long enough to see His beauty? I wish that for you.

Sunsets in the Waterberg Mountains of South Africa


9 thoughts on “summertime

  1. When I was young, the days lasted forever….. we would play and ride our bicycles, come home for lunch and out again…. I guess just the fact that we had no worries, no one depending on us, and those days were wonderful and carefree! Coming from Canada, also the seasons seemed to last far longer…. now Fall comes, and very soon the leaves are off the trees; thanks for letting me remember those sweet days of youth!

    Love ya

  2. What do I remember? Koolaid popsicles made in plastic popsicle holders, the red and white check tablecloth on the picnic table outside, trying to keep up with the boys, catching fireflies and turtles, climbing trees and sleeping out in the backyard, coming home so sweaty and dirty that my mother sent us straight to the tub, then being tucked into bed in “summer pajamas”, with the bedroom windows open to let in the “cool” air.

    We are missing something aren’t we? May your evening be blessed, friend.


  3. My favorite Summer memories was just like you- getting a jar and catching fire flies, playing hide and seek, or just laying there seeing if we could count home many stars in the sky. In Texas that would be hard since your sky is so big but in Lancaster, PA it was so easy! I remember taking in deep breaths and smelling the moisture in the air as the warm breeze blew.

    Oh the old days!

    Thank you for the walk down memory lane Siesta-
    Your Siesta-

  4. Tree forts, making blanket tents against the fence and playing barbies for hours, kick the can and ding dong ditch. We had an awesome neighborhood….I only wish our kids could play with the same innocence as we did.

    Looking forward to a possible trip to France this summer!!!!

    Thanks for bringing back such great memories!

  5. Annie,
    When I was a child we were very pour, and we wern’t a loud to sit and watch TV durning the day… so we played with each other, we ran, skipped, and i was a tom boy so I climbed trees, played cops and robbers, made rubber band guns and we would fight with them… I loved my bike my oler brother built a ramp and I loved jumping my bike off that, then when we moved to Cali, I loved the beach, I learned to surf and boy did I love to tan while reading a romance novel… I miss those times when I was younger… We don’t have a vacation planned other than we are praying the house sells and we will be moving back to Utah… I love sunsets, I love painting them as well…
    I pray that you are having a great day…

  6. I think bike riding is a favorite memory of mine and our annual vacation in Banff with our parents. these days Wayne and I will enjoy sitting out enjoying mellow evenings.

  7. When I was a kid we lived way out in the country and there were no other kids to play with. So I enjoy allowing my kids to have that now that we live in a great neighborhood and they both have friends on our block. My backyard was full of kids last night and they had a blast!


  8. Hey girl…
    Well, I’ll let you know that my boys have had friends over, playing baseball outside, swimming, riding bikes, hunting for frogs and turtles at the neighbors pond….for a solid week now!! Its been a blast!!

    I hope you have a great day today.
    Thanking God for ya!

  9. Many of my favorite memories involve running around the neighborhood playing hide n seek, the plastic pool in the backyard, trips to the library,trips to the beach, and ceramics class at Godwin Park.

    Vacation memories are rafting down the Rio Grande between Creede and South Fork, CO.

    I will spend the Labor Day weekend in South Fork, though I doubt I will raft, the water will probably be too low. I will sit on a boulder in the national forest about the water praising my God and King.

    Blessings to you.


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