you know summer holidays are inevitably drawing to a close when you start getting the usual e-mails from parents, inquiring when the first lesson of the school year will be! it’s happening, you guys.
i have had such a lovely summer back home in the united states, though. we’re currently in eastern michigan for our last days, but am already reflecting on what a time it’s been! above, i’m pictured at the american camp beach on san juan island (washington) with my natural camping hair, and i’m kind of digging that vibe. it doesn’t necessarily reflect the attitude of the rest of this post, but i just kind of love it and wanted to stick it here.
these trips home – they’re so much fun but yet so so exhausting. only the expat (or out-of-stater, or immigrant, etc) will know what it’s like to try to fit in a visit with every single person in your life who matters to you in a matter of weeks (or in some cases, days). as if i needed an excuse to read even more, i began taking even more solace in books and reading.
i usually share photos and memories from the entire summer in mid-september as sort of a seasonal wrap-up, but why not put a few here a little early. august has been incredible. we ended july and started august with a bit of camping in a beautiful big bell tent. although we had another stint of camping a couple weeks later, this was just quiet, two-person camping. i pored over a national geographic magazine for two hours sitting in the middle of dense woods by myself as daylight filtered in and out between the leaves and i listened to the birds. that is my idea of camping, these days! what bliss!
the campfire smells, herbal mosquito-repellent oil. combing the forest floor for trinkets, stones, feathers. sea smells at the beach, tide-pooling. getting so much sun my eyes even start to ache and my hands and feet turn brown. driving around, exploring an island i had last been to about a decade ago. animal visitors in the middle of the night (scaring the pee out of you!).
the dance of sun in the tent in the early morning, and wanting to get right outside as to not miss a single minute of that precious summer morning.
the sweet smell of cedar and berries walking through a forest. besides catching the smell of an ocean breeze, i think that is my favorite northwest smell. the smell of home. and who knew one could miss the caw of a gull so much! i did not. the sound of the ferry as the islands zip by on your way home… back to your own island for a reprieve from the sun.
laying on a paddle board, watching the shore go by, spotting jellyfish and kelp. clouds moving in and out.
these are some of the softer, quieter moments of the summer.
my summer has not been only quiet moments, of course. i think most of those moments were quite amplified, really! but it’s nice to come back to the quiet ones when the noise intensifies.
it’s always tough to see the last days of august (a teacher’s favorite month!) pass by. but man, did we do it the best we knew how this time.