Johnny has a shirt that says “Summertime and the livin’ is easy”. Not sure there’s a better way to sum up our summer. We opted out of any travel (besides camping) and soaked in every sunny day at Mellor Ranch.
It began with endless worm hunting instigated by Johnny. I can’t tell you the amount of hours this kid has spent looking for worms, bugs, grasshoppers, fuzzies, etc. By the time preschool started, he was lead zoologist for the first couple of weeks as he personally collected crickets to feed the class pet, Sprinkles, a spotted gecko.
Johnny’s worm skills also came in handy when we planted our garden. Oh the garden… We gave that garden plenty of love and attention all summer. We were successful with carrots, peas, and way too many greens. Our tomatoes froze … two different batches. Right before harvesting the strawberries, we had a visit from the local wildlife and overnight they were gone. We think it was the deer which makes us feel better about not biting into a fresh, homegrown strawberry. There’s always room for garden improvement next year.
Onto the annual hay cutting holiday our family has created. As usual, it was enjoyed thoroughly by all. To sow, harvest, and reap is deeply rooted in our blood and I think our kids are starting to get it too. The very dry winter, spring, and even summer made for 50% fewer bales than last year but they were happily given away to a neighbor friend with some hungry cows.
The next memorable moment of summer would have to be our camping trip to Ferron. We drove four hours to a very special place in the mountains above Manti where my family has gone camping for almost 40 years and where John’s dad once roamed as a sheep herder. It’s a family reunion with plenty of cousins, dirt, fishing, bonfires, squirrels, 4-wheelers, and time away from WiFi. We — four humans and one dog — snuggled together in one tent for two nights and I’m still giggling about those special bonding moments. Our kids enjoyed this as much as any trip to Mexico or Europe which makes the hard work worth it and satiates the craving of connecting with our roots.
Another memory seen below is a group of photos from all of our dinners spent outside. Thanks, John, for capturing this one. We ate outside almost every night and enjoyed hours of conversation until sundown. We loved hosting friends and family AND opening that second bottle of wine many times. Ahh… we will live for those summer nights all winter long.
Things to remember: Johnny riding his bike at 3 years old, Charlotte’s awesome summer camps at Swaner, biking, and theater, the dinner bell, landscaping, summer concerts (Amos Lee), mud, our squad, bees, lemonade stand, Charlotte and Johnny’s hideout, taking a lap, hiking to the bench, Star Wars, crickets, mud pies in the creek, Tino weekends, magpie hunting.