September officially arrived, and with it closed the door on summer. Luckily we still had many warm days in September, but I was sad to see it go. I had such an amazing season! Probably the best summer I can remember. I know I have mentioned this a couple times recently, but it really has been great being home with Charlie, not working, and taking advantage of the warm sunshine anytime I wanted. You all know that by now, but I felt like the moment deserved special attention.
I hope to always remember the fun times I shared with Charlie this summer. Though it was not his first summer, it kind of felt like it. Charlie was born June 19th, and so last summer we were pretty much boarded up inside all day. Neither of us saw very much of the sun. So this year kind of felt like the first “real” summer. When we weren’t visiting my mom, my Aunt Erin, or Nancy, we were out on adventures. We went to the park probably three times a week. Since Charlie was napping twice a day, we usually went after his first nap around 1:00 PM and left by 3:00 PM. We would usually go to Veterans Park or Discovery Park. Discovery Park was the favorite because it had it great big loop around the big fields and so I would walk Charlie in the stroller around it once or twice, and then head to a shady spot by the playground. Over the span of the summer, it was fun to see him progress from crawling around the grass to walking up and over the wooden step that separates the grass from the playground. I would try to put him in the kiddie swing, but he just hated it. He was always too scared to just relax and enjoy it. Such a sensitive little guy. Sometimes I would put our blanket more in the sun so I could sunbathe while Charlie discovered what was around us. I even read a book a few times.
If I was feeling more ambitious, I would take Charlie to Seven Peaks. Of course, I would rather have someone go with me and Charlie, but that was rarely an option. So we went on our own. I was nervous the first time, but I was determined to prove to myself that I could do it. And it worked out just fine. The trick was going first thing in the morning, right when it opened. That way you could find a shady spot before the park got packed with people. The Pass of All Passes is great, but everyone else loves it too….so there are way too many people there in the afternoons. The parking is a joke! We would go to the Provo one and would always have to park a few blocks down. It was quite the trek. We would start in the youngest kiddie pool area, and I would help him walk along the edges. By the end of the summer, he wanted to brave the play area, so he would make me walk him up the steps (all the while being blasted with freezing water), up to the slide, and then turn around and walk back down the steps. And then repeat….several times...until I was too cold and had had enough. He would whine while I took him away, but was quickly distracted by walking on the cement. For some reason, he loves the cement. He would choose the cement 100% of the time over the grass. After the kiddie area, we would head to the wave pool. I would try to get him to wade in the shallow area or “jump” over the waves with me, but that would only last a short while, until he wanted to walk to the tiny step to get out of the wave pool area, and then walk back and forth along the step and the cement. There were a couple times when I would get a tube (like when Camry joined us once, and when Jason would come), and he seemed to enjoy pushing it around or standing in the middle of it. When Jason came along, we would go in the lazy river. To our complete shock, Charlie allowed us to sit him in our laps while we floated along the river. There were whiney moments, but for the most part he enjoyed the ride. It was great! When it was just me and Charlie, we would usually leave by 11:30 AM. At that point, we had had our fun and it was time for a nap.
Usually on the weekends, or weeknights when Daddy was home, he would request we go up the canyon. As you saw, we did several BBQ dinners up the canyon, and they were always a treat. But even when we didn’t cook dinner, we had a great time taking walks along the trails while Daddy fished nearby. Some of our favorite places to go were the Timpanogos Trail, Mutual Dell, and South Fork Park. The temperature was just right. We could escape the heat of the valley and enjoy the beauty of nature.
South Fork Park:
For how often we went outside, you would think I would have gotten a better tan. But I guess when you have a baby to look after, you are more concerned that they are not too hot and not getting sunburned than you are about getting a tan.
It was the simplest of summers, and it was the greatest of summers. I know we will have many more to come, but there is just something so wonderful about being able to share it with just one other. I imagine with more kids, it will be fun, but a little hectic. Charlie and I got to take it easy at our own pace. And I just loved that! Of course we did countless other things this summer, but these summarize the typical summer lifestyle for me and the Bubs.
Goodbye Summer! We will miss you tremendously!