five for friday: soaking up summertime

During deployment, I have a habit of trying to force time to speed up, if only to get one day closer to having Ryan back home with us. I embodied this during our last deployment, and I wished nearly every second of it away. Perhaps it’s my old age catching up with me, or the fact that each passing day means Mieke is just a wee bit older, but I’m really doing my best to slow down and just enjoy every moment. Instead of hoping for fall days and a homecoming still three+ months off, I’m soaking up summertime and enjoying the chaos and crazy as it comes our way.

I remember feeling so crippled last time Ryan left. Over the months, I learned to venture out more with the boys, but it took time, and those months in limbo were, more often than not, spent doing very little than wallowing. This past weekend in Portland was so good for my soul. Having a good friend with us made it possible to go to a great friend’s wedding, and taking that first trip with all three further fueled my desire to get out and enjoy the PNW while we’re here.

It’s funny to think that having three children during this deployment seems far less terrifying than the two we had last time. There’s a little bit of peace to it, I think. The boys entertain each other so well. They play, they fight, they cause a ruckus, and they’re almost always up for an adventure. Mieke’s my mellow little bean and, while she doesn’t have a choice really, for the most part, she just rolls with the punches while we get out there and enjoy soaking up summertime and having fun.

I sat down the other day and wrote out five little goals for these last few months of the deployment, and I wanted to put them out there to the world, thus confirming that they will happen. Here we go…

  1. Take a proper me day; go get my hair done and relax (don’t just spend the day running errands!)
  2. Visit at least two more local beaches – one’s on the docket for this weekend
  3. Have a picnic somewhere fun
  4. Make homemade ice cream with the kids – I have to share more about this because it is too fun
  5. Do something spontaneous

I make a lot of plans during deployment, but some of the best fun comes from spontaneity. While Portland required a little bit of planning, it was also a knee-jerk “YUP” response in which I decided it would happen, and I made it happen. Soaking up summertime in the PNW means enjoying the sunshine before it’s gone, basking in the warmth, and exploring before the grey skies come back for fall. So, cheers to enjoying the little things and another beautiful weekend ahead!