We've actually been having summer weather this summer in Maine, something many of you, no doubt, take for granted where you live. If you were reading my blog last summer, you'll remember that 2009 was The Summer That Wasn't in Maine. Rain, rain, rain, followed by very cloudy cool day, followed by rain. June through mid-August. Every damned day. In mid-August we had precisely five summery days, and then it began to cool into fall-like weather. I'm still waiting for my refund check.
2010 has decided to make up for 2009 with a cavalcade of heat and humidity. I walk out my front door and am instantly drenched in sweat. Sitting perfectly still in the shade? Full-body sweat. My best friend has coined a new word: "swass" to describe the lovely combination of sweat trickling down your *ahem* heinie, such that when you stand up you appear to have wet your pants. This is usually accompanied by "swoobs", which I'm betting you can figure out on your own, and I will only hint delicately at by saying that it usually results in having to wring out your bra.
My favorite coping mechanism for the heat is to sit inside in the air conditioning with a glass of iced tea and my Kindle. When my mothering guilt kicks in, I load up the kids and head for the lake.
This is our go-to lake, about 20 minutes north of us. It's kid-friendly (sand beach and a gradually sloping lake bed that provides a huge swimming area that's not scary-deep). It's also mom-friendly (clean bathrooms with FLUSH toilets!). Win-win, except for the having to wear a bathing suit in public part. I just got a cute new one, though, so even that isn't too big of a deal this year.
The girls each brought a friend:
Which didn't stop them from engaging in some light sibling warfare:
The older girls discovered the ruins of an old stone wall way out in the lake, where the water was about eight feet deep. They dove down wearing goggles to examine it and check out the fish swimming amongst the rocks. The younger two, of course, were dying to check it out, but because I have this secret paranoia of someone else's kid drowning on my watch (I've never been the same since reading "Map of the World", an Oprah book from years ago, where a little girl drowns while her mother's friend is watching her), I made them each take a noodle out with them and buddy up with one of the big girls. I kept an eagle eye on them while pretending to read a book.
Side note: do you see how crazy-tan my girls are? This after diligently slathering them with 50 spf sunscreen each time they go out. It's their grandma's Native American blood showing. They're usually both about the shade of a burnished walnut by the time they go back to school. I would have killed for that base back in the day. I remember laying out in the backyard with coconut suntan lotion (not to be confused with sunscreen!) and never wound up even half that tan.