It’s been a while. The last post I wrote was for Wolfgang and Mia and then we stopped filming those too…we have had a lot going on.
It’s summer in Washington State.
Summer is wild here in the Pacific Northwest and we never know how long it’s going to last. We go from drizzly and miserable to “WHAT IS THAT BRIGHT THING IN THE SKY” in the space of weeks.
We have to soak up as much sunshine as we can, like squirrels storing nuts for winter. We let the webs between our toes dry up and we collect freckles like trading cards and we throw our arms wide to take in all the ocean and trees and mountains and fresh beautiful air we can before we descend into darkness again for another half of a year.
We hike and camp and fish and take ridiculous selfies on top of big rocks where we wore inappropriate shoes because nobody told us we were rock climbing.
See, it takes a special person to truly understand the magic of summer in the Pacific Northwest.
You have to create as many memories as you can during Pacific Northwest summers, with outdoor concerts and movies on the wall and parade after parade after parade. There is so much to do that if you’re bored, you’re not doing it right.
Something has to keep you warm in the middle of the winter – and sometimes if you close your eyes and concentrate on those rainy nights, you can taste summer and feel that warmth on your skin.
Summer here means little girls wear butterfly wings and tie-dye dresses and twirl on the village green while I sun myself and pick at my freshly-applied henna paste. Old men in lawn chairs dot my street as I take a late evening walk before bed. The sunsets are glorious riots of color, putting on one last show every day like “you’re welcome for another day of drying out your bones to prepare you for another long winter.”
We weed our gardens and stuff ourselves with wild blackberries. Tables groan under barbecue meals, and peaches make an all-to0-brief appearance in cobblers and pies and on top of ice cream. We rush to capture strawberries and blueberries in jars and freezer bags before they’re gone for another year.
If we realize that this is fleeting, we can gather up as much summer as our arms can take and redistribute it on those winter days where the sun sets at 5pm.
Our summers are magical and all too brief. Before you know it, the kids are back in school and the days get too short to go outside for any marked length of time. Barbecues are cleaned and put into the shed to endure another long dark season. Mulch is delivered and it’s time to get ready for what we are known for here in Washington….rainy days.
The drizzle rolls in around mid-September and our chance to become human solar panels and soak up as much vitamin D as our bodies can handle ends.
But the blackberry jam on pancakes in January is exquisite.