Summer is officially here, but if you are like most of us, it’s already in full swing at your house. Graduations are done, the kids are out of school and it’s time to make those summer plans. OR not.
Why not this year, instead of planning, shoot for spontaneity?
Spontaneity rules at our house. Yes, sometimes it does lead to a bit of stress, and a time or two of chaos, but it’s a great ride.
The closest beach to our house in North Carolina is almost 4 hours away. Many Saturday mornings or late Friday evenings we’ve been known to look at each other and say, “Hey! Let’s go to the beach!”
We will race around, throw a few things in a backpack, grab snacks, make arrangements for the dog and get on the road. Sometimes we’ll spend the night; other times we’ll make it a daytrip. Yes, a 4-hour each-way day trip.
Why? Why not?
I was raised in a family that loved the “Sunday Drive”. Mom would make fried chicken, mashed potatoes and other items for an amazing picnic. All seven kids would pile into the station wagon and off we would go. Where? Anywhere. When we got hungry, we’d find the nearest park and have our picnic. Crazy? Yes. But fun, and wonderful memories.
My husband comes from a similar background, so we keep those memories going forward with our own versions of the “Sunday Drive”.
Last summer, it seemed like it rained every weekend, and we were anxious to go camping. One Saturday afternoon the sky cleared and my husband and I looked at each other and said, “Camp On!”
Sure it was already two p.m. but there was a great state park campground only thirty minutes away. This park is well loved so the campsites fill-up quickly. The internet showed only two possible open sites, so we knew we needed to hurry. We grabbed the tent and raced to the campground. Our idea was to establish our spot by putting up the tent, then return home and pack the food and the stove and the rest of the camping supplies. Sure enough, when we arrived, we had the choice of only two sites, and a car was right behind us to take the spot we didn’t.
After we set up the tent, we went back home to get the stove and food. Looking at the less than desirable camping food in our refrigerator, we realized we would have to stop at the grocery store. Unfortunately by now it was after five p.m. By the time we would buy food, drive back to the campsite, and set up the stove, we would be eating very late. No one wanted that, so we bought fried chicken, and side dishes at the grocery store, and ate at the picnic table outside out tent. It wasn’t as nice as cooking on a campstove, but it served it’s purpose. We did have a fire, roasted marshmallows, but the best time was just being together, playing board games late into the night.
So this summer, when you are sitting around the house worried that you don’t have any plans, think of us. Jump in the car, head to the beach, head to the mountains, grab your tent or just go on a picnic. Be spontaneous!