Thursday, August 1, 2013


This is the month when things get back to normal. School begins again in less than two weeks and I think we're all ready for it. The summer vacation is so long (we're currently wrapping up week 11) and it's hard to find enough to do, which inevitably leads to squabbling, unhappy little (and some big) people. I am proud to be a stay-at-home mother and I believe in the value of the work I am doing. But I look forward to having more structure and routine again. I actually want a few more balls to keep in the air, I guess. I don't do well with open-ended, lazy days, it turns out. I feel like I'm jumping out of my skin just waiting for something productive to happen. I usually end up organizing or cleaning things when I feel like that. My kitchen is spotless at the moment.

It's okay. As I've said before, it's probably healthy for me to slow down. Maybe it's not such a good idea to be so structured anyway. And we'll be busy, busy, busy by the end of the month, with music lessons and dance classes resuming too. The lamented home-improvement project is now completed and the family room has been put back together. We have a birthday this month - the Bear's - and he'll be choosing something fun to do to celebrate. I will make my time-honored tiramisu, which is his favorite birthday treat. I'm trying to talk him into a ride on the Sandia Peak Tramway, which is something I'd really enjoy experiencing again. But then I remember that it's not my birthday and maybe I should keep the bossy-pants shtick to a minimum on somebody else's birthday. I'm sure he'll choose something good...but I'll still do a tiny bit of stumping for the Tram.

It's hot, then cool, then sunny, then dismally dark, then it's raining - if it isn't hailing. Isn't this a Katy Perry song?  The weather seems to be going nuts around here lately. The rainfall is greatly appreciated; the hail damage, not so much. But I'm trying to take it in stride; there really is an end to summer in sight. The sun no longer wakes me by piercing my eyes like a laser-beam in the mornings. Thank you, Earth, for rotating like you're supposed to. By the end of the month, we'll have slightly cool-ish nights and mornings. The smell of roasting chiles will be everywhere and I'll be starting to think about the next round of birthdays, for two small Bears who both made their debuts in September.


  1. Hi Jennifer

    It is seems so funny to me that you are back to school in 2 weeks when children in England have only just gone on school holidays. It is hot here again so we need it to cool down as well - no AC here!

    Hope that you have some birthday fun with your family.

    Wishing I could smell those roasting chillies - the thought is making my mouth water.


  2. omgoodness! 11 weeks! omgoodness I doubt I would cope with that, nearly 7 weeks is long enough!
    In answer to your last question, I dont home school but because my little one is not to keen on it (he will be in year 2 when he returns in september) so i thought i would keep his school work going so he remembers what to look forward too!
    its super hot here today! like roasting hot!

  3. Now that is one long summer break! I complain with my two that they have 6 weeks! My Mr Teenager will go back to his last year at school and then has to make the decision on what he wants to do next - trying times ahead!

    I love all your shots of the varying weather you are having - it is pretty similar over in England, one day too hot, the next very wet and then a bit chilly. August is my least favourite month of the year where I am usually going round itching to dig everything up and get ready for, as you said, cooler nights and mornings. September is my favourite month as autumn starts to knock on the door and it's also my birthday month so I get treated for a change!

    I have never roasted chillies so will certainly give them a go when they ripen!

    Take care, Chel x

  4. I am still finding it difficult to grasp the idea that is is already august. We got a mix of weather going on here too.. just no hail.

  5. Oh yes...I remember those summer holidays!!
    3 kids...usually bored out of their skulls!!!
    But I do remember an awful lot of day trips with them...and usually one of their friends!!
    I will never wish Summer away...I still can't believe it is August...already!
    I do love the Fall...very pretty here...leaves turning color,warm afternoon walks...ahhhhhh..
    We only had 8 weeks summer vacation here in Canada...listen to me...ONLY!!!
    Enjoy the rest of your day...

    Linda :o)

  6. Jennifer.thank you so much for popping in to Chalkys and leaving such kind comments. That is a long holiday but I am sure it is one the whole amily will look back upon with very happy memories xx

  7. Hi Jennifer,
    Happy birthday wishes to your husband. The tram ride looks like an amazing experience. Something I'd like to try one day. Enjoy the last days of summer.

  8. I'm not ready for Fall, because Winter comes afterward. :( I really enjoyed your pictures today!

    1. I agree. I think that's why I never get too excited about Fall because I dislike Winter soooo much!

  9. Loved these pics today, Jennifer! Found them to be keenly observant and felt an appreciation for colour and texture and shape. Thanks for sharing!


  10. Lovely intro to August, Heather :) Your photos really spoke to me as did your words. I will be interested to see what The Bear chooses to do to celebrate his B'day :) much your power of suggestion works :)
    Gracie xx

  11. Very lovely photos today! I just received this issue of Sunset and I love it! It is such a nice magazine. I agree that we definitely need more structure to our days. I am looking forward to my daughter starting preschool three mornings a week the end of August... I think we both need it!

  12. This was a lovely post and you made me realise something Jennifer, I too prefer the structure of things!
    At first summer is exciting, then... I just get way too lazy laying around like a loaf with the kids on the computer or tv... I like structure! Yes... yes I do!! Westill have 4 weeks to go!
    Have a great weekend,

  13. Can't believe its August already. Seemed like just the other day the kids got out of school although I'm happy they're going back in 2 weeks. You got some lovely photos! Love that sock monkey. :) Hope you're having a great week and enjoy the rest of the summer!

  14. I'm not ready for summer to be over... :-) But Oregon is so gloomy and rainy a lot, so summer is what I love when it's sunny and warm. Love the sock monkey, did you make it? I've made several, the kids love them. Thanks for the nice note on my post today. I miss my fluffy girl. Hugs, T

  15. awesome photos!!! Summer is flying by.

  16. Wow that is a long time to fill in, we have 8 weeks summer holidays in Australia. Sounds like you are filling your days nicely.

  17. Here in Scotland, term-time starts in a couple of weeks and my darling little pixie-grandaughter will be going to school! Can't believe it. Yes, Jennifer, I'm with you on the open-ended days thingy. I'm on hols as you know and at the start of the week went to help my sister move into her new house and ended up spending two days cleaning her new kitchen!I must be mad. Off into Edinburgh today with my other sister - who has more of that bossy pants shtick than I care to deal with! I'll let you know how it goes! Loved this post and your pics are wonderful. Have a great weekend. x

  18. Hi Jennifer,Seems like there's crazy weather all around!!!We have not even had a winter yet!!!!And September is springtime here in my little corner of the world!!!Global warming!!!What are we doing to this wonderful world of ours??!!!Unfortunately it's even too late to ask that question,isn't it?!!The damage is already done - years ago!!!Have a wonderful weekend!!!

  19. Enjoy the last two weeks off Jennifer, I bet it will fly by. We have had one week off school, and I cannot believe how quickly it has gone! It sounds like the changeable whether is keeping you on your toes, like here! Roasting hot yesterday, dark and gloomy today, I wish it would make its mind up as I don't know if I am coming or going. I know what you mean, I like to have structure too - and the summer holidays always sounds nice, but after a while, it's nice to get the routine going again! Have a great August! x

  20. Lovely photos Jennifer. I'm only in week two of 6 of my daughters summer holiday and its going swimmingly so far, we will see how I am by week 6 haha. 11 weeks is a long time! Enjoy the last two weeks. Like you I'm a stay at home mum x

  21. I remember when my kids were little and how the last couple of weeks of summer were getting pretty darn antsy! Hang in there, they'll be back to school before you know it. And then you'll be back in the thick of homework and extra-curricular activities!

  22. The work of a stay at home Mom is never ending and often draining. When I was home with my little ones I was always so exhausted, you are constantly on.... I dreamed of school days.

    Hugs to you and hang in there, 2 more weeks to go.

  23. What a long break we have only just started our school hols and the little ones have 6 weeks - hope you enjoy the last few weeks and then you can take charge of your days again. Your photos are beautiful you really capture the moment.
    Hope the birthday plans work in your favour
    Sue x

  24. Lovely photos Jennifer. Enjoy these next few weeks as much as you can.

  25. I like the way you wrote about the rhythm of your days. I'm yearning for a few unstructured days at home - I fear we over-filled our holidays this year with visits and plans. You're gearing up for the new school year and we've not even had our family holiday yet! I hope you and The Bear agree on his birthday plans. :-) x

  26. Jennifer,

    It's always a struggle finding that balance. I find that so often it's just out of reach. And then those few days come along when it all just fits. Eleven weeks is an awfully long holiday. I think our six week summer holiday is quite enough. For me and the children.

    Take it wasy Jennifer - even if it means that your kitchen is spotless!!

    Leanne xx


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