Of Fish, and Friends, and Fresh-Cut Grass: Freezing Summer Fast

Can you hear it?

Burring and whirring hums drone a scratchy constant as our backyard neighbor mows. The sound and fragrance are comforting and peaceful, one of summer’s iconic pleasures. Tracing the contours of his yard, my neighbor’s lawnmower rumbles and roars, releasing the sweet green scent of sliced grass. My sprinkler arcs languidly across the back yard, soaking gardens and flower beds, staining the soil and mulch a rich ebony.

Photo Credit: Flickr User Pearl Pirie, Creative Commons, cc license

On the couch, my green backpack still carries two towels, a dilapidated pair of black and white swim goggles, and Daniel’s folded brown camouflage swim trunks. They smell like chlorine from last week’s swim class, and we look forward to tonight’s session. Crumpled kids’ papers from last week’s church Vacation Bible School program line his room, I know too.

“Summer is a-third over,” Mark teased me this weekend, arcing an eyebrow at me.

“No, don’t say that! It’s just three weeks in,” I said, revising and constructing my perspective.

In a season that flies by, I’m trying to freeze time, savor every moment, and live fully present.

At a graduation party this last Sunday, we sprawled on lush grass in groups, balanced bratwursts on our laps, and branched into conversations with the people around us. That Thursday morning in the hallway outside a church sanctuary where one hundred-seventy children and volunteers performed hand motions to lively worship songs, I curled up knees and leaned my head close to hear her.

“Jennifer, you have to meet Tonya,” they had said, and now here we were.

Bending close to hear and reminisce, we talked about towns in West Africa, and the beauty and strength of the Liberian people, and of the atrocities of the Liberian civil war. An hour flew by, and then we exchanged business cards and hugs in the parking lot outside.

At home today, crimson cherries mound in a glass ramekin and Daniel samples a new snack: water-packed sardines.

“Mmm, I love it!”

We pause to examine a tiny fish spinal cord under the microscope, and summer marches on.

Hi friend, what has your first third of the summer been like so far? 

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  1. Linda Stoll on June 30, 2016 at 9:40 pm

    Hey, Jennifer … I love how you put it –>', I'm trying to freeze time, savor every moment, and live fully present.'

    Yes, please!

    Continue enjoying each passing day …

  2. Houseofmills on July 1, 2016 at 12:53 am

    Summer is flying by isn't. Trying to savor it with you!!!

  3. Marja Verschoor-Meijers on July 1, 2016 at 10:45 am

    Well, summer has just started here in The Netherlands, but it keeps raining 🙁 which is great for my garden 🙂

  4. TC Avey on July 1, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    This summer is flying by. I'm trying to cherish each moment.

  5. Unknown on July 1, 2016 at 7:25 pm

    Love the prose. Felt like I was in your backyard too. I've tried to hold on to a day and time with family like grabbing a bull by the horns… never fail to lose at both, but it's a worthy try. Savoring the moments is wisdom from Above… and His gift. Thanks for rekindling my perspective.

  6. Bill (cycleguy) on July 3, 2016 at 7:35 pm

    Loving the summer even though it got started late. I, too, am trying to freeze time since school will start in another month. I despise the all around school they seem to be heading towards. i welcomed the summer off when i was in school and still do even though I'm an adult (or a reasonable facsimile of that). I'm behind on my bike riding due to the late summer start and now it is raining again so that will put me behind some more. It has been a full one though.

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