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Pillow Piles and Backyard Camping

tuesdays unwrapped at cats

The first month of summer we spent planning our contribution to Vacation Bible School and then participating in it. My husband and I helped lead the singing, and he also wrote some puppet scripts to go along with each day’s lesson. The week of VBS, we really enjoyed spending time with all the kids. (I co-led a team of 3rd and 4th grade boys, and we had a blast.) I developed new appreciation for the relative quiet of our home. Even at their loudest, our three kids whisper in comparison to the glass-shattering pitch and ear-ringing volume of seventy-seven hyped-up kids (especially the girls… wow).

We needed a full two weeks after VBS to recover. (I wildly over-estimated how much VBS would deplete me.) The kids were craving down-time, and so were we.

Jumping in a pillows-and-sheets pile = same fun as a leaf pil... on Twitpic Without a pressing schedule, we could goof around while taking care of essential daily tasks. On Change-the-Sheets-On-Everyone’s-Bed Day, the kids piled up every single pillow and all the dirty sheets for jumping, wrestling, and hide-and-seek fun. All the fun of a leaf pile, but without the dirt and bugs. (I apologize for the photo quality – it’s a camera-phone photo. Click the thumbnails to see a larger version.)

Our backyard campsite, complete with borrowed fire pit. on TwitpicLast week, Canada very generously shared its mild summer temperatures with us. It was the perfect weather to move outdoors and store up as much sunshine, green grass, and blue sky possible before winter’s dark brown cold.

After talking about it for two summers, we finally pitched tents in the backyard, borrowed a neighbor’s fire pit, and tested out camping with the kids. They loved it and ask almost every day when we can go camping “for real.” This momma didn’t sleep well at all, but I’m choosing to blame it on camping in a neighborhood located just a mile from two different fire stations.

A slowed-down life, playing with the kids, letting up on our usually-tight schedule, roasting s’mores in the grill, going to bed late, long talks about forgiveness and making both accidental and intentional wrongs right… these have all been gifts to savor slowly.

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