When it comes to running an efficient household, keeping my Sweet V healthy and heart filled, and my own sanity intact, I am a stickler for routines. We have a routine for just about everything. But one thing I do get loosey goosey with on special occasions is bedtime.
And by special occasion I mean summer.
Since she was a tiny tot, I’ve let her stay up late in the summer for a variety of things. I pay the price the next day, but I am okay with it. I just keep my next day expectations very low and give A LOT OF GRACE! Then back on track we go for a few more days. I do this because I want her to have the same kinds of memories I have from childhood.
Here are my top 5 bedtime busting bucket list items for the summer. These are the ones special to me that I want to pass down to her.
Of course we love to stay up late to watch them. It’s a rite of passage. I took V out on her grandpa’s boat at barely 4 weeks old to watch them and she has seen them every year on the Fourth of July since!
This summer, the full moons are tonight, June 27th but really the 28th at 12:58 am, so the Strawberry Moon can be seen the 28th. July 27th is the Full Buck Moon or Thunder Moon, and August 26th is the Sturgeon Moon.
I love the moon. I always have. When it is full and casts its glow across the lake or yard, I am filled with such a peace. It is another reminder to me that God made a perfectly orchestrated system of nature and I don’t have to worry in this life. I want to share full moon moments with my girlie and have her blow The Man in the Moon a big kiss and say a little prayer of gratitude to God.
I have a lot of fond memories catching them. Some people say firefly. Most people I know in Michigan says lightning bug…anyway…
Lightning bug season is short. So when you start to see them, don’t delay. They are not around much anymore and with a little research I have learned that all of the mosquito control sprays on our grass, weird weather, and perfectly manicured lawns are making their habitats more scarce. I grew up on a dirt road on a few acres surrounded by trees. Lightning bugs abound! I am back home at that very place for the summer and even now as I type this in the dark, I stopped to go wake up my girl so she could come see them. She caught one and named him Lloyd Lighting. But since we are a catch and release program around here, she bid him adieu, we snuggled under the night sky for a bit, and I tucked her back in bed.
I have some really awesome memories of summer nights at the drive in when I was little. I remember seeing Karate Kid, Weird Al Fat Music Video, Crocodile Dundee, and I think Big. Vanessa and I have yet to see a drive in movie, but now that she is 7, I think she might be able to stay up to watch one and make it worth the effort.
Would summer even be complete without a bonfire?! Whether you are camping or just making one in the backyard, a cool Michigan summer night is perfect for sending the littles off to grab the kindling and the bigs for some logs. I have great memories of finding the perfect marshmallow stick and my dad using his pocket knife to sharpen the end into a point. I have a few less fond memories of me swinging that same stick around with a fire ball of sugar and it melting right onto my brother’s arm. Oops. So make sure you teach safety around the fire before you try to make the song singing, s’mores roasting memory this year.
Whatever your summer night memories are, make sure you find a few to pass down to your kiddos. And if you are childfree, make sure you get out of your work routine and under the stars a few times this summer. Our super creative God placed each one right up there, so it would be nice if we all just took a few moments to admire his handiwork.
Summer is great. Michigan summer nights are even better. Keep making your house a love-filled home.
High five for home.