Well, summer seemed to fly by, didn't it? I'm not sure if it was due to the fact that it started late (the kids were in school until June 18th!) and that I'm now 9 months pregnant and just a couple of weeks away from my due date, but it feels like summer just got started around here. I mean, we just started getting some really nice weather after quite a few weeks of just so-so, warmish, not quite hot enough for swimming weather. Don't get me wrong- the extreme heat lately has been slightly unbearable for me in my huge state, but I kind of feel like my kids got ripped off with their summer break this year and we've had to cram it all in the last month or so. Next week is their last full week before they head back to school on August 30th, so we've been savoring these last few fun little outings together!
Yesterday we packed up the minivan (did I mention I love this thing?!) and headed across the border to Idaho to hit up a nice little lake. After spending quite a few days at the crowded aquatics center, the YMCA pool, parks, splash pads, and one trip to the big amusement park, I was ready for some peace and quiet by the lake. My sister in law actually clued me in on this place. I'd been there before as a kid but I hadn't been back as an adult, and I kind of forgot it existed. Normally when we want to go to the lake we go to a different one that is super popular and crowded, so rediscovering this little secluded one tucked away in the beautiful mountains of Idaho was a real treat! We arrived by 10:30am and the place was deserted. There was one lone fisherman on the dock (who I'm sure was thrilled with my loud, crazy kids jumping in right away) and an older couple launching their kayaks with their dog, and that was it. We had the whole beach to ourselves for over an hour and it was glorious!
While Harper and I splashed and waded in the warm water and the big kids repeatedly jumped off the dock, showing me their mad cannonball skills and crazy spinning jumps, I couldn't help but think of how different it's going to be next summer. The kids kept saying "Next summer we have to come here like every day!" It sounds fun, but it's so much work being at the lake all day with 3 kids. The towels, the sunscreen, the cooler and food, the overloaded stroller, life jackets, sand toys, etc- it's a lot to pack up and haul around, especially while pregnant. But it really hit me- next summer I'll have another baby, an almost 3 year old, a 9 year old, and my oldest will be turning 13. Wowza. Talk about exhausting. Sure kids...we'll definitely be at the lake every day next summer, haha.
Really though, I'm such a mixture of scared excitement right now. Our lives are going to change so much in the next few weeks or days- whenever this baby boy decides to make his grand appearance into the world and forever change our family. I'm going to be a mom of four kids- four! It still blows my mind because I had just the two for so long and I thought that's how it was going to be forever. Then Harper came along and we had three, and it's been such a change, but an amazing one. I've loved seeing her melt her big brother and how happy she's made her big sister (who always wanted to be a BIG sister). It's been so amazing and such a blessing to get to experience motherhood all over again from the start, with a little more wisdom that comes with being an older, more experienced mom this time around. Sure, it's been a challenge at times too, especially when I feel like I'm being pulled in so many directions. Now we're adding a newborn to the mix and it's going to take some time to find that balance again, but I know we'll figure it all out.
So for now, as I anxiously await my new baby boy, I'm trying to remind myself to slow down and focus on the kids right in front of me. It's hard sometimes, because I'm so over being uncomfortably pregnant and I find myself saying things like "I just want this baby out right now!" But these are our last few days of being a family of 5, and I'll never just have these three awesome kids again...there will be one more in our lake photos next summer and another year of my kids' childhood will be gone forever. I'm trying to savor these moments and remind myself not to rush time- it's already slipping away so fast!