There is so much that I look forward to in these precious days away from work and the city. We will spend hours in the outdoors, boating, swimming and lounging in the lake with family and friends all around. We will sleep in tents on the lakeshore and roast hot dogs, veggie dogs and marshmallows on a nightly bonfire. On the fourth of July we will drink gallons of Koolaid and eat an impressive, all-American spread at my family’s annual fourth of July Pot luck. There will be plenty of joking with cousins, Uncles and Aunts, and there will perhaps be a competitive all-ages game of volleyball with plenty of serious showing of bravado with spikes and high-fives. In the evening, Bjorn and I will venture into town with my cousins, spread out blankets on the grass, and eat candy and popcorn while we watch the fireworks. These are our traditions, some life-long, and others, new. The mood is celebratory, welcoming and lighthearted, and the attitude is “the more the merrier” when it comes to inviting guests, savoring summer pleasures together and finding new ways to have fun. This year we’re planning to dance up a storm at the Park Rapids street dance and rodeo dance during my cousin’s band Tree Party‘s nightly gig. This is our way of celebrating our two countries, my birthday, our family and our friends and savoring the simple glories of summer. These are the days that make our lives rich.
Above are photos of my Mom’s flower garden and potted plants taken a few weeks ago. I am looking forward to morning tours of my parents’ garden and yard with a cup of coffee in hand. I can’t wait to see how things are growing and in bloom. I am hoping that a green thumb is hereditary.