Jump Into Summer

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As recently posted on the http://www.AustinCru.com website. I hope this article will inspire working and non-working mom’s alike to… Jump Into Summer!

I recently took my three youngest kids to one of our local pools specially designed with water slides and a tubing river for families to enjoy. I worked all day, so my plan was to relax on a lounger, sip sparkling water and read a book while my kids played away. I scoped it out, found a great spot to relax, and settled in to enjoy the unseasonably cool, cloudy summer evening.

As I sat, I found myself watching parents go down the water slides with their children. These were people, like me, who’d probably worked all day, yet there they were – fully living in the moment. There was something so beautiful about it. The smiles on their faces, parents and children alike, were priceless! As fun as it seemed for them, I didn’t follow suit. I didn’t want to get chlorine in my hair; I didn’t want to go under…. I made excuses to sit on the sidelines and watch life happen right before my eyes.

I took my kids again a few days later. At first, I sat and watched again. I watched my kids laugh, I watched parents laugh, and then I watched my two middle boys leave their baby sister out. I watched her go up the large slide and come down, and then do it again, with a little less joy than normal. Finally, I called out to her across the pool and asked, “Kylie would you like me to go down the slide with you?”

To say she jumped at my offer would be an understatement; she pounced on it! We met by the slide, she took me by the hand and proudly walked me up the stairs. We went down together and laughed, and yes, we did it again and again! Did my hair get wet? Absolutely. Did I go under? You bet! Did I have a moment with my daughter I will treasure forever? No doubt.

I have learned it takes planning and intentionality to set the table for these moments to happen, especially in light of all the hats we wear and all we do. It also takes the decision to jump in and fully embrace these special “to be treasured” times with our kids!

If you need a little help with your summer planning to make this summer an extra special one, here’s a list of some fun things available for you to do in the Austin area. If you live in another city, Google is rich with lists to consider for fun in the sun with your fam! Whatever you choose, my hope for you is that you jump in and make the most of it, that you laugh a lot and be a child again yourself! It’s good for the soul.

Happy summer!

Amy O’Donnell

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