The Price Is Right

Yard sales for the WIN!

I scored this awesomely huge tv stand for …are you ready for this?….$10. Whaaaaat?! It has tons of storage for our components and dvd baskets and the red color compliments the fireplace. Not to mention it tones down the walls (haven’t gotten around to painting yet).

Aaaaaand that’s that.

mainly because I pressed the publish button on accident. Note to self- no happy dances while editing. Ha!

So I’m updating real quick. This is what we had there. See how messy it all looked? Not to mention there was no dvd storage. I love this shelf – a $75 find on Amazon prime. I had bought it for my kitchen breakfast nook, but had repurposed it when we needed a taller tv stand.

I am happy to report all is right in the world now. Well, in our house. For now. I do seem to love rearranging.

This $10 stand isn’t going anywhere though. It’s too heavy.

The Simpleness of Simplicity

I tend to overthink.

Huge shocker, I know.

I’m most aware of this tendency of mine during key moments of my day. Getting dressed, figuring out weekly meal plans, and when faced with life-altering decisions. Hello homeschooling, cross-country moves and leggings as pants.

Is it possible though that it’s bigger than this? That the inclination to overthink and over prepare permeates my entire day?

I’m currently at the lake as I write this. Seated on an old weathered table perched atop a sloping stretch of green. My eyes are occasionally moving from my phone to the two little girls wading in the cold waters of a northern Maine lake on an early June day.

Our day started as any typical Sunday. We woke up not long after the sun and prepared for an amazing morning of worship. Naturally this included me spending a ridiculous amount of time before the mirror.

We did the obligatory grocery store run after excusing ourselves from engaging conversations with friends following the service. Even started our Sunday dinner in the slow cooker for when we returned from the lake.

Ahh the lake! One of my most favorite places to be here in the summer months. Just a few miles from our home it’s perfect for whiling away the time. Such a simple thing and yet how many times do I waste those precious hours with preparation? From the gathering of supplies to the ordeal of dressing appropriately, the seemingly easy task of enjoying simplicity is quickly mired in a web of complications.

But not today. No, there was no time for that. With obligations looming there was no time to make things complicated. We just threw on our sandals and went.

As I sit here watching these two little girls in shorts wade the water in their search for shells and other such treasures I can’t help but miss those days. Days of simply being simple. Days filled with half thoughts and notions. Enjoying life simply as it is.

I want to be simple too. So in the spirit of simplicity, I’m going to end this post and simply push publish. There will be mistakes and inconsistencies I’m sure, but I hope you’ll overlook them and appreciate this entry for what it is.

Traveling Back

I am traveling back home soon for my 20th class reunion. I wasn’t able to make it to my 10th and I’ve been counting down since. I’m excited and a little anxious and so ready to get on that plane.

A few new friends have wondered what in the world would possess me to WANT to go to a class reunion. For them the idea of eating glass while set on fire is more appealing than attending theirs. They’d rather drop dead than buy a ticket for their reunion. Let alone purchase a plane ticket. After all, why would anyone want to go revisit their past?

I can’t answer for everyone who chooses to go, but I can answer for me.

To start us off, how about I quote a pretty well known English author. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times-”

When it comes to memories of my formative years, they are most certainly scattered about the pain scale of 1-10.

At times I felt I fit in. I played in the band, twirled flags and excelled at eating cookies in class. At other times it was painfully clear I stood out. Like the time at the end of my sophomore year when my mother felt the only way to combat an age old battle involving hair and certain parasites was to shave my head.

The beginning of my junior year was excruciating. I still remember vividly the first week of school. Most of my lunch crowd from the previous year had conflicting schedules and I found myself not only without 90% of my hair, but also without any friends to eat with. Not wanting to sit in the cafeteria alone I chose the glass enclosed atrium as my fortress of solitude.

Huddled against the wall, having chosen the ground rather than one of several wrought iron chairs, I tried to eat my sandwich while avoiding eye contact with the group of hard core punks gathered across the room. I tried to drown their mocking jeers with the sound of my chewing but it didn’t work. Their accusations and snide remarks that I was trying to be like them found their mark.

As I sit here and write this I have to admit, there’s a whisper of that long ago pain squeezing my heart and causing my eyes to water.

Words hurt.

They can also heal.

I might have spent the first week of the 97′-98′ school year alone at lunch, but for the remainder I found my place. With friends who had always seen me, the real me, hair or no hair. They knew me even when I didn’t. Their words encouraged and held me up. Their belief in me stood in and took charge when I had none for myself.

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.

Growing up is painful. And it’s not limited to our school years. I’m STILL growing up. I’m learning and growing every day through moments of victory and absolute failures.

I’m going back this coming week because the me I was back then helped me to become the me I am now. And to deny she ever existed – that’s just unacceptable to me.

I can’t erase the past. I can’t take away the pain of rejection. I don’t have to. I’ve given all of that to my God. He’s got me in His hands. All of me. The past me. The present me. And the future me.

I’m excited to see old friends and can I be honest? I’m also looking forward to meeting those I never truly knew. And there’s a lot. Our graduating class numbered in the upper 300’s. I know this thanks to social media. I also credit social media with helping me to reconnect with old acquaintances, some I’d never really gotten a chance to know. Mostly because I was so wrapped up in my own insecurities and battles, I’d never given them a chance. I’d just assumed they could never like me.

Want to know something I just recently discovered through these interactions? Those same people I thought wouldn’t like me were thinking the same about themselves at some degree or another. We all have doubts. We all fight fears.

I still have a few as June 1st gets nearer. What if’s are aplenty especially after 20 years, but I’m not letting that dictate my choices.

I’m going.

I may be bigger than I was and my dance moves are whiter than the new albino panda that was discovered, but that’s not stopping me. I owe the old me that. She didn’t always embrace life back in school, but she will this week.

Now if ya can just pray for me – traveling makes me a neurotic nutcase. I’m not scared of the flying part. It’s the getting me on the plane part. Navigating unfamiliar airports. Throwing all my stuff in security bins quickly so that the masses behind me don’t die from waiting 2.5 seconds. And mostly – not dying on the human conveyor belts. I trip. A lot.

Spring Things

Well we might be late to the party here, but I am happy to report that Northeastern Maine is finally getting with the program and it’s looking as if Spring is officially here.  To celebrate we cleaned off the side porch, which also happens to be our front porch for all intents and purposes due to it’s proximity to the driveway.

IMG_6693A certain ten year old in a turban joined me on the porch to just breathe it all in.

Oh, and to steal my phone…..

 

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The sight of a bird perched atop a tree across the street had me reaching for my cellphone to take a photo, but wanting more , I dashed inside and grabbed my camera to get a little closer.

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IMG_6639 Satisfied I turned back towards home (I may or may not have alarmed my neighbors by traipsing into the street) and I just couldn’t help but grab a few more shots.

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And apparently neither could a certain little junior shutterbug.

IMG_6697Speaking of bugs, now that the hummingbird feeder is up and filled, that shouldn’t be too big an issue and you’ll soon see more pictures from our porch.  Maybe.  We might be too busy snoozing in the pair of rocking chairs…..

Until next time, this is Summer D saying take it easy.

 

 

The Stevens Family in Black and White

 

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If you’ve been following along this past week then this adorable family will now be familiar to you.  If you’re new (hello!!! Welcome!!!), then this and this are apart of well…this. Go ahead, don’t be shy slide that cursor over there and give it a little click….

Now, scroll down and enjoy the third and final set of photos from our “spring session”.

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We had so much fun that it was only inevitable that we’d end up with so many good shots.  A majority of them are in color, but I couldn’t help but do a few in black and white, I mean how gorgeous are these two close ups of Mama Stevens?IMG_3753 2IMG_3752 2

Some of us enjoyed the session a little more than others….ahem…while a certain Little Stevens wasn’t as impressed with the romance of the moment.

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Thank you again for going on this journey with me and sharing in what was a very wonderful day with new friends.

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