What I Didn't Do This Summer

I remember vividly beginning each new school year with the traditional "What Did You Do This Summer?" picture, essay, poem, etc. It didn't matter what grade it was, that was the first assignment usually completed on the first day. It's been awhile since I've had to write that assignment. There were some summers where I had lots to say, and then there were others that didn't have a lot of big events. As a family, we usually took one vacation during the summer - either to the beach or the mountains. As I grew up and entered high school, my summers were dotted with summer camp, youth retreats, weekend getaways with friends, weeks spent galavanting around town with other teens with nothing to do. Now, as a bonafide adult, and a teacher nonetheless, I still look forward to summer. This year was a bit different than life over the past 3 summers. Those were spent either in graduate classes or working for the summer. I had great plans of travel and adventure. This year, instead of writing about what I did, I'm choosing to write about what I didn't do.

1. I didn't get up early every single day. Instead, I varied my wake up times depending on my exercise schedule. As the heat increased, my rising became an early morning ritual. But that didn't start until July.

2. I didn't spend the summer working a second job.

3. I didn't spend the summer immersed in professional development and graduate classes. Instead, I took one class in Oregon at the beginning of the summer and one in Greenville at the end of the summer. The middle was spent solely enjoying my time off.

4. I didn't do any heavy reading this year. Chick literature, magazines like People and US Weekly, blogs, and the Direct TV channel guide were my friends.

5. I didn't sit around all summer even though I was relaxing. I established a regular exercise routine of running/walking, strength training, and core work. Although this past week it has fallen to the wayside because of the heat.

6. I didn't write one to do list other than my back to school one. There was no weekly schedule, no list of things to accomplish, no projects to be completed before school.

7. I didn't spend exorbitant amounts of money of coffees, books, and lunches. Instead, I spent each Monday at the library, brewed my own coffee, and ate at home.

8. I didn't drive my car all summer long. It needs a bit of work, so it was parked for awhile and Cheney and I have actually made do with one car. When we lived in Seattle, we had one car and managed quite well. This was an adjustment, but it was doable and made me see just how dependent I am on the 2nd vehicle.