Yesterday was our last “kids night” for the summer. A few years back, my husband and I decided summers we were not going to be, “lets see how many activities we could get our kids involved in so they don’t get bored.” We are very careful to not “over schedule” our kids with clubs, sports, classes, etc. That was when we decided to enact “kids night” on Thursday nights in the Summer. This originally started as a day we would make sure we would ALL be together and watch a movie, go out, have pizza, etc. It didn’t matter what we did, as long as the night was focused on our kids. This eventually stemmed out to our kids wanting to share it with some of the neighborhood kids so they could experience the same special night our kids did. So now, it’s an all day party at our house for my kids and some of the neighborhood kids, where we cook hotdogs, set out our jumping castle, cook s’mores, ride a go-cart, watch an outdoor movie, then end with laser tag.
Keeping the magic in our kids lives with these special nights has turned into keeping the magic in my own life as well. Hearing the laughter, getting the thank-you’s and making memories for not only our kids but other neighborhood kids brings about a sense of magic in these Summer months. Keeping the magic in our lives can be hard. The humdrum daily activities can easily douse the feelings we carry during the Summer months and it’s important for us to remember what it felt like to be a kid. The smell of an outdoor fire, sticky fingers from eating s’mores, sweaty heads from running, jumping and playing, and finally, that exhausted but feeling of relief when your head finally hits the pillow, are all experiences a child has during their Summer break. But, I’ve been lucky enough to have children who have led me into this magical world of carefree Summer days (and nights), if even for a couple of months. I’m reminded of my own childhood spent with my brothers and sisters and nights when the power went out and we all headed outside to try and catch the ice-cream man as it slowly made its way down the street. Now, I look back as a grown woman and feel an inkling of magic of those nights as a little girl and hope my own children will look back with the same fondness and memories of a childhood where the magic was all around them. If we can somehow keep the magic of our childhood within us as we grow up, maybe that is the secret to true happiness!
I’m hoping with my novel The Wish, I can introduce a magic into every reader’s lives that sparks imagination. My hope is that it opens the doors to the older readers memories that may have been closed for some time and opens the eyes of the younger reader to a world they’ve not yet experienced.
Til next week…