Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Summer Doldrums

At my house, we have reached the summer doldrums. When mariners of long ago would cross the equator, they would encounter areas where there would be no wind. Captains and crews would sit for days under the hot equatorial sun, waiting for a breeze to get their boats moving again.

That is where our household is at this very moment. In the doldrums. Waiting for a breeze to motivate our ship to move across the sea of midsummer’s languor. The stillness of the air and the slowness of activity is sapping our strength.

Alright, that is about as poetical as I can get. Seriously, it is a slow time in our house hold. Middlest commented the other day that she keeps losing track of what day it is. She has to work backwards from Sunday, since church makes Sunday significant in a week formless and void.

In order to preserve my daughters’ mental health during this time of inactivity, I have devised a series of mental exercises that will keep them in tip-top mental shape for school in the fall. Cleaning out the basement and painting the shed and the trim around the house top off that list. When I made the list public to my daughters, there was much grumbling and complaining. “Dad, we aren’t bored; we have Youtube, Pandora, Hulu, Facebook, and Twitter to keep us occupied and mentally challenged. Your list has nothing to do with mental health; it has to do with forced labor.”

As you can imagine, the rest of the conversation was short, mostly consisting of my scowling and growling and the girls’ eye-rolling and grumbling. I am not sure if this type of conversation is due to our Italian heritage, but it sounds more European if I say that is why we argue that way.

As of today, we have hauled 3 large bags of garbage out of the basement and most of the trim around the house is done and our shed is turning a delightful shade of caramel butterscotch (thanks to the artistic Middlest, who picked the color).

I am also proud to say that my daughters seem to be on top of their game mentally. I have seen one of them actually doing homework - and school doesn’t start for another month.

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