June 10, 2024

Summer, is that you?

Is it just me, or is summer taking its sweet time getting here?

I know, technically, it’s not due to arrive until June 20, but it’s feeling more like “June-uary” than June. My six weeks in Paris were anything but warm—mostly chilly, I’ll say. Naturally, I packed waaay too many summer items: flowy white palazzo pants, linen tops, and sun dresses. What was I thinking? My choices were anything but practical, and sadly, there weren’t many opportunities to wear those beautiful sandals I bought during my first week. Thankfully, my recent purchase of a trench coat, aka my workhorse, saved me, as I wore it daily. However, it’s been long enough!

Island life

Having just returned from Savary Island, where we prepped our cabin for summer, I realized just how much I’m craving some sunshine. Summer on Savary is truly special, with its pristine sandy beaches, clear turquoise waters, lush forests, and the occasional wandering deer. However, when we arrived, we were greeted by rough seas, high winds, and sideways rain—definitely not the vibe I was hoping for. “Get the fire going, Rob!” I kept checking my weather app, hoping for a change. The sun finally appeared, so I decided it was time to tackle the garden, which was overrun by weeds. I found satisfaction in pulling out those stubborn invaders and imagined the beautiful garden that would soon emerge once they were removed. I might add it’s looking pretty good now.

Finally, sitting comfortably in an Adirondack chair with a glass of rosé at the end of the day was the perfect hint of summer. I can’t wait for more!

Summer memories

When I think of summer, I think of my parents’ garden—a true labour of love. My dad meticulously planned the garden map each year, ensuring every plant had its perfect spot. There were trips to the beach for dry seaweed, which was then placed around the base of the tomato plants, giving them a delicious salty-sweet flavour. Meanwhile, my mom’s pride and joy were her peachy gladiolas and vibrant begonias, their blooms welcoming everyone who passed by. My absolute favourite was my mom’s homemade Potato Salad, which officially launched summer. Like shortbread at Christmas, her potato salad became a beloved seasonal staple. There were countless trips to the Okanagan to visit family and load the car with as much fresh fruit as possible to be canned or made into jam later.

My friends and I used to ride our bikes around the neighbourhood with a tape deck strapped to the handlebars, blasting our favourite tunes for everyone to hear. If we weren’t riding our bikes, we were listening to the latest albums in my friend’s basement. “Da doo ron-ron-ron, Da doo ron-ron…” There were many trips to the beach, and the pool, and the smell of Hawaiian Tropic or Ban de Soleil was the scent of summer. Chasing the ice cream truck, making trips to 7-Eleven for Slurpees, and visiting the candy store were essential parts of summer.

Looking back, those sunny days all blend together into a mix of fun and freedom; each memory lit up by the fun we had as kids. Even now, a bite of that potato salad (I make my own now) takes me right back to those carefree summers. It reminds me that the simplest things can be the most special, and no matter how much time passes, those summer memories will always stay with me.

Summer with kids

There were many summer camps, which often felt like more work than they were worth. I loved the endless mornings without the rush to get out the door. However, some structure was good for us. Our neighbourhood, a small enclave with charming one-way lane-like streets near the beach and a dock, was a magnet for all the kids. Both of my sons enjoyed the freedom of roaming the forest behind our home and setting off on countless adventures to make-believe lands. Running through sprinklers and chasing each other with water guns provided endless fun and laughter.

Spending summers at home, a “staycation,” was a no-brainer—who needs a resort when you have the beach just down the street?

Sunny daydreams

It’s not so much a daydream; it’s more like me reminiscing about our trip to Provence last summer. The mild temperatures, azure blue water, sprawling vineyards, and those never-ending lavender fields are reason enough to get me excited. Our extended stay in the south of France was a highlight, and I can’t wait to explore more.

And hey, if we’re on the topic of daydreams, why not think big? As we piece together our grand France adventure, it dawned on me that we’re surrounded by countless other tempting destinations. While trying to decide where to soak up the winter sun, it hit me: the Maldives, sitting pretty on our bucket list! So we booked it! We’re staying at Kuredu Resort and Spa, opting to travel off-season, before the Christmas rush, to keep things budget-friendly and ensure quieter beaches. Check!

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