I’ve been buying paper plates. Ready-to-eat vegetables (think: power-washed baby carrots and snap peas). Wipes that allow me to disinfect a counter without having to exercise a single spray. And similar ones—safe for skin—to use on my face. It’s summer: the days are long but I don’t want spend any of those extra hours chopping or washing stuff. So I have a whole different set of rules for summer…
If I invite you for dinner, expect burgers, often purchased pre-pattied from the meat market, just down the street. Corn on the cob might be served on the side—if you’re lucky. More likely, chips and salsa. If you ask what to bring, I’ll tell you a salad. Because I appreciate your chopping. If I make it myself, it’ll be a compilation of pre-washed greens, tiny tomatoes, slivered almonds and olives. If I’m feeling highly motivated, I’ll slice up some scallions. Dessert will be ice cream—or if we’re feeling like setting things on fire, S’Mores.
Don’t be offended by the cat hair on the chairs. (Allergies? We have meds—just ask.) Pay no mind to the piece of pepper on the floor from last night’s dinner; our sweet pup passed away just a few months ago, and we’re still not used to having to pick up after our messy eaters. Kindly excuse the discarded PJs and toothpaste stains in the bathroom. Straightening and using those handy aforementioned disinfecting wipes on various household surfaces have taken a backseat to eating burgers at the beach and listening to bands play while the sun sets. We’re aiming to create happy childhoods here (and have some fun ourselves).
Dress code is: whatever you were wearing before. Bathing suit with cut-off jeans shorts and a sweaty ball cap: perfect. Office-appropriate dress with bare feet because you just rolled in from work: also perfect. Come as you are—just show up fast because summer passes swiftly. I’ll say it again: the days are long, but these months are SHORT, people.
Screw bedtime. Because—you know what?—it’s not happening. Add a full 60 minutes to whatever preconceived notion you had back in May of the hour your kids should drift off to sleep. Or start there and then add another hour. And when you all roll home two hours later than anticipated, needing to figure out what camp the kids are signed up for in the morning and feeling a tad bit sun-drunk, swipe your face with one of those glorious pre-moistened face “towelettes” and congratulate yourself on a day well lived.
It’s summer. But not for long.