Monday, June 22, 2015

Celebrating Summer











It's here, my friends, summer! And oh what feelings that brings forth....magic, freedom, and joy. The summer feeling is indescribable, and right now we are soaking it up.

We celebrated the arrival of summer all weekend long. It all started on Friday morning with a trip to the strawberry farm. This trip is our kick off to summer, a ritual that is marked year after year with great pleasure. Reece and I picked, tasted, and picked some more, heading home with more strawberries than we intended...we just couldn't stop picking. Back at home most of those strawberries were made into jam, eleven jars in total, some were frozen to be enjoyed all winter long, and some were left as is, to enjoy fresh. We have plans to head back on Wednesday this week, with some friends, and you can be sure the pantry shelves will have a few more jars of jam added to it.

Saturday dawned with a beautiful sunrise, and the beginnings of a gorgeous day. There was an early morning run for me, and a little lie in for Justin and Reece. The day was filled with bike riding, garden work, and lots of play. A certain little man spent a good chunk of time building a home in the woods, complete with a window, shelves, and a sink. It is a pretty special place, and he tells me he will be spending a lot of time in there.

Later Saturday afternoon I left my two boys at home and headed over to a friends home for a mamas only solstice gathering. We began with a yoga class in her backyard, lead by a wonderful teacher, honouring the sun, and ourselves. After yoga we enjoyed a potluck dinner and gathered around the fire, where we sat late into the night chatting, drinking (tea for me), and laughing. We watched fireflies dance in the dark, we shared stories of motherhood, we connected in the dark under the glow of the fire. As I pulled out of her driveway to head home, my heart was happy and my soul full.

When I woke Sunday morning I was surprised, and so very pleased, to see the sun, they had been forecasting rain, which really would have put a damper on our Summer Solstice celebration. I stepped out on to the back deck, took a deep breath, and offered gratitude to Mother Nature for the wonderful gift of the sun. After a morning of Father's Day celebrations, and preparations for our solstice celebration, our friends arrived at our home. The dads and the kids headed over to the race track in our area, to take in the races and the car show, and while they were gone, my friend and I did a little crafting....soap making and rope bowl sewing. It was fun, and I so enjoyed sharing these skills with her. Once the dads and kids returned there was lots of play, good conversation, delicious food, a solstice fire, marshmallows (vegan and GMO free), sparklers, and lots and lots of laughter. It was a wonderful day, and one that I was sorry to see end.

The weekend has been full, in a good way, leaving me so very happy and connected. Connected to the earth, and to the beautiful people we are so lucky to call our friends.

A big hello to summer, I am so very happy you are here.

How was your weekend?

Joining Karen

40 comments:

  1. Those pictures are just bursting with ripeness and color! Happy solstice! Some of best childhood memories I have are of picking strawberries in "u pick it" fields in California. A mama solstice celebration. ..oh how I need something like that! How beautiful.

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    1. Thanks Jen, happy solstice to you too! The mama solstice celebration was wonderful, and we were blessed with a perfect evening for it.

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  2. How wonderful, so glad the sun shone for you. Those strawberries look amazing, our local farm has opened too and we also enjoyed them fresh this weekend.

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    1. Thank you, I am too :) The strawberries are amazing this year, although I might say that every year. We can't wait to go back on Wednesday for more.

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  3. well shoot, my whole comment disappeared!
    To sum it all up I am thrilled that you had a mama's evening, that sounds so wonderful.
    And strawberries! I always pick more than I intend too, along with tomatoes.
    It's so sweet that Reece built his own special place and I know he will enjoy it.
    Have a great Monday Kim and a great week.

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    1. Well, that's no good, sorry about that Tracey. It was the most wonderful evening, and I am still feeling so full from it. You should see it Tracey, it is just so amazing, and he is so proud of it. It made my mama heart sing watching him create his own little place in nature.

      Thank you Tracey, I hope you have a great week too.

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  4. Oh Kim I love everything about this post! We were going to celebrate too (thanks to you and your posts I am trying to honor the seasons too. I love how you do this with your family) but it poured buckets all day yesterday! So today we will be doing lots of outside things. We have a trip planned to the strawberry farm later this week. And this summer WILL be the summer I make strawberry jam....I think :-)

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    1. Aw,. thanks Jen. So sorry it rained on your solstice celebrations, no fun, but I am happy to hear you moved the celebrations to today. I hope you enjoyed your day, and have fun at the strawberry jam. Yes, you must make some jam...so good!

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  5. yay, you joined in! Lovely lovely weekend that you had with yourself and friends and with your family. I like that you drank tea well into the night, that is what I would have imbibed on. Happy father's day to your husband and yay for summer arriving!

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    1. I did! Yes, while everyone was drinking sangria, I was happily sipping my tea :)

      Thank you Karen, hope your hubby had a lovely day yesterday. A happy father's day to him too.

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  6. Oh, Kim, those strawberries are gorgeous and look absolutely delicious! Would you be willing to share your jam recipe with me? I'm still on the hunt for a good one! And I love your sun banners! They are just darling! I'll be posting on our blog later today about our Summer Solstice but I will say that yesterday our day started with torrential rain that didn't let up until around 2:00pm. I am so glad that the rain was not up by you yesterday! What a gift!

    Your mama's night out sounds just lovely. What a treat to have a group of like minded women to gather with in person! Some day I hope to be as lucky!

    Happy Summer Solstice, dear friend! xo

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    1. You have no idea how sweet and delicious they are Shel, so good. I wish I could share :)

      Jam recipe...for this batch I just used the recipe that came with the pectin. I use a no sugar pectin, and instead of sugar use fruit juice as a sweetener, and just a small amount of sugar. It is so good.

      Oh no, so sorry rain put a damper on your solstice. It truly was a gift to have the kind of day we had. We all felt so blessed.

      Gathering with these women was wonderful, and I hope we do it again soon.

      Happy Solstice Shel. xo

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  7. So much goodness in this post! The strawberries and the salad look delicious and so colorful! Did you make the banner? It is really pretty. I'm glad you got to share the weekend with good friends. Life is good, isn't it?

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    1. Thanks Anke. That was the salad I took to the potluck, it was enjoyed by everyone :)

      I did make the banner, for summer solstice last year. This year I just had to restring it, and hang it up.

      Life is so good, I can hardly believe it.

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  8. Hooray! What a lovely looking solstice! That salad look amazing!

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    1. Thanks Taryn. It was delicious!

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  9. those strawberries !!!! Your weekend sounds wonderful - especially the mama only solstice get-together. What a great way to start the summer. Wishing you a beautiful week Kim. xoxo

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    1. It was the perfect way to start off summer. Have a wonderful week Erica.

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  10. Sounds like an amazing weekend , so glad to hear it. I love your little flags that you have made and your little man's house sounds perfect. Glad you had such a wonderful and soul filling weekend -and yay for no rain! Have a great week. xo

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    1. Thanks Carlin. It was really lovely. I love those sun flags, and am so happy I made them last year.

      You too my friend. xo

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  11. oh kim! this is all so beautiful and inspiring ;) i just LOVE watching your yard evolve with summer. absolutely gorgeous :)

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  12. Wow, what a wonderful weekend and I am in love with your mama's solstice gathering. How incredibly lovely that sounds! Every year we make strawberry solstice jam but the berries were a bit late this year. We picked some up today for tarts instead and hopefully this week we will be picking!

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    1. The gathering was really wonderful, and I am so happy to have been included. It truly was soul filling. Have fun strawberry picking.

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  13. awe, what a lovely weekend. I love your solstice banner.. But I said that last year. Those strawberries look so good, I have neighbor children coming over to pick ours today. Our bed while tasty is over run and we cant keep up lol. If you lived closer I would happily share. Be well. It's good to stop by.

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    1. Thank you, and yes, you probably did :) Oh how wonderful to have too many strawberries, that never happens to us. Enjoy!

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  14. What a wonderful sounding weekend, how lovely that you have friends like that close by. And we definitely need to go strawberry picking over here now!

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    1. I feel so very grateful to have friends who walk a similar path. It hasn't always been like that, my first few years of mothering were quite lonely. Finding my tribe of women, connecting with them, and sharing this journey is something that makes me so very happy.

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  15. What a top weekend :-) I love your sunshine banner and the window dressing. As I closed the curtains in my daughters room last night we noticed a rainbow, it was almost sunset, gorgeous x

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    1. It was pretty awesome. Oh how wonderful! A perfect way to end the day. xo

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  16. Sweet summer celebrations! I'm trying to find a similar strawberry patch in our area, but no luck so far. We're going to try St. Jacob's area near Waterloo. (Have some family and friends out that way, so it'll be a full day to be sure.) By the way, I would love to know about those marshmallows. Are they homemade, or did you find them somewhere?

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    1. They were pretty sweet :) Those marshmallows are awesome! I only recently discovered them at a health food store I shop at. Reece had never had marshmallows, but has quickly found a soft spot for them :)

      They are called Dandies, and I am thinking you should be able to find them at Whole Foods. If not let me know, I can get some for you, and put them in the mail. Your kiddos will love them.

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  17. What a beautiful celebration you had! I'm so happy you had such a lovely time. Our weather was not as nice on Sunday, but we still didn't get all the rain they were announcing so we had a lovely Father's Day/Solstice Day with friends. Enjoying the woods, reading new books, eating a bit too much ice cream. It was quite lovely.

    Wishing you a lovely week dear Kim. xo

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    1. Sounds wonderful my friend. Hope you have a lovely week too. xo

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  18. What a wonderful weekend! We wanted to do a bonfire for our celebration in the evening but it was too hot! 100 degrees and bonfires are not really friends... But the whole week we actually did activities, from making a new season table, window stars like yours, decorations for outside and even some sun cookies. It was a lovely celebration. We will continue it by going camping this week.

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    1. Yeah, that is kinda hot for a bonfire. We filled out week with solstice activities too, the window stars was actually one of them. I love celebrating the solstices, and connecting to the shift in the seasons.

      Have fun camping!

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