Today begins the glorious days of summer for our family. This year we have a bountiful 88 days of summer. Now, of course, a good number of those days include drumline practice, cross country runs, and other various camps. But, for the most part, we have a pretty low-key summer ahead of us. I can’t wait. I miss reading for hours and lounging on the back porch. I miss listening to the birds chirping and smelling the flowers. I miss cool summer evenings with friends and nights around the bonfire.  I can’t wait to experience all the joys of summer with my family.

Unfortunately, the joy is surrounded with sadness. This week, I was shattered by the news that my dear friend, Patrice had died suddenly. She was one of the first people I met when we moved to this small town 13+ years ago and we became fast friends. She was also our town librarian, so, of course, we had lots to talk about. Last night at her wake, my husband and I waited in line for two hours to greet the family and pay our respects. There were just as many people waiting when we left as when we arrived. The love for this beautiful friend of mine was wide and true. She will be deeply missed.

I used to give storytime at our library with Patrice and this photo is from one of our Halloween storytimes. It reminds me that she was always up for anything and had a deep love for children. My heart literally aches knowing I won’t see her smiling face down the street or sitting at the library desk when I walk in. As a member of the library board, we are slowly trying to acclimate ourselves to the running of the library. This has changed my summer a bit as I am helping with the day to day operations of the library until a new director can be hired. It has been difficult to be in the library, but I know she would want us to keep the ship running smoothly. That’s what we’ll do!

Yesterday was the last day of school. Next year, for the first time, all three of our kids will be in the same building. I’ll have a 7th, 11th, and 12th grader. Oh, my! With graduation looming ahead, I hope to knock out some projects related to graduation this summer. The kids and I leave June 5 for DC/NYC with the high school band and choir. Long days and many miles will be exhilarating and exhausting. I haven’t been to DC since I was a child and to NYC for several years. I’m excited to experience it with my fellow band/choir moms and our kids.

Of course, I am also super excited about my summer reading list. Stop by next week to see what’s ahead for my summer reading!

May your summer be full of flowers, books, birds, and laughter. Don’t forget that life is short and friendships fill your heart. Take a moment today to text or call your friends and let them know you love them!

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