Ah, summertime…in Florida.  The snowbirds have flown the coop.  Rainy season has arrived, bringing a daily monsoon lasting 30 minutes.  Temperatures hit the high 90s, and our humidity is 1,487%.  Mosquitoes, love bugs, no-see-ums and tiddlywinks abound.  And summer vacationers have arrived.
Even though we are parents who work full-time, and our child is not yet old enough to experience summer break from school, the feeling of summer is still there, thanks to daylight that lasts until 9pm, summer television like Food Network Master Chef Iron Chopped Cutthroat Mega All Star, and of course…the Dairy Queen S’mores Blizzard.  SUMMAHTIIIIME!
One evening last week, I was sitting on our back porch enjoying the sun dipping below the palm trees, and I started reminiscing about summers past.  I realized how much has changed in our summer routine from ten years ago…
2004: Bikini.  Very tiny bikini, in fact.
2014: Super hip mom one piece that provides maximum boob wrangling.  Because we have enough flotation devices in our pool, thankyouverymuch.
2004: SPF 15 (because even in my gingerness, I still thought I might get a tan).
2014: SPF 55.  Also, big hat and sunglasses.  Do they make sun socks?  I would like some.
2004: Pool time consisted of me deciding I’d like to float on a raft for two hours, then putting on my bathing suit, sunscreen, grabbing a beer and a book, and floating.
2014: Pool time consists of chasing a toddler to apply sunscreen, swim diaper, bathing suit, swim shirt, hat that he will turn upside and fill with water then pour on his head, then attempting to put on my own sensible bathing suit and sunscreen, find my sunglasses that said toddler has been wearing for the past week, locate fifteen floating/squirting balls, toys and various inflatable animals, and five towels because you never know how many towels you need.  Get in pool.  Get toddler in float with canopy.  Swim with float.  Toddler wants out of float.  Swim with toddler.  Toddler wants to sit on steps.  Sit on steps for five minutes.  Get out of pool to play in the water table because it’s more fun than the pool.  Get back in the pool because all water table toys have been thrown in the pool.  Toddler says “ALL DONE!” after 20 total minutes.  Dry off, attempt to remove swim diaper, take shower together.  Get dressed.  Check “cardio” off the list of today’s activities, and realize Jillian Michaels has nothing on parents of young children.  NOTHING.
2004: Summer TV is the best.  Stay up until midnight watching cooking shows, dating shows, dancing shows, singing shows, True Blood, Entourage (RIP),  SATC (also RIP), whatever crap Fox has thrown together (do you remember Paradise Hotel, The Swan or The Littlest Groom?!) plus reruns of Roseanne and Friends.  Still have to get up for work, but it’s so worth it to see the dancing poodles and Gordon Ramsey.
2014: Summer TV is still the best; however, we are still trying to finish the first season of Orphan Black.  Our DVR has allowed room for cooking related shows only, and True Blood.  Staying up until 10p is pushing it, which has resulted in our new refined taste in our programming choices.  I still watch Roseanne, though. 
2004: Shirts requiring strapless bras.  Inappropriately short shorts.  Flip-flops.  Something cute and festive for Fourth of July.
2014: Still looking for star spangled yoga pants.
2004: Of course we will come to your barbecue!  I’ll bring lots of beer, and I’ll also make macaroni and cheese and an epic four layer chocolate cake from scratch.  Would you like me to help you set up and clean up?  Done!
2014: What time is your barbecue?  During nap time?  Hmmm.
2014: Nope nope nope.  Wine only, one glass after 8pm.  Two if it’s the weekend, maybe.  Snooze > Booze.
2004: Let’s go kayaking!
2014: Let’s go to the zoo! 
2004: Let’s have a picnic!
2014: Let’s have a picnic!  Do not eat the grass.  Do not eat the flowers.  Take that sandwich off your head.
2004: The beach + sangria + Publix hoagie.
2014: Toddler friendly water parks + bottled water + PB&J + apple slices + cheese cubes + grapes + Cheerios + graham crackers + carrot sticks + hummus + raisins + everythinginthefridge. 
Fourth of July 2004: Begin cook-out at 5pm.  Eat at 7pm.  Decide after four margaritas that playing Marco Polo at 9pm is a great idea.  Then decide climbing on the roof at 10pm to watch the fireworks is an even better idea.
Fourth of July 2014: Begin cook-out at 3pm.  Eat at 5pm.  Marvel at how tired I already am.  Bathe Miles at 7pm, bedtime at 7:30pm (sun is still up).  Watch fireworks in DC on TV.  Go to bed at 9pm.  Get pissed off at neighbors who are shooting off fireworks at 11pm.  Consider knocking on their door and confronting them when they are still shooting them off at 1am.  Wonder how many bags of sugar would fill their gas tank when they’re still shooting them off at 2am.  Mutter the word, “whippersnappers.”  Call the police at 3am to complain about possible gunfire (lies).  Wonder how it’s possible for the kid to sleep through all of this, then immediately stop wondering because if you think about it too long, he will wake up and you only have two hours and 45 minutes of sleep time left!
2004: Think about what an awesome summer we had, then go to bed.
2014: Stand in our son’s nursery, watching him sleep peacefully, marveling at the wonderfully exhausting days of finger-painting, swimming, swinging, beaching, grilling and day tripping.  Wonder what summer was like before we had Miles; realize it was nowhere near as fun as it is today.  Thank God that we are tremendously blessed.  Also thank God for naps and Roseanne.  Collapse into bed, smiling.
Yes, today’s summer is much different from yesterday’s, but in a really flippin’ awesome way.  Ah, summertime.
Not mine, but not a bad idea...

Not mine, but not a bad idea…

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