As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Summer Plans

The (formal) school year is finished and we've made the first homemade ice cream of the year. It must be summer. 

Now it's time to make some summer plans. Of course, I've been making summer goals for a long time. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say, Now is the time to implement the summer plans!

Here are my goals:

Make new curtains for my dining room. 
I made new ones to replace the faded ones that hung in the dining room last year. But then I decided that I really liked those better in my bedroom, so up the stairs they went. Of course, I brought them back down after a few days because the dining room windows were bare. When my friend Frances took my house photos back in December, they went back upstairs for the bedroom shots, and then down again for the dining room shots. When we updated the master bedroom, I took them back upstairs. But when we had guests, they came back down again. All of this back and forth is ridiculous...especially since I have had the fabric for the new ones since January, and since I can make them in a couple of afternoons or one whole Saturday.

Top: Curtains in the bedroom
Bottom: (Same) curtains in the dining room (photo by Frances)

Make a colonial floor cloth.
I am really excited about this! I love the look of floor cloths, and I have the perfect place for one. The braided rug in front of my kitchen sink is falling apart and needs to be replaced (before someone breaks a limb!). A floor cloth is also easier to clean than a rug, which makes it a good idea for a food prep/garbage can area.

I have been gathering inspiration and instructions and I'm going to try my hand at this. Bekah is also excited and wants to help. I'll bring you along too, if you'd like!

photo via Canvasworks Floorcloths

Organize, organize, organize.
Summer is always the season in which I put my house to rights. I will be cleaning out cabinets and closets and the dreaded laundry room. (Very few closets in this old farmhouse means that the laundry room is a catch-all. By the time the school year ends, last summer's cleaning and organization is kaput and the laundry room is a danger zone!)

Last summer, we slowly worked our way through the house, allowing two weeks per room. That worked out well, so we'll probably do something similar this year.

Plan for the next homeschool year.
That is fun! In fact, planning is almost as much fun as actually doing it. I'll pray and ponder, make reading lists, make a rudimentary schedule, do some reading, get my ducks in a row, order a few things...all over the course of the summer.

A summer recipe series on the blog.
Although I have done a winter and a summer recipe series since I started Soup On Tuesday in January, 2012, I almost decided to forget about it this summer. The idea that I had wasn't coming together and I couldn't get enthused. But I really like the discipline that a series gives me to be creative and try new things, especially during the summer when I am most likely to get into a cooking slump. So after a brainstorming session (or two or three), I have come up with a simple plan. I will be sharing recipes for summer fare...a combination of new (to me) recipes and some tried-and-true family favorites, all using typical summer foods.

Join me each Wednesday (although I'll begin the series tomorrow...on a Thursday!) for my Savoring Summer recipe series.

Have some fun!
Ron doesn't take any vacations in the summer. But who needs a vacation to have fun? Not us! We have mini-vacays all summer long.

~ Grab iced coffees at Dunkin' Donut and then do drive-bys. We love this! Slowly driving through older neighborhoods, ogling houses, snapping photos, sipping our coffee. A cheap thrill.

~ Go to the beach...the "little beach" with Kristin and the grands (so named because it is not at the ocean) or the "big beach" (at the ocean) with my mom and my sister.

~ Spend a summer afternoon reading magazines while indulging in one of the Starbucks summer coffee flavors at Barnes and Noble.

~ Eat snow cones and then go to Target. (Life's simple pleasures and all that.)

~ Visit my sister and go to the bigger Target in her town. (Have I told you that we love Target?)

~ Celebrate birthdays. If you are a long-time friend, you know that we have a gazillion birthdays and anniversaries in July and August. Thus, we spend a good part of the summer planning for birthdays, shopping for birthday gifts, thinking about birthdays, hosting and attending birthday celebrations, and hoping that we're not forgetting something!

What are your plans for this summer?


  1. I love to hear about people staying home and doing special things in their "own backyard" We often forget our own towns...looking for something "better" elsewhere. I love the simple things too. An afternoon reading on the porch,sitting on my bench by the woods, visiting one of our many forest preserves, walking along the river bank etc.
    Your idea about your new food project is great. I'll be reading for more ideas.

  2. Sounds like a lovely summer to me! You had me giggling over the curtains going back and forth. Too funny! Looking forward to the summer series. As soon as you get it going, I'll put that cute button in my needs something!

  3. I love your 'cheap thrills,' Cheryl. :-) They truly are pleasant things to do. You're making me feel like a real sloth. I have so few goals for this summer it's not even funny! I do plan to paint the kitchen and after hearing about your curtains, maybe I'll make curtains for mine. I've always had only blinds on the windows. We live so far off the road that people would have to carry a telescope around to peek in on us - or at least good binoculars. lol
    And now I'm thinking about tackling that laundry room. Mine is also a catch all, so it's almost like not knowing where to start!

  4. Sounds like some good summer plans. Sometimes our mini vacations are the best. There just seems there's less stress in planning when you just take off for the day...

  5. I'm laughing at you running your curtains up and down the stairs depending on the occasion. That is cute. I can't wait to see your floor cloth. My oldest will be moving out soon so I would like to paint his room before one of his sister's moves into it. And finish planning next year's homeschool. I would like to try some new healthier recipes but that seems to take so much forethought. :P

  6. I can't wait to see your curtains! It made me laugh to hear about them going back and forth! I move curtains from room to room but never in the same day! :)

    I love the sound of your summer plans. What are mine? hmm,,,well a trip to Knoeble's amusement park. We've never been and the kids are so excited! All our kids and our granddaughter are going so that is going to be special. We are taking an unexpected trip to Florida for a spontaneous family reunion (more about that on the blog soon), Emma and Rachel are going to a youth conference at the end of June for a week. The rest of the summer will be pretty laid back, but I've learned to hold these things lightly. I'll spend a bit of time planning for next school year, too. Reading is on my list, I am on a roll with that.

    I'm hoping our summer paths will cross at some point! That would be so fun!


  7. Great curtain story!
    I love a mini-vacay best, too. Swinging in the hammock, meeting for a coffee, going for an ice cream, reading a good book, taking a drive. The simple pleasures bring me the greatest joy.

  8. Love all your plans for the summer, Cheryl. We are mostly staying at home this summer also. Our grandson will be attending college in our town and will be moving in with us this summer. We've been getting his room ready. A lot of cleaning out has been going on here. We'll all go to the beach for a week in August. Our children and grands all come for the week and it's a great time to get us all together.
    Your floor cloth looks amazing and will fit right into your decor. ♥

  9. I'm mulling over summer plans in my head. But we haven't finished school yet, so I'll firm them up in a week or two. Some cleaning and organizing is definitely in store.

    Giggled at the thought of the traveling curtains. Looking forward to summer fare for the table.

  10. I think you all are really good at planning! Your summer sounds well organized already and I like the sound of your little vacations. I'll look forward to the new curtains, the recipes and especially the floor cloth!

  11. Well you certainly have some good plans in place. I had to laugh at the changing back and forth of your curtains. Yep, it's time to make some up. Looking forward to the recipes, and I am intrigued over that floor cloth! Just starting to make some plans over here. Most of them involve one sewing project or another. Hope your day went well!


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