Sadness is easier because its surrender. I say make time to dance alone with one hand waving free.
— -Claire Colburn, Elizabethtown

I'll gladly throw one hand in the air and dance, eyes closed tight, round and round. Because summer is finally here.

Shauna Neiquest writes in her book, Present Over Perfect, how frightening it was for her to go snorkeling with her son on a summer vacation. She had been working, going, performing,  and surviving for so long, she hadn't been alone with herself or her thoughts. In a moment, without noise, without a to-do list, without anyone to perform for...she was alone, exhausted, tired of living fast, and scared of what it would look like to slow down and pay attention to what her body and soul really needed. 

I've been there, have you?

Somehow you feel stranded in a moment of quiet, a moment you desperately need but have no idea how to embrace because it's so foreign and scary.

Having a school schedule with a free summer has become one of the greatest gifts to Brett and I as we seek to stay in tune with who we are and what our souls need. 

For me, summer is sacred. 

A time to invest in my marriage, not my to-do list. 

And I can feel the weight of my to-do list and Brett's busy schedule takin a toll on me. 

Every year I can feel the weight of the school year lift as rigid schedules cease, coffee shops empty of their stressed out regulars, and our roads are noticeably less trafficked. 

The weight lifts and summer settles. 

Summer in Lubbock is the start of flowers and cactai blooming, warm evenings, and drive-in movies.

Summer for the Stines looks like a homework-free husband, reading and writing for fun, escaping our isolated city for vacations and photographing weddings, and, my favorite, slow summer strolls as the sun sets every night.

How could I have any summertime sadness when we're slowing down to connect to ourselves and to each other and to rest? 

How do you slow down, get in tune with yourself, and rest (whether you have the summer off or not)?