It’s summer. And so far, it’s been gorgeous. Warm, sunny days, the smell of fresh cut grass (okay, okay, AND fertilized fields), just enough rain, and vast amounts of green space. Boy, I sure missed the space.

Summer also means:

:: first boxes from the CSA. It feels like I had to wait forever (because I did!), but I guess that made it all the more fun to see boxes and boxes of huge, beautiful heads of lettuce. When I arrived at the pick-up site on Friday morning, bright and early, the excitement around that table was palpable. Like Christmas morning with a bunch of kids — except it was June, we were adults, and the excitement was about cabbage. I think you have to live in the frozen tundra of Upstate New York to truly appreciate the beauty of radishes and baby carrots.

:: slipping out of the house before 7 in work clothes and gardening gloves. I can get more done in those uninterrupted 30 minutes than I do the rest of the day. Unless you count refereeing light saber wars as “getting more done.” Also, I don’t know why I’m constantly berating myself for my lack of exercise, since working in my vegetable garden means running up and down a huge hill to check on why the boys are screaming, where they’ve disappeared to, how much dirt they’ve tracked through the house, etc. I’m pretty sure sprinting uphill is exercise, right?

:: watching my first attempts at gardening. And reminding myself to be stalwart, resilient, ready to do better next year. I’ve already learned several things: When you’re in the last 30 minutes of planting, and your baby is screaming his head off because he’s wanted to nurse for at least an hour (or more), better to take a break than to just scatter carrot seeds all over — and then beet seeds, basil seeds, and spinach seeds. Especially if you don’t know what these little sprouts will look like, and are then forced to wait for all sprouts to grow two inches or so — at which point, half your garden is thickly populated with grass. Did I mention that half my garden = about 175 square feet? That, folks, is a lot of grass. Next year, I foresee many more seedlings and not quite so many seeds in my future.

:: housework going out the window. No, really. I pick up, do laundry, cook, and occasionally vacuum. And every morning, I wake up telling myself that really, today needs to be cleaning day. But it’s summer! When I start to worry that I’ll never regain routine, I remind myself that autumn comes every year, and summer is only a season. In the meantime, I’m just trying to make sure that the boys have their teeth brushed before they head out to find their bikes — in their pajamas, crocs, and helmets, the ultimate summer uniform.

:: riding my new-to-me bike down the country road. Breathing deeply of clean, sweet country air. Stopping to fill my basket with cheerful little flowers. Catching the first glimpse of my very own house on my way back — and loving it.