“it’s a smile, it’s a kiss, it’s a sip of wine … it’s summertime!”

Today is the solstice, the longest day of the year, the official start of summer, and Mother Nature has gifted us with a beautiful day, a summer day with a bit of a breeze and lots of sun.

When I was a kid, summer started when school was out for the year. It was glorious. I had two full months to do whatever I wanted, well, mostly whatever I wanted. It was actually whatever my mother let me do or whatever she didn’t know I did.

I remember going barefoot at the start of the summer and having every rock and stone hurt my feet, and I remember hopping one foot to the other on the hot pavement as it burned the soles of my feet, but it didn’t take long for my feet to harden, and I could walk anywhere and on any surface. My summer attire was always shorts and a blouse, mostly a sleeveless blouse. If I had to go anywhere, I wore sneakers, low, white Converse sneakers, with socks. The only time I wore a dress was to go to mass on Sunday.

We never had a set bedtime in the summer. I can remember sitting outside on a warm summer night. The outside light attracted all sort of bugs, and I’d watched them circle the light or bang into the screen. I used to go inside by the front door so I wouldn’t bring in the bugs.

My mother kept the living room shades down in the summer. She said the darkness kept the room cooler. Upstairs was always hot. I remember tossing and turning and trying to fall asleep.

Summer mornings are favorites of mine. The air is still cool, the birds are singing and the garden smells divine in the morning air. I love to sit on the deck with my coffee and papers. Sometimes I just sit there taking in what I can hear, smell and see. I always feel a sense of solitude, a sense of peace.

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17 Comments on ““it’s a smile, it’s a kiss, it’s a sip of wine … it’s summertime!””

  1. im6 Says:

    I’m sorry you had to wear Converse sneakers. KEDS were the ones to have when and where I grew up. KEDS with that blue logo/label on the back that always seemed to fall off (if you hadn’t worn it off first). I did some Googling and it seems like they may only make them for women / girls these days. What a shame.

    • katry Says:

      im6,
      Converse is a local company. My mother used to take us to the company store in the next town over, Malden. The sneakers were always a bit cheaper there. Nothing wrong with sporting Converse All Stars. I still have a few pairs of brightly colored Converse high tops.

      • im6 Says:

        I have several All Stars myself (black, grey, dark brown suede, red…), but Keds were for kids where I grew up!. Have you priced All Stars lately? W.O.W.

      • katry Says:

        im6,
        I have pink, purple and red All Stars.

        I went to the web site ands sneakers I would love to have. The colors are great; of course, the pair I like is $75.00, but there is a 25% off sale so maybe…

  2. olof1 Says:

    We’ll celebrate Midsummer tomorrow and the weather is as expected, cold and rainy. Oddly enough there’s almost no wind but I wouldn’t be surprised if it starts blowing tomorrow around noon when lots of people will start dancing around the Midsummer pole 🙂 🙂

    It was sandals or clogs here, otherwise it was very similar. We came home when we were tired just as long as my mother knew where we were or at least could guess here we were 🙂 🙂 I was the calm kid in the family so I doubt that she worried much that I would do something stupid 🙂

    Yes early mornings are the best, when it still is a bit chilly and the flies calm. Well I liked it when I lived in the city too where we had almost no flies, then I used to walk my dogs down to the ocean so they could take a swim before everyone else arrived. I do miss the ocean sometimes.

    Have a great day!

    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      That is too bad. The least Mother Nature could have done was to give you a lovely day tomorrow. We have May poles here but not Midsummer poles. I do love all your traditions.

      Kids did wear flip flops when I was growing up but they were mostly little kids. Sandals just weren’t popular. I wore them all the time in Ghana and have worn them since.

      My sisters were much younger and stayed around the house. I either rode my bike or went to the playground so my mother mostly knew where I was.

      I would hate those flies. Our green ones are here for only a while in the wooded areas, not near the houses. I would miss the ocean.

      Have a great day!

  3. Birgit Says:

    Summertime, gardentime. Currently we have more cherries and raspberries than we and the neighbors can eat though we really try.
    Goal!!! Oops, wrong topic. TV is on. KTCC music later.
    Currently a few cold days here but summer will be back next week. I’m barefooted as always nevertheless.

    • katry Says:

      Birgit,
      I’d be munching fruit by the handful.

      Around here are more strawberry plants and blueberry bushes than any other fruits. Blueberry pie is my second favorite pie.

      I totally understand why Goal!! has your interest!! Enjoy the games.

      Tomorrow will be like today, just a bit cooler.

  4. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I mostly spent the summer in a bathing suit or dungarees and short sleeve shirts. I was either in the water or in places where shorts would have meant lots of bites, cuts, scratches or bruises on my legs. Sometimes short sleeved shirts were problematic, too.
    I didn’t go barefooted much unless I was at the lake or the beach. But I wore PF Flyers. Low top red ones with the big white baby buggy bumper toes. They didn’t stay white very long. Or very red for that matter. 🙂 Red sneakers were necessary otherwise the raccoon wouldn’t follow on the leash very well.

    My mother kept the living room shades down, too, but it wasn’t necessary because there were shade trees all around the house. After the trees leafed out, the sun didn’t shine in. Upstairs was hot though. The trees weren’t tall enough to shade the second story during the hot part of the day. Sometimes I slept out on the front porch or in the old garage attic. Sometimes I slept outside in an Army surplus tent in the back yard. It was cooler out there. Buggier but cooler.

    Today started out beautifully. Somewhere along the way it turned meh. Warmish, sort of humid, murky. Meh. I cleaned the stove. That was the big highlight of the day so far.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      My summer “uniform” seldom changed. I did spend some time at the swamp, but there were plenty of ways to walk without getting scratched or bitten.

      I never had red sneakers back then, and I don’t think I remember seeing PF Flyers. I just went with convention in the white sneaker. Now, though, I’d choose the red.

      There were no tall trees anywhere near my house. Like yours, the upstairs was the hottest part of the house. I would have loved a front porch, but I did sleep outside every now and then.

      My day started with clouds and ended up with sun. It has cooled down a bit. I had PT, my last one, and did one errand. I wet mopped the kitchen and hallway and finished potting the outside plats. It was busy day.

      Have a great evening!

      • Caryn Says:

        PF Flyers were Converse too. I think we called all low tops PF Flyers and all high tops were Converse. And probably they all were because Converse was local.

      • katry Says:

        Thanks! I didn’t remember that. I know my black basketball high tops were Converse.

  5. Bob Says:

    Summer is here except the temperature has been hot since early May. Today we hit 99 degrees under clear skies with no chance of rain and triple digit heat for the foreseeable future.

    When I was a kid my mother always bought me Keds black high tops, white crew socks, shorts and white tee shirts. That was my summer uniform. I only played outside in the morning because we went to the public pool in the heat of the afternoon. Our house was a single story ranch style with three bedrooms, two baths and central air conditioning. Thank you Willis Carrier for inventing air conditioning.

    Today is the longest day of the year and the hours of daylight will become shorter daily until December. A few years ago I flew to São Paulo Brazil in early July. I arrived in the morning and went to the hotel and at about three I laid down to take a nap. I can’t sleep in a coach seat and I was very tired from being up all eleven hours overnight from Dallas. I woke up confused because the sky was pitch black and I thought I had overslept. It was only 5 in the evening because I forgot that I was in the Southern Hemisphere. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      We stayed in the low 70’s today. It really was a pretty day. Tomorrow should be the same. They’re saying rain for the weekend. That won’t hurt the tourist trade as it is still early in the summer.

      There wasn’t any central air around where I lived. I think a few movie theaters in Boston had central air and they made a big deal of it. I played outside the whole day. Sometimes we went to the pool while other times we went to the zoo or just rode around town. I liked the library as it always felt cool inside.

      Iceland in the winter is dark. My mother kept looking out the window during breakfast. Finally she asked if it ever got light. It did but not for long.

      Northern Finland in the summer was light forever. At midnight the sky was bright with color almost like sunset here. It was definitely the land of the midnight sun.

      • Bob Says:

        Why would anyone visit Iceland in winter? I can understand visiting in the summer there. A friend of mine spent a couple of days in Narsarsuaq Greenland. He said there was a hotel at the airport and feasted on while blubber which is a delicacy in Greenland.

      • katry Says:

        It was such a good deal, it being winter and all. We got the plane, breakfast every day and five nights at a hotel in town. It was so cold.

        The country is beautiful.

  6. Rowen Says:

    Summer mornings are especially exciting somehow. The air is still fresh and full of possibilities.


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