In a couple of days, we will be saying goodbye to the warm weather, bee buzzing, flower blooming season that is summer. We’ll begin to start packing up our summer gear, replacing it with our cooler weather items that can be easily layered or worn for those chilly mornings. We’ll be packing up our sandals for boots. It’s the end of one season, but the beginning of a new one that has its own uniqueness and loveable qualities.
While summer is not my favorite season, over the years I have grown to truly appreciate the summer. I have learned to try to be more content and more in the moment instead of wishing the season away (although I am looking forward to the fall weather, activities and drinks).
As we prepare to say goodbye to the summer, I wanted to share a few words about what summer means to me and why it’s so special.
Almost every summer growing up, my family and I went somewhere or did something during our summer vacation from school. Whether it was taking a week-long or weekend trip to Cape May, riding Morey’s Pier rides in Wildwood, NJ or visiting an amusement park in Allentown, PA my parents often did whatever they could to make sure we had some activity to celebrate the summer. We’d go so often and it was such a popular spot for people from the Delaware Valley that we’d always run into people my dad worked with while on vacation down there.
When I got my first job working at a department store, I remember the excitement I felt of having the ability to put in my vacation time so that I could enjoy summer vacation with my family.
It’s something I realize as an adult how blessed I was to experience because not all of my peers had that experience growing up. Yet every summer that they could afford to take us, we were headed to the beach for a family vacation. It’s moments like these that I feel truly bonded us and continued to make us the close-knit family we are today – something I am incredibly thankful for.
Once we were out of the house and married, I remember saying to my husband how I wanted to start a tradition like that of our own. I wanted to find a place, whether it be on the shore or somewhere else, where we could take our future family every year for summer vacation and for an opportunity to bond as a family.
“It’s moments like these that I feel truly bonded us and continued to make us the close-knit family we are today – something I am incredibly thankful for.”
This summer we got an opportunity to visit Newport, Rhode Island for the first time and going there reminded me a lot of the trips I took as a kid heading to the shore. The cheerful demeanor of the visitors and their families.
The activities and how you can do everything from go on a sail to enjoying fresh seafood on a pier.
The fact that it’s almost like an island with the amount of water surrounding it.
It’s one of the things that caused my husband and I to both look at each other and go, “maybe this could be it?”
I’m not sure where that place will be, but I realized at that moment that there’s so much beauty in just enjoying the moment. As excited as I am for the fall season, there’s a lot of joy to be had the summer as well. There are memories to be made, experiences to be had, and things to see. There are opportunities to experience all that the summer season has to offer and appreciate its uniqueness, even if it isn’t my favorite season.
This is why when I think of the summertime I think of walking along the sandy beaches of New Jersey and dodging fruit flies while enjoying water ice (commonly said as “wooder ice”) on the beach.
I think of hearing the lyrics of “Wildwood Days” blasting through the speakers at the Wildwood Convention Center whilst walking down the boardwalk.
I think of the first summer that I turned 21 getting to go to a winery with my parents and enjoy a glass of wine for the first time.
I think of visiting the beach with my best friends, packing sandwiches, sunscreen and a good book for the road.
I think of dancing to “Before I Let Go” at birthdays and family get-togethers.
I think of long drives with my husband with no aim, stopping at a random town to explore and see what it has to offer.
I think of backyard barbeques full of laughter, dancing, and adorable kids playing in the yard.
I think of hearing “Summertime” by Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff and knowing that it’s officially the start of summer in the city. I can even think of the nostalgia of hearing it at celebrations, in the car as my mom is picking me up from the last day of school, and driving around the city with my now-husband.
I think of my mom’s seafood salad and my aunt’s garlic crabs.
I think of conquering my fears through summer hikes with my abbonim, ummanim, and sister-in-law, celebrating our treks with a delicious feast afterward.
I think of getting caught in the rain without an umbrella with my family, laughing hysterically once we got to the car.
I think of my husband and I going on our first summer vacation together.
I think of summer and I think of all of the joyous memories I’ve had over the years in summer’s past with the hope of more joyful memories in the future.
What is your favorite thing about summer?