I saw a graphic earlier this morning noting that there are only 18 summers of childhood, and I have thought about that ever since.
You see, we are now in summer 18 with our oldest, though in my mind's eye, he will always be the same little one he was here in summer 4. Now, though, our conversations are deeper, and the opportunities that lie ahead of him are greater and more exciting as he nears the end of the first leg of the race God has called him to run.
Summers 1-18 have been filled with countless amazing memories, yet I find myself wanting more. Our family has been blessed with more private jokes than we can count, better experiences together than we would have ever imagined, and God-given opportunities for which we will always be grateful.
Yet, as I look back over the summers, I don't have a vision in my mind of what my house looked like on any given day, nor of how many times I went to bed with the dishes undone. I do, though, remember the game nights after dinner that stretched so late we all decided to let the dishes wait a while. :) I remember the chaos of Nerf wars that left me finding darts for days on end in the curtains and other places. I remember swimming in the ocean, hiking in the woods, having dinner conversations so bizarre and hilarious that anyone else would surely think we were insane, and us all laughing and loving together all along the way.
So, today, no matter what summer of childhood you are on, I encourage you to seize it! Make time for playing together, laughing together, reading together, and just being together. I can promise that you will never look back from summer 18 and say you regret it!