Daily Archives: 06.18.2011

Savouring Summer: A List of Essentials

Jo blogs at Mostly Fit Mom and when I think of her, the one word that keeps on coming to mind is prevailing.  Whether she’s attempting a week of solo-parenting, pushing through her finals or doing battle with a fussy hip injury (runners, we have all been there) she always makes it through.  I should like to think that in some ways she’s even managed to teach me a bit of second-hand patience.


Hello, kittens!  While Kat is away playing in the Mediterranean – lucky girl – I’m filling in with a guest post.  My name’s Joanne (“Jo” to many) and I blog over at Mostly Fit Mom, typically about fitness and trying to eat healthfully, but also about random stuff, like what life is like as a mom and dental student.

Luckily, the school year has wrapped up so I won’t bore you with the details of my typical study schedule.  Instead, I’m looking ahead to summer.

Living on the Canadian Prairies, summer is short and sweet – or, as was the case last year, basically non-existent.  As a lover of sun and warmth, but not wanting to move away from our extended family, I try to squeeze every last bit of summer out of the season so that I can make it through the long, cold, dark winter, stoked with sweet memories involving sunlight and above-freezing temperatures.  And since I also have Type A tendencies and like to makes goals and lists a lot, here’s what I’ll be doing to make the summer of 2011 memorable:

1. Reading – Right now my reading list includes:

  • Bossypants by Tina Fey
  • Run Faster by Brad Hudson and Matt Fitzgerald
  • Atlas Shrugged and Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
  • The Harry Potter series (not the first time I’ve read it, of course, but it’s been awhile)
  • The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson (I’ve been waiting for the paperback version, but I’m tired of waiting!)
  • A few more books from the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich.  To me, these are TOTALLY what summer reading is about: easy-to-read and fun.

2. Taking the kids to Homestead Ice Cream – Honestly, I’m not sure if I’ve been back to Homestead since we moved back to Saskatoon 3 years ago, but when I was growing up, it was a place my family sometimes went if we were visiting my aunt who “lived in the city.”  Later, it was a place my new boyfriend (now husband of 13 years) visited during the early months of our developing relationship.  Had I known then that his favourite flavour of ice cream was bubble gum, it might have changed the course of our relationship, because who, besides those under the age of 10, likes bubble gum ice cream?!?  I’m pretty sure he masked his strange flavour preference back then and ordered “normal” flavours featuring lots of chocolate.

3. Training for the Disneyland Half Marathon on September 4th – This is actually part of my master plan to Hit My Target Weight and Be the Fittest I’ve Ever Been this summer.  Actually, I’m still working out a specific plan as to how I’m going to achieve this, but it will happen!

4. Seeing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 –

July 15th.  I will actually be sort of sad to see this film, because it’s the last movie of the series.  But I’m sure it will be FANTASTIC and AMAZING.  Also on the summer viewing list:

  • The Green Lantern
  • X-Men First Class
  • Bridesmaids
  • Kung Fu Panda 2
  • The Hangover 2

Like my books, I like my summer movies fun and easy.

5. Taking the kids to the drive-in – It’s a family tradition to hit the drive-in at least once per summer.  We’re about a 10 min drive away from the drive-in here in Saskatoon, which is located just east of the city.  Unfortunately, I usually only make it through one movie.  Since we live fairly far north (about 52 degrees north, if you really wanted to know), the sun sets fairly late during the summer months, meaning that drive-in movies definitely do NOT start early and being that I’m officially a bore, I usually fall asleep after the first feature (often before my kids do – so sad).

6. Road-tripping with the kids to Banff and Lake Louise –

From the Banff National Park website www. banffnationalpark.com

If you have never been, you really should consider it.  Banff was Canada’s first national park, and the world’s third, and the scenery is spectacular.  I first visited Banff when I was 5.  It was a motorhome vacation with my family (mom, dad, sis, bro), paternal grandparents, and my aunt and uncle (who were, coincidentally, my mom’s sister and my dad’s brother – I think it’s a small town thing).  Of course now Banff itself is quite touristy, and the Chateau Lake Louise is owned by Fairmont (not that that’s a bad thing), but you can definitely still find yourself a quiet spot and take in the views.

Beyond that, I’ll just be trying to get outside with the kids, spending some much-needed couple time with my husband, and heading home to my parents’ house (conveniently located near a lake) for a few weekends.

What are your big plans for the summer?  Any books/movies you’re dying to read/see?  Do you have any traditions that you just have to fit in every year?