June 6, 2011

Whereby Summer, or at least a warm day or two, comes to Racine

Here's the thing with June in Wisconsin.  At some point you may be able to say "I could really use a sweatshirt."  In which case, it's not really summer.  But I will say, winter has most definitely lost its grip.  On my daily walks, I've watched the mammoth snow pile leftover from the blizzard turn to a sad gray lump, full of trash and pieces of road signs.  Just a few days ago it was a lousy puddle.  And now - it's gone.

I'm so grateful I threw my camera in the stroller a few weeks ago, because the combination of fog and blossoms and heat made this particular day feel straight up make-believe.  What can I say?  You've bewitched me, Racine, body and soul.  (But drive 5 blocks and there was a shooting at Tino's.  We stay near the lake). 

Can you believe these were all taken on the same day?

that's the lake out there, beyond the mist


And then, just like that, it was Memorial Day weekend.  We are really doing this, 2011?  Because yesterday I was cupping my gloved hands over the heat vents as my car warmed up in the snow, and my big pregnant belly got in the way of the steering wheel.  However, when this long weekend surfaced on the calendar unexpectedly and stretched out in front of us, we weren't complaining!  First we hit our favorite diner, The Blue Diamond Family Restaurant.  Paper placemats, white coffee mugs, a case full of pies by the door.  Buuuut, Bear didn't exactly feel like napping or staring into space (or being quiet) like he normally does in restaurants.  No biggie - we just took our omelets to go, ourselves, our boy, our dog, and our stroller to a nice patch of sun and tried to soak in the nothingness.

Only, babies don't like nothingness so much.  He was confused by the sunscreen, and he hated nursing under a blanket in the heat.  He had a meltdown that sent me running for the AC in the car, which only caused him to scream harder.  I guess he is growing to appreciate the feel of a cool sheet and dim room when nap time rolls around.  In the end, we forced him to nap half-naked in the shade while we lounged in the sun.

I lifted my shirt and exposed this silvery-white stomach to the searing sun and dipped my feet in a stream where Trail was nosing around.  We went home, feeling a little like beaten soldiers as our definition of spontaneous fun is morphing into some kind of happy-go-lucky flexibility.  Trail is totally along for the ride, in every sense of the word.

Now the official beginning-of-summer holiday has come and gone, and I find myself willing the time to slow down.  I want these days to sink in real good.  I want to savor this baby while he is a baby.  I like him how he is right now: semi-mute, immobile and really smiley.  One day soon enough, his legs will stretch with an independence that causes the whole apartment (and the water's edge!) to become fair game, but for now he is our little bobblehead chunky monk and all it takes is milk and a soft blanket (okay, and a dim room) to keep him smiling.


This past weekend we kept Olivia while her parents went away for the weekend, and more summer sun came looking for us by way of 80 degrees.  Aside from the parking police, everyone in the city square had their own personal hallelujahs going.  The fountains were in full-swing, sunscreen was necessary, and no one brought along a"just in case" fleece jacket for the windy walk home.

The day started warm, and got hotter and hotter.  It's impossible to stay away from the lake on a day like that. 

Litmus test for true summer: sandy baby toes.


  1. Wow. Those are some impressive thighs Bear's got!

  2. Isn't it life affirming to be out on the first great spring/summer day and feeling that lovely sun on your face. Love those fat little feet in the sand for the first time.... ever. Thanks for the ride along...... J


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