Summertime and the Livin’ is Easy – June 5

Welcome if you are visiting because you are on the 2016 A to Z Post Challenge Road Trip This is a series during the month of June celebrating Summertime


“Then there were long, lazy summer afternoons when there was nothing to do but read. And dream. And watch the town go by to supper. I think that is why our great men and women so often have sprung from small towns, or villages. They have had time to dream in their adolescence. No cars to catch, no matinees, no city streets, none of the teeming, empty, energy-consuming occupations of the city child. Little that is competitive, much that is unconsciously absorbed at the most impressionable period, long evenings for reading, long afternoons in the fields or woods.”
― Edna Ferber

This paragraph takes us back to our summers trips to the library, and books we read. Growing up when I did, children were allowed to PLAY, to use their imaginations, to just be. Rather than where we were raised, city or village, it was the times we were brought up in that formed who we have become.

Children today have no real summers, not the kind Edna Ferber writes about. They are over-programmed, over-organized, have constant schedules for every kind of class, sport or otherwise. There is no time to dream. As adults we have allowed ourselves to become over-booked like our grandchildren.

Let’s make a promise to one another that this summer we are going to clear a space everyday to read, or sit on the porch and do nothing. Maybe an afternoon in the fields or woods. I have another idea….let’s get a deck of cards, sit on the steps, and play a childhood card game, the names of which I am beginning to forget. Deal? Deal!


About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her:
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9 Responses to Summertime and the Livin’ is Easy – June 5

  1. Deal!

    I’m with W H Davies who, in his poem Leisure, wrote:

    WHAT is this life if, full of care,
    We have no time to stand and stare?—

    No time to stand beneath the boughs,
    And stare as long as sheep and cows:

    No time to see, when woods we pass,
    Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:

    No time to see, in broad daylight,
    Streams full of stars, like skies at night:

    No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
    And watch her feet, how they can dance:

    No time to wait till her mouth can
    Enrich that smile her eyes began?

    A poor life this if, full of care,
    We have no time to stand and stare.

  2. dino0726 says:

    Sounds like a good deal to me. When my son comes to visit with his family, we let our hair down so to speak and play games. I play board games and cards with the kids, but last summer we brought back to life the ball game of SPUD. My son was as much a kid in the game as the kids were. It was wonderful!
    @dino0726 from 
    FictionZeal – Impartial, Straighforward Fiction Book Reviews

  3. John Holton says:

    Crazy Eights is always a good game, as is War. If you’re in the mood for a little violence, Slap Jack is another good one. When my brothers and I played it, things got pretty wild.

    We have a bunch of kids living on the block, and I don’t think I see many of them out in the street playing, or walking on the sidewalks, or exploring. Kids need more anarchy, for lack of a better term, time to do stuff without adult supervision. They need the opportunity to make their own rules and settle their own disputes…

    • You have stated the case well, John. It remains to be seen wheat these children will do when their parents are not there running interference over everything. Perhaps the inability to cope with the hard times every life experiences. Wish I could sit down with you for a Crazy Eight card game.

  4. You’ll get no argument from me! We have never got caught up in the “got to go here and there” life. Our children did not choose to go out for a sport in school, and we didn’t put them in summer programs. We had them out in the garden in the spring. In a camp on Bush Lake for swimming and forty-two and conversation in the summer, at deer camp in the fall, with campfires and Coleman lanterns. In the winter, we huddled up inside and watched movies together, played board games and baked. The art of living life instead of letting life drive you is being lost and a generation is paying the price. I’m afraid it is too high a cost.
    .Barbara, blogging at Life & Faith in Caneyhead

    • You gave your children the gift of being summer children.How lucky they were. I can vouch for the fact that they will remember their summers all the rest of their lives. Thanks for leaving your comment that understands what children are loosing out on these days.

  5. The A-to-Z “road trip” invitation is a perfect example of summertime and living easy isn’t it?! Popping by and visiting a myriad of blogs at a slower pace is like a lovely summer spent at the library. That was always one of my favorite things as a kid – to check out a ton of books and then read them outside. I’m going to make sure to do that again this summer. And I still remember the delightful card deck with pink carnations on it, that we used the summer my sister taught us how to play canasta. You’ve got me ready to make a picture of lemonade and go sit on the porch. Happy summer!

    • You have made my day outlining exactly what I hope my readers would consider. Tons of books, taking advantage of a lovely day outside, lemonade. A Happy Summer indeed. Thanks for leaving this reply and including those pink carnations playing cards.

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