With the start of school and football season, I think it's safe to say summer has come to an end. For those of us who are no longer in school and don't play football, maybe we can stretch summer out a little longer, but fall is nearly upon us.
With that, I'm going to revisit a post from June 1. It was a list of the things I wanted to accomplish during the summer of 2007. I'd like to evaluate how successful I was, so here it goes:
1. Spend as much time outside as possible (preferably with my wife and kids)
I believe I accomplished this one. We spent countless hours in or near the lake, playing outside, visiting neighbors (thanks for a great summer, Yoders!). I spent many hours on the tractor mowing grass. I got up early and went fishing probably 85% of the summer workdays.
2. Date my wife at least 10 times
Unfortunately, I don't think I met this goal. I did date my wife numerous times, but I don't think it was 10. We may have gone out 6-8 times and each one was great. I did plan a special date that we've never done before: dinner and a movie on the lake.
3. Take my wife on a weekend getaway
We haven't done it yet, but in mid-September we're going to Nashville for 3 days. It's for a conference, but it's still just the two of us going away for a few days.
4. Visit with friends and family
It seems like we saw a lot less of family than usual, but a lot more of friends.
We even made some new friends this summer. Our summer neighbors, the Yoders, became more than just neighbors - they're now some of our favorite friends. Craig Helfrich played on the same softball team as us and a friendship has started there. The Lantz family has become an important part of our lives - good friends.
We got to see some old friends, too. Dan Erickson came to town twice and I got to play disc golf with him each time. Despite being badly beaten both times, it was a great time. We saw Mark & Stephanie Troyer and their two boys for the first time in several years. We just recently made a trek up to Niles to visit the Becraft family, and got a bonus when we stopped by our old church. There was a Fun Fair going on there that day and we caught up with a bunch of old friends.
I'd say this one was a success.
5. Get my money's worth ($17) out of a fishing license
As I mentioned in #1, I went out nearly every morning before work. I also got to spend some longer stretches of time on the lake with friends. Definitely accomplished this goal. Just this morning, I caught the biggest fish of the summer - a 24-inch walleye. This is a sampling of what I (and others) caught.
6. Play more than 2 rounds of golf
I have yet to play any golf. Although, I'm supposed to play in an outing with Jeff Becraft on Sept. 8! So, I failed, but I don't feel too bad about it. Golf takes a lot of time and money, both of which can be better spent elsewhere.
7. Cook out more than cook in
A lot of my outdoor time was spent cooking on the grill. We came up with some new recipes and had a great time using open flames!
8. Eat more corn on the cob
Oh man! We discovered Sweet Corn Charlie this year and if we ever move far away it's going to be hard to eat corn from anywhere else. So, yes, I ate more corn on the cob!
9. Read 2-3 books that challenge me (currently reading "God's Secret Agent" by Sammy Tippit)
God's Secret Agent was a good one for me. You can read my thoughts on it here.
I also read The Five Love Languages of Children and you can read what I thought here.
Overall, I'd say one of the two challenged me, but I learned from both!
10. Serve others in new ways
I guess this fits here - I spent five days with my kids while my wife was gone at camp. It called for me to serve those kids in ways I could never have imagined. I loved it. We had a great time. You can read a little about it here, here and here.
Now, as summer ends I've started serving in the Junior High Wednesday Night Youth gatherings at church. I'm running sound and tech. It's definitely a learning experience and I'm beginning to love those Jr. Highers!
11. Play disc golf with friends
As mentioned in #4, I played twice with Dan Erickson. It's a hobby (not really a sport) that I'd love to pick back up. Maybe when my kids are old enough to play with me I'll get back into it. But at least I can check this one off the list.
12. Do a parrot head pose for a picture
Nope. Sad. I need to get with Derry and pose one before August ends. Will that still count?
13. Take my family to a beach
Took them to the Warren Dunes in Michigan. What a great day. You can read about it here.
Living on a lake, it's inevitable. Lots of time in the lake - lots of lake water in the stomach. Yum.
Had a great camping trip with my dad, who I plan to post more about soon. You can read about the camping trip here.
16. Run, and finish, a 10K race
Not even close! That's why this was #16 on the list!
17. Drink iced tea
We made so much iced tea this summer I'm pretty much a walking antioxidant.
18. Learn to play my guitar
I took one lesson - does that count?