July babies. Both my girls have come in the heat of the summer. Their rumblings will forever be tied to clammy nights under the steady breeze of a fan, to walks on heated pavement ambling from shade to shade; the slow avalanche of their births both begun on heady evenings when the sun had only just blinked to dark. Boston is drifting under a week-long heatwave right now. I do so love these cooped up mornings: no expectation of leaving the apartment, the windows closed to the heat and one or two air conditioner units humming away.
I have mentioned before that I like to imagine motherhood as the lazy summertime of a woman’s life. With Joan Bea’s arrival last week, again I encounter the bliss of a day less full, a project not started, a voyage left for another time. We all have voices within us that speak louder and even compete at times: the creative urge, the rowdy adventuring spirit, the maternal leaning, the enthusiasm and passion of a new idea, the quiet tug to rest and be still. I am happy to tell you that it is significantly easier with the second baby to relax and enjoy, to listen to the voice that says cherish, relish, savor.
I know Boston’s isn’t the only city anticipating a heat index over 100 today and tomorrow. Let’s all have a tall glass of water and savor the breeze when you discover it.
I’m so grateful for this project from Sakura Bloom–I fear that many of these moments would not have been captured without it! I’m wearing the Sakura Bloom pure baby linen sling in twilight.
oh, the memories we all have of food! When do they form? I think of just summer alone: salty chips and candy bars at a beach stand, strawberry ice cream on a hot afternoon, lemonade after a long swim, cheeseburgers with friends, tomatoes off the vine and sprinkled with salt, corn cobs spun in butter, cold oysters mingled with tart mignonette, melty peach pie in evening, hot doughnuts in the morning…. We seem to pull our strongest memories from childhood, the flavors melded with moments, locations, the presence of loved ones, all of it recalled in an instant with just a taste or a whiff.
Toddlers seem to me to be nearly fruitarians. They just love it. Look for them at a party and you’ll find them all round the fruit tray, pinching watermelon squares, bundling blueberries into their hands for later, telltale strawberry stains long since dried on their shirt collars. To love something as a toddler is to want it over and over—a book only gets better on the 3rd read; a lunch, then a dinner, of only fresh raspberries is never refused.
Imagine the wonder of a market to a toddler’s eye: the fruit heaped, piled, trays lining tables, tables forming rows fading off into the distance. The fruit of Boston’s Haymarket is not farmer’s market fruit: fresh from the fields and only just ripe to sell. Instead it is overripe, really on the verge of rotten. It is opulence from grocery stores across the city, an order that was overestimated and must be sold quickly or wasted altogether. The vendors will warn you, “eat these right away,” as they hand over a bag of mush-soft avocados. If you’re planning a party that night and want an enormous bowl of guacamole, a margarita pitcher sharp with fresh limes, or mojitos brimming with trampled mint, it’s perfect. Otherwise, think fast.
I remember coming to Haymarket when I was due, so very overdue, with Lux. I bought lemons and made a lemon cake. Though I’m now only at 33 weeks, I still feel a bit like the fruit piled here. Bursting at the seams here and there, even softer in spots than you might expect. Getting dressed in your third trimester, I’ve always felt, is a bit like slipping a rubber band over a ripe peach. Abundant, and preposterous.
I’m wearing Lux in sakura bloom simple silk in amber. All of these photos were taken by Cambria Grace, a dreamy Boston photographer. Lux and I had so much fun wandering the market with her and Joe and I are absolutely over the moon about these photos (she got smiles from Lux we never seem to managed to capture!).
I returned from visiting another city inspired to rediscover my own. That was the most unexpected element of our trip, the way I came back ready to see Boston as I had seen Rome. What are the old habits you find yourself in, that you haven’t even noticed? The cafe you always go to, the cafe you never go to? The part of town you haven’t visited in years. That park you’ve heard is beautiful, but it never quite works out to visit. If you were visiting your city for the first time, what do you think you would fall in love with first?
Carrying a toddler can have a similar effect. We talk about ducks, and suddenly she’s pointing out that ducks are everywhere, in fact there are flyers for a duck parade in every window on our street. When I’m pushing her in a stroller, we have a bit of separate experience—she’s chatting away while I’m eyeing street signs, curb ledges, the uneven sidewalks that are coming up next. But slung up next to me, we share the moments as they pass. And why not stop to watch the bikers ride by, their wheels skimming over the pavement with such precision? Why not closely examine the flower buds as they open just a little bit more each day? Why not head in a new direction for the morning, the day unplanned but certain to be filled with something new?
This is my first post for the Sakura Bloom sling diaries. Lux is slung in the simple silk sling in amber made by sakura bloom. There are thirteen other moms with babes of all ages participating, what a treat to take part!