Today's Self-Portrait Tuesday involves one of my very favorite places in my town.
There's a lake here in Mission Viejo. Cleverly named Lake Mission Viejo by some original city founder. It's man-made and has two beaches.
I have been going to this lake since I was pregnant with Adam (23 years ago!) and to survive the hot Mission Viejo summers, I would take my then 3-year old Amy and park my beach chair directly in the water. I'd stay cool. Amy would swim around me while I kept an eye on her and occasionally floated around. It was perfect.
The first summer we lived here in this house (without air-conditioning!! What were you thinking, Tract Home Designers of the 70's???), we quickly noticed that the heat was unbearable and we had to be out of the house by 11 AM.
Of course, I am married to Mr. Problem-Solving Guy, who quickly re-insulated the entire house himself, had the South-East facing windows tinted to keep the first smoldering rays of the summer sun from incinerating us into carbon, and for which I'm grateful, but that's not important right now.
And, by Day Two of the Unbearable Heat That Is Summer In Mission Viejo, he had already had a new air-conditioner installed because, well, he probably wanted to stay married. ;-)
The Lake (let's just call it that because, well, that's what we call it) is a short 4 minute drive from door-to-water. When the kids were little, we went there just about everyday.
The water is warm in the summer.
There are no waves.
You can rent sailboats, or party boats or canoes.
On summer weekends there are concerts and fireworks (which we can see from our front door).
It's perfect for soaking, and swimming, and generally splashing about.
Yesterday afternoon, Amy came over after her Zumba class all hot and sweaty and in need of cooling off (maybe that was an over-share?)
"Let's go to The Lake," she suggested.
I resisted at first with some tired arguments. Really there was no good reason, besides just being lazy. And I always tell my kids that "Lazy is not an acceptable excuse." (I do. I tell them that. And I mean it.)
So I threw on my suit and made Lucy and Jonathan and his friend, Jonah, who happened to be here, go with us.
I had forgotten how much I loved The Lake.
How could I have forgotten this?
Since the kids are now older and always want to surf or boogie board or something, we have been going to the beach pretty regularly, ignoring our deliciously refreshing Lake (just 4 minutes! from our house).
I love The Lake.
The water is walk-right-into warm. And clear. And beautiful. And soothing for tired bones and nerves. And you don't have to constantly keep looking over your shoulder to see if you're about to get trounced by the next big wave, because of course, there are no waves. So you can just float and actually swim! and relax. Did I mention the relaxing part?
The boys, of course, were off in a flash with snorkels and masks to locate and follow the fish that populate The Lake. (There are fishing tournaments and you can rent party boats and sail. Did I mention that The Lake was a wonderful place to play?)
Lucy, Amy and I just swam around and then, exhausted, sat in our beach chairs and read until the sun went down.
[ALERT: Yes, that's the Cuban flag on the chair on the left. Can you imagine the headline? Cubans spotted at Lake Mission Viejo! Story at 11.] =D
All that to say this:
I'm going to be scheduling a lot more Lake Days this summer. Oh, yes...
And here's my Self-Portrait for today:
I call it: "Toes in the Lake." ;-)