WDAY.com |

North Dakota's #1 news website 10,650,498 page views — March 2014

Published May 24, 2012, 11:30 PM

Salonen: Ritual eases moms into summer

The school year has ended; the lazy days of summer have arrived. Parents everywhere are collectively doing a happy dance over the reprieve from sorting endless piles of finished homework, early morning sibling scuffles and tantrums over missing backpacks just seconds before van takeoff.

The school year has ended; the lazy days of summer have arrived.

Parents everywhere are collectively doing a happy dance over the reprieve from sorting endless piles of finished homework, early morning sibling scuffles and tantrums over missing backpacks just seconds before van takeoff.

Cue the gently rocking hammock, violins and visions of 90 days of breeze-blowing bliss.

Wait, June Cleaver has left the room?

All right then, with June gone, let’s get real. Most parents I know find the onset of summer a trepidation-filled transition.

The kiddos no longer have seven hours of structured, adult supervision. It’s all on our laps now, whether we work inside or outside the home.

Without a good plan in place, summer pandemonium may be inevitable.

Several years ago, feeling the weight of this Changing of the Guards time, a friend and I came up with an idea: the Painting of the Toenails.

I’ve never been one to splurge on the extras. As a mother of five trying to make it for years on one main income, I’ve come to view pedicures, manicures and massages as a bit on the exorbitant side.

But I’m also not about denying oneself the proper survival tools.

Tammy and I decided that in order to face summer with the right mental attitude, we had to take action to help ease us in.

And so we scheduled our first end-of-school-year, or beginning-of-summer, pedicure.

Our now-annual routine begins before the actual appointment at a java joint with catch-up and commiseration. From there, we move onto the nail salon of choice. In our case, it’s usually the place with the best deal; not high end but high enough for us.

Moms, if you’ve never had a pedicure, know that it can be a life-changing experience. Well, maybe more like day-changing, but any bit helps.

Sitting in a padded chair next to your friend, magazine in hand, and having your weary feet immersed in warm, sudsy water is like breathing in a bit of heaven, especially after six months of zooming around town to every imaginable event in service to family.

And something about tending to our feet – often the most abused part of our bodies – seems to have an effect on our hearts and minds as well.

If you don’t yet have a pre-summer ritual and need a little convincing, think of it this way. What warrior heads into battle without proper preparation? You can’t come out the victor without the right equipment and moral support.

Pretty toes and soft heels do wonders. Walking into the after-school world with pampered peds can help moms face summer with a “can do” attitude.

After our day in the salon, my friend and I often don’t see each other for three more months. We settle back into our lives with our families, not fully emerging again until the ring of that first school bell.

But it’s comforting to know that when things do get rough in the summertime – and they’re bound to – a giggle-filled day with a mama pal is only a memory away.

So I challenge you: choose your ritual, call up a friend and go. You’re worth it, and it will get your summer started off on the right foot.

And now, I’ve got a call to a certain nail salon to make. My toes are telling me it’s time.

Tags: