Simple pleasures, summer version



By Caitlin Kelly


Watching the bees enjoy our balcony garden

Welcoming butterflies

Starting and ending the day on the balcony




Dining al fresco


Birdsong at (!) 4:30 a.m.

Long evenings — soon to (sob!) start getting shorter again

Flapping about in our Birkenstocks, Jose in brown suede Arizonas, me in pink suede Madrids

A soft swirled ice cream bought from an ice cream truck

Buying a parks pass for the first time

Listening to music outdoors through a Sonos speaker

Lit lanterns

Hitting a bucket of balls at the driving range

The rustling of treetop leaves

Watching fireflies glow in the dark

Making sun tea

Falling asleep in an AC-chilled room

Getting out onto the water — canoe, kayak, sailboat, paddleboard, surfboard

Our apartment building pool! (Only opening this year in July)

Corn, berries, tomatoes — delicious produce in season


What are some of yours?


22 thoughts on “Simple pleasures, summer version

    1. Jan Jasper

      I really enjoy seeing the large variety of flowers that bloom in my garden. I have several different flower beds, which I started to cultivate when my late husband and I moved to this house 12 years ago. Many of the plants are mature and large now. Also I have planned carefully to ensure that some things are still blooming in September and October. It certainly does not look like a magazine spread, it is uneven and there are weeds. But I love seeing the flowers. I also love seeing the bees and the birds enjoying things. I have three bird bath that the birds use enthusiastically, and I really get a kick out of seeing them splashing and flapping their wings as they bathe.

      1. That sounds amazing.

        Our co-op has so many really annoying rules — like no birdhouses or anything like that. If I ever have PRIVATE land, I want a bird-bath and a fire-pit.

      2. We have a condo with rules like that as well. I understand why those rules exist, but after living in houses for most of my life, I’ve lost my patience with them (and there always seems to be more of them). We are selling it this fall and are shopping for a townhouse with a small yard.

      3. I hate all the rules.

        My biggest issue (and it infuriates me more and more) is that every $$$$$ is ONLY spent on external stuff like the driveways — and our lobby and hallways are really ugly and have not been updated in 20 years. That hurts my property value if we ever want to sell. It really angers me.

      4. Jan Jasper

        These rules are the bane of so many people’s existence. In the condo my mother lived in, she wanted to put a flower box on the windowsill but they wouldn’t allow it. So she made a lovely arrangement next to her porch with some pretty stones she found. A few days later the head of the homeowners association, – without even talking to my mother – removed them all

  1. Going to Penticton. Spending time on the beach at Skaha Lake, going for lots of walks, wonderful scenery, warmth. BC has entered phase three, so I’m looking forward to maybe one or two favourite restaurant visits when I get back next week.

  2. a slower pace, waking and going to sleep when it naturally happens, walking to the (toned-down
    and safer) farmer’s market and choosing one native plant to put in my little garden each week, ordering a few others online from a local nursery, walking by the river and the woods, seeing all the wildlife out in full force this year, learning about plants and flowers when walking around by using my inaturalist app when it’s something new to me, cooking simple and fresh foods, snipping fresh basil and chives from my morning garden, low-key distant get togethers with a few friends or family, a road trip to the north, with more as the summer continues hopefully.

    1. This all sounds so great! We have thyme and rosemary in our little balcony garden and they’re thriving.

      We read the Financial Times and the gardening columnist is excellent — his latest suggests (!?) it”s possible to grow roses in pots. I LOVE roses…so maybe next year.

      1. ooh, that’s promising about the roses, maybe a small variety? something to look forward to. it seems like a very European thing to do – beautiful

      2. Oh, yes…

        The names of FT writers are like…really? Here are a few: Madison Darbyshire, Rhymer Rigby, Minty Clinch., Horatia Harrod. No, I am not making these up.

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