The leisure of summer

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By Nirmla Motoomull


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

SUMMER has a fantastic magic of leisure, relaxation, ease, recreation and rest for everyone. And yet, it is marked by seemingly endless different events before the school opening in June.

Indeed, it is all about enjoying life’s many pleasures. Everyone is looking forward to travels, picnics, mall trips, movies and fun lessons. Although most of us shudder at the thought of what all these mean to our budgets, most of us still want to have summer fun.

We use summer especially to give the young generation skills that will be useful when they grow older: cooking, swimming, painting, drama, dancing and handicrafts. But these lessons, which help the young gain confidence and discover hidden talents, are often expensive. There are creative projects for kids that won’t break the family’s budget.


For more fun and savings, it is best to talk to friends and relatives and gather six to ten children for each group activity. This means that the cost of raw materials will be shared by everyone bringing the cost of each participant down to a minimum.

Let’s take as an example a Culinary Arts “Cook and Eat” summer class. It was once the sole domain of women but now, it attracts men as well. We start men and women young by introducing them to the kitchen early. So they will not be intimidated, have them prepare simple dishes that they love to eat like pancakes, French toast, pasta and pizza. Then they move on to prepare easy Filipino main courses like adobo, sinigang, paksiw, nilaga, torta, bistek, sisig and barbecue.

For us adults, summer may just be the right time to pause or take a break. This may be anathema to someone bent on fast-tracking his/her career but we ought to consider its wisdom.

We allot time for our passions and also for our important relationships. Nowadays, it is usual to hear of someone in her/his late 20s or 30s who has suffered from hypertension or from a heart attack. The rat race has never been as fierce these days that many are overdriven to work hard and play hard in living their lives.

So maybe for a change this summer, you and I pause so we can have time to cultivate relationships that truly matter to us. Amidst the stress and demands of work and trying to fit in, our important relationships are our best refuge where we can just be our real selves.

Balancing family and career is somewhat impossible in today’s world. Many, like me, who decide to restructure our lives and simplify our material requirements are motivated to do so by our desire to spend more time with our families. We reason that if we make more money but as a consequence allow our children to grow up without getting to know us, it would be a very bad bargain indeed.

Thus, we pause to reflect and evaluate on what’s really going on with us and how we should respond. Oftentimes in our busy-ness, we miss opportunities or warnings which are crucially related to our overall wellness, family and work. Good as you and I may be or try as hard as we can, we will never be able to accomplish all things at all times.

Most of all, we pause to remind ourselves that there is a God. The Good Book has a wonderful reminder for us and it is found In Isaiah 40:30-31: “Even youths grow tired, weary, stumble and fall but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run not grow weary and they will walk not faint.”

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on April 23, 2014.


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