Okay, my fellow mid-Atlantic dwellers, this is it. It’s August. It’s hot-hot-hot, but if you’ve lived here for more than a year, you certainly realize snow and sub-freezing temperatures are just around the corner. Back-to-school sales are in full swing, sunsets are happening earlier, and dare I say a few leaves have fallen from the trees in my yard… The summer of 2019 is rapidly passing us by, but I refuse to let it go without squeezing every last bit of goodness out of it.

As an almost-empty-nester, I do remember a few summers when we parents were counting down the minutes until school started again. My family always thrived on routine, and the summertime lack of a schedule could send us into a tailspin. No matter how organized, excited, and well-intended I was in June—“My kids will have summer chores! We’ll have nightly outdoor dinners! We’ll do fun crafts and science projects! And they’ll stick to a strict bedtime schedule and a budget!”—by July 4 it would all be falling apart, with bored kids testing boundaries, fighting with each other, making constant messes, and using me as a human ATM.

Still, I would love to have the last 18 summers back to do it all over again. A weird thing happens when you hit the age of 50. You really do face your own mortality; the passage of time speeds up exponentially. This year, I made a new year’s resolution to “Just Say Yes” more often—by which I mean, when an opportunity to do something fun or different presents itself, I resolve to accept the opportunity whenever possible. This does not come naturally to me as an introvert, but I’m realizing that now is the time to “carpe diem,” because, just like our mid-Atlantic summers, life is flying by far too quickly.

So as August begins, I encourage you all to join me in “seizing the summer” for these last few weeks. Now is the time to soak it all in. I get that we all have adult responsibilities that make it difficult to “Just Say Yes” to everything. We are busy, we have jobs, we have to tend to our families… It takes some effort, but summer is so short; you have to make the time to “carpe diem.”

Let some things go. Call Immaculate Clean so you don’t spend your free time cleaning! Give yourself the gift of time to do something that is hard to do the rest of the year. Go to the beach, go swimming, go for a hike, ride a bike, sleep in a tent, go fishing, grill hamburgers on your patio, play miniature golf, watch baseball, make s’mores, visit the farmer’s markets, see an outdoor movie or a concert, tend to your garden… Make some summer memories before it’s too late!