I’ve been away for much longer than I intended. The summer got away from me, and now it’s all but over. The last couple months have been crazy hectic, and today sanity returns. But…it’s awfully quiet. The kids are both back in school. My husband is traveling this week. I guess I’m not used to having the house to myself just yet. I miss everyone.
But, it’s a good day to catch up. My trip to Pennsylvania to attend one of the Highlights Founders Workshops (Writing Nonfiction for Children and Young Adults) was everything I hoped for, and more. It was intense and relaxing at the same time, if you can imagine that. I met so many wonderful people, learned so many useful things, and, oh my gosh, ate so much good food! More to come on the workshop. And the food.
While I was in Pennsylvania, my husband had to travel to Florida for a few days, so the kids were completely on their own. I was a stressed mom, even though I knew a 21-year-old and 15-year-old would be fine on their own, and I did have the workshop to keep me from worrying too much. Then Murphy’s Law presented a crisis. Our dog Reesie was afflicted with the sudden onset of glaucoma. But the boys were so great. So responsible. They recognized something was wrong, got Reesie to the vet, ordered medication at the pharmacy and administered eye drops three times a day–they really stepped up to take care of our poor puppy. Even so, it wasn’t enough to save the sight in her left eye.
This summer, we also flew to Wisconsin to see family. We spent several days in Mt. Horeb, and I don’t think we ever stopped moving. We spent a day in Madison, we drove to Sheboygan to swim in Lake Michigan, we went to a quirky scrap metal sculpture park off Highway 12, and we went canoeing and kayaking at Devil’s Lake (where my camera became a casualty as I helped unload the canoe from the truck). Oh my golly, I was so tired! But it was a good tired.
On the fifth day, we drove to Janesville to see Gramma and Grampa, stopping at the National Mustard Museum on the way. Another quirky place. Wisconsin has a lot of them, it seems. 🙂 And even quirkier? T-shirt connections. Christian wore one of his Dr. Who T-shirts and became instant friends with one of the girls who worked at the museum. (Who do you like, David Tennant or Matt Smith?)
It was so nice to be back in Janesville, but a little bittersweet–we are all older, but it hit home to see Patrick’s parents suffering the effects of age, all the more noticeable, I think, because we’re not there all the time. On the bright side, it was great just to spend time with them, to have breakfast on the back patio–orange juice and toast with homemade strawberry jam, yum! We had fun on the playground where Patrick went to elementary school. And of course we had to have that Wisconsin staple: burgers and brats on the grill. There was a wrench in the works though, because over the summer, hubby and son #1 decided to go vegetarian. Thank goodness for bean burgers! Oh, and how could I forget Caramel Collision–only the world’s best ice cream and not to be found here in Arizona. I should have taken a picture.
After Wisconsin, we barely had time to breathe before Christian started school, then it was sorting and packing and shopping for Ryan before he headed back to Flagstaff. Whew. It’s been so crazy. You’d think sanity would be welcome, but…it’s just so quiet.
Oh, one more thing that will define this summer in my memory–between travels and adventures we did have some downtime together. What did we do? We watched all six seasons of LOST. Yep. I was a blubbering mess at the end. Only one thing to say, though: Best. Show. Ever. 🙂