Saturday, July 31, 2010

My Summer is Coming to a Close



My summer break ends Sunday night and I will remember this one fondly. It did not involve raves or speedboats, but I had a great little party of my own all summer. I took a lot of naps, I read a lot of books. I played with my food and did a lot of yoga. I got a new car and a new phone, both of which have stretched me technologically. I played with my friends and family. We took a nice trip to Minnesota, where we saw all our family...both sides. Even the ones in Saskatchewan! We saw one niece play her senior recital and another get engaged. We met our one of our new grand-nieces, too.

And the other day we said hello and goodbye to our second son, Riley, who graduated from Army Basic Training. We had a graduation dinner at Yesterday's in Columbia, where he experienced for the first time the gratitude of our country for his service as the owner thanked him and paid for his lunch.

Any regrets at all about this summer? I don't think so. The only thing I didn't get to do that I wanted to was see a Twins game at Target field. But I figure that will be around  for many years to come.

And so on Monday I'll go back to work rested and happy, peaceful and calm. Maybe it will be Endless Summer in my mind.

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Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Back into the Oven!

We have had the most unseasonable weather here this past week. The temps have only been in the low-to-mid 80s and we've gotten up to high 50s in the mornings. But that will end now, as we start to climb back up to the high 90s.

I'm grateful for the new car. Mensa Boy bought a 2010 Prius for me when the van decided to retire. Big Green had 182,000 miles on her, and she was going to need a couple thousand dollars of the work in the coming months. The most pressing of which was the air conditioning. Again. The new car cools off in minutes and this week I will be thinking about that whenever I get into it.

I have to confess I'm a little sheepish about the car. People exclaim and congratulate me, and my best pal has been teasing me unmercifully about it. But it seems so extravagant right now. I loved my van and could have happily driven it for many more years (if they'd ever been able to stop that creaking noise it made when I turned the steering wheel). With a kid in college and new carpet needing to be bought for the house, my salary and days being cut this coming year, and Bob's salary still the same as two years ago, I really feel dumb taking on a car payment. But at least this will be a known car expense and not something that bolts you out of the blue like car repairs do.

So when people exclaim over the vehicle and talk about it, I find myself wanting to just say "let's talk about something else."

This year's Independence Day was probably one of the most fun we've ever had. Mensa Boy organized the "First Ever Henry Nesbitt Grand Day Parade," which was a whopping 1/10th of a mile long. Henry Nesbitt is the end of our Shelley Mullis Rd as it crosses into North Carolina. Apparently you can't just let a SC road name cross the state line, so that last 1/10th of a mile is named for someone else. We still aren't sure who Henry was, but he was probably a war hero of some sort. Could be Revolutionary War, could be "The War of Northern Aggression," who knows?

So after the 10 of us marched down to the end of the road and then marched back, we repaired to our home for supper. We grilled portabello mushrooms and corn and had sliced tomatoes and watermelon. After supper we progressed to Kriz's house, where we lit a bonfire, shot off fireworks and had blueberry cobbler and homemade ice cream. A great time was had by all, particularly Taylor and Ken, who tended the pyrotechnics. Mensa Boy was too tired to stress about the explosives, so Taylor just went to town with them...I think maybe he'd never done that before.

All in all a very nice 4th and a wonderful weekend. Now it's back to the hard work of...oh wait! I still have a month of summer left!

Oh...the Tour! If anyone thinks watching a bike race is boring, they should have watched yesterday's stage 2. Crashes, underdogs, demonstrations...it was all there.

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