Well, summer is running away with us, as usual! We’ve been spending our days in lemonade stands, ice creams, farmer’s/craft markets, trips to the library, gardening, fresh produce of all kinds, and daily jaunts to our favorite river spot. It seems like every morning holds its space just long enough for us to prepare and then set off for our daily adventures. Sometimes I wish there was no other season than this.
At any rate, I wanted to share with you some of our fun. Most of these are from the beach trip we took last month…
This was Bella’s “look-my-legs-aren’t-connected-to-my-body” trick. It was new this year…
The girls all experimented with various floatation constructions — here’s one of Xi’s. She is in a green tube, cantilevered over and onto the green spongey float, with the orange noodle needled under and around one leg. I’m forced to assume that it looks more comfortable than it is…
It’s tough being a parent and dealing with kids’ boredom, dissatisfaction, and frumpiness all the time, isn’t it?
It was back during Bats at the Beach 2009 that we started the tradition of the afternoon chill-out from beach and/or pool. We usually hit the beach first thing in the morning, then come in for chill-out, then hit the pool in the afternoon. It’s a tough regiment, but we’re serious about our beach experience… So this year, during the afternoon chill-outs, we all piled into the living room of the beach house and watched the entire Star Wars series (from Episode 1 to Episode 6). The girls loved it (and the big kids did too!), and got especially caught up in the notion of developing their Jedi skills — which has continued to incite interesting life discussions.
Here Xi and Echo are involved with Dolphene and Ahg. It turned out that Dolphene was telling Ahg (her son with Bruce) that they are expecting a new child — Dolphene is pregnant! Xi and Bella informed us (and I just took their word for it) that dolphins gestate for almost a year — so the next time we head down for Bats at the Beach, there will be a new member in Bruce and Dolphene’s lovely family. The last time, the blue-sperm whale and the giant dolphin made a great-white baby — I can’t wait to see what they have this time!
(And yes, I did [later] notice the poolside lighter that the previous tenants had so generously left for us [on the arm-rest next to Xi] and I was able to relocate it before anyone caught on fire…)
One of the new activities of Bats at the Beach this year was — not as you might guess, videos games, or the like, but — Bella (with Xi in tow) working on one or more of her stories. Yes, the 11 year-old is a budding novelist and poet, and was working daily on her latest creation(s). In addition to story-writing and -generating, Bella also wowed the family with some delightful birthday card poetry this year, as well.
When we went back to my parents house after the beach this year, I had the opportunity to go through a few of the boxes I still have stored in their attic, and happened upon these three hats that I used to wear. The girls (for some mysterious reason) seized upon them with zealous enthusiasm, so I ended up keeping them out of the Goodwill box I was forming, and even brought them home with us. In my youth when I was wearing them, I never in my life dreamed that my kids would someday be wearing them as well…
Another of the novel activities this year was Nana (and Xi) helping Bella begin one of her current 4H projects — sewing her own dress. We all went to the fabric store together while Nana helped Bella pick out all of the pieces (pattern, fabric, accessories, etc.), and then Nana and Bella set to work. It was pretty cool getting to watch the process unfold, but it was even cooler seeing how stoked Bella and Nana were to get to work on this project together. Nana made all of my clothes when I was a baby and toddler, but hadn’t really had the chance to do any sewing in the last 20+ years, and I get the sense that she was really pleased as punch to be able to share in this activity with her granddaughter(s).
Our seasoned travelers on the way back home… It was cool to see the girls navigating the various operations of airport-trekking with such confidence and skill. I also liked the feeling of having our travel-routine down to a science. We have snacks, entertainment, books for everyone, and a movie (one for each way); the girls each carry a hand-bag, and the older girls also wheel a carry-on suitcase. There’s nothing so nice as feeling like you have what you need, and you know what to do — ya know?
And we when got home, who was waiting for us? The Lupines! In the 11 days that we were gone, it rained nearly everyday, so when we returned the garden was truly in full swing — and nothing was so fully “in swing” as our gorgeous, gigantic lupines.
Echo wanted to show you that the Lupines were even taller than her…
Hope you’re all off to your own super-Summer adventures, too.