Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Last Hurrah

Lat week we went to the shore for a long weekend. Longport, NJ is just beautiful! Ira and my dad took the girls fishing. They didn't get any flounder (apparently it is too late in the season for that, but they didn't bother to tell them that before they sold them the ticket!) but the girls were just as happy with the shark they caught. That and watching the guys gut and clean the other fish. They thought watching the contents of the fish's stomach was most interesting.. especially when he had just eaten a little crab!

We also got to take the dogs to the dog beach wile we were there. Rufus and Izzy had a blast running in the surf, digging in the sand (without getting yelled at) and making friends with other people and dogs. The girls also loved playing with all the other dogs. It was a busy beach, people coming and going with their dogs all morning. We all had a blast there. Haley found one of my greatest pleasures, napping on the beach, and Erin just enjoyed digging, finding jellyfish (harmless clear ones) that had washed up on shore and either giving them a funeral or dissecting them. Something is wrong with my children?

Well, overall, it was a beautiful way to spend our last get-away of the season. The weather couldn't have been better, we all played hard and slept harder, my parents spent some wonderful time with the girls and we enjoyed having them with us as always, and it was sad to have to come home. Since we never got to the boardwalk to do rides, when we came home Ira and I took the girls to the Funplex to do some games and rides here. Haley has reached the 42 inch mark so she is big enough to do all the rides, mostly. She drove go-karts and bumper cars with Erin and Erin even got her to go on a free-fall ride. Haley was scared, but Erin held her hand and coached her through the whole thing. It was so precious!

Addition Progress!

Well, we are having an addition on our house. We are turning the garage into a family office and putting a new garage on as well as adding a new laundry room and a changing room and bathroom behind the new garage by the pool. They started the real building today, and here are the first few shots!

Winding down....

As I sit here late, late, Tuesday night (even though it is really very early Wednesday morning now) I am very sad. I realize that one week from tonight I will be miserable, exhausted and counting the days until winter vacation. You see, next Tuesday I will be getting up at 6:00 a.m. after 10 weeks of sleeping until 8:00... ish. I will be hustling to get myself together and packed and out the door to make the almost half hour drive to school for the teacher inservice day. I will spend the morning in meetings, learning all these so important things, spend the afternoon preparing my class for a new position I am starting this year, and then hurrying out the door at the end of the day to spend the night preparing lesson plans after rushing to pick up the girls from their classes and sitters, make dinner, pack bags for the next day and do it all again.

I know you may have a hard time finding sympathy for me. I have, after all, just spent the last 10 weeks on summer vacation. I have had the joy of spending time with my family and loved ones, traveling, reading, scrapping, visiting friends, taking naps, meeting my husband for lunch, taking the dogs for long walks, and grocery shopping on weekdays when the stores are not so busy. It has been more than nice, it has been blissful. I have not accomplished even a tiny fraction of my list of things I wanted to do this summer. No closets all cleaned out. No huge pile of scrapbook pages completed. No organizing of anything. No hours logged in the gym. I pretty much goofed off, chatted on the phone, or on line, read, crafted, visited, and soaked up the joy of life every day. It has been bliss. I can think of no better word.

I have so completely enjoyed this summer. I had my list of good intentions... that went out the window before July 1st... but I am ok with that. I did some, but I spent the time with my children. We went places. We saw family they have never even met before! We played. We swam. I spent time with my mom on a girl's weekend; just the 2 of us. I don't think we have ever done that and it was priceless. I stayed up ridiculously late with my husband, keeping him company as he did work in the office at home, just chit-chatting about whatever. Watching bad movies. Drinking too much coffee. Sometimes just silent companionship, but being together. I love doing that. During the school year we keep very different hours so this was a real treat for the both of us. Every day of the last 10 weeks was delicious, I just sit here and soak it all in; you can see why I am so sad it is ending now, right?

So, that being said, maybe you can understand why this is so hard for me. I am so lucky to have had the last 10 weeks, to have the opportunity every summer to take the time to "smell the roses" so to speak, that when September creeps up, well, it is double hard. How can I say goodbye to such the perfect time? How can I let go of these days that are filled with nothing but absolute pleasure and joy and just about everything I could want in any day of my life? I know, I know, Summer is just 10 months away... suck it up... I get it.... The school year is probably why I appreciate my summers so much more. It sure doesn't make it any easier to switch gears though.

So, for now, I sit here drinking my late night cup of coffee, not decaf mind you, the real stuff. Knowing that in one short week all this delicious bliss will be a fond and dreamy memory, something to hold onto tightly to get me through until another JUNE comes rolling around on the calendar....

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Surf's Up!

On our weekend away, headed to North Carolina, we made a stop in Virginia at Great Wolf Lodge. It is a great place to spend some time with kids who love the water, but don't love fish! Haley was in love with the wave pool, while Erin couldn't get enough of the slides. She and Ira even took a few turns riding the waves o the foam surfboard. Erin took to it like a California born pro, while Ira... well, he needs a little practice. The video I managed to capture was his 2nd time up, and his first was much more entertaining, but my battery was deas. Erin, perfect 10 every time.

Hawaii here we come! (Well, if they could just get all the fish out of the ocean, I am sure Erin would love surfing for real!)

Our proudest moment...

We are safely home from our trip to North Carolina for cousin Elizabeth's wedding to Scott. Fist, I want to say I have never seen a happier bride in my life than Liz. It brought such joy to me to watch the pure happiness that just shone from her and to be a part of it all that day.

The trip home was not so full of sunshine.... Erin ended up not feeling well rather suddenly after we stopped for dinner (no more full dinners for HER on 10 hour journeys!) and her quick thinking resulted in her rollong down her window, putting her head out, and getting sick at 80+ miles and hour with her head out like a dog in the left lane of some highway in Virginia around 10:15 Sunday night. If you hear anybody talking about this wierd stuff that hit their car as they were driving north that smelled REALLY bad.... please don't give them our name!

Our little trooper, when it was all over, and we got to a stop to get her cleaned up, she first asked if I was mad that she has "some stuff" in her hair? Car was clean. (inside) clothes were clean. Little "stuff" in her hair was fine with me! After she washed her hair in the bathroom at the travel-stop, she came skipping out to me and asked if I liked her new hairstyle. (Still interested in her style after all that!) Then, the little turkey says, "Mommy, did you take my picture while I was throwing up? That would make an AWESOME scrapbook page!" Sorry, hon, you were too quick for me. She had to settle for a picture of her in front of the aftermath. But I have to say, the girl has her priorities right!

Kids keep you on your toes, don't you think? Kinda gross, but look how pleased she is with her self. We are so proud. This kid isn't going to have any problems in college at the parties...