A few months back we purchased a passel of chickens and one rooster, promptly named Diablo. Diablo, at this point, is allowed to live with all the hens. I am currently campaigning to separate him from the hens because I believe he is messing with their hormones in ways only a male can. We’ve had 3 hens sitting on at least twenty eggs for months now…and they’re not hatching. And the gestation period is twenty-one days. Sorry hen-ladies, but your eggs are duds. I truly believe having a male around is tinkering with their natural instincts and then proceeding to mess up my intake of eggs. Buh-bye, Diablo.
I’ve slowly reacclimated to life back in the real world since our vacation. It was very difficult for me to come home from possibly the best vacation of my life. My fantasy – to spend the summer on Mackinac Island. Maybe one day! I can honestly say my (grown) children traveled better than they ever have before and made the trip so special.
The white shirt made an appearance!
So school starts soon…and I’m being honest, I’m not ready. Of course I’ll miss summer break but it’s more. I’ll miss the freedom to eat lunch anywhere I choose. Freedom to go to the bathroom at any given moment. Freedom to read or write or just sit with my dog in my lap at my whim. I’ll miss my Chacos (I’m still trying to figure out what I can wear them with to work). I’ll miss the quiet. And too, I’m missing my students from last year. I worry over which teacher they’ll have this next year, and I’m secretly wishing I could have them all back (I tend to get a little attached and I’m sure my new kiddos will help fill the holes left by last years children quickly). Mostly, I’ll miss the pace…the ability to stop and breathe and just cherish each moment for what it is. Sigh…buh-bye, summer.
It’s hard to describe the smell. It’s pure – no noxious gases from vehicles, no smokes or fumes. There’s a sweetness to it, one of flowers and growth, of earth and soil. It’s tinged with a pinch of the fudge made on the main road of town and then always, always backed by a subtle whisper of horse. But even the horses smell better here – their sweat, their poop. It’s true.
In the air, something old whispers through the trees. Something from long before you and me; an ancient hold on this earth that hasn’t been wiped out by man and its machine. You can almost feel life here… Not the hustle and bustle of work life, home life, but life that God created before we all became too busy to recognize it anymore. It’s not in the streets of town but back in the woods where tiny animals live without fear, where plants burst from the forest floor on their own accord, where the trees beckon you to come inside for just a little while.
My heart lives here, a part of it anyway. Having all of my heart here with me the last few days has made me extremely happy but already sad that tomorrow is the end of this trip. Still, we have today and I will soak up each magical sight, cool breeze, sweet taste and soothing smell as long as I can.
Summer vacations…ahh! Bill and I decided early on that we wanted to travel and we wanted to take our children with us. So we did, and wow…it’s been an adventure! I honestly wouldn’t change any trip we’ve ever taken, not one. Wonderful memories, loads of fun. My favorite vacation is a tie between Mackinac Island and a Boston-Martha’s Vineyard-Maine trip we took. My least favorite, a haunted hotel in Missouri (I did not sleep well there, to say the least).
Two pictures taken literally seconds apart. The first – the perfect photo opp. The second – real life!!
Notice Bill’s white shirt. It has probably been on every vacation we’ve ever taken. He’s taking it with us this summer, too. The kids made him give up the white socks a few summers ago though!
Top picture – brother/sisterly love! I have at least a dozen just like this taken over the years. The faces in the bottom picture are of two freaked out kids. We had just gotten into New York City, loaded our things into a cab, and they were in the back of the van (a van probably going at least 80 mph). They looked in the cup holders and both were full of questionable liquids, very nasty questionable liquids. That began Trey’s 48 hour spell of essentially losing it once every few hours. In one spell he screamed, “Why did you bring me here?!” Believe it or not, he ended up having fun.
Top – deep sea fishing. Bottom – the Hollywood sign.
I’m thankful for each moment I get to spend with my family, and as my children get older, I realize these special times may become fewer and farther between. They are growing up, working, so while I can, I plan to keep traveling and keep taking them anywhere they’ll go with me (us).
(Our vacation is coming up soon, and we are driving 12 hours each way. I may have to retract those words once we get back!)
So what’s your favorite vacation memory? Your favorite place to go to? Where is the one place you’d go back to today if you could?