Sunday, July 8, 2007

Best Summer Ever!

We have a goal: to have the BEST SUMMER EVER! To that end, we have attended 1 (one) brewfest (see previous post), traveled out of town for 1 (one) weekend (YAY! Portland!), played in 1 (one) extreme croquet tournament (I did not qualify for the next one), had 1 (one) back-yard party, patronized the farmers market a bunch (rode our bikes down once--yeah!), hiked 1 (one) mountain (pathetic, really), visited the lake to let our dog swim a bunch, took 2 (two) days off work, drank 3 (three) bottles of French rose (that's roz-ay) on the front porch one fine evening, and enjoyed 1 (one) spontaneous outdoor beer-drinking afternoon with some friends.

I realize that the whole numeral (word) thing above is quite annoying, but once I started, it would have been inconsistent to stop.

So far, we are enjoying our summer--very much, indeed. It's been relaxing, and we haven't done much that we didn't want to do, which is always nice. Installed some new light fixtures in our new/old house. Got rid of the previous owners' nasty IKEA chandeliers (one each in the dining and living rooms). I love you, IKEA, but let's be honest: your lights look cheap and dated after a time, and even you must agree that they are not appropriate for a 1908 Craftsman--right? Especially in the living room! What were these people thinking? We also put up some (period-approved)new house numbers and planted some flowers. We're not into large-scale landscape revitalization right now. The yard needs a HUGE overhaul--but after spending the late winter and entire spring packing, moving, unpacking, painting, and hosting three sets of visitors, we decided to let the yard look like crap this year and do something about it next year. There's a lot of freedom in that decision, which was a difficult one, as both D. and I love the accomplishment of a beautiful landscaping job. But the trade-off would be that we would not have the BEST SUMMER EVER, so there you go.

I drove by our old house the other day; the front bed is in full, gorgeous bloom. Three years' of growth have matured the plantings into a mass of blue, purple, and pink. Shades of grey and silver, yellow and green add depth. The lavender is huge, the variety of grasses are lovely; the coneflower and scabiosa were blowing in the breeze, and our weeping Black Swan Beech tree, Abagail, was looking healthy and stately. So much work went into that bed; now, we have to do it all over again. Sigh.

Today is my dad's 80th birthday party in New York. Sadly, I am not there. I so wanted to be; but the airline ticket prices are ridiculous right now, and I'm not up for a cross-country trip (a/k/a hell on earth) of cancelled flights, uncomfortable seats, screaming crying crotch fruit, and rude, pathetic security personnel. I'll wait until fall to see my dad. And I'll miss the laughs, memory-sharing, and closeness of hanging with my parents, six or so siblings and assorted nieces and nephews. And my brother's home brew. Damn, they're going to have fun. Here's to you, Dad. You are all a kid could have wanted in a dad, and more than I could hope for as an adult. Your devotion to mom and overflowing love for us kids and your grandchildren make us all real happy. We have so much to be thankful for; I'm so grateful for you!

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