Category Archives: Summer Vacation

My new normal …

The week after

My elder daughter, her husband, and the two granddarlings arrived last week and stayed until this past Tuesday.
Swingset

Larry and our son-in-law put together this swing set for the girls, much to their delight. Since our SIL is stationed about seven hours away now, we hope to see them often, and we want them to be eager to visit us. Every day, we planned another fun adventure. We went to Carowinds, fed ducks and geese at a local lake, ate out a good bit, made homemade ice cream, watched “Peppa Pig” and “Paw Patrol” along with Cinderella and Aladdin, and went to church.
Family 2017

My younger daughter and her hubby arrived on Friday, but he received an important call and had to leave after a few hours.
Disappointing but understandable. I did get a family photo before he left. Obviously, we are a dog-loving family.

It’s quiet here now, but Larry and I are going to see Wonder Woman at the local cinema tonight. I’m looking forward to it. I also hope to visit my younger daughter often to keep her company while her husband is gone, and I plan to visit my elder daughter after her furniture arrives at the end of June. Gayle says that we must do another sister weekend at the beach this summer, and I’m certainly game.

Plants6
I have now retired from teaching school, though I’ll continue to work at my church and teach private lessons.

Meanwhile, my plants are still fascinating to me.
It’s hard to believe this plant looked completely dead just a few weeks ago.

I nearly gave up on the second one last week, but look now! I kept watering and pruning it, and it has survived. Plants 7

Here’s a promise: I have two writing projects in the works which I will complete this year (I hope). I’m going to contribute to an Austen Christmas anthology, and I’m going to write the first volume of a YA fantasy series.

Stay tuned. There’s life in me yet.

Sisters’ Summer at the Sea

Last Sunday afternoon, my sisters and I left for our first (and what we hope will be annual) beach trip. We stayed in my former brother-in-law’s condo just across the street from the ocean, close enough to walk on the sand and wade through the estuaries in the warm breeze.

IMG_0864

Layne, Gayle, and me

It was a trip of inaugural events. I hadn’t worn a swimsuit in at least twenty years, but Gayle brought two along with the intent to change that, and she did. We have both lost quite a bit of weight, thirty-three pounds for her and thirty-two for me, and she was ready for us to celebrate. Layne has never been heavy, but we love her anyway.

20160801_174632 (2)

Our view at dinner on Tuesday evening

 

We ate out, shopped, and went to a movie. We talked of childhood memories and updated each other on our children and grandchildren. We did what we wanted to do without worrying about whether or not husbands, children, or grandchildren were entertained.

As Mrs. Bennet would say, “A little sea bathing set me up forever.”

There’s nothing any of us love more than being with our families, but it’s nice to have no one to answer to occasionally. 20160801_112435 (2)

Who knew being in our sixties would be so much fun? It’s liberating to accept yourself for who you are and how you look. If others cannot love you without changing you into their image of what you should be, they aren’t very good friend material.

It reminds me of a poem  by T. S. Eliot.

“The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

I grow old… I grow old…

I shall wear the bottom of my trousers rolled.

Do I dare to eat a peach?

Walk barefoot upon the beach?

Well, yes. I do.

~~~~~~~~

Southern Fried Austen will return next week.

Having a Coke with you . . .

Laura's Coke

Here you see Laura’s Diet Coke. I consider it to be either the seed of a great idea or an epic fail.

I saw this Coke on a recent trip to Target, and I looked for the names of the other JSI ladies because I thought it would be wonderful to have Cokes with our names having fun over the summer. We live a continent apart, and Gayle and I have never met Laura, Sue, or Barbara. We met Pamela at the Decatur Book Festival a couple of years ago. Our Cokes could sit on the porch, chatting and exchanging ideas. They could go to the beach and bask in the sun. They could ride in my daughter’s Corvette, scarves blowing in the wind, carefree and howling with laughter.

But the only one I saw was Laura, so she sits in my kitchen, watching the frenetic activities of my household and waiting for her compadres.

Hold on, Laura. I haven’t given up yet. Somewhere out there are Cokes with Gayle, Robin, Sue, Pamela, and Barbara on them, and I will keep trying to find them.

Friends are like that. We don’t give up on each other. Amigas stick together.