I feel like the roller coaster known as “Summer of 2014” just screeched to a halt, and I’m getting off now, holding my stomach, calming my jittery nerves, squinting into the sunlight, and thinking, Damn! What a ride!
It was fun and exhilarating; wild and exhausting; but nervewracking, busy, frantic.
And it all flew by in a blur.
The wildness of the summer started in May, was punctuated by a multitude of milestone birthdays and events, and ran all the way to Labor Day. Here are the highlights:
- May 3 – Oldest son turns 21: party? gift? We didn’t know what to do. (It’s not like we saw this coming for 21 years, right?…)
- May 16 – Oldest son finishes second-semester of college: airport, re-configuring space at home, buying more groceries, planning family get-togethers, figuring out transportation for a new job 26 miles away, what to do for his birthday, etc.
- May 24 – Sis-in-law turns 50: milestone birthday, fun 2-day party, photos galore, etc. Her birthday party turns into the see-oldest-son-home-and-wish-him-a-happy-21st-birthday moment for the whole family.
- June – Middle daughter child graduates from high school: party? gift? It’s not like we saw this coming for 12 years of school, right? … We ended up knee-deep in announcements, math tutoring, photos, banquets, party planning, friends, prom, grad gown rental, shop for her shoes/dresses, grad night, etc., etc. And yeah, we planned a party.
- July 1 – My first book launch! Egads! Craziness! Facebook contests, blog posts, interviews, social media, writing to friends, contacting relatives, watching stats, signing books, doing newsletters, etc., etc. This went on for a month, overlapping all these other things.
- July 14 – My job moves from Mission Viejo to Newport Beach: packing, unpacking, learning a new drive route, figuring out lunches, changing youngest son’s schedule, getting up earlier, more time on the road, etc., etc.
- July 28 – Father-in-law turns 70: another milestone birthday, another fun 3-day birthday party, photos galore.
- August – Middle daughter getting ready to go away to college, along with oldest son: packing, following lists, boxes all over the dining room, going through daughters room/ closet/ clothes/ drawers for what she needs to bring, shopping for bedding, cords, lamps, rugs, wastebaskets, shower caddies, desk supplies, etc.
- August 9 – Middle daughter child turns 18: party? gift? (It’s not like we saw this coming for 18 years, right? But somehow I didn’t see all these milestones in the same year!) She’s already swept up in college-getting-ready, though, and hasn’t looked back — doesn’t want a big celebration, just wants to get stuff for college.
- August 14-16 – Last-minute appointments for college kids: vaccines, eye exams, contact lenses, glasses updates, etc.
- August 16-17 – My two older kids saying goodbye to extended family: pizza, playing games, photos, fun
- August 20 – Road trip to college with the whole family: packing, planning, buying travel items, booking hotels, finalizing registration, finalizing orientation, paperwork, maps, organizing week off from work, etc.
- August 23 – We return home, just the three of us. We reorganize the chaos we left in daughter’s bedroom and dining room from the crazy last-minute packing, then get ready to return to work.
- August 26 – Second book’s cover reveal: more promo, blog post, Facebook posts, etc.
- Sept 4 – Youngest starts sophomore year in high school
- Now – Take some deep breaths! Step off the roller coaster. Summer 2014 is over!
Maybe that’s why I’m so happy about September.