So I’m way behind on blogging, aren’t I? I had a really great summer, despite the crazy writing schedule that kept me writing basically every minute of every weekend. But my family kept me happy! We had a great Fourth of … Continue reading →
Here are more of the images of my daughter’s first year in college (and first “real fall”!) that I get. I love seeing all the beauty of Montana — and the beauty of being young, and free, and independent, and … Continue reading →
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!
This is a picture my daughter took of herself, sitting on top of the “M” on the side of the hill in Missoula, Montana, overlooking the campus, the stadium, the Clark Fork River, and most of Missoula, where she is now attending college and just finished her first week. (And is reportedly loving it.)
She took this photo last year, when we were visiting the campus, and she calls the photo “Adventure Boots in Montana.”
She bought the boots last fall at Target — just an ordinary pair of boots that she’d wanted, and got them on sale. But they ended up taking her on a lot of fun adventures over the next year, including Montana, NYC, and some great local California hikes with friends.
But I love that she even has something she calls “adventure boots”! Because this is the girl who always wore dresses at home, who had to have skirts with a certain “twirl factor” when she was 5 years old (although she did carry purses with dinosaurs and rocks in them), who has always been a rather introverted, quiet, reserved girl. And the idea that she’s been forcing herself out there to have “adventures” — and the idea that she was brave enough to travel 1600 miles away to go to college — impresses me to no end.
Here’s to many adventures for my daughter in the “adventure boots” — and a fun, new phase of discovery in this exciting time of life for her!
I’m so proud of the woman she’s becoming.
When’s the last time you had what you’d call an “adventure” — where you had to put yourself out of your comfort zone and do or learn something new? (I’m thinking I might have to get myself a pair of adventure boots and do more of this!)