Archive for August, 2011

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eek! back to school is HERE!

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

It is here! It is here! Holy crap! When did it suddenly become back-to-school time??? How is that even POSSIBLE? It is still AUGUST for at least one more day for crying out loud. I cannot even deal.

And I am not even a child or a parent. Which means I am either having my typical-me over-reaction, or I am just waaaaaay too much feeling it for all the Moms and Dads and kiddos out there.

Maybe back to school is a great thing. That is what I will tell myself, anyway.

Gulp.

Seeing those lumbering yellow buses first thing in the morning as I am driving to work bleary-eyed never gets easier.

After all these years.

Sigh.

At least it is still August for one more day, right?

The little things… I will marvel and find comfort in the little things.

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come on, irene

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

Well, we survived hurricane tropical storm Irene in one piece. We spent all day yesterday prepping for her arrival. I installed a new gutter piece on the flat roof over our living room. Craig caulked the gutters over the porch. He mowed and trimmed the dogwood tree out front. And we cleaned up the yard. I picked any tomatoes from the garden that looked even the slightest bit ripe… just in case.

Well, Irene did indeed come through starting around 7 a.m. this morning. But she was much gentler than we thought she would be. Which I suppose is a good thing. Our power went out just before noon. We got a little bit of water in the basement, but nothing that couldn’t easily be mopped up (yeah shamwow!)

Craig and I decided to take a long walk to feel the rain and the winds. We saw some downed trees on the golf course near our house, and we saw some fallen limbs here and there. But no major flooding or craziness. Around 3 p.m. we went out to grab a late lunch, sandwiches from one of our very favorite local pubs. We still were without power, so it seemed like a great chance to hop in the car and listen to the radio for updates.

Within 5 minutes of getting back home, the power was back! Yeah! So all in all, we lost power for just over 4 hours. I think that everything in the fridge and freezer made it through. I had made sure the icemaker was doing its job for the days leading up to Irene’s arrival, and I am thankful that I have more than a few mason jars of frozen homemade broth on hand, which I am sure helped to keep the temp in the freezer cold. Nothing seemed to have thawed in that time space.

So now it is night time, and while the rain has moved on out, there are still some really crazy wind gusts going on. It is really crisp out and the constant breeze and winds remind me of fall. I am just not quite there yet, even though I realize that the end of August is here.

I am very thankful that the damage was not worse. While I love good weather, being a homeowner makes me more nervous and sobers me to the seriousness of potential storm damage. I am sending out all my good thoughts to those who fared worse in this storm.

And I hope that wherever you are, you are snuggled somewhere safe and cozy!

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awesome august

Sunday, August 21st, 2011

August is totally having its way with me. I am just not getting anything done at all. I haven’t even cracked open the computer at night for 2 weeks since we’ve returned from vacation. So I haven’t been writing posts. But I have been LIVING and RELAXING and SOAKING IN summer.

I want to apologize for my inability to get my act together and show photos and whatnot. But I just have been languishing in the ephemeral wonder of August. Coming home from work and going for a run or a long walk (or both if my run doesn’t quite go according to plan). Hanging out on the screened porch watching the sun set and turn the sky spectacular shades of orange and pink.

Picking heirloom tomatoes from the garden to make a tomato, basil, mozzarella salad for dinner. Or homemade tomato sauce. Or a warm bruschetta.

Hanging out with Craig in the living room in the dark listening to the cicadas chorusing outside.

I just delight in summer. It so agrees with me. And I do not want it to end. I want it to keep going forever.

I know this is not the case.

So I have kind of forgotten about chores and home projects and all other ambitions so that I can just be present for this amazing, fleeting time.

I will rein it in soon. I will. We all have to. But before that whole back-to-school thing rears its ugly head. Before you go apple picking in a few weeks. Before you grab for a sweater on a cool night… just for a moment stand still and breathe in summer. Wrap it around you and hold on tight.

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sumptuous summer

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

Hellllloooooooo! I am here. I swear I am. I am back from my wonderful and utterly necessary summer holiday/hiatus. I cannot recommend enough just how vital it is to back AWAY from the computer and the phone and work and the nonsense of everyday life to high-tail it out of your house, out of town, and head for the woods. In my case, this meant retreating to Maine, journeying to the most wonderful place I know of… a not-so-little lake called Mooselookmeguntic in a very-much-so quaint town called Oquossoc.

And that is where I have been for the past two weeks. Craig and I packed up the car with bikes and hiking gear and bathing suits and food and hoisted the kayaks on top. And off we went!

I spent two glorious weeks waking up on my own terms at the house/cabin we love to rent. I have been coming to this lake for almost all the years of my life. My family has rented a few different places over the years, but we have stayed at our current spot for the last several. We share the rental with my parents and siblings. It is sort of a revolving door of family. And with it comes laughter, kiddos, yummy food, nights spent grilling, days spent inhaling balsam-pine air, numerous dips in the lake, eating lobsters, teaching nephews how to kayak, watching nieces explore toddler-hood, late-night skinny dipping! for me and Craig, and the list goes on.

Does it really get any better than that? I don’t think so. I feel so blessed and lucky to be able to spend time having in-depth, fruitful conversations with my parents. I love taking long hikes along the Appalachian Trail with Craig and remembering how the simple life should be. I love sit-down dinners filled with farmers’ market veggies and grilled salmon. I love watching the sun set and knowing that I don’t have to get up and go to work the next day. I love watching the stars reveal themselves in the night sky while at the same time the loons begin their lyrical conversations from somewhere across the lake.

This is exactly how life should be. This is the time worth savoring.

My vacation was nothing short of amazing. I feel so refreshed and rejuvenated. I feel reborn (cheesy I know) in so many ways. Every time I waded out into the surprisingly warm lake waters and took the plunge to dive in, I felt like I was reaffirming my very existence in my body. To reconnect with my whole self — my arms and legs and torso and all my parts — instead of solely living in just my head was such a gift.

I am so happy to reflect on my time away and realize the wonder of it all. I feel so very fortunate that Craig and I were able to coordinate a vacation and get away together for two whole weeks in a location that we so completely love.

I am back home now and back to work and the daily grind. But I will NOT forget the beauty and splendor of Maine. How could I? I was reminded of how important it is to live in the moment. How important it is to unplug and be in nature. How important it is to stop DOING and just BE. Observe. Listen. Sit for a while. Soak in the sun. Soak in the possibility. Exist in your body and delight in the goodness of summer.

I hope you are able to do the same thing too! Summer is fleeting. It is so totally worth savoring. Yes, August is here. But there is still time to slow it down and relish its delights.

Ah, sumptuous summer!

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