This was the highlight of my day. My kids came out for a hike with me, even though some thought this was a horrible idea.  I wanted us to get out for some fresh air, to move our bodies and to share conversation along the way, away from other distractions. There was some complaining and whining at the beginning and I kept focused on being grateful and patient, thankful that we were all together enjoying the crisp, fresh air and muddy puddles.  I loved watching them taking pictures, bird watching and deer and squirrel watching too. They laughed and danced and ran up and down the hills, teasing each other too.

This was a great way to end our Thanksgiving holiday break. I am thankful for my family, near and far, for traveling and being together sharing meals and conversation and chaos, and for being back home again.

I hope you all enjoyed your holiday, making memories and celebrating with those you love and like!


Day 27: Summer

I write daily to share the little joys of living this one life we’re each given, sharing highlights from my little world, hopefully resulting in a smile, inspiration, and connection for you and me. This is my way to make the world a better place, at least in this cyberspace.

I am sad to hear about the protest in Dallas and the police officers who were killed. I am sad for the black families who lost a loved one and have lost hope of equal treatment. What can I do to make a difference? What can you do to make a difference?

I say hello when I see people and make eye contact, especially with people who don’t look like me. I want to connect to our One Love spirit, even though we might look different to each ther. I want to say, “I see you. I love you.” But that might be weird. I’m not sure what to do, except to be loving, kind, inclusive and friendly.

Today I enjoyed cooking with Jeff and preparing a spaghetti dinner for our friends. The house smelled so good and brought back memories! We enjoyed our friends and were thankful they could join us and for the delicious dessert they brought to share. 

Life is good. Be kind. Stay loving. Share.

Day 329: Goodbyes Suck


Letting go… namaste

I had the best day again today.

Yet I am fully aware of the change that is looming.

As I live in the moment and enjoy these last 3 weeks in Europe and the last few days of school, I am feeling the heaviness of what’s to come.

I feel extreme joy in the celebration of life with good friends, fully aware of the loss I’m going to feel when we say goodbye for the summer… for the school year… for the end of this journey.

Today I went paddling for 1 1/2 hours with Barbara and enjoyed being on the water. Afterwards, we swung from a rope swing over and into the water and swam to the dock, just like kids.  Can you see the smile that was on my face? I did yoga on the board before coming in and the picture above is me relaxing and letting go. What a perfect way to spend the morning.  Thank you, my friend!

Jen invited me to join her for a sushi lunch. I learned from her that sometimes it takes awhile for friendships to bloom and a year just isn’t long enough!  But once you establish roots, I think you can go anywhere and pick up where you left off, right Jen? I’m going to believe that! And if Lucy can Facetime with you from Russia, surely I can figure out how to keep in touch from America.

Finally, we had a swim party for the kids to celebrate with their friends and mine. What kids don’t like swimming? They were all so happy and the parents enjoyed chatting and relaxing too while the kids played. I received a wonderful, personalized, handmade pottery gift from Bob that really meant a lot to me. He’s been taking a pottery class and took the time to create something special for our family.  I’d share it, but it has an inscription with our address, that I’ll save to share after we move. Thank you, Bob!  What a cool and unique gift!! I love it.  As we left the pool, two friends came home with us for a pizza dinner and a sleepover. I’ve got to make sure they are living it up too and bending all the rules. Change is good!

I know change is coming and I’m ok with that, but it doesn’t change how I feel about it. It sucks to have to say goodbye, yet I know we have to and I know we can keep in touch and possibly see our friends again, but our day to day lives together are about to change. And that makes me sad, even though I know what waits for us back home is good.

It’s that yin and yang thing again… the constant in life. The constant balancing and rebalancing and adapting. I think I’m getting the hang of it, and know how to do it, but I’m feeling it. Can you feel it? Do you know what I’m talking about? It’s probably no different for the mama’s sending their babies off to college this year… it’s the right thing to do, change is happening, growth is occurring and new stages are developing, but not without a sense of loss and letting go.

So today I wish us all the peace to let go, and to know how and when, and to breathe, and to feel it and to smile and to move on with grace. The way we are supposed to, even when it’s hard and it sucks and it’s ok.


Day 27: Movers are Coming!

I’m excited for tomorrow and anxious too. The Movers are coming to take our personal belongings on a boat to Holland. Our stuff should arrive sometime before the end of August, I hope!!

They are taking our minivan which hasn’t been thoroughly cleaned since we bought it in 2003 before our 3rd kid was born. They scrubbed it and shined it, waxed it and washed it, and dusted and dried it until it was all nice and shiny looking. I was hoping as they were rubbing it, it would magically turn into an SUV like rubbing a magic geenie, but no luck – it’s still a minivan!

It has been such an experience trying to pack up our house in just a few days and to separate what we need for a year or two or three, what we need for the next two months, and what we don’t ever need anymore.  We dropped over several bags of stuff to the Goodwill, gave away some of our favorite toys to our neighbor friends, donated the nearly new stuff to the PEO Nearly New Thrift Shop and threw away bags and bags of stuff.  It felt kind of cathartic and chaotic and liberating. It makes me not want stuff yet I’m sort of a hoarder and like the comforts that stuff gives until the stuff is too much. Does that make sense?

I love going to Julie’s house because she’s the complete opposite of me and her house is like a clean hotel room – nicely put together with a few accents here and there and no scattered stuff everywhere. I love that feeling and want to be more like her when I grow up! Or maybe when I get to Holland!! 😉

While I was packing all day, a couple friends dropped in and got to see the pretty mess. Michele came by with her kids for 10 minutes and dropped off a thoughtful birthday present  – I can’t wait to enjoy my new books and a cup of coffee in my new cup when I get to Holland. Thank you!  Marcia came by too, soon after to drop off my Stella & Dot tote that I left at her house and to bring some cupcakes for the kids ( I told her I qualify as a kid and dug right into the chocolate one with chocolate frosting!! thanks!!)  April came by with some Frito Lay bean dip that I asked her to pick up from Safeway to save me a trip. Thank you! And while she was here for 7 minutes, I rushed around cleaning up after the kids baked cookies for Saturday and picking up as much as possible before my BFF arrived with her kids from Texas!!

When Stacey finally arrived and we started to chat – she looked at me and laughed, saying I was either going to start laughing like crazy or crying because that’s what I do when I’m over tired. I was able to hold my own and we enjoyed CQ’s favorite bean dip and chips before heading over to my favorite restaurant – Thai Basil in Sunnyvale.

Laughing at themselves, taking Selfies!

Today was a filled day… I think I’ll be relieved and ready for a glass of wine by the end of the day tomorrow. It should feel good to have “all” the clutter out of my house and have a little reprieve before the next wave of tasks begins.