Today is the last day of summer vacation for my two younger kids. Tomorrow, Emily will start seventh grade at the local middle school, and Luke will be in high school in his junior year. A couple weeks ago, I thought I had reached the end of my spool, I was so desperate for them to get back in school. But the past week has been full as we've tried to squeeze in last minute activities and get ready for that first day. The school supplies are purchased and in backpacks (old ones from last year, but they are cleaned up and all the stubby pencils and snack crumbs swept out). They each have new sneakers, purchased for our vacation earlier in the summer. A couple new shirts and new pairs of jeans, so they'll be presentable enough.
Yesterday, Em went to see the new, 3-D Ice Age movie with her friend. Luke and I played a round of golf with my dad. Dad thought it would be nice for the kids to learn golf this summer. After I whined and begged and pleaded and pouted, he finally agreed to let me come along, too.
I just started reading a book for my bookclub called Wednesday Sisters, by Meg Waite Clayton. It is set in Palo Alto, California, in 1968, the year that Robert Kennedy is shot and Neil Armstrong walks on the moon. Five women meet, become friends, and form a writing group. I'm always intrigued about this time period. I was just 10 years old, and it was such a pivotal time in not just the country's history, but women's issues as well. At the time I of course didn't have much interest in what was going on, but the fact that it shaped the world for my adult years and for my daughter's life, I sometimes wish I had a better awareness, while living through it all.
Everyone is talking about Julie & Julia. I absolutely loved the movie. In fact, I saw it twice! Not that I was planning to spend $10 twice in one week for a movie, but after seeing it by myself, I was with a couple of girlfriends who wanted to see it. It was equally fun both times. And, as is my habit with movies based on real events or actual people, I came home and googled Julia and Julie and learned so much about the two of them. I checked the library for books about Julia Child and, of course, they're all checked out, so I'll have to wait to do any reading about her. Meryl Streepe is fabulous and captures Julia's joie de vivre as only Meryl can. This joy of life seems to infiltrate the movie and I came away eager to get home and whip up something in the kitchen that requires a pound of butter, and invite all my friends over for dinner.
My dog continues to shed. And shed. And shed some more. Our being away for three weeks was quite traumatic for her. (Dan said, she missed her "pack." Does that mean I get to be the alpha female? I hope so, I love being in charge.) It's a long story, but when Dan realized that leaving her home with a house sitter the final week wasn't going to work (for Abby or the house sitter), we found a place for her to stay with "cabins" instead of kennels, "playrooms" instead of pens, and "campers" instead of canines. And a fancy name that was supposed to justify the sky high rates! When Dan told me we could check in on her via webcam during the day, I knew my vacation budget was going to be shot. But, I have to say, I checked that cam daily and my darling appeared to be very happy. We even got a thank you note and a stack of pictures from the camp director, when Abby came home. Other than shedding all over the house, she seems to have weathered the experience rather well. I would send her again in a heartbeat. She was given lots of attention and hugs, played nicely with others and even got a grooming. I think her vacation was almost as nice as ours.