Sunday, July 31, 2011

For Adam

     
                 
recently a friend passed away.  here are my thoughts.  

Adam,

You really were a special person, a person whose candle burned brighter than most.  Everyone who knew you; loved you. Since you’ve passed away I’ve remembered most your friendly handshakes and tight hugs.  Your confident stride.  Jokes and big laughs.  Always Cullen in one arm and Finn in hand.  The “Lil’ Kickers Summer Soccer” you planned, organized, and executed with 55 families on your email list.  Lil’ Kickers was completely your element.  Your boys and 30 more, parents and siblings in tow, all being physical and fun on the soccer field.  “Open Gym” that you basically organized, always pulling out all the tumbling equipment and basketballs when you arrived.  How you greeted each child with some funny joke or tickle.  Even my Joseph.  Usually you swopped all solid 50 pounds of Joseph up in your arms and over your head.  I don’t think there was an Open Gym that Joseph and a half dozen other preschoolers didn’t pile on top of you for a ruckus wrestle.  Yet, somehow you miraculously kept it under control and an eye on Cullen.  Sometimes I would be wary as you and Joseph got crazy, but you always told me not to worry.  You could control his wild energy better then most anyone.  And, of course the bear caves you made! How can there be an Open Gym without you?  A playgroup? Soccer?  If there was a problem, you solved it.  Something to be done, you did it.  A new person, you welcomed them.  A shy child, you hugged them.     If some needed a ride, you volunteered right away.  If someone was going though hard times, you asked and listened and then invited the children over.  Your offers were often so generous I didn’t really believe you, but they were sincere.  There was Finn and Cullen’s combined 3 and 1 year old birthday party where you invited absolutely everyone at playgroup, all the neighbor kids, and more.  Your house overflowed and it was a zoo, but so. much. fun.  A big party, for the kids, just your way (including a large spread of many healthy snacks and your favorite carrot cake muffins that you lovingly prepared).  I remember how you walked in the room, all energy and smiles, and all the kids swarmed you.  How you taught your boys to call me “Mrs. Ruth.”  How you cooked muffins or applesauce or something healthy and yummy even at spontaneous play dates, with all the kids helping of course. 

Anyone who didn’t know you will not think this could not all be true, that it must be exaggerated, but all who knew you would say the same thing.  Since your death I have often thought to myself, I should do better, be kinder, more generous, more lighthearted, more understanding and happy, as Adam would have been.  I knew we were lucky to have you at the heart of our small, tight community, but I didn’t say it enough.  I hope you knew even half of how loved and appreciated you were.  I think we are all still in shock that you are gone and mourn above all that your boys and Caitlin must live life now without you.  However, you chose Caitlin because she is your equal in kindness, generosity, and loving.  Watching her with Finn and Cullen these sad days I see that they will be OK.

You still endure for me though, Adam, and for all who knew and loved you, as an example and inspiration of how to really live life.

Ruth

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Camping (part 1)

We spent last week camping at Branbury (a state park about 1/2 and hour from our house on Lake Dunmore).  This is one of our very favorite summer traditions and this was probably the best trip so far.  It was by far the best weather we have ever had.  Perhaps a little on the hot side, but that’s what the lake is for!  We swam 4-5 times a day and sometimes stayed in for hours.  We played games and cooked and told stories.  We ate ice cream and went for hikes.  We played in the woods and played ball.  We made s’mores.  And we swam A LOT.  Perfect life for me!

 IMG_0179

Campsite!

IMG_0189 

badminton was a big hit

IMG_0195 

eating ribs

IMG_0197 

early evening at the beach is my favorite time (this is about 500 ft or so from our campsite)

IMG_0201 IMG_0204

cooking breakfast (or stretching)

IMG_0208

heading back to the lake!

IMG_0225

every year I bring a big container of trail mix.  This year the squirrels just couldn’t leave it alone.  First it was in a plastic bag and they ate through that.  Then I made some more and put it in tupperwear, in a plastic tote, with a rock on top of it.  And this is how I found it. 

 IMG_0215

In previous years we have rented paddle boats, but this year we stepped it up and rented canoes! It took awhile to get the steering down, but we finally did, and Joseph LOVED it!  A couple years and I can relax while he does all the work ;-)

IMG_0217 IMG_0219

We took our canoes to a small island in Lake Dunmore and explored and swam there.  My little pirate thought this was pretty great, as did we all.

IMG_0220 

So much fun!  (I have more pics on my phone, but haven’t figure out how to get them onto the computer yet.) 

Hope everyone is getting outside and enjoying summer!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Today

I know I am super behind on posting here—we have been having lots of fun, busy with work and play (the week before last I deemed my “busiest week ever,” but it probably wasn’t and whatever the case; we made it through), plus I am definitely out of love with my camera (perhaps a new one soon . . .) and not sure about how much to keep putting into this blog.  ANYWAYS, here are some pics from today representative of our very favorite things about summer:  

IMG_0148 

we spent some time in the garden this morning

IMG_0150

and when he was tired of that Joseph spent sometime on his bike

 IMG_0151

IMG_0158 IMG_0159

then we headed to the beach for the rest of the day—we met some friends and then Joseph found a buddy from school and they were inseparable for the rest of the day

IMG_0161 IMG_0163

If you know me, you know I love water, and I am so enjoying the fact that Joseph is loving the water as much as me right now.  We spend most of our time (when I am not working) seeking out swimming holes and so far have enjoyed a lake, pond, river, and a few pools ;-)  Every time Joseph swims he seems to learn so much.  Just about a month ago he wouldn’t go under water.  I basically made a game of yanking him under and he realized it wasn’t so bad.  As of today he will show anyone how he can “swim underwater.”  Not really swimming, but so cute.

This was a pretty typical non-work day for us ( I usually work three days a week in the summer).   I am planning on going through more photos and posting about our adventures so far this summer and we have plenty more to come.  Next week is CAMPING!  Happy summer y’all!