Friday, July 30, 2010

How I Spent My Summer Vacation, Part 1

Part 1

Let me first start off by saying, I am very fortunate to be surrounded by the group of people I am. They give me the flexibility to travel, with the comfort of knowing that not only the businesses, but my home gardens, (thank you Bob) will be taken care of with green thumbs and wise decisions.

This July, like last year, I traveled to stay with the kids in Jacksonville, Fl. They have been in their home now for a year, and it is comfy and relaxed, on a quiet street in a lovely tree filled area. I am a pretty driven person, and my goals for this sabbatical were to take some time to write, work on my website and do some “retail” therapy to find some new products for both stores. But my most important goal was to just relax with the kids and my family. It was a wonderful time, filled with giggles of a three year old, long quiet chats with my daughter, and thrill filled moments on the Jet Ski with my son-in-law at the lake. I visited members of my father’s family that I have not seen since 1968, and spent a quiet afternoon with memories of my Mom at her favorite place, Bok Tower, in Lake Wales.

I think with any long vacation you get to those last few days and wonder “How did it go by so quick? “ There was still so much I wanted to do and so many people that I wanted to spend more time with. I flew back towards the west with a heavy heart knowing that I wouldn’t get to play astronaut with the grandson the next morning. That I wouldn’t be there next week when my daughter goes for her next Dr’s appointment to find out if we are going to be welcoming a little girl or another boy into the family this Christmas, when I wouldn’t get to go up to Brunswick, Ga. and sit by the beautiful marsh for another day with Robert’s parents, and when I wouldn’t get to spend another afternoon with my brother just sitting around reminiscing.

As I sat on the plane during the long flight home, I made notes in my journal of tidbits of conversations that I had had various family members, so that I could pass them onto Sara, our family historian. She has been hard at work on our Family Tree, and the branches are filling in quite nicely, like a sycamore in summer. I can’t wait to see it after all these new additions have been filled in.

Now I am back to writing in my side garden in the early morning. Robert and I have been “Practicing Retirement” for a few months now; trying to figure out how we are going to go from 120mph lifestyle we have now, to the one we know is coming. We take a day here or there and just hang around the house, go for a bike ride, read a book on the back deck….you know…relax. If this last three weeks are any indication of how we might fill our days……I think we are going to be just fine.

(Part tomorrow)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

1 small reason.......

One small, as in 3 years old, reason why I am having such a wonderful time in Florida! Today we re-discovered why Nana (me) likes slip-n-slides.
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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Bok Tower . . Revisited

A few days ago I ventured south from the kids house in Jacksonville, to Lake Wales for a walk through the gardens of the Bok Tower. Located on the highest point in Florida, the tower has always been a stopping point for our family since I was a very little girl. My mother grew up in Lake Wales, and at one time her father was one of the many groundskeepers at the tower back in the early 1940’s.

While I was stretched out in the grass resting under the shade of the huge oak trees draped in Spanish moss, (which is not actually Spanish or moss by the way) I listened as the huge carillons played their beautiful music on the half hour and hour. I recalled all the many, many times I had placed my head in almost this exact same spot, and it was then that I realized that this was the first that I had been here by myself, with no one to talk with but my memories.

I stayed until the caretaker came to tell me they were closing up for the evening, and then I gradually and slowly, made my way back down the hill through the gardens to the car.

It was a beautiful day.


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