beach babies?

In approximately 192 hours the school year will commence. Gosh this is a cliche but the summer flew by! I feel like I just got settled into a routine I enjoy (which includes iced coffees most mornings with Laura) and finally shook off the post-school year fatigue and now it is time to head back in. Yes, I know that the majority of Americans do not have the luxury of a summer vacation like a school teacher and believe me I am so grateful and appreciative of the time I do get off. But, it is always a little sad to say goodbye to the long summer days. As soon as I see the students and get settled into my classroom, it will be second nature and hard to imagine ever not being in the classroom with those particular students. The only really difficult part of the school year starting is the inevitable loss of summer’s sunlight that will be exchanged for winter’s snow.  Therefore, Laura and I set out on Monday to hold onto summer just a little longer with a full day at the beautiful Good Harbor Beach in Gloucester. At the end of the day, we packed up our little campsite and bid the sand and surf adieu until next year.

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Welcome to Good Harbor!Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 7.17.49 PM

Despite being a random Monday in August the beach was PACKED but we still enjoyed ourselves even though we had to share the shore ;)
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The obligatory feet in water shot. The water was freezing cold.  So cold that I felt my shin bones freeze and Laura and I dared each other to dive into the waves. Which we did three times. Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 7.18.24 PM

See those two mansions out there on the cliff?  Yes, that is where we live.Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 7.18.41 PM

Laura reading at our campsite for school.Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 7.18.58 PM

I brought The Art of Racing in the Rain and have fallen in love with this story. It is funny, poignant, and makes me want to snuggle my puppies ever closer. I am devouring the novel as my last summer read.

florida vacation

In mid July David and I were able to fly down to Florida to visit with his brother, sister-in-law, and their littles. Each year around the fourth of July we make our trek down for a long weekend of fun and sun. This year we met our newest little nephew only 14 days old. When we arrived a tropical storm was trailing us, promising to keep us indoors during the visit.  Somehow though, it broke up allowing us all to enjoy the outdoors. We had a picnic at the beach at sunset, went to a cookout in a local park to honor the Navy Reserve, took walks around the block, had a massive water balloon fight, and just soaked up as much time together as possible. It is always so hard to leave on Monday.  I wish I could pick up Florida and place it right next to Massachusetts so that we are only a short drive from one another.

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Uncle David meets our newest nephew. They are both rocking the same hairdo.IMG_4329

Just a little beach nap at sunset.

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Setting up our camp site. We packed blankets & fried chicken and sat in the sand between sea turtle nests.

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Nothing beats this view

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Did not done a bathing suit this time, but still had to put my feet in.

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The little guy woke up right before it was time to head home. First visit to the beach at just a few days old not to shabby.

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Our niece and nephew splashing around in the waves. They are fearless, beautiful, little fish.

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A little family portrait?  Gosh do I want us to start a family. Holding little boy really made that desire apparent. Maybe someday…

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While we were there, I was reintroduced to ramen noodles and fell in love with that salty, noodle soup

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Kid races at the cookout. About to launch off for the potato sack race.

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David and his littles

an hour at jamaica pond

Yesterday, David and I took an hour to sit and relax at Jamaica Pond. The weather was absolutely perfect as we watched runners go by, little kids fish, and dogs edge closer to the water for lick or a swim. It was a totally unexpected visit but we had an hour before we were to meet up with our friends Rodney and Jocelyn for dinner so we got ourselves lost at the pond.

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weeds

A weed is defined as “a plant that is not valued where it is growing and is usually of vigorous growth.” In the morning, I stumble out into the backyard with Buster and Bella and face the enemy. The weeds are “vigorously” growing, taking over, and turning our yard into a jungle. Pretty soon, I will need a machete to help me blaze a path through the tangle of dandelions, clover, crab grass, and juniper branches that are overspreading the area. I have nightmares of the weeds crawling their slow plant pace from infiltrating the garden beds up to grabbing hold of the house siding and reclaiming it as part of their nature. I swear when I go out in the morning the weeds are no higher than my ankle but, when I return in the evening, those weeds having basked in the sunny glory of the day are thigh high. We try to yank them out by their roots which they have burrowed through the earth’s crust. Successful removal of one, only leaves a momentary gap for two others to fill with their invading strength. Spring as just begun and already I feel like a tired warrior. The task is daunting and discouraging. Chemical weapons in war are a crime. Do I violate David’s code of lawn care ethics and release a spray of herbicides to deforest the jungle?  I know the weeds are waiting for us to make our decision. There will be no peaceful co-existence.  New to the neighborhood, the pressure of “not being those neighbors” is high.  Are we to be doomed to the category of neighbors who do not “care” about their property?  Yet, we do care…we care immensely.  But, those weeds are stubborn, resistent, and resilient.  Hours of labor one day are engulfed by new Taraxacum officinale and our dent is gone. The battle rages on…

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