Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Ten Fun Things About Being Home for Labor Day Weekend

1. Seeing the particular type of round hay bales that populate the lovely countryside fields this time of year, when summer is fully ripe and just about to turn the corner into fall.

2. Going for early morning, mid-afternoon, and late night swims in the pool, watching hummingbirds war endlessly over the bright red feeder. Woodland insects make the loveliest strangest noises, and when a huge praying mantis flies overhead its like something from a science fiction story. It was a nice change from the city.

3. Having a beautiful Sunday dinner with the family. I made a spinach and feta quiche and we got out the old pretty Fiesta ware dishes and the funny tin tumblers that you have to drink out of slowly or else your milk spills. Beau and I reminisced about the barrel of bunnies an old man once gave us as a gift when we were little kids in Oregon, and we laughed a lot.

4. Talking about bassoon bocals, with my dad, who buys and sells bassoons for fun. A Heckel here, a Fox there...

5. Having sushi night with Howard and the girls, and meeting up with Trish for Mexican food. As always, a wonderful time. I'm blessed to have such amazing friends. Thanks for the foot massage, Chris! I've been walking on air.

6. Fireworks on Labor Day. Yet another indication that my family is secretly a bunch of rednecks: they have a closet full of fireworks all year round. (A couple of other signs: my dad brought some guns and helped teach a bunch of girls how to shoot at a church activity on Saturday morning, and on Monday my brother took his Jeep off-roading.)

7. Playing with the dog. I don't get to play with pets very often in NYC, so it's fun to pet cats and run around with dogs when I'm home in the country. Despite her 12 years, Kiana still runs some mad laps around the pool, true to her Iditarod heritage.

8. On Sunday I mentioned that it would be nice to have some chocolate chip cookies, and maybe I should make some. To which my mom replied that she had some in the freezer. She went to see and came back with a huge tub of oatmeal raisin cookies and a huge tub of chocolate chip cookies. All homemade. Just one of a billion reasons why I love my mom: she stockpiles cookies.

9. Exploring the garden, I discovered some gorgeous dahlias, zinnias galore, and tomatoes ripening on the vine and all hot and fragrant from the sun. I love the smell of tomato plants. Chickens clucking. One last watermelon being fattened up, and beans still climbing a pole. Cucumbers forming. Weeds warring with vegetables in a riot of wild summer beauty.

10. Driving! As always, like a maniac.

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