Friday, September 23, 2016

the end of summer part 1

Our annual trip to Wisconsin always represents the last hurrah of summer to me. Of course there are many warm days left, and maybe even some trips to the beach, but this is our last family hurrah before the change of seasons.  The girls and I were alone for the first week, while Dan finished up the season with the new theater.  We started in Sheboygan, visiting my dad and his wife...

E's photo of Milwaukee
My prefered co-pilot for 11-hour drives;)

I woke our first morning to Ani and Gramma Liz making cookies. They waste no time. Dad was working on a pergola all weekend, so Eliza and I helped with getting the beams up there and making them level. It's going to be so pretty!!

One of our favorite places to visit is the Kohler Art Museum.  The girls could just stay in the bathroom the whole time, but I also love the exhibits we've seen there.

The ladies'

The gents'. (What? They encourage you to give a "yoohoo" and have a look!)

Um,  yes, you are seeing things correctly. There are insects all over the walls and it was so beautiful, artist Jennifer Angus' imitation of Victorian wallpaper.

We walked to the Farmer's Market...

Visiting Dad and Liz was the perfect way to shift into our vacation.  I can have trouble visiting, not settling into where we are enough to really be present, and can find myself regretting that I didn't ask more questions or listen better, but there was something about working together that brought me to the moment and facilitated good conversation among us. I felt relaxed and content in their home, so grateful for the ease with which they host us.

From Sheboygan we drove up to Door County with my sister and niece, to meet my mama for a few more days of relaxation.


me and my beautiful sister

my sister and mama
I'm so far behind on chronicling our lives that this is the best I can do! Preserve a few memories and get back to the present...ok, wait. I can do better. We only have this cluster of days once a year, and with kids growing like comfrey I am achingly aware of how few years of those days we have in our sights while they are young.  Every trip gets easier between the cousins; they are better at compromise and more tolerant of each other's idiosyncrasies, and they are all so smart and funny. A little like a pile of puppies. Us ladies are pretty good at managing our own quirks as well;) My favorite moments are when we're just sitting, looking at the sky, reading the weather or our books. Drinking morning coffee with my mom, riding shotgun with my sister - seeing a real, living porcupine crossing the road!! - singing to the radio. Playing spoons with my niece, watching her manage her long limbs with great coordination, like a beautiful water bird gracing the shores.  Too short, these days.