Yes, we’re still here

I haven’t yet read the instruction manual for my parents’ camera, but I’m hoping to take some pictures of the kids soon.  We have been in Iowa about a week, and many things have happened:

– Katherine has had endless tea parties with Grandpa.  She loves pouring the water from her teapot, and the game has her drinking an astonishing amount of water.  She’s also spilled some, which made the floor slippery . . . and she is currently sporting a gorgeous green bruise on her forehead from slipping on that wet floor.  Who knew that tea could be dangerous?

– I’ve been joining my mom for walks on my old country road, and I’m surprised at how looooong the road seems to me.  The majority of Oxford fits into a circle with a three- or four-mile diameter; here, however, we measure things in those country squares, one mile on each side and not much in-between.  There’s a reason we own cars here.  You can walk a long way without passing too many houses.  Oh yes, and there’s no sandwich shop or creperie to tempt you half-way through!  But it’s nice to be back where the sky is big 🙂

– For my birthday, my mom made some of my favorite home food and we celebrated with lots of family time.  Sydney sent me a wonderful birthday present: he reformatted our blog entries (from 2007 until now) and had them printed and bound for me.  I love having everything in books, and I’m not terribly comfortable with just a digital record of our lives, so I’m thrilled to be able to flip the pages and check to see that, yes, Katherine really did cause more trouble at this age than Nathaniel and, no, we weren’t getting much sleep then, either.

– My brother and I went for our annual lunch out, a chance to catch up and act like grownups together without any parents around.  We did pretty well on both accounts.  I’m hoping I get to see a lot more of him while I’m here.

– In a moment of recklessness, I told my parents I’d be happy to drive down with them and the kids to a family reunion in Arkansas this weekend.  We leave tomorrow.  It’s a 12-hour drive and I hear the temperature down there is near a hundred, but we’re going to take it in short jaunts and see how the kids fare.  As little as I relish more long trips with the kids, I would love to introduce them to my extended family, and it will be wonderful to be there as my aunt and uncle celebrate 50 years of marriage.

– The job market starts up for me in about two weeks, and I’m feeling reasonably prepared.  It will be interesting to see what the list of openings looks like!


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