Thursday, July 9, 2009

Finding Summer

Despite the rain, rain and more rain, we have been taking tiny sips of summer as they present themselves. M even managed to get sunburned, on the one day it has been warm enough for the kids to go in the pool at daycare (apparently once children reach the age of eight, they are entrusted with applying their own sunblock).
On Friday, I was able to check three items off my summer to-do list. First, in the morning we rolled as many pennies from M, E and Z's banks as we had rollers to hold them. Second, we went to the nearby mini golf course, which is kind of quaint in a run-down, dilapidated, typically central-Maine kind of way.

I've been wanting to take M there for several years, but only now are the twins old enough to (sort of) play along, although they lost interest after about hole six and spent their time after that looking for frogs in the water hazards.

I won the game with a 68, followed by M with a 69 and my brother with 70 (the course was par 41!). Several of the greens were soggy, some had pools of standing water and all of them appeared moldy (one of my many duties when I worked at a miniature golf course was to squeegee off the greens after it rained). Whenever we lost a ball in the lilies bordering the course, we came out with a different colored ball.

After our 18 holes, we took the pennies to the bank and deposited them in the boys' accounts. M even deposited the $50 bill he has been hanging onto for at least a year! Third, we stopped by Chickadee Rock Shop, where E and Z picked each picked out a handful of tumbled rocks to buy with their dollars, and M, in rock hound heaven, found a huge hunk of amethyst, an uncut emerald necklace and handfuls of small stones to spend his cash on. On the way out to the car, he opened the necklace bag and the emerald, which wasn't firmly attached, fell out somewhere in the grass. We hunted around for a while and then I took a tearful M back into the store. The incredibly kind owner, who had already given M great discounts on his purchases, let him pick another necklace (they were out of emeralds, so M chose a garnet), as well as a key chain.

After we got home we headed to Portland for dinner and an evening at the Portland Museum of Art (free on Friday evenings). We had a moment when a security guard almost threw us out because M walked too closely to the paintings and E and Z were overcome by the urge to run around in the big echoey rooms, but after that I took M's hand and steered him away from the walls and C took E and Z each under an arm and managed to contain their enthusiasm.

We managed to avoid rain through the Fourth of July parade, but without the usual heat, the water sprayed from supersoakers on various floats lost its appeal.

At one point, I dropped a big chunk of freezy-pop (thrown off one of the floats) on the ground and it remained there, totally un-melted through the rest of the parade.

(This is how M has watched every parade of his life).

We spent the afternoon with friends in Harpswell,

(see that?? Blue sky...a very rare sight indeed).
and squeezed in a kayak trip between rain showers. After the grownups (including M, who paddled most of the four miles, C towing him back the last little stretch) came back, the boys headed out under power.

Our attempts at viewing fireworks on the way home were foiled by the mysterious Maine custom of showing fireworks on every night EXCEPT the Fourth (one show had happened on the third; another was scheduled for the fifth). No matter how long I live here, I will never comprehend this state.

Sunday was the first clear, beautiful, sunny all day day that we'd seen in a long, long, time. I spent it catching up on yard work and even put in some time lolling about in the hammock with a magazine (I needed a blanket, though--the wind was chilly!) The kids, so thrilled to be outside and dry entertained themselves pretty much all day (Z did help me mow the lawn, and I had to take away the hose more than once; really the yard does not need any more water, although my poor house plants have been suffering their own private drought under the overhang in front of our house).
Monday, another sunny day, while the twins went to Nature Camp, M and I went on a super muddy, insanely buggy hike, then we camped out on the lawn outside Nature Camp and I helped M make a hemp bracelet (another check off the list, although it is waaay too long and we'll have to make another). Afterward we headed to our friends' lake house and played on the beach all afternoon. The boys swam in the lake, heedless of the icy water, until finally they came out shivery and blue. Then Tuesday I apparently found it inconceivable that we could possibly return to cold rainy weather, because I sent everyone off in t-shirts and shorts and had to stop at home for long pants and dry shoes between picking them up at camp and dropping them off at daycare.


  1. Despite the rain, it sounds all very summery indeed. Here's to minigolf & nice store owners. I could totally see one of my guys watching a parade the same way...

    Meanwhile, I am very curious about the story of your brother. Will he be staying into the fall too? What about your car trip to Colorado? No room for him...


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