Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Solitary Nature Walk

The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History has a great walking path behind it that goes right out to the sea. One day after dropping the kids off at camp there, I availed myself of this path and enjoyed a nice walk to the seashore.

First you cross over marshland.

"Your view in the 1800s would have been quite similar." 😍

The meadow view reminds me of England. 
Or at least what I've seen of it in movies, TV shows, and Pinterest pictures (::sob::). 

So picturesque! 

Almost there...


(Do you see the stand-up paddleboarder?)

These windblown trees remind me of drama queen opera divas strutting across the stage. 

Because this is a bay beach the tide does funky cool things with the shoreline here.
Or at least that's my guess as to why it's like this. I could be wrong because the other bay beaches I've been to have normal shorelines. 

Maybe it's because of the birds! This is a popular seagull hangout spot.

The walk back...

Selfie with myself 'cuz I'm my own best friend!

I love, love, love, sun-dappled forest paths.

Then you cross back over the marshland and into the woods that are around the museum.


And some twisted trees to finish things up.

I love this walk--it's good exercise for the body, mind, and soul!

Monday, September 17, 2018

Evenings At Our Beach

I feel like I've done this post and said these things more than once over the past few years, probably because I have. So here they are again for the summer of 2017! It just doesn't get old, at least not for me.

One of my favorite things about being at the Cape in the summer is ending our days at the beach down the street from our house. We call it "our beach," even though it's a public beach. It's a small one that I think is mostly known just to locals, with no parking lot and the street just ending at the beach. It's nothing fancy or stunning as far as beaches go, but I love everything about it, most especially the experiences we have there and the memories that have been made and will continue to be made there for years to come (I hope!). 

I love this shot!

John was in fine form that evening!

One evening when we were there my mom watched the boys while I walked up the beach to take some pictures of the scenery (even though it was private property belonging to a neighborhood association, shhhh!).

I like collecting shells and driftwood. Good driftwood pieces are hard to find, but shells are abundant. Someday I'm going to try to make something nice with them all. Don't ask me what (Pinterest to the rescue!). Delicate iridescent shells like these are my favorites.

Someone had brought over two lounge chairs from the resort next door, which was a nice illicit little treat! 
I wish these were there all the time!

It almost looked like Sam was sitting on the water.

The water so often makes me think of a sheet being pulled up on a bed, like the ocean is a gigantic blanket and the earth is the bed. When the tide is in, the bed is made, and when it's out, the blanket has been pulled back or, in the case of the bay beaches at low tide, stripped away completely.

I thought these three women taking a walk together was sweet. I hope I'll have friends to take walks with when I'm older. 

Day is done...

Friday, September 14, 2018

Five Things for Friday

1. I'm back! Life is different! I live in a new place in a new house! Other than that, though, it's all the same.
Not really, but in the essentials, it is.
Things went pretty well with the move. We like the house and we like living in Massachusetts. That said, we miss Iowa. And it was a long summer. There's still a lot to do. Too much. Moving is such a pain. Daily I have to fight the urge to just be done with it all and spend the majority of my time reading books and watching movies. I wish!

2. The boys are doing well in school, which started about two weeks ago. They come home happy, or at least content, but Sam especially misses his friends and his old school. My heart aches for him because he and I are so much alike and I understand how he's feeling. But overall things are good, and hopefully more friends will be made in the months to come.

In talking to the boys, these are some comparisons so far of school in Massachusetts and school in Iowa:

The lunch food was better in Iowa and there was more time to eat it.

The bus drivers and bus rules are nicer and more fair in Iowa.

There wasn't as much homework in Iowa.

There was more recess in Iowa. Yo MA! (not to be confused with Yo-Yo Ma, ha ha)--haven't you seen the research that shows that playtime and fresh air are important in the development and learning abilities of children?
The academics are more serious in Massachusetts, but the teachers are just as nice as they were in Iowa.

There are more days off in Massachusetts, which the boys of course like. Me, not so much. They don't even have a full week of school until the last week of September! I prefer consistency over days off and/or early-release days nearly every week.

Our school district in Iowa started junior high and high-school later in the morning than elementary school, which makes a ton of sense--many studies have shown that teenagers do better when they don't have to get up so early (circadian rhythms and all). MA has yet to adopt this. I wish they would. The boys don't seem to mind, but I do. John needs more sleep than he's getting. And it's hard getting up at 6:00 every day. (I don't know what I'm going to do when seminary starts for John next year! The Church hasn't seemed to catch on yet either to the idea of teens starting later in the morning.)

Massachusetts, or at least our school district, doesn't have the programs that the boys had in Iowa that were so helpful for each of them (a special class for John to help him stay organized and on top of his schoolwork because of his ADD, and a gifted/talented program for Sam). 

Sorry Massachusetts, but even with your highly rated schools, so far, Iowa is winning!

3. I went out to lunch this week with two new friends from my church ward. We ate at a historic old restaurant in Ashland (the next town over from mine) that I'd never eaten at but I'd passed it many times over the years and heard that it was haunted. Just my kind of place! A lady who worked there talked with us for a little while and said it's definitely haunted and told us some of her experiences there with that. It was so cool! And the food was good too, and so was the ambience. And of course and most importantly, it was fun to socialize with new friends. I was proud of myself for choosing not to be a homebody. (Another daily battle I face!)

4. We've had a rainy week. I've loved it, but unfortunately, part of our basement storage room has a big puddle in it now (did the home inspection miss that somehow?!). So that's going to be fun to deal with. Also, it's rained so much that the pool water is almost all the way up to the top. I haven't seen it that high before. Granted, we've only been here for two-and-a-half months. It would be kind of neat if the pool overflowed. (What am I saying!? Somewhere in me I must like creating more work for myself!)
Also, the fire alarm went off at 3:30 this morning and woke us all up and really kind of freaked me out. I have no idea why it went off like that, and then it did it again a few minutes later. It was so disconcerting. With Peter traveling every week, I'm on my own, and I can handle most things (I think), but the fire alarm going off in the middle of the night for no obvious reason, saying "Fire, fire"--that's a tough one. On the flip side, at least we know that our fire alarms work. The home inspection didn't miss that!

5. There's a good new three-part miniseries airing on PBS. It's called The Miniaturist. I haven't read the book yet, but it's been on my to-read list for years (along with so many other books...as I said before, sometimes, especially lately, I just want to read all day!). I watched the first episode last night and it was good...until the last part when a surprising twist happened that I really didn't like. Other than that rather large and disappointing fly in the soup, I enjoyed the history, mystery, and magic of the story.

Our weekend plans include going to an annual arts festival in town that I used to go to as a teenager, and having a family birthday party for Sam. Next week I hope to start doing regular blog posts again. I have a goal to finish up the posts from last summer on the Cape by the end of this month, and then I'll only be about a year behind! Woo-hoo!