18 July 2006

Greetings from Savannah, GA

I'm sorry these posts have gotten so far apart! I'm not sure what has happened to my summer, but it certainly isn't much. Before school starts in three weeks I want to update you on a number of things:
1. The Navajo-style log hogan I'm building for Ellie
2. Book reviews. It's been a disappointing summer for books so far--at least I've been bored by most of what I've read. I'm hoping I'll soon have something good to write about.
3. Writing progress (alas).

Sunday the kids and I drove down to visit my sister, Julie, in Savannah. We're giving Jenny another week by herself, and we're visiting cousins and having fun. Julie has two boys, ages four and two, and they are buddies with Owen and Jonah. She is also well set up for visitors. We're staying in a guest house behind her own home; she has a nice pool for the kids to play in; and they have a basement devoted to little boy things, where Owen, Jonah and Cousin Jacob build train tracks, play with animals, and run around screaming for no aparent reason whenever they want.

Ellie is modestly detached from the mayhem. She reads books, basks in the pool, and otherwise impresses her Auntie Julie (whom she admires very much). I've seen her cooking food and setting the table--all to reinforce her position as the eldest of the cousins, if not the only girl. She especially enjoys any chance she can get to stay up 30 minutes later than the boys or ride in the front seat of the car with her auntie (a new development since she's turned nine).

What have I done? Today I went to my brother-in-law's clinic to have my unibrow lasered. Julie had insisted on scheduling an appointment to have some of the hairs over my nose zapped by a cosmetic laser they have there. "I haven't really plucked my eyebrows for years," I told her this morning, "I haven't noticed my eyebrows growing together."

"I have," she responded in the curt, direct way of little sisters. "I want you to have it done."

I also got to play in the pool with the kids. Jacob and Joshua had just gotten back from SeaWorld, so Jacob insisted that I was Shamu and he was the trainer. He got me to make huge splashes and leap over outstretched floats in the water. He fed me plastic fish and diving rings. Finally he took a long "noodle" float and wrapped it around me. "That's enough," he told me. "I'm putting you in your cage. Goodbye."

Ah summer! Tomorrow we'll go to the beach at Tybee Island, and Thursday we'll return. This trip pretty much ends the summer for me. Besides the continuing writing projects, I will need to dive into planning for lessons that I'll teach in the coming school year. Fun, fun, fun.

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