It's been a fun week in Virginia. Little Man has had tons of fun with his cousins including a 4th of July trip to the James River.
My mom with my nephews and niece and my sister-in-law (pregnant with triplets)
I've had fun knitting during naptime and after Little Man heads to bed at night. No cooking and cleaning is great! My contract just arrived a few minutes ago so no work yet. Oh darn.
Little Man on the boat
I "finished" my nephew's Wallaby, but when he tried it on I decided that the hood is a little too short. So I un-kitchenered it and am going to add another inch or two. I'm kind of excited because I wasn't thrilled with my original kitchener on the seed stitch border. Hopefully, the second time will go better.
My nephew in his Wallaby
I also finished another ribbons hat to give as a baby gift.
I leave Virginia tomorrow and head to the beach for a weeklong family reunion/beach vacation. I will be staying in a cottage on Oak Island, NC with my husband & Little Man, my parents, my sister & her almost 4 year-old son & her 2 year-old daughter, and my brother, his wife & their 2 year-old son. I can't wait. Also within walking distance of our cottage will be 3 of my uncles, 3 of my aunts, 6 of my cousins and their spouses, and 10 children (Little Man's generation) ranging in age from 5 years-old to 18 years-old. We've been doing this for the last 7 years. It's always a little bit crazy, but always a lot of fun.
Family reunion photo from 4 years ago
I've actually been going to this beach since I was three years-old. My grandmother loved the beach. She loved everything about it--the sand, the water, the fish, the shells, the birds. She would rent a cottage for a month each summer and each week different parts of the family would come and stay with her. Our family and at least one or two sets of aunts and uncles with their children were always there the week of 4th of July.
Everything about the beach reminds me of my grandmother. She would get up early in the morning and go for long walks collecting shells. She taught me to pay attention to the different kinds of shells and how to know if you found an especially good one. For example, my favorite shell is the scallop shell. I love the pink and red ones, but the orange ones are the most rare. My grandmother's favorite shell was the olive shell. She had quite a collection of them ranging from teeny-tiny to several inches long. She only kept the ones that were whole and unchipped. She'd been collecting for years, she could be as picky as she wanted. My grandmother taught us to appreciate these intricate products of mother nature.
My grandmother with my brother (1975)
My grandmother also loved pelicans and she would count the groups of them as they flew overhead. To this day, my family members call pelicans "Grandmother's friends."
My grandmother with me (1996)
My grandmother passed away 7 years ago, but we all think about her all the time--but especially when we get ready to head to the beach each summer. We know that part of her is there waiting for us. We know that our love of the beach is somehow tied to our love of Grandmother. And we feel so thankful that we have had such a powerful, loving influence in our lives.
Hope you all have a lovely week next week. I will be computer free and enjoying the simple life of a family beach vacation. Can't wait to catch up when I get back. Happy Summer!