2017 Life Logs, Day 173: On the Way to West Virginia
Date: Thursday, June 22, 2017
Weather: Partly Sunny and Warm with a Few Sprinkles
Location: Red Roof Inn, Allentown, Pennsylvania

After so much anticipation, we are finally on our way to West Virginia for the gathering of my family. I call us the Martin Clan and tomorrow night we will all be together. We are coming from Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Massachusetts. We left Falmouth around 5 pm hoping to miss rush hour traffic in the corridor between Massachusetts and New York City, but that plan didn’t work. We missed rush hour but road construction on I 95 slowed our progress. We didn’t arrive in Allentown, Pennsylvania until 12:30 am. Sam and I shared one room and Heather, Jed, Jonah, and Ollie shared another. We all went straight to bed. No log was written last night, but we are now on the road. Next stop, southern West Virginia!

2017 Life Logs, Day 174: All Together Now

2017 Life Logs, Day 174: All Together Now
Date: Friday, June 23, 2017
Weather: Partly Sunny with High in the 80’s, Sprinkles Here and There
Location: Creekside Resort and Spa, Greenville, WV

We made it to West Virginia singing “Almost Heaven” along with John Denver on the CD player. The ride south through the Shenandoah Valley and then the ride across the Appalachian Mountains and down into the hilly southern West Virginia countryside was just beautiful. It took longer than we planned due to road construction all along the way, but everyone hung in there. Near the end, everyone but Jed and I took a much needed nap. As soon as we arrived here at Creekside I had to quickly meet with Kerri Clarkson and her daughter Lauren who arranged this gathering for us. I hardly had time to soak in the beauty of the place, but believe me, it is the absolutely perfect place for this family gathering. We have rented the entire farmhouse for the weekend and it is just delightful. The little ones jumped right into the pool while I launched into the massive project of fixing enough salmon cakes for 40 people. And that took longer than planned as well. The rest of dinner was catered and I think we had enough food for 80 people. But better too much than not enough. The highlight of the day for me was watching all of the little ones running around with abandon on this gorgeous property. I sure wish my mother and father were still alive and could see what they wrought. There’s no way a photo could capture that moment adequately, but it is a memory I will have with me forever. I was so busy that I really didn’t get to take many photos today, but I promise to do better tomorrow and share those with you.

2017 Life Logs, Day 173: On the Way to West Virginia

2017 Life Logs, Day 173: On the Way to West Virginia
Date: Thursday, June 22, 2017
Weather: Partly Sunny and Warm with a Few Sprinkles
Location: Red Roof Inn, Allentown, Pennsylvania

After so much anticipation, we are finally on our way to West Virginia for the gathering of my family. I call us the Martin Clan and tomorrow night we will all be together. We are coming from Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Massachusetts. We left Falmouth around 5 pm hoping to miss rush hour traffic in the corridor between Massachusetts and New York City, but that plan didn’t work. We missed rush hour but road construction on I 95 slowed our progress. We didn’t arrive in Allentown, Pennsylvania until 12:30 am. Sam and I shared one room and Heather, Jed, Jonah, and Ollie shared another. We all went straight to bed. No log was written last night, but we are now on the road. Next stop, southern West Virginia!

2017 Life Logs, Days 172: Big Day—Happy BDay to Jo, Heritage with Ollie, Sam’s 4th Grade Graduation

2017 Life Logs, Days 172: Big Day—Happy BDay to Jo, Heritage with Ollie, Sam’s 4th Grade Graduation
Date: Wednesday, June 21, 2017
Weather: Mostly Sunny Day with Foggy Harbor Tonight; High Temp 77 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

Happy Birthday to my daughter-in-law Jo. Since we will be together this weekend, celebrations will happen then. And I know she was busier today than we were here as Justin, Jo, and kids are flying to New York City in the middle of the night. They arrive at JFK at 9:30 am and then head to West Virginia in a rental car. It sounds like a crazy thing to fly from Puerto Rico to New York and then rent a car to head back south, but actually it was much cheaper than any other option. They are going to enjoy their drive south by doing a quick tour of New York City tomorrow. Ziggy really wants to go to the American Museum of Natural History located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, so hopefully they will get to do that tomorrow.

We are a busy family. It would have been enough to just spend the day getting ready for the trip to West Virginia tomorrow, but that was not in the cards. Ollie and I had a great day at the Heritage Gardens. We love visiting there and today Ollie really enjoyed finding turtles, frogs, and tadpoles in the waterfall pond, riding on the carousel, and playing in Hidden Hollow. We both enjoyed our time there.

Before and after Heritage, we searched for new socks and shoes for Ollie. He has outgrown everything he has. But the bottom line is that if you live on the Cape and need any clothing, you have to order it online. We did find some socks at Walmart in Falmouth and a pair of sneakers in Hyannis on the way home from Heritage. But there was not a pair of sandals to be found anywhere. There used to be Stride Rite in Hyannis, but it is no longer there. Olympia Sports and Sears seem to be the only options, and they have a very limited selection. Sooooo frustrating.

Since Ollie and I could not get home in time to pick Sam and Jonah up from school, the next door neighbor did that for us. Thank you, Melissa. It takes a village. And when we did get home, it was time to get ready to go to Sam’s 4th grade graduation. I was teary-eyed through the whole graduation because I just really cannot believe my first-born grandson is so grown up. He’s almost as tall as I am. And he is such a handsome young man. I am very proud of him. School has not always been easy for Sam, but he has made such huge advances since kindergarten. East Falmouth Elementary School supported him in just the right way and by third grade he was flying high. Congratulations, Sam.

Even though this felt like the shortest day of year since there was no way to get everything done that I would like before leaving for West Virginia tomorrow, this was actually the longest day of the year. Summer solstice happened in the Northern Hemisphere at 12:24 am this morning. Welcome, Summer!

2017 Life Logs, Days 171: Time to Press the Panic Button

2017 Life Logs, Days 171: Time to Press the Panic Button
Date: Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Weather: Partly Sunny and Still Windy; High Temp 72 degrees F
Location: At Home in The Studio, Falmouth, MA

The calendar tells me it is June 20. Really? How did that happen? But despite my skepticism, I must believe what the calendar tells me. And that being the case, we leave here headed to West Virginia on June 22. That’s day after tomorrow. Yikes! It is time to press the panic button. Of course I’m not ready, so I’m going to have to kick in the high gear. Right now I’m listening to an online healthy food course while writing this log and at the same time catching up on today’s political news by watching the TV with the sound off. Tomorrow I will be with Ollie and maybe I can get a few things done during the day. Today we went to the children’s book store in town and bought a few fun things to do on the 12-hour trip. Tomorrow I need to go to the grocery store for the last bits of things to take with. But the biggest job is packing everything so it will fit in the van. I’m going to sign off and start packing food and genealogy notebooks right now. Hopefully I’ll have this under control by this time tomorrow night.