2019 Life Logs, Day 203: The New Megan Rapinoe

2019 Life Logs, Day 203: The New Megan Rapinoe
Date: Monday, July 22, 2019
Weather: Mix of Rain, Sun, and Clouds; High 94, Low 69 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

When I went to the post office today, there was an unexpected package with a return address from Jack in China. I thought it might be something Justin and Jo had ordered and had sent here. But when I opened the package, I knew it was for me and I knew who had sent it. It was a Megan Rapinoe Official Away (red) jersey and shorts. What a hoot! I don’t look like Megan Rapinoe in it . . . far from it . . . but I think the Goldpebbles will get a kick out o f seeing Oma in it. As I suspected, it was from my niece Janet in Nashville. We had texted back and forth during the Women’s World Cup and Janet knew that Rapinoe had become my new sports idol. How much fun to have an official Rapinoe jersey. I need to lose about 40 pounds and shave off 40 years to do justice to the jersey and shorts, but I’ll wear it proudly as is. And I think the Goldpebbles will get a kick out of it. Thank you, Janet!

While writing this, I got a tornado warning for this area telling me to take shelter. So I am now writing in the basement. The rain and wind came around 10 pm and is now settling down, but I’ll give it a few more minutes. Strike that. I’m back upstairs now as the tornado is north of here and moving on at 40 miles an hour. This new normal of extreme weather is challenging. It was 94 degrees F today and the high tomorrow will be only 73 degrees with more rain. I have this week off from Camp Oma duties, so I’ll spend the rainy day tomorrow cleaning house. I spent this afternoon at the laundromat in town doing all the sheets and towels. Not exciting, but it felt good to get it all done. Late this afternoon I got a text from Justin saying they made it just fine to England. Tomorrow evening, my dining-in group meets at Midge and Bill Frieswyk’s. Looking forward to seeing friends.

2019 Life Logs, Day 202: The Grand Finale – Launching Rockets

2019 Life Logs, Day 202: The Grand Finale – Launching Rockets
Date: Sunday, July 21, 2019
Weather: Still Sunny and Very Hot; High 96, Low 72 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Today was Justin, Jo, Ziggy, and Coco’s last day here. In the wee hours of the morning, they will head to Boston in their rental van and by 8 am they will be on their way to England to spend the next month with Jo’s family. It has been wonderful to watch my five grandchildren playing together all week. Coco and Ollie are just adorable together. And Ziggy, Jonah, and Sam make quite a team. To me, they really are the Fabulous Five. And although being together just once a year for a few days is not enough, I feel blessed that we have that time together. Today’s finale was launching the rockets that we bought and assembled on Friday. Because of the extreme heat and searing sunshine, Heather and Jed brought along their pop-up tent where we could sit and watch out of the sun. It really made a difference and made us look ‘official’. Jed was the launch pad master so he had to be out in the sun most of the time. But there were no complaints and he did a great job. These little rockets are cheap and it is tricky to get them to work. The launch pad belongs to Sam and he manned the controls. I know each of the kids really appreciated Jed’s attention to detail and insistence on everyone getting a successful launch . . . and they did. We had six successful launches with Ziggy’s rocket winning the height contest. It was a shorter and lighter rocket and went much further than the others. After rocket launching, we came back to my place so the kids could finish up their play in the basement and go for one last kayak ride. Heather and Jed bought a beautiful piece of halibut for grilling for dinner and some very special chocolate for dessert, so we ended out time together with a special dinner in the backyard. Until next year . . .

2019 Life Logs, Day 201: Great Day at the Cape Cod Inflatable Park

2019 Life Logs, Day 201: Great Day at the Cape Cod Inflatable Park
Date: Saturday, July 20, 2019
Weather: Sunny and Very Hot; High 96, Low 73 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

It was almost too sunny and too hot to enjoy the Cape Cod Inflatable Park today, but despite the temperatures in the 90’s, we had a great day. You would think a hot day would be perfect, but it was so hot when we got there this morning that many of the inflatables were almost too hot to touch. Despite that, the kids picked the ones that were heat tolerable and had a blast. Very quickly, however, we were all so hot that we needed to move on to the water park. We spent the rest of the morning cooling down in Lazy River, enjoying the Ninja challenges, and with the older ones going down the big slides. We stopped early for lunch, which gave us a chance to dry off, and then we went back to the bouncy activities and on the arcade. By then, a few clouds had rolled in which made the rest of the afternoon delightful. Grandkids, parents, and Oma all had a great day. Jed grilled marinated flank steak for dinner at the Goldstones and four of the five grandchildren are camping out in their backyard tonight. Tomorrow is Justin, Jo, Ziggy, and Coco’s last day here. The time has flown by so quickly, but it is time for them to travel on to England to visit with Jo’s family. It is such a special treat for me to have both of my children and all of their children together. I will miss them so much.

2019 Life Logs, Day 200: From Clamming to Ice Skating

2019 Life Logs, Day 200: From Clamming to Ice Skating
Date: Friday, July 19, 2019
Weather: Overcast Early, Then Sunny; High 84, Low 72 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

Our day started out with a clamming expedition with Poseidon, ended with ice skating at the Falmouth Ice Arena, and packed in a stroll down Main Street in the afternoon. Clamming is done during low tide, so we had to be up and ready to meet Peter Baranowski, aka Poseidon, in the Menauhant Beach parking lot at 8 am. From there we headed across the road to Bourne’s Pond where we were all given a lesson on how to clam. Peter knows the bottom of Bourne’s Pond like the back of his hand as he clams and snorkels there almost every summer day. We returned with three very happy kids and our full allotment of clams. Thank you, thank you, Peter. Ziggy, Coco, and Sam really enjoyed the working lesson and all of the rest of us really enjoyed a fantastic Portuguese pot dinner—sausage, potatoes, and then clams steamed in a huge pot. This was Heather’s idea, so thank you, Heather. But we still have a few dozen larger clams that we will turn into clam chowder. Later in the morning, Justin suggested we go to Betsy’s Diner in downtown Falmouth for second breakfast. When he say the 1950’s-style diner earlier in the week, he decided that we needed to go there. So, we did. Everyone ate a huge amount of food, but Jo seemed to enjoy her choice, Eggs Benedict Florentine Style, the most as they had it over gluten-free bread. Then we ventured further down Main Street to meet up with Jed, Jonah, and Ollie. We bought 10 cent candy at Blast From the Past and sorbet from Ben and Bill’s Chocolate Emporium. We also bought some rockets at Blast From the Past that we spent the rest of afternoon putting together. Then we headed home to put the rockets together. Launch will be on Sunday. After our fantastic clam dinner, we then went to the Falmouth Ice Arena for an hour and a half of free skating time. This was something Coco really wanted to do and I think the whole family enjoyed it. I’m not an ice skater, but I loved watching. The day ended with Jonah and Ollie coming over to spend the night with Ziggy and Coco. I could write so much more about today as each part of the day was so very special. But we have to be up early for a trip to the Cape Cod Inflatable Park tomorrow morning. On we go.

2019 Life Logs, Day 199: Rainy Day Activities

2019 Life Logs, Day 199: Rainy Day Activities
Date: Thursday, July 18, 2019
Weather: Rainy Day; High 84, Low 66 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, MA

As was forecasted, it was a rainy day from start to finish. Sam spent the night last night, so he played with Ziggy and Coco in the basement all morning. Last year when Ziggy and Coco were visiting, the five grandchildren formed a club called the Bacon Bandits. They rearranged the basement as their clubhouse and when bacon was on the breakfast menu, they would make sneaky little raids back to the kitchen to get another piece. Thus the name, Bacon Bandits. They have continued the club this year and really enjoy spending time in the clubhouse together . . . certainly a great rainy day activity. I took Sam to swim lessons at 11:30 and Justin went to pick him up. That allowed me to go into town to pick-up Jonah and Ollie from ceramics class. The traffic was really intense, so the trip took much longer than expected. We were supposed to get home in time to each lunch and then all pile into the van and take Jonah to guitar lessons and then continue on to Hyannis. But we had to adjust plans. Jonah ate lunch in the car on the way to his lesson with just me and then after his lesson everyone else met us at the Mashpee mall. There was a mandatory toy store visit there before heading on to Hyannis to Barnes and Noble. The rest of the afternoon was spent in the bookstore. I really enjoyed watching my grandchildren reading away the afternoon. When we got home, it was still raining and I suggested that we do an ‘educational’ dinner which would require eating tacos while watching the new Apollo 11 movie. It uses original film clips to tell the entire story from launch to walk on the moon to the return to earth. Coco asked to me during the movie if I was really alive when this happened and had I really watched this on television when it was happening. Yes, indeed. I did that back in the olden days! It’s a great movie for young and old alike. I highly recommend watching it this week to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the landing on the moon.

2019 Life Logs, Day 198: Afternoon Exploring the Beach and Marsh

2019 Life Logs, Day 198: Afternoon Exploring the Beach and Marsh
Date: Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Weather: Cloudy AM, Mostly Sunny PM, Then Rain; High 88, Low 70 degrees F
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA

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Before venturing into today’s activities, I need to do a little explaining. Really, we don’t eat children, not even beer can children. In last night’s log I wrote that our dinner included something for everyone . . . even those who like beer can children! One of my cheekier friends wrote and asked me to share the recipe. Too funny. Of course, I meant to write beer can ‘chicken’, but spell check gave me some unwanted help and provided those of you reading my logs with a little humor. Something else from yesterday that I didn’t mention in last night’s log was the beautiful full moon. Just before I went to bed, I took a photo of it through the pine trees in front of the cottage. My moon photos never show the true beauty, but I keep trying.

The big event with the Fabulous Five grandchildren today was an exploration of Woodneck Beach and Little Sippewissett Marsh. It was low tide when we arrived, so we first explored the marsh. We let the Fab Five explore on their own in the very shallow part of the marsh and then I caught up with them when they headed into an area where there are deeper pools. They swam in the water, ran in the water, did every conceivable kind of dive into the water known to man plus some new stunts, and just enjoyed the sunny afternoon. When we walked deep into the marsh, we found a number of empty horseshoe crab shells or ‘molts’ but only one live baby horseshoe crab. All of the kids helped me collect jingle shells to add to my collection. I never realized until tonight while doing some research on jingle shells that they are a type of bivalve crab related to scallops and oysters. The research was prompted by a question asked by Ziggy for which I had no answer. Now we know. After work, Heather and Jed joined us. By this time the tide was starting to come in, so we ended our explore with a ride down a very ‘lazy river’. Dinner tonight was sushi. It was delicious and easy. Now it is time to start thinking about tomorrow. Sam is doing a sleep over tonight and tomorrow afternoon after Ollie and Jonah’s ceramic class, I think all of us are going to Hyannis to visit the Barnes & Nobles bookstore. Justin went there when he was here after my knee surgery and he was so impressed that he really wants to share that experience with Jo, Ziggy, and Coco.