Good… afternoon! I promise that these Monday afternoon posts are going to stop – very soon – and I’ll get back on a regular schedule. I’ve been trying to eke out every last drop of summer fun and blogging just sometimes falls by the wayside. You know how it is. This being Labor Day weekend, we obviously needed one last hurrah before turning our attention to fall and fall things (although the anklebiters have been back in school for two weeks already…). So on Friday afternoon we rolled out of town and headed for the mountains – Shenandoah National Park, specifically. Shenandoah is one of our happy places, and I’ve lost count of how many times we’ve been there by now. This time, we planned to stay overnight, right in the park – at Skyland, one of the lodges on Skyline Drive. It was a perfect base of operations for an epic weekend – we banged out seven hikes over three days, and I’ve got posts coming on all of them after I wrap up recapping Steve’s and my trip up to the Adirondacks last month. (Travel recaps will be continuing for awhile, guys…) I’m not even sure I could pick a highlight of the weekend; we climbed multiple mountains, challenged ourselves in new ways, and unplugged for three days straight. It was glorious.
Reading. It was a lovely bookish week! I finished up The Adventurous Summer on Tuesday – the last day of August. With time for one more summer read before Labor Day, I decided on Where Stands a Winged Sentry: Margaret Kennedy’s memoir of the summer 1940, when all of England was expecting a Nazi invasion every day. It was fascinating, gorgeously written, and evocative – I flew through it. Finally, a weekend in my favorite National Park deserves some special reading – The Hour of Land, by Terry Tempest Williams, which I’ve been saving for just such a trip. I’m about 100 pages from the end and battling the twin impulses to fly through it and also slow down so I can savor every word.
Watching. The kids haven’t been on a movie jag in ages – maybe even a couple of years – but right now they’re BIG on the Lego Movie, so I’ve watched that several times this week out of the corner of my eye. As funny as that movie is (it’s really hilarious) what I’ve enjoyed more is watching the wind whoosh through the treetops at the summits of Shenandoah’s beautiful mountains, and watching the kids stretch their wings and become stronger hikers over the weekend.
Listening. I had to think back on this, because while I’ve also listened to the Lego Movie several times (in the car to and from Shenandoah) I never listen to music or podcasts on family trips. But there was a bit of The Mom Hour while running errands last week.
Making. Menu plans for the upcoming few weeks – I’m craving a nutritional reset, so starting another Whole30 tomorrow. And fun adventure plans for the fall; I finally decided what I’m doing for my birthday. Stay tuned!
Moving. Alllllll the hiking! Seven hikes – including several mountains. And earlier in the week, a couple of runs. I’ve been going to the bus stop in my running gear and taking off pretty much as soon as the kids climb aboard. They said they’ve seen me through the bus windows a few times.
Blogging. Musing on Michener on Wednesday, and continuing Adirondack travel recaps on Friday. Check in with me then!
Loving. It was so wonderful to get away, into the mountains, and unplug for a bit. With the school year already underway and fall activities revving up – Girl Scouts has already begun; soccer and swimming both start next weekend – I really needed a couple of days away from it all, to gather my forces. Shenandoah was full of gifts, as it always is: maybe the best was this moment, above, on the trail to Mary’s Rock this morning. The fog was rolling up the mountain and brewing into a cloud, and the sun’s rays cut through the mist in a hundred points of light. We were the only ones on this section of the trail, and all four of us were mesmerized.
Asking. What are you reading this week?