Sunday, October 17, 2010

Apple Picking

We played hooky from life this weekend.  We told teachers and coaches we'd be out of town.  Because we needed some downtime as a family.  And it was really great.

As I had mentioned earlier, the pace of our schedule was beginning to steal the joy a bit.  But over the last two days the sweetness of our journey was just as good as those juicy apples of Julian.

We took our time and stayed at what I'm now calling Mimi's bed and breakfast.  We drove to my parent's house in San Diego where my mom is the best at making omelets and eggs to order in the morning.  

The kids all shared a room.  And on Saturday we drove the winding roads to Julian.  It was a breath of fresh air for this city weary girl.
Oh and just before we left Friday night, my car work was finished.
26 days it took to put it back together.  But it looks all shiny and new now.

All of the stress of the last few weeks melted away.  The sky was clear, the clouds the most glorious white, the sun glistened through the leaves.

Walking through the rows of apples we looked up and praised God for this gift.  The gift of family, the gift of time, the gift of moving at a slower pace.

Eating lunch, browsing little shops, taking pictures (that may or may not wind up on our Christmas card).  All of it felt easy and relaxed.  

Except for the little bee incident.  But even that caused us all to laugh and have one more "remember when mom freaked out about the bees" story to tell.  Let's just say I don't like yellow jackets and when sitting outside with my kids the mama bear in me comes out.

I whacked that menu against the table it may have been a few more than a few times before the bees that dared come near us were dead.  Sorry 'bee activists'.  I know they're dwindling.  But really my mom is also allergic.  It was my duty to protect my family.

To spare any more needless bee deaths I went inside and said we just have to move in here.  So we split all six of us into a couple of two-top tables on different ends of the restaurant.  It was a squeeze, but I didn't care.  I may have made a bit of a scene.  A polite scene, but a scene none-the-less.  And praise God for my husband who is always one to turn things into a light-hearted joke and clear the air.  Once safely inside I could laugh at myself.  But I was keeping a keen eye for any wayward bees attempting to cross the line.

Rest, (did I mention we slept in till 8:30 while my mom got up with the kids), relaxation and laughter.  Feelings I had grown out of touch with lately.  I felt the weight of things to do lifted from my shoulders.  I was happy just to be there breathing the clean air, enjoying my kids, my husband and my mom. (Grandpa's on one of his fishing trips right now).

There were several moments where I felt like I was on a far away vacation.  Sitting outside by their little pond, listening to the fountain and splurging on pumpkin spice lattes.  Listening to my kids playing happily with none of the, 'that's not fair' banter 
that had become a little too frequent lately.

It was a quick little respite, but it was definitely needed.  Now I'm home refreshed and ready for the week, while praying for ways to find the little vacations in the every day a bit more frequently.

Here are a few more pictures from the trip.  We're in a rather long (like a couple of years - and she's only three) phase of Audrey not being too keen about photo-op's.  She especially doesn't like being told to pose too long for pictures, so most of the time she's strained at best.  

But more typically she's walking away in tears because she's just "too tired" (her words) to sit still.  We also forgot our good camera.  We only had the backup video camera that takes pictures too, so the delay wasn't working in our favor.

I still managed to get enough for a very nice scrapbook page and perhaps a collage Christmas card.  It all comes down to whether I have it in me to attempt another family photo. :)

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