Summer Memory Dump

The packers are almost done with their work.  Eleanor will have to make it across the country with one shoe since I didn't grab the other one fast enough.  I have that panicky feeling of too much to do when all I really want to do is spend time with friends and neighbors and soak up these last moments here.

Our summer was exactly what I'd hoped: full of fun, growth and preparation.  That didn't leave much time for blogging.  But something in me won't let me close the door on this time in our lives without noting some of the highlights....

We had a wonderful visit from my Grandmother, and my Aunt Rachel and Uncle Bob.  They brought Marley and Eleanor a beautiful hand-thrown tea set, made by my Uncle's brother (you'd better believe I told those packers to be VERY careful with that box!).  We had a tea party, complete with sugar cubes and clovers taped to our heads (Marley's idea).

My family are all artists and lovers of art, so it was fitting that we also made it to the High Museum to see Eric Jr.'s drawing of a "Coca-Cola shoe", which was chosen for a special student exhibit.  The boys' school has a contest each year where all the fourth graders draw an art-inspired shoe, and the favorites are chosen to go on the "shoe shirt", commemorating that year's school fun run.

I finally made good on my promise to Brigham that we could have a "patch party" to commemorate the end of his long years of wearing a patch over his eye everyday.  The idea was for everyone ELSE to wear a patch- as you can see, that got old pretty quickly.  It made me appreciate what a challenge that must have been for him, and admire his good attitude all the more.

We had a bar-b-que with friends Jeff and Leah, who've known Eric since his freshman year at Duke, back before even I did.  Their adorable little girl, Kendall, is one of Marley's good friends, and they are some of the most laid-back, calming people we know.  It's always so fun to visit their beautiful home.

The boy choir sang an end-of-year concert for parents, and we reflected on what an amazing opportunity this experience has been for Eric.  He especially loved working with Maestro Wolfe, who always called him "Puncey", because Eric reminded him of his brother of the same name.

Eric Sr. and Eric Jr. ran in the Peachtree Roadrace, an Atlanta tradition and the largest 10K road race in the world.  They hooked up with the missionaries from our church, who were running in their suits, proselyting along the way!  It's that kind of race...there's even a Catholic priest who sprinkles people with holy water.

We walked in the Druid Hills neighborhood 4th of July parade.  It wound through the beautiful, old streets where movies like Driving Miss Daisy have been filmed.  I really think this has to be the best neighborhood in the whole world.

Eric and Brigham rode in their first official cycling race at the Dick Lane Velodrome in East Point.  They've been riding there once a week, honing their track racing skills in the kids program.

Eric even won third place in his category.  The look of surprise and elation on his face was one of my favorite moments ever.

We took off to the beach for a week, welcoming back my mom from her adventure in Turkey...

We made good on a promise to take the boys to Six Flags amusement park.  Honesty alert: I do not ever want to go back there again.  I think I lost a few IQ points and my neck was sore for weeks.  Plus our budget is still recovering.  But the boys had a blast, and it was fun to be a kid again for a day.

We escaped to Asheville with our dear friends the Alders.  They showed us the many wonders they discovered while Brian did a 5 month stint at the VA hospital there.

And so here we are.  Our time in Atlanta is over.  The packers are gone now and the house is in boxes.  Tomorrow the truck will come and take it all away.  We'll have dinner with the friends who have been our family these last two years, and then we'll hit the road ourselves.  

Stay tuned for survival reports from our cross-country road trip with four kids and a dog...