We've been home for just a few days and already we miss Lake Winnipesaukee. Lilly's misses her cousins, Jack misses eating the sand, Amelia misses her 'downtime' and I miss everything else. After days of sun, beach, boating, beer and family, it's hard to adjust back to the daily routine.
We packed so much into the past week, and yet, there were so many things we didn't get to do: breakfast at George's, chocolate milk from Moulton Farm, and fireworks in Meredith Bay to name a few. But there will be plenty more chances to do the usual eating and drinking too much and fireworks from the boat. This was a special year that stands out for all the 'firsts' and special memories that only come along once in a lifetime.
In our own little family, Jack took his first ride on Pop's boat. Lilly made sure he was snug and secure in his life jacket before taking off. At the start it was difficult to tell if he was enjoying it, but once we zipped it down a bit and Jack could breath again, he actually seemed to like it. Although he seemed content to crawl around the boat and see how close he could get to climbing off, next year I'm sure he'll be ready for his first water skiing run.
Lilly spent about 80% of her waking hours in the water and ventured far from the wall that she preferred to stick near last year. She spent 100% of her waking hours talking to everyone, including the dogs, Maggie and Blue, who learned quickly that pretending to fall asleep was possibly the only way to end a conversation. On that note, there isn't a big enough way to say thank you to Liz for 'surprising' us midweek by arriving with AJ, Lauren and Paul. Aside from having almost the whole family together (Duane was missed and many beers were left waiting for him), it gave the little cousins some much needed time to play and talk and run and talk and go on golf cart rides and talk together.
|In really deep water but Lauren can still stand.|
|Racing to another good night's sleep.|
Amelia and I were just glad to be in the sun, away from the office, on the golf course and enjoying the calm before the chaos of moving house in a few weeks. There are never enough hours to spend on the beach playing in the sand and water with Jack and Lilly but we enjoyed the time we had and have many new memories to take home.
|Fashionable in sunglasses.|
|Just 'hangin' around.|
There were so many things that made the week special. We celebrated my parents' 60th birthdays (early) with an amazing night out to dinner. It was a small gesture for two people who have given so much and to whom we owe so much, especially for all the times we've stayed at the house! We all reminisced and laughed, drank wine and scotch, honored Mom and Dad with their very own birthday cake (note Mom's face...) and talked about all the exciting things to come in the next few weeks and months.
|So happy to be getting their own cake... with a song!|
|60's are the new 50's - looking good Mom and Dad.|
Two of these things stand out as particularly exciting. Sometime in the next few weeks, Carolyn and Jeremy will welcome the first Hastings baby. There were a few rumblings midweek that made us think this might be the first NH-born Clark, but the baby decided to stay out of the heat for at least a few more days. We're all looking forward to meeting the newest niece/nephew/cousin and are counting down the days!
|Only two Hastings... not for much longer!|
Equally exciting was Sarah and Ross' engagement. Ross picked the most romantic spot in all of New England - Crayfish Island - to ask Sarah to be his wife. It would be impossible to imagine anyone saying no in such a setting. And since Ross was successful in holding onto the ring while kayaking out to the island, there was added incentive to say yes. It was a smiling crowd that greeted them on their arrival back to the beach. We couldn't be more happy to have Ross join the family, and who doesn't love a wedding!?!
|What else do you do with a magnum of Veuve?|
All of these celebrations and firsts are a huge part of what makes the Lake so special to all of us. And this will definitely be a year to remember. More often than not though, it is the quiet time on the beach watching the cousins play, the conversations on the boat while anchored off Timber Island, the big family dinners followed by games of setback, and ice cream runs to Town Docks that make the Lake our home away from home, and a place we will love coming back to year after year.
|Sprawled out on the beach.|
|The best way to dry off.|
|The best way to get wet.|
|Duane looking a lot like Dad.|
|Glowing - because of the sunset, or dinner without kids?|
|Maggie and Blue enjoy a moment of silence from Lilly.|