Sunday, July 13, 2008

Ah, Summer

Oh, how I am reveling in this summer.

Time outdoors. Walks. Bike rides. Salad from the garden. Nectarines. Watermelon. Kids having squirt gun fights. Church festivals. Fireflies. Long lazy evenings when the sun just seems to hang there low in the sky, as reluctant to go to bed as we are.

So this is what I did this weekend.

I started Saturday with a Pilates Reformer class. Then I came home and worked at weeding our organic veggie beds. They were pretty neglected so the weeds were healthier and more vigorous than the cucumbers, jalapenos, tomatoes and basil. My husband and kids came out and so did a good friend, so we all sat outside and weeded for an hour or so. Being out in the garden with friends and family is one of my favorite activities, so I had a ball.

Then I did a few chores and went out to see the new Hellboy movie. I liked the first one, and I enjoyed this one too. I also really enjoyed watching my kids watch it - they loved it and sat on the edges of their seats a few times.

Then we all went to contra. It was second Saturday, so we danced from 8 until 11. It was miserable kind of humid so we were all sweating buckets, and crowding around the fans to enjoy a cool breeze between dances. But even with the heat, it was the usual great time listening to music and dancing with friends.

Sunday started with Zumba class with my favorite instructor, Chet. I have gone enough that this time I was able to relax and really dance a couple of the dances instead of still fumbling and learning. Boy, that was fun.

Then I came home and did more chores and paid bills. My husband helped me install a new HP print/scan/fax/copy station that I bought (coupon at Costco made me finally get off the stick and buy one after looking at them for the last couple of years). It took a while, but once we got it set up and tested, I fell in love with it. I got my pesky FSA paperwork out in a flash since I could make the copies here and fax it out using speed dial! It rocks. So much better than lugging all the paperwork into work, staying late and using the old and slow fax machine that we have there. I am on a real kick to streamline as much of my chores as possible - I find myself less willing to toil, and more willing to find ways to make time for fun. That's not natural for me. My old way was just buckling down and making do with whatever the circumstance was. Not any more. I ask myself what I want to do and how I want to do it. And if I have to do things I don't enjoy, I find a way to make it more fun (if nothing else, I crank up some tunes), and I consider what I can do to streamline it so I can spend less time on necessary things and more time on fun and family. Duh. I really should have thought about that before!

After all the chores, we walked (about a mile and a half stroll, very pleasant in the evening both ways, I can't remember the last time I walked home in the dusk - the sky was so pretty) to a local church festival. I had a frozen margarita that tasted quite a bit like spiked urinal cake. Needless to say, I only had one. I also got onion rings. I don't feel like I have really experienced a festival if I don't eat something totally greasy.

We saw a few friends there. My eldest won his brother a goldfish, we won a honey baked ham raffle, a DVD raffle, and I won an item at the silent auction. It was a pretty funny walk home. I had my purse, water bottle, goldfish in a bag and the basket that I won. My husband and I took turns holding the stuff, but we both had our hands full the whole way home. The kids stayed later than we did, and rode their bikes home with friends.

At the festival, I saw a woman going through chemo. She wore a pink shirt and flip flops, and a pink scarf covered with a baseball cap. She looked about my age too. And it looks like she decided to skip wearing a wig just like I did. I debated going over to give her some encouragement (you know - hey, I did what you are doing this same time last year, and look at me now kind of thing), but in the end, I decided to respect her privacy and let her enjoy the festival without some stranger bringing up what she is going through.

And I learned that one of my aunties was just diagnosed too. I'm doing what I can to offer encouragement and support and I will get to see her soon when we go to our family reunion.

I guess no matter how far you get away from treatment, you never really do get away from it do you? There will always be reminders. If you don't think of it when you see yourself in the mirror with totally different hair, a scar or two and some extra pounds, then you will be reminded because there are just so many other people going through the same thing.

I'm glad my totally crazy life is back in full swing now, and I'm glad I have a new appreciation for every little bit of it.