Down Time & High Spirits

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Isn’t a hammock a thing of beauty? My sweet friends gave it to me for my birthday a few years back, and I’ll admit that it wasn’t exactly love at first sight, me and that piece of stripy canvas. In fact, it was my son who claimed it first, and as with most things he claims I surrendered it lock stock and barrel, ‚cause I just love giving my kids things. For a few years, the hammock lived up in the attic of our cottage – a place I usually don’t venture to a lot, because it’s the kids‘ territory and therefore even more cluttered than the rest of the place. It drives me up the walls, so I just don’t go there if I can help it, and over time I sort of forgot that the hammock was actually mine.

And then, our lovely friend and neighbor, R. the Artist, put a fixture in the wall for me so I could hang it right under my beloved linden tree, and now I love that spot more than any other. My spot, my hammock, my sanctuary.

So what were the past few weeks like? It was insanity, people. I finished a book translation, completed several smaller localizations on a tourist platform, proofread two knitting books, and accepted the task to translate Santino Hassell’s second novel in the Five Boroughs series, ‚Sunset Park‘. I also helped with the Summer Fayre at my son’s school, helped make the Summer Party at my daughter’s school happen, saw the much respected dean to her highly deserved retirement, gave gifts to the teachers, completed my physio prescription, finally took my poor kitty to the vet (tooth extractions, not pretty!), bought summer outfits for kids, and eventually packed up the family, our stuff and the cats and moved to the country for the next few weeks. As I was doing that, my heart went out to A. in Colorado who was actually packing the family’s complete lives up to move to the West Coast – and they have a _big_ house to pack. But then again, they’re moving to the Pacific ocean, so it’s going to be sooo worth it!

So far, our vacation was spent doing things like this:

Some may find that kind of holiday boring – but to me, it’s pure bliss. After a week I was rested enough to actually feel like throwing a party for my birthday. It was a beautiful, laid back, summery event: we grilled things, had salads and quite a few bottles of prosecco, there was music, torches, a pretty strawberry cake I didn’t have to make, and I got awesome, awesome gifts. (A bright green herb shelf my son made from a euro-pallet, a Fjällraven backpack in a lovely shade of pink, wonderful books, excellent olive oil, a fantastic electric coffee grinder, book vouchers, a wildly creative box of incredible things from my friend A. and a Dinner Date Voucher with my fabulous niece M. the Unicorn … aaaand I treated myself to the complete 5 seasons of Queer as Folk on DVD ;-)). My family & friends are wonderful. Thank you so much everyone for helping me make the day beautiful. I love you all!

The next two weeks, I’ll be taking the brood to the beach. I’m both excited to go and sad because my husband won’t have time to come with us. Essentially, we’re spending our summer without him this year, which absolutely sucks. Totally the big fat downside of freelancing, despite the money perks it obviously has. They still pay nicely in advertising. Better than in translating, that’s for damn sure (snort!).

My two knitting projects are coming along nicely. No new pics available right now, but I’m way into the back piece of the Pink Summer Sweater, and made some progress into the Blue Shawl. I’ll bring them with me to the beach, and since I’ll have lots of hours to kill while the kids play with the surf, I plan to finish the sweater there. You probably won’t be reading anything new here until end of the month, because I won’t have Internet access – isn’t it quaint? We’ll be staying in an old villa by the beach front, with charming furniture – at least it looked really cozy and old-fashioned on Airb’n’b. I’ll take pictures and let you know when we come back.

For now, wherever you are, enjoy your summer – and tell me all about it!

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