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Our Respite

Every Labor Day weekend we travel to Madeline Island, Wisconsin.  You travel to Bayfield, and catch the ferry.  When you drive onto that boat, you leave a lot of the day to day worries behind.

We have done this for years, meeting up with friends who introduced us to the island’s charms.  You can do a lot , or nothing. Golf, lay by the pool, paddle board, boat, nap.  Hike.  Go to fine dining restaurants (but don’t bother dressing up), shop for artistic creations, hear tons of live music.

Over the years our trips evolved.  At first the moms were exhausted, supervising 8 crazy kids who ran between lake and pool all day.  Then the kids were old enough to wander the town unsupervised, then they could rent mopeds and then they started graduating high school and moving away.  This would be our first weekend without kids.

Our dogs loved the island.  Monte and Penny were married on the shuffleboard court, and spent hours chasing fetching sticks in the lake.  This weekend, we released some of Penny’s ashes in her favorite place on earth.  Our first Madeline trip without a dog.

I was nervous that the weekend would be sad.  So I made sure we did some things we had never done before.  We ate at a restaurant I’d always wanted to try.  We went kayaking.  I explored parts of the island I’d never gotten around to before — heck, I even golfed! Yes, there were definitely sad moments, but we also managed a lot f laughter and smiles.  As always, the island gave me many reasons to pull out my camera.  I hope you enjoy these glimpses of Madeline as much as we enjoy being there.  Maybe, next year’s pics will have a new dog in them!

 

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What I Love

80s Hair Metal

Unexpected compliments

Making people laugh

Hearing babies laugh

Cheese

People with differing opinions listening to each other, respecting those differences and learning from them

The way my son now wants to go to theater with me

The way he loves his girlfriend

The way my daughter loves her boyfriend

Makeup

Madeline Island

Scolding my husband and my BFF for being too silly together (the time they almost knocked the tree over, though…)

Getting Christmas cards

First flowers blooming in spring

My new car

Sweatpants

The full moon

When my nail polish stays on

People’s reactions when I hand them puppies at a puppy party

Game night

Planning travel

Books and the people who read them (shout out to my book club!)

Food and the people who eat it (shout out to my Gourmet Club)

Volunteering and the people who make it happen (shout out to my Senior Party staff!)

Dogs and the people who save them (shout out to Secondhand Hounds)

My husband’s commitment to French lessons with me, even though he hates it

Taking off my bra at the end of the day

Wine with my girlfriends

Cheese

That I forgot I’d already said cheese, which kinda shows my true feelings

The smell of asphalt after a rain

The Oscars

Historical dramas on BBC

Seeing a formerly traumatized dog become what it was meant to be, and finding the perfect forever home

The sound of a champagne cork

Crossing stuff off my list

Making a new list

The way my daughter teaches me things

The way my dad still says I love you, even though he isn’t sure who I am #fuckAlzheimers

That my mom still wants to help me every day in every way

That I am still in contact with friends made when I was a toddler (thank you Facebook)

That people who I used to fear/be intimidated by/look up to/have massive crushes on in high school have become my friends (social media plus time: the great equalizers)

Discovering new links on Ancestry.com

Not caring if people think I am weird

Being recognized for my accomplishments

Hair dye (shout out to Chelsea at Spalon Montage)

My Vegas group (shout out to the Unicorn Poop Squad)

Online shopping

Mom and Pop stores

People who don’t untag themselves from photos

That my son asks me for advice — even when the subject matter makes my butt  cheeks clench

40 degrees in February

Puzzles

Lake Tahoe

Watching the parents of Olympic athletes realize it was all worth it

Sunsets over the water with a glass of Chardonnay

A clean house

All the laundry done

Cooking for my family

Having them all there to eat it

Having a long, hot roll … at craps

Free champagne in Vegas!

Massages

Surprises

Someone else planning everything, rather than asking me what I want to do

Big fat scary pitbulls that are really lapdogs who want to give kisses and receive pets

My dog’s patience as a foster-trainer

The “unfollow this post” button on Facebook

Being retweeted

Having random people in cities I am visiting decide I am the bomb and follow me on instagram

Being a fly on the wall during fun school activities

The pile of shoes near the door when there are kids in the house

Watching Singer Girl do her thing

The look on a family’s face when they take home a newly adopted, once-my-foster dog

That my kids both bring soup to their significant others when theya re sick

My kids righteaous indigantion over the mistreatment of others

Doing new things

That my husband remembered that one of my dreams has been to dance on the Champs Elysees on my birthday — so is taking me there for my 50th

Sailor Boy wanting to be the party host (gets it from his mama, ya know)

Everyone’s excitement about my annual Halloween party

My friends’ disappointment when I can’t host Dec 23rd

Dressing up for any and all holidays and events, whether it means black tie or bunny ears

Knowing that my kids have amazing lives in front of them

Knowing that I have an amazing life in front of me

And did I mention cheese?

Enjoy all that you love this Valentine’s Day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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