Friday, June 20, 2008

Cousin Dave

It was great fun when my cousin Dave Batstone came to visit us last week. He and his managing director (and co-founder) of Not For Sale, Mark Wexler, were here to evaluate a donor development firm that is headquartered in Colorado Springs. We had a great evening of conversation and laughter as we caught up on one another’s lives.
I have intended to read his book Not For Sale for a while now. Now I have no excuse because Dave gave me an autographed copy. It exposes the tragedy of modern-day slavery and how we can help. I think it is one of the most worthwhile social causes for which one could fight.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Our New England Trip

It has been over a week since I returned from my trip out east, but that remains for me, one of the most significant things in my life of late. Kim and I had a great couple days in Bass Harbor with Sarah, Andrew and Henry. As Andrew was leaving to go home to work, Kim’s brother and sister-in-law arrived with their daughter. The two brothers and their wives and daughters had a good time enjoying the delights of Mr. Dessert Island. We climbed Cadillac Mountain (by car) and pondered where it was exactly that Henry Hager proposed to Jenna Bush, delighted in the sights of Acadia National Park as we drove Park Loop Road, ate popovers at the Jordan Pond House, had some good ice cream at Mt. Dessert Ice Cream Co. and a gourmet meal at Havana’s in Bar Harbor, did a bit of shopping in Bar Harbor and took a little outing to view the famous Bass Harbor Light.

Lance, Marti and Katie left for Atlanta and Kim, Sarah, Henry and I drove down to Boston. I planned to stay with my parents as Mom recuperated from hip replacement surgery. Kim and I visited her in the Mount Auburn Hospital. (I observed the hospital with interest because in the novel I was reading, Run by Ann Patchett, the hospital figures prominently.) Mom did very well with this major operation, heroically refusing pain medication and progressing well with her walking and her exercises. I hope I was able to be a good support to them during Mom’s first week of recovery. Although Dad did very well at handling everything—managing the household as well as being a staunch medical support to Mom. I helped prepare meals for them with the help of Margi’s Dinner’s Done pre-prepared meals. I enjoyed being with them and I trust that next time I visit, Mom will be pain-free with her new left hip. Meanwhile, Kim left after a couple days in Boston in order to accompany Sean as he moved to Los Angeles to do his UCCS internship with a film production company. I am grateful for the opportunity to visit with Margi, Don and Belinda (and meet their cute little dog Muffin). Unfortunately I did not see Doug and Patty, David and all my nieces and nephews out there.

While with my parents, I spent one more beautiful day with Sarah and Henry. We went to Lynch Park, a seaside park in Beverly, and let Henry have the run of the place while we followed him around. He had a great time on the playground equipment with a short visit to the beach to dig a bit of sand. Sarah prepared a nice picnic lunch which we ate on the run as we tried to keep up with busy little Henry. When he was finally exhausted, we got into the car and before we had driven very far, he was fast asleep. We used that opportunity for Sarah to do some shopping. We found a shady parking spot and I “babysat” Henry while Sarah shopped. After Sarah was finished and Henry woke up, we went to a great ice cream place nearby—Richardsons. My lovely day was complete with a meal at Julian House with the Carlson-Liers and the Wassells. Christina made a delicious summer meal of BLTs and steak fries. I had a lot of fun connecting with the Wassell boys again.