It was a good summer. Nothing unusual or particularily spectacular, but that's okay. Spectacular should be used rarely, too often and the glitz wears off. I did take a trip back to Minnesota, and it was great. Let's take one step back - in the beginning of this year my parents decided to sell their home in Moorhead and move to southern Minnesota where they'll be closer to my two youngest brothers and their families. Their house went up for sale a day or two before I arrived. It had never been so immaculate! And, it had to stay that way, ready for anyone come through the door to see it at any time. I like to resort to my teenage self and throw my clothes all over the floor of my room when I'm at home, but not this time.
The move also meant that it was likely my last trip to the old stomping grounds. My parents sold the farm that I grew up on about 10 years ago and moved into town, so I said goodbye to my childhood home then. This move didn't make me as sentimental as that one did, but still, I wanted to go to some of my favorite places one more time. We drove out to Glyndon, the little town where I went to school, and drove past the elementary and high school. It has been remodeled since I was there, but some of it is still the same, like the windows all in a straight row along the elementary school. You look at them and can picture the classrooms on the other side. I love looking at something like thos windows; something that I haven't seen in years, and had forgotten about, but when I look at them again they're instantly familiar.
We down the main drag through town, which now has one stop light, which I swore I'd never stop at (twenty years driving through that town without stopping, I'm not going to do it now!). I had a job at the Tastee Freeze on that street all through my high school years. While we were driving I mentioned stopping there, to which Mom answered that it was closed. What? I was stunned, but not as much as I was when we drove passed that corner and found that the building had been torn down. Gone! Nothing but an old slab of cement where the Tastee Freeze used to be. It was so strange to have a landmark of my childhood and teenage years wiped out like that, and I thought that I was for the first time experiencing a sign of getting older - places I knew disappearing. I wish that it were still there. Even though I'll probably never be in Glyndon again, I wish that I could still picture it standing there.
After Glyndon, we drove out to the old farm. I don't know how many of you have moved far away from the place where you grew up, but those who have will know what it's like to suddenly have that "home" feeling back again. I don't know that any place you live has as much of a lasting effect on the soul as the place where you spent your childhood. I've been away now for more than 20 years, but when I'm back there the grass and trees, the smells in the air, even the way the breeze blows feels like home. I don't know how to describe it. We drove down the gravel road toward the farm, and it was suddenly 1982 again, and I was 12, and it was all the same.
Mom and Amalia
Michael, Matthew, Jake, Josie and Jonny at the science museum
Olivia at the zoo
Amalia, Spencer and Drew
And now it's fall, my favorite season. I do have some new developments to share, but you'll have to come back for the new season of the blog to find out what those are.
In the meantime a word to the wise - when at the park, it's not a good idea to let the kids run up the wrong end of the slide. There's a ladder for going up, and a slide for going down, and mixing those two up is an accident with injuries waiting to happen. I learned this with my nephews just the other day. So use proper park safety precautions, enjoy the fall air, and remember - you are loved.