This weekend at the Cape with friends we had toppings for our hot fudge sundaes, including M&M’s. The new gimmick now is a bag that labels them “Fall M&M’s.” Of course they taste exactly the same, but we all sighed a big sigh when we saw the bag. Fall, already? No matter how much I love the rainbow of leaves scattered on my doorstep or the new boots that I get to pull out of my closet or cozying up with blankets in our family room while watching TV with SHL, I still want to enjoy what is, right now. My dear friends, it is still summer after all! Let’s stay in the present moment, shall we? There are still 37 days left of summer, technically! I for one want to savor and sip and swoon in each one.
This summer has been such a gift. I got good news on my scans, thank g-d, that things right now look stable. SHL and I had an awesome 2 weeks away in Hawaii, I just got back from the Chopra Center, and a weekend on the Cape with our friends. Next weekend my brother, SIL and nephew join us for another weekend on the beach, and I can’t wait to see them all. We lost our cat Teddy Bear, which is still like a punch in the gut, but we’ve been giving a lot of TLC to Riley and thinking about bringing home another furbie (fur-baby) for Riley to play with. I think about Teddy and his tremendous love every day. I’ve taken some days off of work here and there which has been a game-changer. It’s given me the chance to recharge my batteries and focus solely on having fun (what a concept! You should try it too!).
Having just returned from the Cape, I’m still in beach mode. I feel like I could live in my flip-flops eating ice cream (what a treat!) for days to come. This past weekend we had 7 friends with their 5 kids in total to the house, and sometimes I still can’t believe that I’m an adult hosting other adults and playing with kids and can’t fathom that I’m not the kid anymore. We all grew up together at summer camp, so our memories are of Shabbat Dinners and Color War and throwing up on the Pirate’s Ship at Canobie Lake Park and the big barrel of ice filled with those fake sodas that they used to give us after a day at the beach. Walking on the rocks and the smell of a cookout and locking our counselor out of the bunk (we were trouble-makers!) and sitting at the lactose intolerant table in the mess hall and eating warm cookies and drinking cold milk for snack in the middle of the day (we all agree that the snacks these days must be healthier). We wonder what it’s like for the campers now to have the option of a pool instead of the “ka-ka” in the lake, and if the kids still love to go to the G-store and buy raw cookie dough and eat it on each other’s beds late at night when they’re really supposed to be asleep? We cried like crazy on the last day of camp, clutching our yearbooks and looking forward throughout the school year to the next time that we could be with our summer families. Everything I learned about Judaism and the beauty of our culture I learned in the summertime at Camp Tel Noar.
This weekend we camped out by the ocean and watched the kids play and dip their toes in the water squealing with delight when the waves came to chase them back to shore. We ate hamburgers and cupcakes and drank wine and took pictures outside because I couldn’t imagine all being together like this and not documenting the moments. Part of me wanted time to stand still forever so that I could feel that warmth that wasn’t just from the sun, but also from the joy and the love and humor and camaraderie that I have with my friends. Thankfully I love everybody that my friends have married and I love their kids, so it’s almost like it’s always been all 14 of us, and not just the 6 of us (and those that didn’t go to camp with us like SHL are incredibly patient with all of our CTN stories). These are some of the important people in my life who love me for who I am, who cheer me on and cry with me and read this blog and are honest about their work and their love lives and the ups and downs and they’re just… real. Being so raw and open with each other makes the friendships just that much deeper, and I’m grateful for the depth that these relationships bring into my life.
I can’t wait to tell you all about the Chopra Center and especially Kris Carr (spoiler alert, we’re now BFF’s!), but this post feels right to just be about the camp memories that we reminisce about, and the beautiful warm memories together that we know are still yet to come. I love you guys, my summertime and now all-the-time friends. xoxo.