Wednesday, June 30, 2010

B+W Wednesday: Swimming Lessons

Summer camp started last week. The highlight of the day is (without a doubt) the swimming lessons. The director called me the second day to tell me that Isabel was having so much fun in the pool and that her swim coach was, amazingly, one of my former students. Not only that! She was my student the year I got Isabel.

What a small world!

Check out other folks' photos this week over at Lisa's blog:

the long road

Monday, June 28, 2010


So excited for my cousin.
Her mom and my mom are sisters.
Both had three children.
The six of us cousins were close growing up.

Who could have forseen
that decades later the next generation
would include two little cousins from China?
So excited for you, Bernadette!

Saturday, June 26, 2010


One way to deal with the Florida heat

Friday, June 25, 2010

First Things First

While it may seem like old hat to most of you...
this week has been a time of firsts for me and Isabel.
You see... Monday was her first day of summer camp.

since the school she has attended since she was 18 months old includes lunch...
this was also the first time she has had a lunchbox.
(okay... it is actually more of a bag).

it is also the first time I have made her lunch.

All of this brought with it an unexpected wave of melancholy
as I recognize that her baby-toddler years are really over.

Everyone tells you that this time flies by so fast,
to cherish every moment because it will be gone before you know it,
but in the midst of living forget.

Until it is a Monday morning
and you are wrapping a sandwich in waxed paper,
writing a note on it with a Sharpie
telling your soon-to-be pre-K student that you love them.

What a fast three years this has been.

Summer 2007

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Welcome to the Family!

My cousin leaves today for China.
We are so excited to welcome Alexandrea to the family.
Safe travels, Bernadette!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

At The Water's Edge ~ As Large As Alone

When I sent these two photos to a good friend of mine, her response was:
"It almost looks like Fizz ( Isabel's nickname) caught the sun in her bucket...very cool.
The first shot could be made into a poem."

[I loved her comments.]
And so, Jackie, here you are:

maggie and milly and molly and mae
by e.e.cummings

maggie and milly and molly and mae
went down to the beach (to play one day)

and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn't remember her troubles, and

milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;

and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles: and

mae came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.

For whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
it's always ourselves we find in the sea.

Click to see others' photos over at Lisa's blog:

the long road

Monday, June 21, 2010

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Bye Bye, Nai Nai

It has been a wonderful week having my mom down here visiting. Her one request... a trip to the beach... was finally granted this morning. Between the triple digit (yes, you read that correctly!) temperatures and the sudden thunderstorms, it didn't look like we were going to be able to get there. However, today (on the day of her departure) we headed out early in the morning and were able to catch a couple of hours before heading out to the airport. She and Isabel built sand castles, collected shells and splashed in the surf.

A more beautiful way to end our time together, I cannot fathom.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

B+W Wednesday: Nai Nai

My mom moved back to New England two years ago when Isabel was only two.
She is an amazing woman who raised the three of us as single mom.
She instilled within us a love for music, a sense of humor, the joy of storytelling and the importance of an education. She is tough and compassionate.
As they say... velvet steel.

She is also a survivor.
Almost eighteen years ago, she was diagnosed with a rare terminal disease.
She was given three months to live.
While her life has most definitely been compromised by the disease,
she has clearly beaten the odds.

This past year has been a rough one for her medically.
In September she had open heart surgery.
A month later, back surgery which resulted in serious complications.
Being halfway across the country was both frustrating and sobering.
There were days when I didn't know if I would ever see her again.

she is a fighter who (in her own words) "gets her Irish up" at times.
I am so thankful to have her visiting with us this week.
She is Isabel's only grandparent.
It warms my heart to walk in the front door and see them together.

On Sunday I had a cook-out for her and invited a bunch of folks to celebrate with us.
Folks from the 19 years she lived here came to see their friend.
The joy was palpable.

the long road

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Oh Sweet Nikon, how I have longed for you!

At long last... I finally bought the camera I have lusted for wanted for over two years.
(Double Click each image to truly appreciate the details.)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

And Meow, for some more pictures...

Rehearsal in the morning was followed by a stop by the gourmet Cupcakery.
Later on that afternoon was that rite of passage, The First Dance Recital.

What's New, Pussycat?

First dance recital yesterday.
Too cute.
Thankfully, not too long.

Where did my baby go?

(More pics later)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Eighteen years ago I was with my college friend as she was in the middle of labor. As fate would have it, everyone in her very large (10 kids) Italian family got hit with the flu and were not allowed into the birthing room. I got to be there when Olivia was born. Last month, I got to photograph her and friends getting ready for the Prom. This past weekend, she graduated.

After the outdoor ceremony (it was so humid, you felt like you were eating the air) we headed out to lunch at the same oceanside restaurant that Olivia's parents had had their wedding reception years before. There were 16 of us ranging in age from 13 months to 86 years. The kids even got to watch a family of three dolphins playing in the waves outside the window for about five minutes.

I am so very thankful for the gift of this family... they have been a constant in my life for over 30 years.

Check out more B+W pics over at Lisa's blog

the long road