We're back in Chicago, and already I hear people walking down the street yelling their conversations within a foot of each other. I'm home, but I miss "home," too. My sister is back on a plane to NY, and my mom is probably busy with her therapeutic act of picking up after all of us. (I told her I left a huge pile of therapy up in Matt's old room in the form of all my old toys that Nourit dug out.)
We did all the usual things we do when we get together at mom's- the Turkey Farm, South Haven, the Kellogg Bird Sanctuary, Target and Sam's Club. We ate too much ice cream, and complained we didn't walk enough. Some things never change, no matter how much you promise yourself you won't get sucked into that conversation again. (Or start it!)
As a mom, I want to give my daughters a stimulating but holistic life experience, and I just hope and pray they learn to love to be in nature as much (or more) than I do. Everything just gets put into perspective when you are at the beach with the horizon stretching out to forever and the waves continuously crashing. (Nourit loved going in the water with me, waves and all.) Family also has a way of doing that, too. It is a blessing to have parents and siblings who love my children, who will hold Avi nonstop for two weeks straight, and who teach Nourit the 'happy' songs she loves so much.
Today, on our way home, we stopped at my childhood friend Amy's house and caught up after two years. Earlier in the week, we had stopped at her parent's farm (where I spent countless hours as a child) and introduced Nourit and Avi to the horses and chickens. This afternoon, Nourit took her first horseback ride (with me whiteknuckled at the edge of the corral the entire time!) on Dandy, the 28 year old horse that Amy and I used to ride. She had no fear, and wanted to "do it again!" She also met her first kitten, and watched the mama cat pick it up by it's neck to move it to safety.
I don't know how these experiences will be stored in her memory, but I hope we continue to build on them, finding peace and sanity at a slower pace with family and old friends.