Assorted Mid-Summer Musings


In the Pennsylvania prison system, the prisoners were kept completely isolated from each other. They left their cells only every 4-5 days for a shower and went out in their own private exercise yards. I wonder how anyone remained sane left alone with only their own thoughts for company.

The kids and I toured the Eastern State Penitentiary during our latest trip to Hershey and Philadelphia. The prison is hauntingly beautiful, and I can’t imagine being confined within its castle like walls. They actually do a Halloween tour which I imagine would be pretty amazing in its creepiness.

The Philadelphia trip was an effort to push myself out of my comfort zone after our summer trips to the lake, Myrtle Beach and Ocean City. Staying in an unfamiliar city and driving its unfamiliar (and mostly one way) streets was an effort to do something different. To honor Dave and his sense of adventure but also to honor ourselves and experience and learn some new things. Grant’s favorite part of the trip was running the famous stairs at the Philadelphia Art Museum. He and Dave watched Rocky together as part of Dave’s movie and classic music education curriculum.

Whenever we are traveling I have this fleeting thought of “What if we run into Dave?”. This might happen because I see someone who resembles him but usually it is just a thought that runs through my head. I imagine seeing him and asking him where he has been. Tonight at dinner, Sam shared that she and a friend (who also lost his dad) had a similar conversation. I guess it is not that unusual to feel this way. It is a bit unsettling and definitely leaves me missing him more.

Last fall, completely unprompted, Parker made a list of personal goals and wrote them on a dry erase board on her bedroom door. She successfully checked off all of her goals this past year. I am taking a note from my youngest and creating some personal goals for myself. Goals that will improve my intellectual, physical, psychological or financial health. I can’t do the year long plan that works for my child, but I can pick a few small goals on which to focus each month. For August, besides pushing myself off my familiar path, I also decided to take a break from Facebook. It’s a huge time suck for me, and I find that I am spending my time in more productive ways rather than clicking around on the computer without any sense of time passing.

We have a little less than a month before school starts up again. Sam will head back down to CNU mid-month, Grant will be doing some lifeguarding, and Parker heads off to Camp Kesem W&M on Saturday. I will be working a few days a week before we ramp up again at the end of the month. This summer is flying by far too quickly.