Back to School: Weekend Show and Tell

Okay, so I’m not technically going back to school this year.  It’s been a few years since I bought my favorite notebooks and pens before heading off to new classes.  I love school supplies though.  Love.  And I love the feeling of a new school year.  It was always bright and hopeful and exciting on that first day.

So to honor my love of back to school and all that it involves, here’s a show and tell of our weekend visiting Norfolk:

Blue BellThat is the single best picture I can imagine to explain the weekend.  I grew up in Texas, and Blue Bell ice cream hasn’t been available where I’ve lived since I moved away from Texas after college.  Since 2006, Blue Bell has just been a part of my past–a delicious, wonderful memory.

Not this weekend.  Blue Bell came to the Hampton Roads, Virginia area right before we moved away.  But, well… it’s kind of expensive.  It isn’t too expensive for celebrating with friends though.  We splurged on Blue Bell this weekend, and it was perfect.  There’s nothing like a weekend in a place that still feels a little bit like home with friends who feel like family and a bowl of ice cream that tastes just about perfect.

Peanut as SiAnd that picture is a merging of two of my favorite things–our dog Peanut and Uncle Si from Duck Dynasty.  Sometimes when I have a few spare minutes, I do things like give my dog a beard and glasses from the Duck FX app (which is free, and thus was downloaded instead of the more popular Beard Booth app).  I had a few spare minutes this weekend.  Those minutes were filled with coffee and friends and walking on the beach and long, flowing dog beards.

SquashThis picture is something we came home to–new home.  Our garden is doing alright.  Not everything has sprouted (there were two planting days, a few weeks apart), but the squash and the corn and the peas (Beans?  I always forget.) are thriving.  That is a close-up of some new leaves on one of the squash plants.  They’re healthy, and if plants had feelings, I think they would be happy, too.

It was a good weekend.

17 Again

In 10.5 short hours, my best friend from high school will show up on my doorstep, and I’ll be transported to the mental state of a seventeen year-old.  I’m pretty excited about that.  It’s not that I want to be excessively giggly or dramatic, which I think we both avoided fairly well for teenage girls.  It’s just that old friends are great.  They knew what you were like before you knew what you were like, and they decided to keep caring about you anyway.

If a thought passed through my head in high school, she knew about it.  Even if I meant to keep something to myself, it inevitably spilled out in late-night conversations on the trampoline behind her house.  Who knows how many hours we spent looking for shooting stars back there while we talked about life.  Not many of my seventeen year-old thoughts were worth sharing, but she never told me they didn’t matter.

Looking back, I wonder how we didn’t run out of things to say.  We went to the same classes, ate lunch at the same table, played most of the same sports, and hung out with the same friends.  And somehow, we never even got close to the end of a conversation.

There’s plenty of new material to cover now that we only see each other a time or two a year.  Almost all of the details of our lives have changed, and we definitely don’t get to eat lunch at the same table anymore.  Most of all, I’m excited about living a small portion of our lives in the same time and place again.  There’s something about sharing space that helps you really know what’s going on in someone’s life more than hours of long-distance conversation.  So I think in true seventeen year-old fashion, I’ll celebrate the moment with a simple, “Yay!”