So I could easily make this whole blog about how much I'm going to miss Clare while she is at camp for 3 weeks! I certainly did not think it would be that difficult for me to leave her. I was not anticipating missing her so much. I'm the "babywise" mom. I'm so proud of her decision to go away for 3 weeks. Many people told me- including my mother- and I thought- p-shaw- we'll be fine. Now I know- my mother (always) and the rest of those that said it- were right. I'm waiting by the computer for an update of the photos on the website. I'll be the one waiting by the mail box for the letter with any input about how it is going. And once again I'm in the role my own mother was in some 34 years ago...except she didn't receive an email from the camp directors saying all went well and the activities included x and y for the first 24 hours. There were no photos on line....and at that time camp was 3 1/2 weeks long I believe....Wow- another big thank you to Jeanne Stoner. I know what you did shaped me to be who I am and what I've accomplished. The memories I'm grateful for now were gifts from you and Daddy. Thank you for the inspiration to keep it going and for the empathy!
Okay- so I won't just talk about Clare at camp...I'll share some of the fun of returning south. Yes returning as it is where I'm from, my birth place....Virginia Beach, Virginia! I moved to Maryland not long after but Maryland is a border state with southern influence. Ahhhh- country ham, biscuits, sweet tea as the only option...friendly friendly hellos and the accent- makes me smile. I so loved being in West Virginia, even if for less than 24 hours. I loved the windy roads, mountain peaks and colors that only the Appalachians can provide. I spent the evening with my parents back at a destination we've met before- Hawk's Nest Lodge/State Park with incredible views of the New River Gorge! The hotel is a bit run down I'm afraid but it worked as a lovely place to catch-up with my parents and put us both an hour ahead of our return trips this morning. http://www.nps.gov/neri/naturescience/the-new-river-fact-or-fiction.htm Daddy asked this question last night and I enjoyed learning a bit more about this special part of the country- here is a link for you as well! Joe and I have talked about bringing the kids here to understand the socio-economic and natural resource history....and even Clare perked up from her nap on yesterday's drive when I mentioned white water rafting....I left today knowing we'd be back. The views are wonderful and it was good to be the only child and not have grandchildren's distractions!! It really was the perfect way to kick-off my birthday week (this is how I enticed them to join me!) ahhh life with just me...We were talking with Sally about what it will be like next week when Peter goes to camp and she is the only child. It is nice from time to time not to share...I love my siblings and I know my children love one another but absence will make the heart grow fonder for all of us no doubt!
It was a quick trip- down and back in 30 hours but better than down and back in 14! FYI- the stop at Tamarack in Beckley was ideal- thank you for the tip! Great rest rooms, lunch option, glass blowing studio, wood turning happening, it was nice to stretch our legs. So I'm going to turn in now....but I'll be checking the website for updates from Clare.