Winding down the summer with lots of warm memories

The summer is winding down…and today marks eight years since I started this blog.  I should choose a nice juicy topic to celebrate that milestone, shouldn’t I?  Some of you have been faithfully reading from the very beginning, and so much has happened in these years together.

But I’m not going to deliberate about a topic to mark this occasion.  I’m just going to share with you some moments in our lives that I’ve appreciated these last weeks.

We’ve had a nice, mellow summer.  Two blog readers visited Karmiel and we spent time together – one came for dinner to us with her family, we met another at a local park and had a barbeque together.  (So if you’re in Karmiel, don’t be shy – email me!)

We enjoyed a family swim at the pool of friends when they went away for the weekend, which was amazingly relaxing and something that we haven’t been able to do since leaving the US three years ago when we had our own pool.

Dd18, ds5, ds15

Dd18, ds5, ds15

 Ds2, ds8, ds5

Ds2, ds8, ds5 and ds6 in inner tube

We’ve celebrated the birthdays of four children (12, 2, 21, 18 and one is almost 7), along with the birthday of my mother’s husband.

Ds21 and dd5

Ds21 and dd5

We’ve spent lots of time just hanging around the house or going to local parks.  It may not be exciting or unusual but it’s still special to me, since having the older kids around and doing activities with all of us together isn’t something we get to enjoy that often anymore.

Dd13 and ds2

Dd13 and ds2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dh and ds12 hanging out with a friendly cat that took a liking to them

Dh and ds12 with cat that took a liking to them

Dd18 and ds15

Dd18 and ds15

I basically disappeared from my blog since my days were filled with younger kids and the nights were filled with talks with the older kids…don’t think when your kids get older that you’ll get more sleep.  Not at all.  Having older kids is what years ago pushed me to a very late bedtime, since I kept staying up later and later so I could have quiet time to myself when they were finally asleep!

Late night conversations with older kids are my favorite.  Don’t let anyone tell you how hard teenagers are.  They’re awesome!

Me helping ds21 pick hundreds of tiny prickles off of his pants - this is how bonding happens!

Me helping ds21 pick dozens of tiny prickleburrs off of his pants – this is how bonding happens! :)

We spent our last evening with everyone home with a wonderful barbeque/campout – we went to the local picnicking area, built a couple of campfires and set up our full sized tent to hang out in.  We brought lots of food, bikes, games and a couple of guitars.  From late afternoon until well after dark, we enjoyed talking, exploring, singing and just being together.

 

 

Dh with ds8, ds6 and ds5

Dh with ds8, ds6 and ds5

Yirmiyahu, 2, having fun playing in the dirt

Yirmiyahu, 2, having fun playing in the dirt

The dirty face to show what he's been busy with...

The dirty face to show what he’s been busy with…

Yirmi, 2, enjoying some freshly grilled chicken

Freshly grilled chicken tastes best when eaten perched on a rock!

Ds21 exploring local caves at the insistence of his younger brothers

Ds21 exploring local cave a short distance from our campsite

We finished off the evening with a siyum made by ds21, who thanked us all for making it possible for him to spend so much of his vacation learning and then said that being home was a big source of encouragement to him, that he gets a lot of love and it really means a lot to him.

The older kids all went back to their various schools/yeshivas this week and the house is quiet again with just the younger six kids home.

It won’t be until Sukkos that everyone is home again – but! – it looks like dd19 will be home with us for the holidays!!!  She doesn’t yet have a ticket but we’re so excited about this.  When she was here for Pesach, she said she wanted to come back for this school year but then it looked like she would have to stay in the US at least through mid year because of her studies.  She’s working things out so that she can finish up what she needs to do there and be home much sooner than we anticipated!  So Sukkos is something to especially look forward to.

I’ve spent so much time just basking in the feeling of joy in being around my children.  The rewards of parenting are so much greateer than the time and effort we put into it.

Now life is getting back to normal – quieter, more regular.  I can finally get myself and everyone else back on a schedule, do all the things that I haven’t been doing now, and maybe even blog a little bit more.  :)

Avivah

5 thoughts on “Winding down the summer with lots of warm memories

  1. Avivah, Happy anniversary of the blog! I’ve been cleaning out my computer and came across correspondence that reminded me of some tough times we went through with our kids at various points. I had completely forgotten about most of them! In retrospect the joyous times and nachas so overlay everything else. I don’t mean to diminish the pain when things are dark, but avoiding those times means not having the good ones as well. This is so clear from your writings over 8 years as well.

    1. Susan, I was thinking of you just yesterday! You are so right about this. It’s hard to see this when things are hard but as time goes on the tough times dim and the good things are so much more predominant. I

  2. The summer has gone sooooo quickly. What wonderful times you have had.
    Our aliyah was 9 months after yours. This summer has been so amazing experiencing all kind of activities and being part of my family members lives. Thank you so much Avivah for making my life so much richer.

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