Thursday, June 21, 2012

Travel--There and Back Again

Having been away for most of the past two weeks, I have had much to catch up on including participating in Friday Fave Five with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story (click the link to add your own FFF to the list).  The purpose of FFF is to practice gratitude for the wonderful gifts of grace we receive daily.  I find it to be an excellent exercise in thankfulness as I look back and  focus on the positive events in my life.

1.  Summer break always involves traveling to visit my children.  What mother does not LOVE spending precious moments with her kids?

 We had less than twenty-four hours to enjoy The Grad Student's company before he headed off on another summer's worth of adventures in other parts of the world digging for bones, shards and other ancient artifacts. (Yes, really and truly, that's what he does.  Isn't he lucky to have such an interesting job?)

We enjoyed a quick stroll around the Los Angeles Farmers Market on Fairfax where we know we will always be able to find our favorite drink of all time: es cendol. It's a sweet coconut drink we learned to loved in Indonesia.

After that, we met up with a couple of his friends and devoured a fantastic feast of Ethiopian food (one of our absolute culinary faves), said our farewells, knowing he was flying out of LAX just a few hours later.  We do know he arrived safely at his dig site but internet and phone access are seriously scarce out there so we don't expect to hear from him often. (In this case, no news is usually good news.  As long as I don't receive a call or visit from the US embassy or State dept, I can assume he's alive and well.)

2.  Just a couple of days later we hopped back in our happy little Honda CRV (love that car!) and drove to San Diego to see our youngest girl and her family.  We always have to visit the San Diego Zoo--it's tradition.

3.  This time, Little R had a preschool field trip--a ferry ride from Coronado Island across the bay to downtown San Diego and back again. So. Much. Fun.  The trip is only about fifteen minutes each way which is just long enough to enthrall a little one but not too long to bore him.

4.  Of course, at Willow's Cottage, knitting constantly commences.  On the needles right now are no less than four projects.  But this one is off now, finished, and on the shoulders of T.  Once I gave it to her and she was off and running, there was almost no opportunity for a photo op.  I did catch a quick close up shot of the Fair Isle design on the body of the sweater.  A top down raglan cardigan with a hoodie, knitted in Red Heart Soft yarn on size 9 needles, this Knitting Pure and Simple sweater is a perfect fit for our girl.

5.  I could mention all the wonderful walks and quiet reading hours of the past week, but what jumps out at me as a fave during the past few days is the generosity of a friend from my spinning/weaving guild.  Debbie had taken a non-working weaving loom that I owned and was ready to part with, fiddled around with it, and with the help of another friend, FIXED IT.  Then, she offered it back to me!  Not only did she graciously return it, but she also spent almost a full day with me teaching me how to work it, warp it and weave with it.  That is true generosity!

What moments stand out to you in the past weeks as events of thoughtfulness, generosity, gratitude?


Brenda said...

Sounds like time well spent! I'd love to try that coconut drink!

nikkipolani said...

Huh. My cat does that, too. Sits there with his tongue on his lips, relaxing. So nice to get to see your son before he heads off the wild. Bet you all have fantastic stories to tell. Generous friends are wonderful.

Melissa said...

Sounds like a lot of family time, well spent and good for the soul.

I hadn't heard of es cendol, but when you put the words sweet and coconut together, I'm looking into it. I found a recipe. The ingredients might be hard to find, but the recipe doesn't look too difficult. It's at

Barbara H. said...

With two grown kids away from home and a third starting college in the fall, I now what you mean about enjoying time with them when we can.

The ferry ride sounds fun!

I so admire anyone who can knit. I love Fair Isle patterns.

That is really neat that your friend fixed the loom!

ellen b. said...

Sounds like you are making the most of your Summer break. The sweater is sweet and perfect for a little girl. So he's off to another dig...
Have a great weekend.

Hollace said...

The sweater is gorgeous and looks very intricate. For me, having one would be a 'fave' but making one would be a 'pain'!

It's great when our kids do well. That's always a fave.

Faith said...

it sounds like you had a wonderful week! that's a GREAT summer job your son has...something I've been interested in but just went down a different path. yum.....a coconut drink..i LOVE coconut...looks yummy. I love reading time too...have a refreshing weekend!!

Laura@OutnumberedMom said...

Beautiful sweater! Wow...your son is a modern day Indiana Jones, huh?

Sounds like a great Summer Break Week!

Aqeela said...

I love everything in this post, sounds like you have an interesting family and interesting taste in food / drink!

I had two moments which stood out for me this week. Firstly, a usually very grumpy man who i was afraid to talk to was very kind, helpful and generous towards me when i needed his help. Secondly, two friends have both made gifts for me and are sending them out to me. I feel so humbled and privileged to have been thought of by them and grateful for their time and effort just for me.

Aqeela xx

Julene said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julene said...

I am thankful to read of all you have done! It spills over.
There is lots going on here and maybe a time to relax around the corner. Everday is filled with kindness and the kind of kind that is consistant. I like it!

7:37 PM

Susanne said...

I have never tried Ethiopian food although there is a restaurant in town. I will have to give it a try. Any recommendations on dishes?

Visiting one's children never grows old. So glad you got one in before he went off on another adventure.

Bethany said...

I can't wait to see what you weave! It sounds like a wonderful week! And that coconut drink sounds delicious too!

Annette Whipple said...

It's amazing how sometimes silence is what gives us peace of mind. Loved the story of your friends love and skills helping you!

What a week you had! So glad it was so good!

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Weaving are so accomplished in textile arts!

Cindy Garber Iverson said...

I have to agree that digging for stuff has to be probably the coolest job I can think of. Your knitting is gorgeous. The pattern is beautiful in its intricacy. So lovely.

Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

Barbara said...

Your son looks like his Dad. so great I agree to spend time with children and grand children.