Monday, September 2, 2013

Summer . . . Best Enjoyed Before . . . .

 I suspect you're all out in the last summer sunshine, perhaps with your families, friends, loved ones, perhaps enjoying some solitude. I notice that my blog stats show fewer readers this weekend, and I think that's a good thing -- we should get away from the screens regularly, right?

Still, I'm a bit torn, because I've worked hard in a number of ways on my last few posts, and I'd love them to be read -- and I always worry, with this medium, that readers only look at the post that heads up the blog.

So should I let my post on family memories hold that spot a bit longer? Sit quietly, no more words, for another day or two? After all, there have been many words here lately (with many generous responses). Two posts especially, one on the Visible Women (of a Certain Age) phenomenon, another on struggling with sorrow and depression, garnered more views within fewer days than I've experienced since I began blogging. Is it shallow of me to admit that I love to know that my writing is read?

Yet even as I suspect that I should simply let the latest post sit, word-heavy, emotion-filled as it is, top of the blog, for another day or two, I have some end-of-summer photos left that I've been saving, and that have almost reached their best-before date. Summer might not officially be over for another 3 weeks, but for me, tomorrow's return to the classroom turns the calendar page forcefully to a completely different rhythm.

So. Photos for you. Above, my neighbours treading water and chatting with their houseguests, a tug hauling logs in the background, all in a high-tide, mist-tinged, end-of-day sunslant, capturing the pleasures of August on the island.
Shortly afterward, this log rolled in, and I couldn't help but think how quickly my youngest two and their cousins would have been back in the water to play on it. They would have clambered onto it, tried to stand and dive from it, they would have whooped and shrieked and got blue-lipped, full-body-chattering cold from playing it into shore, and by the time it was dark, I'd have the bathtub full for them to squeeze into, 3 or 4 of them at a time, bathing-suit baths they called them, keeping some coverage for modesty's sake.  The tub would be silted with sand, pebbles, bits of kelp. They'd wiggle out of their suits as I wrapped them in a big towel, and they'd gradually work into their pyjamas while sipping the hot chocolate or tea I'd made. Good times. So long ago.
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And while we're clearing out the end-of-summer photos before their expiration date, here's What I Wore one day a week or so ago, heading into town on the boat. . . The boyfriend jeans (Current Elliot) really are not flattering, are they? But ohmigosh, they are comfortable -- the denim is So. Very. Soft.
The top was one I bought on the Whistler trip with my sisters. Can't really blame them for the purchase, unfortunately -- I think they were as bemused by my picking it up as I was (BabySis, the youngster, laughed that I was now ready for my next rock concert) -- my first skulls ever! Can you say late adopter? What can I say? I do like the weight of the top, but it was definitely an impulse, novelty purchase.
I was surprised to get a few compliments on the Anne Klein leopard flats -- can't remember how old they are, but I was already getting tons of wear from them in this 2009 post, so they've paid their dues! (I've had them resoled and reheeled at least twice)

And I loved mixing these pearl-and-gold earrings with the skull shirt, although I do wonder what my mom would have thought of the pairing -- they were her earrings, gifted to me a couple of years ago just because I admired them on her.
So there you go. Last post of my perceived summer, although I'll try to feel the estival vibes through at least to the Equinox. Making the last of my blackberry jam today, so that we can taste the season's sunshine, anyway, through the winter.

Now let's get out there and enjoy this Labour Day weekend, those of us lucky enough to have one. The rest of you, already back in your Monday offices, may you find some moments in the sunshine as well. . .

26 comments:

  1. Yes, everyone's outside:).

    Except me, who is quite tired after all the wonderful hoopla, and who has spent the weekend holed up with Significant Husband.

    You look wonderful, the boyfriend jeans are perfectly flattering, and the shirt/earrings/leopard rather close to genius.

    Good luck in the classroom tomorrow. xoxox.

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    1. That sounds like the perfect way to spend the gift of a long weekend -- so pleased for you!

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  2. Is it really over? I am just getting started!
    I've said goodbye to the grandchildren, after two weeks of beach days, log-riding, sandy bathtubs and bedtime stories. I could have done with more.
    The jeans? They are what they are and you wear them well.

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    1. Wow! You saw the summer out in style! I loved your photos in the latest post.

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  3. Last week was back to school week for me, with its meetings and last minute details to take care of, and worried students to talk to. So I had little time to myself and did not comment. But I read your posts, faithfully, and they do make me think.
    Dominique

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    1. The rhythm changes so quickly, doesn't it, once the students are back on campus. Thanks for reading. . . take care . . .

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  4. I think it's just the way you are standing with the camera that makes you think those jeans aren't flattering. I'm wearing my boyfriend jeans almost all the time this summer, except when it's really hot. As you say, the soft fabric is so comfortable, and the fit is so forgiving!

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    1. These are the only jeans I can stand if there's any heat at all . . .

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  5. The skulls are contemporary and interesting with your mother's earrings. I just reread your visible women and struggling post and I think that you articulate very well the feelings that many of us share. I also love to be read and to share something of myself with others. The end of summer light on the water is so different from the June light. This Monday does truly mark the end of summer for many of us so jam-making is a great way to keep a bit of summer for the grey days.

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    1. Isn't that light different, on the water, at this end of the summer? You have another light entirely to look forward to, the light being reflected off all that glorious fall colour back East!

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  6. I'm still thinking about the last post. I notice that even in this post your thoughts harken back in time via your mother's earrings and wondering what she would think of your outfit. Do we ever lose that desire for a mother's approval?

    We enjoyed the glorious sunshine yesterday and today I'm making salsa from the garden bounty. A good trade off for the rain and clouds of this morning.

    Bonne rentrée!

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    1. Hmmm, I wonder if it's approval I was looking for from Mom. From my teen years into my 50s, she irked me with her refusal of trends, and I suspect I was often just trying, childishly, to yank her chain a little bit. Shame on me. But I know that she gave me the bones of my own style, and I'm careful about picking up trends myself. So yes, perhaps in some ways I want her approval, but I think I also would have liked her to know that I get what she was doing as well, even though I was impatient with her.
      Nomnom to the salsa! ;-)

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  7. Perfect end of summer post. Love the log and the memories it triggered. How poignant! Your pearl earrings are beautiful and look great with the new blouse! Enjoy your final day of summer fun! I have my 16 month old grandson in Ireland and he has discovered the great outdoors in a big way, so our summer is playing out on a high note!

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    1. Oh what fun, a sturdy toddler in the big outdoors -- enjoy!

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  8. I think you look great. Casual, comfortable, on-trend ... What more could you want?

    And we are into the 3rd official day of spring, but our winter was so hot (many days in the mid-20s C) that it's not the lovely change it usually is. Not that I should complain - I love the longer days and the stirring of activity in the garden.

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    1. Thanks, Tiffany. I love spring as well, but it's so mind-twisting to think of emerging into that right now instead of going the other direction as we are. . . .My garden is getting so tired-looking it clearly needs a long sleep, while yours will have that promising new sparkle about it.

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  9. Oh, the skulls. Admiring your spunk. Just getting caught up on my blog reading, so shall go back a post and savor what I've missed.

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    1. Sputtering at the idea of you admiring my spunk, especially after your last two boundary-breaking posts! ;-)

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  10. Such sweet memories, and I so enjoy 'seeing' you again!

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  11. You know, sometimes I kill myself writing a post and 3 people comment (three wonderful people :-)) I think it's the weird unknowability of writing to a world of people you cannot see nor decipher. What I will say is that I've loved your recent posts - esp. the family photo one. I think that, sometimes, people really appreciate a post but it's so "big" or meaningful-seeming that they don't know how to properly respond. And I think that peeps are outside. BTW, adorable top!

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    1. I didn't mean to sound wistful that the stats were low -- I was mostly just remarking my own impatience, my inability to sit back and let a post have its time at the top. Instead, I sometimes have a little pile of prospective posts that want to burst out. . . .
      I do think you're right about finding a post too meaning-ful to comment on easily. I've often gone away from such posts still thinking about them, yet the blogger won't even know I've visited. . .Thanks. . .

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  12. I must say once again... just how much I enjoy your writings my dear I schedule my visits here... I come when I know I have time to focus... and savor. Your writings are rich and thought provoking... and require more time, than a quick look... to fully experience the richness of the visit.

    Your questioning whether anybody ever looks past the current post, has been on my mind as well. My post on apple picking and the merits of learning as a parent... to let go and hold on... was one of my all time favorite posts. It was actually a culminating moment of almost two years of blogging... which to me has been a cathartic online journal of sorts. Today, I felt I buried a quality post... with a trite fashion challenge... Because what I wear ... many times brings more viewers in... than what I am feeling.

    I want to thank you for sharing your mind.. and your heart. I am now on my way to read your previous posts :))

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    1. Thanks so much Tamera. I do sometimes wonder about the blog as medium in our busy lives. And I struggle with the tug to read and the tug to write, the desire to post honestly but also the honest wish to have others read what we've written.
      I have to say that your post on apple picking was really luminous, expressing a certain fruition that, if we're lucky, we parents get to experience occasionally. At the same time, though, I enjoyed seeing another aspect of you in the playfulness of the neon fashion challenge. But I similarly struggle from time to time with the reality that the WIW seem to have to be there to pull in readers. . . and I sometimes wonder if that awareness compromises what I might otherwise write. Lately, I've been indulging my need or desire to write the longer posts. Not sure how this will play out as the term gets busy. But it's lovely to know that I have some very thoughtful readers. And comforting to know that other bloggers are thinking about these same choices.

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  13. I've not been avoiding your blog, just waiting for a time when I could focus and savor the contents. Your words are worth more than a quick click through.

    Really, the jeans are quite flattering and are what they are. Who is to say that "flattering" is some arbitrary standard imposed by a narrow few? Confidence, comfort in your own skin, with a sense of style and wit: These things all stand out to me even this the most comfortable and nonchalant of outfits.

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  14. I so appreciate you taking the time to leave comments on these "back" posts, Mardel. I know we've talked before about the tyranny of that adjective. Sometimes it's just time to shove it aside and express something besides an awareness of the mirror. Glad you agree.

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we?

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