1. Visiting family in Oregon. It was a shorter trip this year, and having just lost Dexter I wasn’t necessarily at my best, but it was good to be there, with them. I went to my youngest niece’s softball tournament with my mom and dad, saw her pitch and my brother coach, watched movies with my mom (she made me a marionberry cobbler!), “met” the feral cat my dad has been taming (looked at it through a window because that’s as close as I could get), hung out a bit with my oldest niece, went to visit one aunt who lives on the coast with a few other aunts along for the ride, ate some seafood, played a new dice game, and walked on the beach. It’s nice to sink into the rhythms of their life, but it’s also good to get back to my own.
2. Walking on the beach. I was so happy to be there, but it was mixed with sadness because our trip last summer was our last before Dexter’s cancer diagnosis, the last time he’d be with us in that place, an innocent time before getting the worst news and I couldn’t help remembering, missing him.
4. Having a smart phone. I resisted it for so long, and still cringe each month when I have to pay the bill, but it sure is nice, especially when I am away from home and Eric can text me, send me pictures of my dog.
Bonus Joy: The way Sam squealed when he first saw me after I’d been away from him for six days.