1. Our garden. Strawberry season is already over, and now we are getting more kale and lettuce than we can eat, and there are tiny green tomatoes and so many flowers blooming. We also got some new additions to our garden “decor” — the above sign and a new bird bath. There was a viral story about a trans teen who saw a rainbow flag in a neighbor’s yard, left a note asking if they could have a binder shipped to their address because their family wasn’t accepting. I’d been wanting a sign and that story made me realize the importance of making it clear what you value, where you live. You never know who needs to see it, who might need your support. When we went to the local garden center earlier this week, Eric saw the bird bath and really wanted it, but we were already on a mission and I had hit my limit of being out in the world so we didn’t get it. As an online educator tasked with helping his campus move classes online, he worked so hard the past few months, and we had to cancel our trip to the beach, so he deserved a present and I went back the next day and got it for him. It’s not a bad deal for me because I love it too, can’t wait to see some birds using it.
2. Morning walks. These hurt without Sam, and yet are still one of my favorite things. This week we were able to sneak one in by the river because the weather had been cooler for a few days, slowing down the mosquito population. I got bit a few times, but with COVID-19 I’m suddenly not so worried about West Nile Virus.
3. Swimming. This time, Eric went with me (which is how I got this picture), and for most of the time we had the whole pool to ourselves.
4. Sad anniversaries that are reminders of big love. Seven years ago today, we had to let Dexter go. Four weeks and one day ago, we did the same for Sam. I didn’t expect them to be back together so soon. I’ve lost three dogs in a row to incurable cancers, never had a truly old dog. It is so hard but I also wouldn’t trade what came before that for anything, even knowing how it ends. Still, I miss those three so much.
5. My tiny family. Ringo got a new toy this week and he’s in love.
Bonus joy: having enough to share, strawberry rhubarb yogurt with granola and berries, yard time, texting with my mom and brother, hanging out with Mikalina and Chloe’, naps, remembering to shower and brush my teeth (y’all, there are some days…), practice, the light in our living room in the morning, that corner of the couch, Sam’s couch, thunderstorms (as long as there’s NO hail), compliments on our garden, laughing with Eric, pizza, cherries, reading in bed at night while Eric and Ringo sleep, all the people working so hard and putting themselves at risk so that we can stay healthy and safe.