When my family came to Vermont in August, I lay in bed listening to all that new breathing, overhead footsteps and muffled conversation.
They had come from the south, ready for a summer break from the heat and city life. Our home provided cool air and quiet alongside the darkened woods, nearby hiking trails and the Williams River with its roaring gorge and rocky swimming holes.
We shared the cooking and clean-up and had wonderful gourmet meals each night, from lobster and pasta to Italian and seafood salads.
The garden was producing tomatoes by the basket, a few green beans and wonderful herbs.
The local farmers’ markets filled in with cheeses and more vegetables.
Trips to the New Hampshire liquor store and Shaw’s grocery kept the refrigerator full of wine and beer. One night our son Joe mixed martinis; his grandfather Joe would have been proud!
The weather was perfect for outdoor play and nighttime bonfires. Nearby Bromley Mountain provided a fun family day with great slides and adventures. The indoor game of choice was Settlers of Catan, a new family favorite. Competition was keen, but all seemed to still be speaking the next morning!
I love the preparation for company—cleaning the house, making up the beds, and best of all, adding those special touches of flowers, jugs of water and good reading material alongside the bedsides. If I am feeling it, I pray for their travel and their stay. After several days, I feel the need to pray even more keenly because I get tired and a bit less patient! An early night and a morning lie-in usually set that to right, or even better, a hug and a thank you.
After the last car pulled out of the driveway and the Amtrack train left the Bellows Falls station, I headed inside, feeling a little bit empty. I tossed the sheets into the wash, made a cup of coffee and sighed as the adrenalin low swept in. Later, as I hung the sheets on the line in the sunshine, I relaxed with the sun on my back and gave thanks for this place in Vermont to share with family and friends. Later that evening, Ian and I enjoyed the leftovers and sat by the bonfire admiring the stars and listening to the symphony of insects.