scrumptious summer sandwich

bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich on wheat breadIt’s not summer until this happens.  Just sayin’.

Good thing I finally made some BLTs, because by the above culinary criteria I was about to have a year without a summer.  (Ha, ha–right; like anyone, even someone in deep denial, could pretend that summer isn’t officially happening.  Because it’s happening at full throttle mercury on my thermometer.)

Lovey and I got a couple strong hankerings–his for bacon and mine for vine-ripened, juice-heavy tomatoes.  We satisfied his urge at the grocery store and mine at the farmer’s market, then stacked up the bounty in our kitchen.  Ahhh, bliss!

Add sweet tea and that, my friends, is summer.

What meal perfectly captures the season for you?

full hands

As I mentioned Monday, over the weekend we made a quick trip to visit some family.  When I sorted my photos after the trip I noticed that several of the photos focus on hands.  My hands full of M&Ms…

handful of M&Ms...every color except brown, by chance

…and my baby nephew.

M holding nephewMy baby nephew’s hands full of cantaloupe his daddy had just picked from the garden.

baby with a squinched-up face of pure abandonI also have a video of him noshing this melon, but because I’m using the free version of WordPress I can only upload this blurry photo.  Still hilarious, though, right?

Then there’s my niece, this adorable little “handful.”  She can talk—and scream!—and even sing now.  She’s cute and ornery in fairly equal proportion.  Maybe a little more cute than ornery.

girly in pink

And these not-so-little handfuls.  Those are my gorgeous sisters and their guys, except we’re all mixed up because it was midnight and someone was being silly.

mixed up couples being sillyThen there’s my wedding ring, a symbol I wear constantly on my hand.  Lovey and I had it cleaned and re-rhodiumed at the store where he bought it.  It looked so pretty and new when I got it back an hour later that I kept staring at it like I’d just gotten engaged!

clean wedding ring

Speaking of wedding rings, the most meaningful story from this trip centers on Lovey’s grandparents holding hands.  A little background first.  We planned our trip after we learned Grandma had been placed in hospice care.   During our visit we sat with her for two hours, telling her about the family, the Olympics, the weather, and whatever else came to mind.  She leaned back against her pillows, unable to communicate with us except by moving her hand or changing her facial expression.  Winks were abundant, as were smiles and kisses.

Sad as it was to see such an independent-spirited woman lying mostly helpless, it was also refreshing to watch the afternoon unfold with Lovey’s grandpa in control.  Grandma has pet subjects, and the whole family knows what they are.  But as she sat silent, suddenly Grandpa had the chance to focus on his favorite subject—their love.  He reminisced about their meeting, courtship, and engagement.  He talked about the early part of their marriage and told us proudly that they’ve been married for almost sixty six years.

Through it all Grandma, who barely let her husband squeeze in a word edgewise the last time we visited, just beamed at him.  They gripped each other’s hands and every so often she beckoned him closer for kisses.  He actually got sheepish about it after a while, saying she was “acting like we’re still courting!”

Their history has given them so much in common: age-spotted, bruised skin on their intertwined fingers; knowing looks in their eyes; and love uniting their spirits.  Their intimate interaction is the sort of thing a person doesn’t photograph.  Yet it’s also the sort of thing that embeds its image in an observer’s memory.  I hope when Lovey and I are wrinkled and worn out like these two we can still draw inspiration from their loving legacy.

sunshine at sunset

We were out this weekend.  And by “out” I mean on the road visiting my sisters, our new nephew, and Lovey’s grandma and grandpa; eating Pringles and M&Ms because that’s road fuel, baby; and trying to squeeze in as much quality time with loved ones as we could before heading back to (sad trumpet) Monday morning.

Before we left for this whirlwind adventure we snapped a shot of this outfit, one I’ve wanted to share for a while.  I’ve worn it many times but until sunset on Friday I hadn’t gotten around to posting about it.

Here’s why this outfit has gotten so much wear this summer: both pieces are lightweight, loose-fitting, and safely this side of neon–but they’re not quite drab either.  The jade necklace echoes the green of the shorts.  With flats it’s a little put-together, with flip flops it’s just an easy outfit.  And that’s what I like about it.

I’ll share a bit about our trip later this week.  But for now I’m curious–do you have a go-to summer ensemble?  What are the “ingredients?”