Thursday, Friday in Santa Cruz

Our days of boogie boarding with seals (swimming suuuuuper close), whale watching every day from the balcony and the shore, surfing, being completely slammed by waves, eating cupcakes galore, delicious crock pot meals that allowed us to sit in the sand as long as we wanted, birthday celebrations, fireworks, sand castles, movie nights, laughter, tears, fire pit Lockeford Meat sausages, Bampa's cast iron desserts, s'mores, and mud fights, made nothing short of a perfect vacation. 

I'm always very thankful when we arrive home safely from a long drive, and even more thankful everything is in tact when we get home. Especially after driving home this weekend - the rain never let up, and we saw multiple, terrible accidents. Also, when the day comes to leave my parent's house I'm always a bit cranky and sad that vacation is over and I have to come back home. I have lived in this apartment in Seattle longer than I have lived anywhere in my entire life, and I sometimes get anxious to go somewhere else, do something else... But, every time we pull up the 99 and I see the Great Wheel, the Space Needle, Tyler's building downtown, the water, the ferries, I'm always filled with gratitude that this is where I live. I love my friends, my house, my neighborhood, my church, this city, and wouldn't want to live anywhere else.

After reading Steal Like an Artist I have started a new style of journaling: I ask myself, "What was the best thing that happened today?" It is perfect - it gives me only a few lines to write, and as soon as I start thinking back on my day a flood of tiny memories come to mind - all the things I want to remember when I am old. This is one of my favorites from yesterday:

"Tonight arrived home safely. Relaxed, fun 2-day drive home from California. When I put the girls in bed Kate was screaming and I started singing, 'Amad a Otros.' Kate finally laid down next to me and I started saying a prayer of gratitude out loud. Annie, half way through, copied and finished the prayer. I started our nightly ritual of, 'I love you, Annie.' and Kate shouted, 'Uh-Uh!' Annie then said, 'I yuvvv you mommy.' Kate, not feelin' the love said, 'I. NO. WAN-NIT!!' and then she fell asleep."