It's something I look forward to every year. You would think with all these people and canines it would be utter chaos, but surprisingly it's not. There is plenty of room in the house to spread out and the lake is short walk away. Even though my brother and his family only live 1/4 mile from me, I don't spend all that much time with them. It's nice to have that weekend to catch up with Paul and Martha (my brother and his wife) and spend a little time with my niece (Julia, 11) and my nephews (Alex, almost 8 and Travis, 13).
I really enjoy our evenings spent playing games together as one big group. And, of course, we usually watch a movie or two. But, I think the reason I look forward to this weekend every year is that it truly is the one time in the year when I really do just relax. There is not too much to do in little Bristol, NH, so each day just unfolds slowly and I take it one minute at a time. Mostly, I sit on the lovely screened in porch (with a view of the lake) and read. Big surprise, right?! Or I take my favorite beach chair down to the lake and, you guessed it, read some more. Pure heaven!
But, I think the thing I look forward to the most is what I've come to call Closing Day of Ice Cream Season. At the beginning of the summer, I wrote a post about Opening Day of Ice Cream season. Since Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer it seems right that Labor Day would be the end of the season. What makes it even more exciting is that Shackett's, the little ice cream/sandwich shop around the corner from the house we stay in, closes on Labor Day and on that day, starting at 11:00 am ice cream is FREE until it's all gone. Getting a super sized cone (they only have one size on Free Ice Cream Day. Heck those college kids just want to get out of there) for free on our last day of vacation is the highlight of the trip for our family.
It's always a big surprise to see what flavors are left and usually everyone can find something they like. It's not too hard. It is ice cream after all. This year when I announced that Labor Day was the Official End of Ice Cream Season, I was corrected by the Commissioner of Ice Cream (aka Geoff). He claims that he, and only he, can declare an end to the season. And since his favorite ice cream shop back home is open through Columbus Day, the season is officially still going strong. Ice cream, anyone?