We've arrived at the homestead in the forest. We flew up to San Francisco on Friday and drove up Highway 1 (The Coast Highway) on Saturday. We've only driven that route maybe four times in our lives because it takes about twice as long as it does to use the big freeway (Hwy 101). But we wanted to celebrate this visit in a special, slow pace way since it is the first time we've been up to the homestead in probably 20 years that I didn't have to bring any work with me. The view is gorgeous all the way up (about 150 miles). I told the Pirate to pull over at any point that he thought was particularly photo worthy, but we immediately realized that would mean stopping at every pull-out. Here are a few examples:
I am a cherry fanatic - I come by it genetically, and I've passed it along to one of my sons. He and I could easily eat an entire flat of cherries in a single sitting. One of the great treats about this trip is that it's cherry season, and of course we stopped at the first cherry stand we saw.
As long as I was active in my profession our vacations were primarily "working vacations" for me, especially here at the homestead. The Pirate could relax and do whatever took his fancy, but I had to spend much of my time focused on work. This visit is SO different - I can be fully present when family members want to come over to our cabin and chat; I can go to local events without having in the back of my mind all the things that I'd have to get done when I got back to the cabin; I can just loll around and read and knit or crochet.
Yesterday (Father's Day) one of the volunteer fire departments in the area (there are lots of them because there are lots of small communities around here) held its annual Father's Day chicken barbecue.
Our son, who is on the volunteer fire department of our local community, helped grill the chicken.
Our daughter-in-law and granddaughters held down the booth selling non-alcoholic drinks (there was also a booth for beer and wine)
The Pirate and I got to have some good, long conversations with old friends whom we rarely see. That's the Pirate in the black cap and our granddaughter Jordan standing behind him.
What a great gift God has given us to be able to come back to our original home and spend time with old friends as well as family. And in such a beautiful place, too!