It's been a gorgeous summer. July and August gave us sunny skies and beautiful places for both quiet relaxation and lively fun with family and friends. We rented our friends' cottage on St. Joe's Island for two weeks again early in the summer, where we filled up our lungs with fresh northern air and our hearts with some of our very favourite people, landscapes, and family traditions. We spent a fun long weekend at Matt's parents' place on Lake Nosbonsing, where all of his siblings and their families gathered at once, including a brother who lives in Australia and who surprised us all with his visit. Later in August, Matt and the boys and I took a little overnight trip to Frankenmuth, MI, always an enjoyable getaway for shopping and sightseeing and famous chicken dinners. We also spent many mornings and afternoons this summer enjoying our own backyard together -- swimming in the pool, jumping on the trampoline, gardening, grilling, reading books and playing cards in the shade of the big, friendly trees. My brother and nephew and niece joined us for a few days in late summer and the yard echoed with the laughter of four kids who always have a wonderful time when they're together, despite the physical distance that separates them for most of the year.
The boys got up to some interesting things while they had an abundance of down time these past few months. They both volunteered as camp counsellors for a week, mentoring younger students in robotics and other STEM activities. Will mastered solving several new types of puzzle cubes and was invited to join an FLL team for the new season, which he's thrilled about. Noah spent much of the last couple of weeks at the Communitech hub, working diligently with a friend on a special design and programming project that was an exciting and challenging learning opportunity for them.
This summer, Noah turned 15 (!?!), and we finally gave in to Iris the cat's whining to go outside and bought her a harness and leash, which is both ridiculous and fun. We watched the Olympics, and the Tragically Hip's poignant last tour concert, and we sat under dark skies in our pjs late at night and watched for shooting stars. Oh, and in between all of this, we bought a new house, and sold our current house, in a wild flurry of activity driven by a hot real estate market where everything worked out in our favour. (We move in early October, and Will starts at his new neighbourhood school tomorrow morning.)