I'm going through pictures from this summer to see if there was anything interesting that I failed to tell you during my days of whine and dozes.
The short answer is: no.
Patrick had a great time at camp and returned wearing a bathing suit he had not removed for three days, his second t-shirt of the week and the pair of shoes in which - he told me, with pride! wasn't he efficient? - he had been sleeping. When I think of all of the time I wasted labeling and neatly folding pajamas that returned just as neatly folded I could smack myself and when I asked if he had, you know, showered since I had last seen him he said, "Oh yeah, of course, I swam in the lake most days."
Needless to say he was filthy.
It is a testament to how much Caroline missed Patrick that she is standing so close to him in this picture. She is usually much more fastidious and did I mention he was filthy and bug-bitten and filthy?
But he had a great time and the second thing he said when I picked him up - after telling me that the food at camp was much better than what he gets at home - was that he wants to go back next year.
Steve finally got glasses, which is a consumation devoutly to be w.'d not only because he no longer inspires me to go all Deputy Dawg's Moley on his squinting (Hey Muskie! Whazz happenin'? Whazz happenin'?)
but he can now see well enough to teach Caroline how to throw a frisbee.
Hmmm, what else?
We went to Vermont and saw Steve's birthfather and half-brothers for a day, then went to Tyler Place for a week and, finally, visited Steve's birthmother and her daughters and grandchildren (plus an aunt and a cousin) for a long weekend in upstate New York.
I know I say this every single time we interact with Steve's birth family but I just feel so lucky that they are all so kind and interesting and loving and fun and that they have all embraced him as much as they have.
The one brother lives in a kid's paradise.
They have ducks.
They have chickens.
And they have Lake Champlain in their front yard.
The other brother studies and travels and has a fascinating job and this year he brought his girlfriend for our visit. She just finished her doctorate in the philosophy of physics (ummm umm-hmmmm, ummm-hmmmm m'yes) and she rescues dogs and she has promised to send me her recipe for vegan cheese kale chips that she swears taste really good. I am not ashamed to admit that I followed her around with my mouth hanging open, eyes glazed in adoration.
Seeing Steve's birthmother and her family is always really lovely. The granddaughters bookend Caroline and Edward and the grandson will be three in the Fall.
I'm trying to find a photo to post that doesn't have the other kids in it but it is hard. Caroline and the girls were inseparable and Edward decided he was going to mentor Phillip. In fact, he had the following conversation with him:
Edward, with his hands on Phillip's shoulders: Phillip, I'm your Patrick.
Phillip (visibly confused): No. I Phiyip.
Edward: No no. I mean *I* am *your* Patrick. I'm the big kid. You're the liddle kid. I'll help you and you do what I say.
Phillip: I Phiyip.
Edward: Gaaaaaah! Fine. Come on, let's look for snails.
Huh. I really can't find a picture without the cousins in it.
Oh wait, Portraits of Edward Who Lost Another Tooth While On Vacation.
And now we are all caught up.