Yesterday, we spent a lovely day in Newport, RI. It's a resort town on the coast - the place where gigantic mansions were built in the late 1800s/early 1900s by families like the Vanderbilts and the Astors - as their summer homes. We drove by some (now maintained as museums), and it's astonishing to see that kind of ostentatious display of wealth. Especially considering that these turn-of-the-century mansions are nestled among many, many similar mansions that are still used as *private* residences! I can't believe there are still people around today who find that a useful way to use their wealth.
The trip was brought about by wanting to see the Newport Kite Festival. Unfortunately, the winds were uncooperative so there really wasn't much kite flying. (Though some of the massive kites on the ground were spectacular! I wish we could've seen them airborne!) But we still had a very nice lunch in downtown Newport on the harbor and then, after a brief attempt at kite flying, wandered around the tide pools at Brenton Point State Park. Elliot was fascinated by the streams of water flowing between the ocean and the tide pools, and with the small snails inhabiting one of the pools. Jonah, adventurous soul that he is, simply wanted to run all over the rocks (slippery with seaweed) and stomp through every tide pool he could find! It was a good day.
Last night I had a talk with a very good friend of mine who had some very bad news, so that's been occupying my mind since some. But it's not yet public information, so I can't go into more detail yet.
This morning, I took Elliot to the pool where he'll start swimming lessons tomorrow. He's a very cautious soul, so he needed to go to the pool several times to play before lessons started - that's the only way he'll be even a little bit comfortable tomorrow, which is going to be stressful enough for him as it is. We came home for lunch, and then I spent an hour and a half slicing 51 cucumbers (that's just what ripened in the last 4 days), which I think will make about 16 quarts of pickles. Holy moly! Good thing we like pickles. I hope other people do, too! ;-)
Then later tonight it's off to the local homemade ice cream place to celebrate my mother-in-law's birthday.