The End To Our Summer

This summer has just been flying by, with so many house guests and coordinated activities. Even without my usual parade of summer weddings weekend after weekend, I’m still feeling like there’s never enough time to do everything. Between our in-house mani/pedi sessions with the girls, culinary adventures at home, and summer camp, it seems as if every day has been maximized, but in a really positive way. We still have a good amount of down time where we have unstructured play, where we just roll around the carpet pretending to be sick fishes being eaten up by sharks, draw really crazy looking stick figure people that we call princesses, and read Pinkalicious over and over again. This has been a really memorable summer, and as we move into Brianne’s last week here, I can’t help feeling a little sad that it will be over soon. What will ‘normal’ be like again?

My mom left for Hong Kong last night, and it was sad for all of us to say goodbye once again. The silver lining in our separation is that we now really cherish the times that we do get to spend with each other. The day before my mom left, I planned a fun “girls’ day” in the city for us, and we had a really entertaining time together. My mom, who is always going 200 miles an hour no matter where she is, said it was the most relaxing day she has had for a very long time.

We started the day off early, with an 11:00 am lunch at one of my new restaurant discoveries in the city, Bluestem Brasserie. We were the first patrons that morning, and got to choose exactly where we wanted to sit. We chose the lounge area next to the large windows overlooking Market Street. Because people watching during lunch just feels very hip.

We ordered some pretty awesome stuff from their menu–beef tartare, corn chowder with fried oyster, halibut, and a peach tart that was really like a pizza with peach, blue cheese, and arugula. Everything was exceptionally tasty, particularly the peach tart!

After lunch, we walked over to Yerba Buena Gardens and rode on the carousel with the girls before spending a good few hours at the Zeum museum. The girls built a 3D castle, created their very first puppet show, and made paper plate masks, amongst other things. We probably could have spent one full day there and they would have been perfectly content, but I had made reservations for us at The Rotunda in Neiman Marcus for afternoon tea. My sister and I mostly watched the kids play, but my mom was really hands on in playing with them in the museum, and it was endearing to see how much they loved having grandma’s company.

Bridgette and my favorite place for afternoon tea is actually Crown and Crumpet, but because my mom has already been there twice, I wanted her to try something new this time. I chose the Rotunda mainly of its proximity to where we were planning to be that day, but also because I have heard good things about its afternoon tea. We were not disappointed. We got a window seat that overlooked Union Square, and enjoyed a lavish tea set filled with exquisite yummies.

Quick tip: Be sure to request coloring books for your kids to keep them busy! They have a really nice activity book they give out upon request.

After the tea, we shopped around Union Square, and finally ended our eventful day with dinner in Japantown, where my mom got her favorite soba!

We sent my mom off to the airport on Monday night, and we will be sending my sister and Brianne to the airport this Saturday. This will mark the end to our summer. I can’t believe how quickly these weeks went by. I am so grateful for all the help my sister gave us while she was here, taking good care of the girls, grocery shopping for our home, and keeping up with house chores. But more so, for being really ‘present’ through all of our activities. It’s been a very memorable summer for all of us, because we usually don’t get to spend this much quality time together in one place. It’s what we’ve always wanted to do, and finally, we’ve obtained the wisdom and courage to put the brakes on our careers to make it happen. For us, for the kids. I know we’ll look back one day, and our hearts would be fulfilled just knowing we made the time to do this. Thank you Mims!

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