Greetings fellow empty nesters. I haven’t been around lately, but it is time to get back to work. This blog post was written in the summer, but I decided to throw caution to the wind and take the summer off and savor it like a little kid. I am refreshed and ready to conquer more exciting adventures in the empty nest world.
Hello Darkness, My Old Friend… July 2022
I am writing this blog from the comfort of my cool and dark bedroom. The dog is snoring, the fan is whooshing, and it is the middle of the day. Something is definitely wrong with this picture. I am not a napper and wouldn’t be caught dead laying around in the middle of the day. I am type A and that is not part of my vernacular.
The cat is out of the bag… my husband and I have Covid. The one thing that we have been avoiding since it became a buzzword in 2019. We were the perfect anti-covid model family – we locked down, quarantined, vaxxed early, and were boosted multiple times. We masked, washed, and sanitized. Nevertheless, Covid found its way into our bubble. However, we are lucky that it hasn’t made us extremely ill or hospitalized us. The minor inconvenience is that we are dog-tired. Hence that nap.
The wonderful thing about being an empty nester is probably the one thing that made me the Covid carrier, the freedom of travel. I am a freelance food stylist and must travel for work. At the beginning, my traveling came to a screeching halt. After my first vaccination, I would make a deal with the devil and reluctantly board a plane, whether it was for work with a VIP client or a visit with my immediate family. Each time, I donned my hazmat-type attire and crossed my fingers that I made it out safely.
As restrictions started to lift and the numbers started to drop dramatically, traveling became second nature. Don’t get me wrong, I still tested days leading up to prevent any exposure on my part. “Super spreader” was not something that I wanted to add to my skill set. However, Covid was not going to rule my world. Well…fast forward to this week, after traveling for a cookbook photoshoot, I became the lucky recipient of a positive test. Yay me!
Not feeling well when you are an empty nester is totally different when you have a house full of kids. You can actually focus on yourself and the goal of getting better. Wow! No one is asking you for a meal, a ride, or money. Okay, I did Venmo my daughter her rent money, but that was already planned. Your adult children actually call to see if you feel okay and they even ask if there is anything that they can do. It is heartwarming and kind.
Long gone are the days of not feeling well and having to prop yourself up to make sure that the family ship wasn’t sinking. I will say being down for the count allows you to stare into space and think about anything you want. You are a captive audience and you have nothing but time on your hands. So, being type A, I am thinking about summer and my kids returning to the nest.
Summer is in full swing here in Maine. My husband and I are so grateful to be living in a lovely seaside community and have finally escaped the brutally hot summers of Florida for good. While we do have some hot humid days, they are nothing in comparison to the jungle-like heat and humidity that Florida promised daily. We wake up to bright blue sunny skies, cool breezes and days full of possibilities.
Summer is also a time to spend with our children who have flown the nest, but still fly back for a quintessential Maine vacation and a long-awaited lobster dinner. When our kids are in town, our nights are filled with crazy yet fun family dinners. I am very fortunate that my son and his girlfriend have chosen to move close by. We love it when they pop in for dinner and the weekly use of our washer and dryer. It has been a great way to connect and enjoy each other’s company on a new level.
Adult kids are like the prize at the end of the race. They are the medal around your neck and the unexplainable feeling of victory. My mom would refer it as the crème de le crème. Speaking of crème. Maine is the ice cream capital of the world. We are known for 3 things…. lobster, blueberries, and amazing ice cream. In keeping with Maine tradition, our family dinners always end with enjoying ice cream on the front porch from our local yet famous dairy bar, Red’s, located across the street. What could be better than that?
Enjoyed this post? Check out History Repeats Itself for an incredible Mandel Bread recipe.