This week we were all spending a lot of time with Emily's good friend and her family, who left Friday to move to Austria. This was the first time in 8 years that I've been the friend left behind, and it sucks! Definitely not as much as moving, in terms of logistics, but the constant sense that life is normal except for this one hole in the fabric is a bit unnerving. Several times in the last couple of days, Emily has mused, "I wonder what Annalena is doing now?" I think the strangest part of having friends leave is the sense that you don't know what they look like in their new place. And the other part is having all those wonderful memories follow us around town/neighborhood as we go about our normal routines. Hopefully we'll go visit in November; I have to renew Emily's passport, and get Hazel her first one.
Brian spent more time than he should have this weekend at home, finishing up a tree fort in the backyard. The camera insisted on focussing on a branch instead of the fort, but you get the idea. We'll see how much play it gets, but it was fun to make, at least. If it fails as a fort, we can always convert it to a fox-proof chicken house! I have a theory about houses/forts that children never really play in them unless they build them themselves, so this will be interesting to watch. Emily did help with this, a bit, but I wonder what will make it feel like a retreat? I suspect a blanket-roof would help; we're thinking we'll let the girls paint it, as well.