I was going to start this out with “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times”, but I think that’s already been used. So I think I’ll just go with I had a great time and about a million calories at the family reunion and call it done.
I had an energetic and productive (not to mention, lucrative) reunion-eve. A friend who owns her own cleaning business had asked if I would help her with a massive 3-story cleaning gig downtown. I readily agreed, despite the fact that I had a dusty house of my own in need of attention. In addition to the lark of doing something new, I knew it would be great exercise. And it was! My glutes are still protesting, but only mildly.
No pictures of the house we cleaned (it was gorgeous!) as that seemed an invasion of privacy. I did, however, snap a photo of this kitty (Emmie, who the same friend is pet-sitting) hoping for a potential protein source to land outside her window:
The work was hard, but the pay was surprisingly good–better than that offered for most of the jobs I’ve been applying for, which is quite sad, really. I’m not a good enough housekeeper to hang out my shingle, or dust mop, in this case, but I’d help out again, if needed. I am, however, pursuing the pet sitting biz. I had no idea how much it paid! And I’ve already got my first customer! Woot!
Saturday was the day of the big reunion, and it started early–5 a.m. I made a super easy batch of mini-corn muffins (more on those later in the week) and hopped in the car to do some country touring on the way. First stop, Oxford, MS, home of the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss).
Oxford is one of those quaint southern towns with a courthouse at the town center and shops and restaurants on the square surrounding it. I enjoyed walking around and window shopping. Eventually I sought some shade and had a visit with this guy:
William Faulkner lived in Oxford off and on for most of his life, and the university maintains his home there. Fortunately for me, he was much less wordy on this visit than he was as an author. I didn’t have time for chit-chat. I had a reunion to get to and more miles to travel. But first, a quick stop at McD’s since I had no idea if there were any rest areas up ahead. Good call; there weren’t. Plus, the stop provided this giggle:
A town with a sense of humor and a sense of community–I like it!
It’s a woman on a horse, right? Big deal. Except she’s texting while riding. It’s not something you see every day. And you shouldn’t. If I can’t drive and text (and I don’t!), then she shouldn’t get to ride and text. And if you squint, you can just make out two mangy (literally!) dogs barking warnings at her from the middle of the road.
Five miles and seventeen turns later, I arrived at the site of the reunion:
I have to tell you, it’s very surreal to see the names on some of these headstones and then go inside the reunion and talk to those same people. Apparently it’s the custom to purchase a double headstone when a spouse dies and do as much of the engraving as possible. Maybe they see it as being more expedient for the family left behind if all they have to do is have the date of death engraved? I dunno, but it would definitely create a dilemma if there was a remarriage in the future.
Anyway. Amongst the living, there was food and more food:
Blueberries, melons, tomatoes and corn are in season, and we had several dishes featuring those. Plus, we had cousin Carol’s traditional caramel cake–so-o-o- good! It was worth driving several hours for, that’s for sure, even if my piece was extra small because there were so many people there that I didn’t want to be piggish and deprive them of the caramely goodness. I made up for it by having an equally small piece of coconut cake and, later, a blond brownie for the road.
It was great to see everyone again, but I’m glad we only do this once a year! LOL I’m also glad that there are no events like this on my calendar for the next several months. I’m ready to get back to splurging on fro-yo!
But for this week, I’m focused on workouts and home projects. Plus, I may build a website for my new pet-sittin’ biz. Or maybe I’ll defer that until I actually complete an engagement.
Wishing you all a wonderful week ahead!