I’m writing this is the calm after the storm that was my daughter’s third birthday party. One word: WHEW. We had grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts and uncles and good friends, as well as four other kids under six here for cake, ice cream, and sandwiches from Neal’s Deli (the best, best, BEST place in Carrboro, oh my goodness). My daughter woke up promptly at 5:30 on Saturday morning, asking if it was time for her party yet. Well, no. She asked again and again, all day, was so excited and then….when everyone arrived, buried her face in my shoulder and hid. After a little while, though, she warmed up, especially when we brought out the presents. Man, what a haul. Yes, there were stuffed animals (are you surprised? I wasn’t) as well as hula hoops and paper dolls and banks and books. The cake was great, not that I got to eat any until about 9pm, hours after everyone had gone. I really have to learn how to eat at my own parties. I get so caught up in making sure everyone else has what they need that I just forget, and the next thing I know we’re down to two sandwiches. Scary stuff. Luckily I am NOT such a good hostess that I felt bad about immediately eating them both.

I swear, though, this last week was all about the crazy. First day of preschool, third birthday, birthday party AND the end of summer, all crammed into about four days. Factor in that I’ve also been doing copyediting on WHAT HAPPENED TO GOODBYE, making final tweaks here and there AND working on some super-duper top secret book promotion stuff (I can’t wait to tell you, it’s hilarious) and it’s no wonder I’m feeling tired today. I need a week of total Zen and peace to get myself back in fighting shape.

Yeah, I know. Like that’s actually going to happen. And let’s face it, after about fifteen minutes of Zen and peace I’d probably be bored. It’s just how I am, I guess.

We’re celebrating the end of summer tonight with hot dogs, peanut butter and jelly stuffed jalapenos (my husband’s specialty: I don’t partake, as I can’t do the heat, but they have large following of those who can). Beans from the garden, leftover cake with pink icing, and the bean salad and pasta salad I of course forgot to put out last night because I was too distracted not eating. Sigh. There’s a chill in the air in the mornings—I wore a sweater today, for a little while!—and I’m pulling out jeans I haven’t seen in months. Fall is here: the leaves are actually falling, and there’s no bigger proof than that.

I am determined not to start another book anytime soon, as I am still so burned out from the last one. But I have a feeling I won’t be able to wait all that long. A time will come when it’s cold and dry and gray and I’m sick of chapped lips and slippers. Probably sometime in January or early February, way before the warm weather returns. Thank goodness for writing. Even if it’s winter outside, you can always make summer on the page. And something’s not really gone if you always know one place to find it. Right?

Have a good night, everyone.

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