flying high

I’ve been on a major high since reconnecting with a dear friend, but that wasn’t the only thing that made last weekend one of the best we’ve had in awhile.

Andrew got smart and hired one of the neighborhood kids to help him mulch this year, and they got eight yards done in two evenings. Deaglan is a great kid and he’s excited to help Andrew with some more projects this summer, including a ‘potting patio’ for me behind our garage with leftover pavers from our patio. We still have a bit of mulching left to go, but it would have taken the two of us an entire week (or more!) to do that without Deaglan’s help. Before Maelle, I did much of our yardwork, including mowing and mulching. While I miss the freedom to spend that much time in the yard, I can’t say I miss all the back-breaking work… (<– A great ‘before’ of our backyard and all the work we did/started six [SIX!!] years ago.)

On Saturday, the three of us spent some (shockingly) rare time simply relaxing out back. After spending many of the recent weekends cleaning the patio and deck, it was nice to just SIT. We felt a little guilty not racing off to the pool on such a nice day, but Maelle was content to play with her water table and we gave ourselves permission to actually enjoy the patio. We even ate lunch down on the couches instead of the table!

Sunday morning was Father’s Day! Andrew took Maelle to pick up fresh bagels from Blue Eyed Baker. That’s become their new weekend activity together, and Maelle has even started yelling ‘bagels!’ anytime we walk near the shop.

He got some cards, new socks and a ‘papa’ shirt…you know, the usual Father’s Day gifts. But then the fun REALLY began…

We met a BLUE ANGEL!

OK, that was a bit too dramatic. And not even technically true; I’ve known Jim since we were teenagers!

Long story short, I found out the Blue Angels were in town for the Thunder of Niagara air show and sent Jim a message, crossing all my fingers and toes that he’d be able to spare a few minutes to see each other. We were best friends in high school, but–as these things go sometimes–we lost touch and twenty years goes by in a blink. (TWENTY YEARS?!)

(Our giant smiles say it all–we’re back in touch and all is right with the world again.)

Of course, Jim not only returned my text but got us some last-minute ‘friends and family’ tickets as well. I joked to Andrew that I’ve never been ‘general admission’ to an air show (Growing up with your dad in the Navy merits you very few things, but one thing you DO get is VIP access to the air show.), and I didn’t start now! Ha.

I don’t think I’ve been to an air show in about twenty years, either! Seeing the planes, listening to the music and narration, HEARING the jets…it all made me so nostalgic for my childhood. I guess I didn’t realize how much of the ‘military’ lifestyle I enjoyed and perhaps missed, if only a little. It was so special to bring my husband and daughter to their first air show, and I hope we keep going.

This is the first time in my life I don’t live in a military area and I think–unfortunately–fewer and fewer men and women grow up wanting to serve their country. It’s important we continue to support our warfighters, whether they are medics, support staff or demonstration pilots.

Thankfully, Andrew’s parents can be bribed to babysit with the promise of Apple tv–we got them hooked on Ted Lasso–and we went back into the city that evening to meet Jim for dinner. We ended up at Pearl Street, and we were talking so much we didn’t end up ordering our food until 9 p.m. We reminisced about memories from high school, and Andrew and Jim hit it off with their common interests of aviation issues (albeit more work-related), sailing and golf. Despite hours of talking, I feel like we’ve just scratched the surface of catching up on each others’ lives.

As I was scrolling Instagram the other night, I came across this verse on @jennrothschild: “A sweet friendship refreshes the soul.” (Proverbs 27:9)

It’s so true, and I feel that deeply right now. I feel like I’ve gotten a friend back from the dead! (As crazy as that sounds.) Jim is onto his next air show, and life will return to normal for both of us, but I know we aren’t going to let another twenty years go by before we see each other again.

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