Posted by: jeannineatkins | June 30, 2011


People around here, and that’s a pretty broad “here” taking in lots of New England, have had a lot to say about rain this spring, so I was happy that the long weekend my daughter got for a visit included some sun. Being from L.A., Emily was done with mostly gray days after one and  a half of them, and found it hard to believe that was our norm. I think she got the hint as we had lunch and did a few errands in Northampton, and strangers couldn’t help exclaiming over the sun that showed up. It felt like old days driving around with her and occasionally pulling out my laptop while she went off. She saw some old friends, visited her grandparents, got in some time with the dogs and her own old bed. So it was hard to leave that, but we made a family road trip to Maine, trying to pack into two days some of what we’ve eked out over two weeks in the past. There was the sound and smell of the ocean crashing on rocks, the vanishing pool at the Cliff House, shared fried clams, Moose Track ice cream, the J. Crew outlet, Harry Potter being read in the back seat, Oginquit and Kennebunkport, Maine and Portsmouth, N.H. street life and shops.

Now it’s laptop on the porch season. I still have a peaceful sense of Emily sleeping upstairs, though she’s back home, glad for a short work week following the short vacation. I’ve got a draft of a new work in the hands of my husband and writing group, so July will be devoted to some revision and wading into a new book set in a favorite time and place: Concord in the 1860s. I’m looking into kayaks on the Concord River and bike paths as my husband asks about my desire to see “buildings that aren’t there any more.” And some that are. So writing and summer fun may mix.



  1. What a perfect photo!
    Sounds like a beautiful few days.
    I miss you.

  2. That is one pretty daughter you’ve got there!
    I’m glad you’ve had a nice visit.

  3. Hooray for visits with daughters! (C is here for the summer now, too!) Enjoy!

  4. Loved seeing your Maine photos. What a special place. And I miss you, too. How far is Brattleboro from you? I was thinking maybe a writing date there sometime?

  5. Visits with daughters are always precious. As I know is your time around here. But if you ever get any free time, I’d love to do coffee and maybe a writing date. (gosh, this seems to be my theme — see note to Jo above — with the right timing, maybe we can get her to Mass., too!)

  6. I’m loving your summer, Debbi! Paris and C!

  7. What a wonderful photo! And your summer plans sound perfect. Wishing I could be out kayaking with you…

  8. My husband is taking the July turn and she may be coming here in August, but I’m sure I’ll be back in September. Yes, let’s plan ahead and make Jo visit, too.

  9. Would love to. Brattleboro is about an hour from me. We should talk! 🙂

  10. Such happiness in your post here. I experience the same sweet feeling you do when my daughters leave, the sense that they are still warm in their beds. They might leave a half-empty water bottle or a sock that I discover later.
    Wishing you well with revisions and your next work. Don’t you wish you could write on the Maine coast all summer?

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  12. Sounds like a perfect start to a lovely summer. Beautiful picture.

  13. Ooh, Laptop on the Porch Season, how I long for you! Sweltering in these parts.. our LotPS lasts only a couple of weeks, usually in April & October. I DO enjoy the chair by the window… glad you are enjoying summer!

  14. The kayaking on the Concord is still in dream stage, but if it happens, I’ll definitely think of you standing on those banks talking about events of 150 years ago. Saw Jama today for the first time off the computer, and it was lovely, and your name was said with much tenderness and praise.

  15. Yes for half empty water bottles and stray pieces of underwear! It’s good to know they thrive in the world, but those moments back do bring such a special peace.
    Oh and Maine all summer long. Would it be productive, or would we just stare at the waves? Worth a shot…

  16. It does feel like summer is starting here, after a long rainy spring. Hoping to swim in a lake on the fourth, which will set the season in true motion, but wandering in (the very lower tip of) Maine with family was very very nice.

  17. Well in Mass. we have waited a long long time for porch season, and sometimes it only lasts through early morning or comes accompanied by fan, but yes it is delicious. Especially when the hummingbirds come out to sip perinneals. Hope lots is getting done by your chair by the window. Not wanting to make you jealous, but… dog panting after trying to catch moths, neighbor’s dog barking, but… a certain peace over the daisies and rugosa roses and with you in mind, thinking I’ll get back to a poem…

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