As a native Oregonian, I was shocked to realize recently that it had been more than nine entire months since I had set foot in my home state. Nine months! I could have gone through an entire pregnancy from conception to childbirth in that amount of time (please note I said could have; this in no way a reflection on what actually happened during the previous nine months)!
Fortunately, last weekend remedied this situation, as Michael, Lucy, and I drove to my parents' home late Friday night. Saturday was spent with my parents, dining (I use the word here with just a touch of the facetious) at Sheridan's lone Chinese restaurant - home of Michael's favorite General Tso's chicken, hiking out to the point of Cape Lookout on the coast for some fabulous views and woodland scenery, and letting the dogs loose on the beach, where a piece of kelp stood in quite nicely for a stick for Lucy to chase.
We had picked this last weekend of the summer for our trip as a wedding reception was held on Sunday for my cousin, Noah. The wedding had been in Mississippi, and the reception was a casual one, although the setting, in a beautifully landscaped home garden outside of Newberg, and the weather were gorgeous. The casual atmosphere was apparantly a good match for Noah - well, actually, even this setting was more formal than Noah's wedding attire, which he dutifully wore to the reception. While Rosalie, his bride, wore a lovely, simple white wedding gown, Noah had on a pair of dungarees, a striped Hickory shirt, and red lumberjack suspenders. I'm not sure how he convinced Roaslie that dressing like a logger was the way to go for the ceremony; perhaps the folks in Mississippi figured that this must just be how us Oregonians get gussied up. But hey, at least the clothes were clean.
We were on our way to Seattle following the reception, sadly with one of our family left behind. Lucy will spend the next month and a half as a farm dog with my parents, who have offered to dogsit while Michael and I vacation in Greece. But now that we're back home and still have almost two weeks until our trip, the house feels strangely lonely without our beloved pup. Nuisance though she may be at times, it is comforting to come home to someone who's always excited to see you, always eager to snuggle up next to you on the sofa, and who sleeps only an arm's distance away next to my bed each night.
But I have the feeling the next two weeks will be busy enough that we won't have too much of a chance to miss her. And when we get back, Lucy will be an bonafide Oregonian herself, fully integrated into her country dog ways. But don't worry, I'm sure she'll miss her Seattle sofa, at least a little bit.