I have been laying low for the past week because I was out of the country at a conference. And because I took my husband and daughter with me, there was no one keeping watch over the old homestead. So as much as I wanted to share photos and updates as things unfolded, I thought it was best not to advertise that our house was empty. We were here:
I attend the Society for the Scientific Study of REading every year, and this year we met at the Don CeSar Hotel in St. Pete Beach, Florida. When I first learned the location, I thought it was mad to have a meeting in Florida in July. But I'm telling you, it was bliss.
We went down a few days before the meeting so that we could have some time together - a little family time before our daughter goes off to university. My husband deeply needed some resting time to restore his soul after the loss of his mother in April. We closed out her apartment just two days before we left for the beach. As we are early risers normally, he and I enjoyed a 6:30 am walk on the beach every morning. We saw dolphins and crabs and picked up some pretty shells. The water was as warm as a bathtub!
Our daughter was glad to have the opportunity to work on her tan, and she managed herself very well, with ample sunscreen, and avoided getting burned.
We had great plans to do lots of things in the vicinity, but once we got there, we couldn't seem to drag ourselves away from the hotel, aside from a lunch or two off-premises.
But mostly it was all we could do to manage the 20 metre trek from the pool to the beach and back again several times a day.
The conference is one that I have attended since 1994 and it always features the best and most current reading science. I look forward to seeing my good friends from other universities, and catching up. The sessions were all very good, and my session was well-attended, but it was hard to concentrate, as the view from every window was so compelling!
It was a week filled with luxury, far beyond our normal level of indulgence, you can be sure! As nice as it was, though, we were glad to come home to see our two dogs, who spent the week at summer camp (aka boarding kennel). Alas, while in Florida, we came to rely on air conditioning to mitigate the heat and humidity, and we have no AC here at home. Our house was a sauna upon our return yesterday!