Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Historic Boston

After logging several hours in the car, we finally arrived in Boston, the historical landmark of our nation's freedom. What an amazing time we had walking the Freedom Trail, riding the T-rail, eating in the North End, and visiting the New England Aquarium. We packed so many things into two and a half short days, but the memories we made will last a lifetime! Here is a list of some of our favorites:

  • Riding the T-rail with hundreds of Red Sox fans into Boston from our hotel near Riverside
  • Walking through the Boston Public Gardens and envisioning Mr. and Mrs. Duck and their happy, quacky family from the book, Make Way For Ducklings by Robert McClosky
  • Winding along the Freedom Trail in the middle of downtown Boston to the Granary Burial Grounds where lie such great American patriots as Paul Revere, Crispus Attucks, Samuel Adams, and John Hancock
  • Remembering a key moment of our nation's history below the balcony where first was read the Declaration of Independence
  • Standing on the very ground of the Boston Massacre and contemplating its significance to the Revolutionary War
  • Watching a street magician perform outside Faneuil Hall before crowds of curious people
  • Listening to the children recite Paul Revere's Ride by the doors of the Old North Church
  • Devouring mouth watering Pesto Alfredo at Little Italy's La Famiglia Giorgio's in Boston's North End followed by authentic pistachio gelato at a small quiet cafe across the street
  • Touring USS Constitution or "Old Ironsides" and USS Cassin Young before heading to Bunker Hill Monument
  • Dining at Warren's Tavern, the old pub where George Washington used to take his ale
  • Gazing at sharks and other sea creatures at the New England Aquarium
  • Waiting in a long line for world renowned cannoli from Mike's Pastry.....yum!!!!
  • Collapsing into bed at the end of a very long walking day only to be awoken at 2:00am by the fire alarm at the hotel

We had a marvelous time exploring the wonders of Boston together as a family, yet the short days spent there didn't do justice to the historic city. Maybe some day we will return to once again haunt the streets of Little Italy in the Old North End, and take in all of it's aroma of garlic and fresh baked bread before exploring the vast treasures of the great, historic landmark we have not yet discovered......

....but until then, we say good-bye, farewell, we hope to see you sometime again fair city of Boston!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Mom's Front Porch

The winding road of my summer adventures carried me first to my mother's delightful front porch. Sipping cold iced tea while listening to happy children frolic about the large front yard situated so beautifully at the top of Whispering Oaks Lane brought great refreshment to my road weary soul. The rhythmic creaking of the swing and the wind rustling through the leaves created a subtle symphonic background for delightful conversations as well as contemplative moments of reading and thinking. New goals were set, prayers were prayed, books were read, and relationships were nourished because of the creative endeavors of my precious, hospitable mother.

As I soaked in the moments of refreshment, I contemplated the many memories of hospitality she demonstrated before me as a young girl. The doors of her home were always open, and her graciousness stretched to needy young children who came from broken homes, to lonely old men and women who often were overlooked by others, to isolated international students looking for a second family, to neighbors, to friends, to friends of her children, and most of all to her family. She could host intimate settings with simple food for a few, or create a smorgasbord of deliciousness for large gatherings.

Her legacy of hospitality created a burning desire within me to work a little harder, reach a little farther, give a little deeper of myself and my home in order to refresh the souls of others in the same manner I have seen her refresh so many. I left her home so thankful for her open door and extended arms, and so renewed for the trip I had before me.