As I sit here in my apartment, listening to the rain outside, I know that vacation time is over. As emails from school folk start rolling in again, and meetings are beginning once again, I know that vacation is over. But oh how wonderful it was.

Yes, I was exhausted by the end of it all and sick and tired of being in a car, but I would do it again.

Being on vacation reminded me of why I write. I write because others may never know that July cornfields in Iowa look like velvet, or the stories the wrinkles on my Grandma's hands have to tell. I write because of the sound of kids' laughing against the backdrop of ocean waves. I write because I think people have forgotten the miracle of flying, and the miracle of sitting on your porch drinking sweet tea with your family. I write because I have to somehow try to describe feeling your niece kick and squirm inside your sister. I write because of a dad who understands perseverance, sweat, blood, and accomplishment. I write because of family, the ocean, the midwest, friendships, popsicles, and the Fourth of July.

I've been working on sorting through my pictures, and I'll leave you with just a few and post more later (posting pictures can be a little time consuming).

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