My husband and I returned from a trip to San Diego Monday evening to find a large package beside our front door. It was from a friend who visited us recently and said the setting at our “family compound” required a hammock. As we talked about the hammock, I envisioned hours spent under the shade of an enormous oak tree with beverage in one hand and frivolous novel in the other enjoying the warm Florida breezes.
The setting is Sarasota, Florida. My husband, son, his wife, her parents and two young grandchildren moved from three houses in the area into our two-acre compound last fall. We have enjoyed time around our new fire pit, afternoons on our dock, impromptu dinners, a Christmas Eve remote boat parade and all the other times in between. I consider myself one of the luckiest people alive.
At the same time, however, my husband and I are fully renovating the house we chose to inhabit. That includes hiring workers to rip out kitchen walls, flooring and cabinets, re-roof, create a new entrance and remodel two bathrooms. In addition, I am starting our new business venture with friends Doris and Lisa. I am sharing childcare and transportation responsibilities with the other grandmother, and I am checking on my mother, diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, in an assisted living facility on the other side of our pond. Read more