Last fling of the summer

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Hi neighbors. I hope you are enjoying the last long weekend of summer. Labor Day weekend is heralded as the last summer fling before the fall schedules lock us all into our autumn and winter routines.

Many families celebrate together with reunions, backyard barbecues, short vacations and trips to the lakes for boating, fishing and skiing.

Some homebodies prefer to use all hands on deck for painting or remodeling/repairing the house, cleaning out the garage, yard work preparing plants for winter, cleaning out closets to sort warm weather clothing from sweaters and jackets, etc. There is always work to do when the seasons change.

Of course there is school starting. Young adults head off to college. Many facing dormitory living have to prepare and learn a few quick recipes for cooking survival. Budgets have to be determined; care packages of food and special items have to be prepared. Schedules of time off for family events, weekend grocery and laundry runs have to be determined. The first weekend has to have money saved back for unexpected college expenses and sudden rushes home for things forgotten.

What seems to be an impossible schedule settles into routine by next month; so try to relax and be supportive with time, expertise and, of course, money.

There is never an end to money needed for school no matter what grade your child is entering this fall. Lunch money, locker rental, books to buy or rent, laptops or notebooks are furnished by most schools, but there are still the notebooks, pens, pencils, and miscellaneous items that have to be bought.

Younger children need Crayolas, colored pencils, glue, scissors, rulers and a few other things on the school lists.

A new school wardrobe is needed for this year's "look." New shoes, new coats, new outfits for gym classes, new clothing for various school clubs and classes are always demanded.

If you look through any school yearbook, you'll discover that each year had its own look but most of the students have similar haircuts, hairstyles and clothing choices.

But this weekend is for fun whether shopping, sailing, swimming, visiting, traveling or working at home. I strongly urge all families to enjoy this last weekend of the summer. Remember the rule, no labor on Labor Day!

With summer reaching its end, it's time to start thinking of extra activities to replace those of the summer. Nevada has many fine clubs, organizations and attractions to keep volunteers busy all winter. The chamber of commerce can help you find an organization that might suit your interests.

Two of my favorite interests are writing and genealogy. Although summer is a time for hiking through cemeteries, I prefer to wait till the ticks, snakes and chiggers are less plentiful. Writers and genealogists all know to plan activities at least four to six months in advance. Writers should already be done working on Thanksgiving and Christmas stories and be concentrating on New Year's and Valentine's Day stories. It's no wonder all fiction writers are a bit lost in space, as they never think about current events to write about but have to concentrate on three to six months in the future.

Genealogists are no better off as their points of reference are often more than a hundred years in the past. Although social media, message boards and online searches are great tools for genealogists, the extended family reunions are the best go-to events to collect information and family photos.

I intend to spend this fall planning a public, family event for next spring for a bring and exchange opportunity for people who are family, or who know family of any generation, to share photos and information with each other. I take my computer, scanner, printer and plenty of blank CDs to gather and share with others.

Another interest that takes some of my time is the Creative Writers group. Although we usually meet the first Monday of each month, this month the first Monday is a holiday. We will meet the second Monday, Sept. 12, at 10:30 a.m., in the Nevada Public Library. Great conversations are always the norm at the meetings designed to kick-start creative thinking. I hope you drop in and join us.

One activity suitable for individuals, families or groups is simply walking around the parks. Nevada has several nice parks with walking trails. Take a camera and catch some scenic or wildlife photos.

Until the next time friends, remember that just like the weather, life changes day-to-day and we should enjoy each moment as it is available to us. Have fun this weekend with family and friends.