Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Man, She is Hot

One 5-minute downpour Friday night was followed by heat & humidity that still hasn't let up. Pretty nice weather for outdoor visiting in and around "the big tent," though. Better than cold and rain.

A pie-throwing contest was a fundraiser and these cousins, among others, were darn good sports about it. Apparently the pies were tasty too. 
Sign tacked up on the wall of the big tent.
Dad's cousin Orilea, party planner extraordinaire, along with her husband Bob, pulled off a smashing gathering for well over 100 relatives. I am still in awe of all the thought and effort that went into it, and somewhat ashamed of my own energy levels and ambition in comparison. I'll say it again: Wow. I'm not sure I'd ever have the guts to tackle it, myself.

These are the only pictures I took. The camera hung off a belt loop on my jeans till the last morning. What the -- ? Guess I was too busy yakking. (And yes, jeans in this sky-high temperature, in an effort to avoid sunburn. Spose I should be thankful that only my neck, shoulders and nose burnt, considering I didn't manage to stay in the shade every moment and obviously didn't apply enough sunscreen.)

We had a bus tour to the small village of Lintlaw, near which our grandparents (my great-grandparents) raised their nine children (out of 12) who survived to adulthood. The tour came complete with two knowledgeable and entertaining guides who provided family history and memories. We learned that Engdahl was not originally the family name! Back in Sweden it was Isacksson, and our great-grandfather made up a new one for himself after arriving in the States at age 17. Apparently "eng" was the name of a place he had lived back in the old country, and "dahl" means "valley" -- however Google's translator.com doesn't appear to know anything about these words. It thinks "eng" is German.

Anyhoo, it was an enjoyable weekend and then Dad, my sister Joan and family, and brother Cameron have been here since last week so we have been cramming in even more visiting together since the weekend. We gathered with Mom's family to bury Grandma's ashes on Sunday afternoon and then descended upon Karen's lakefront deck to visit some more and fill our faces at suppertime. This we repeated just down the road from her place yesterday, at my nephew's, and tonight supper is on me.

But it's going to be take-out, or going to town, because I can't bear the thought of turning on the oven or even the top of the stove to prepare something that could go into the slow-cooker or electric oven and be plugged in outside. The house, which seems cool enough this afternoon when you come in from the great outdoors, would be an inferno tonight.

Maybe air conditioning would be nice to have! We've thought that there are so few really hot days here, annually, that we can live without it. And of course we can. But these hot days do curb your options in the kitchen, that's for sure, which is why I am never completely sorry to see the end of summer.

For now I'm not complaining. We needed the heat.