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Family, Food for thought

Life’s a beach

New year, new opportunities to find a better balance.

I’m determined to do it this year — continue to work hard, play hard and not lose my mind in the process.

Stop laughing. It’s possible, I’m convinced of it.

Jan. 1 found us taking down the Christmas tree. It was no easy task. Many of the ornament strings had wrapped themselves around the branches in the tree’s fall on Dec. 23, perhaps endeavoring to maintain their posts. It was like a reverse of untangling the lights at the beginning of the tree-decorating process, and it involved an equal amount of swearing.

Once the vacuuming marathon ended and the furniture was back in place, we headed to the beach.

This is another of our annual traditions, and this year we super-sized the effort on account of the day’s unseasonably mild temperatures. It seemed the entire town had the same idea and why not? The sun was shining, the air was warm for January and the day stretched endlessly ahead.

First stop, the pile of trees awaiting their fate at the teeth of the shredder. We added ours to the collection, then dodged the lady who had tied her tree to the back of her SUV and was dragging it behind her rather than get some pine needles inside the vehicle.

Only in Greenwich, CT. We had to laugh.

As if it was a hot July day, we had to search for parking — it was rather like a party as we strolled from one end of the sand to the other, watching the many dogs gamboling in the waves, and the huge numbers of kids, many wearing rain boots and carrying shovels and pails, play in the incoming tide. Bare-legged joggers dotted the landscape.

We joined a long line of folks at the concession and treated ourselves to chili and fries, watched the sun glitter on the water and the world go by. Lots of kids tried out gifts from Santa: tricycles, bikes, scooters, a really cool, dragon-shaped kite. The littlest guys tested their sea legs, snuggled in their coats and hats and mittens.

For an hour we could exhale, and shove aside the various to-do lists and scheduling nightmares headed our way once reality resumed.

It marked a solid start for the year — a glimpse at a bit of balance.

Well, at least until Tuesday.

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About Terri S. Vanech

Wife, mother, communications specialist, Jazzercise instructor and recently reunited adoptee. I'm living out loud -- and trying to make it all work -- in midlife. Having a sense of humor sure helps.

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