It possibly wasn't as carefree as it looks. There was child wrangling and I got shat on by a bird. But there was water and sand and sun and that beautiful golden light.There was lots of scootering on the paths because there's no concrete where Ruby-Lee and Maeve live and even though they get to scooter and play with their ride on toys inside on the hardwood floors, it's not the same as a big long path. Something about the dynamic has changed between the children, they're all a little bit older (with exactly two years between each of them). Grace is also a lot more assertive and sure of herself and much more able to tell me what she needs - as in, mum, I just need some time to myself. When your sociable introvert only child says that, it's good for every one to take note. All in all though, the children played really well together and the grownups were nice to each other and drank beer with their chips. Even me. Just half a stubby, because it tasted so damned good.
Another thing I just remembered is how I was struck by the cousin's sureness of their relationship with each other and it's importance. I'm not the best at between visit skypes and phone conversations but Grace and Ruby-Lee especially looked forward to the visit and regarded it as pretty important. Once we had been there a little while, Maeve also seemed quite sure that we were family. Writing these posts just makes me want to go back. To have a barbeque by the river this weekend. To drink beer and catch up on the gossip. It would probably even be warm enough to swim now.