A summer photo-dump coffee date and an Anthropology Giveaway!!
It’s that time of the year again…time to catch up on the last few months of life over a cup of something yummy. I’m just hanging out here, hoping you’ll pull up a chair and join me… 😉
I’m at least starting this post from a sweet little spot at the Honolulu Coffee Co. at Ala Moana Mall in Honolulu. I took a rare afternoon downtown to do some returns (and ok, hit the sale rack at Anthropology!) and decided this was a good time to order a soy mocha (with light whip because: balance) and hang out with all of you for a few minutes!
So: what’s your bevy of choice? And…what is on your mind? Really: I’m wondering what you’d want to talk about over coffee? (save that thought for the end of the post and you can enter to win a giveaway!)
Since our last coffee date, I cannot believe how many big things have happened in our family. Like, way more than usual. Two graduations, a World Championship, a couple birthdays, and somehow my kids have covered much of the globe (while Dave and I have mostly stayed on the island.) If we were to sit over coffee I’d probably have to just pull out my phone and show some photo highlights, so that’s exactly what I’ll do here.
But before I dive into that, I’d have to just smile and say: Aren’t you happy it’s nearly fall? I have loved fall since I was a kid and fall wasn’t the thing that it is today. (yes, even before the PSL!) I talk about this every year here, even as we acknowledge that…Hawaii DOES NOT HAVE FALL. 😢 (It’s ok, I’ve come to peace with it.) You might remember that I create my own microcosm of fall each September — decorating the house with (fake) pumpkins, burning my favorite fall candles, cranking the A/C, and telling Alexa to play “fall jazz.” (and my family is like: “What even is that, Mom!??” 🤷🏼♀️) I will soon start a regular rotation of soups and baked-pumpkin-everything.
Happy Note: I do have a trip coming up in early November to the very east coast for a writing conference, and I’m counting on a little taste of true fall then!
Photo dump first, (hang in there — it’s a LOT, and of course you are welcome to skim!)
- Luke graduated (homeschool) high school in May.
2. Josiah graduated from Westmont college the following week!
We had a great time in Santa Barbara. (including Mother’s Day! ❤️)
(My parents AND Dave’s dad ^ gathered with us in Santa Barbara for that!)
After graduation, Josiah and Levi went on a road trip together. 🥰
Then Levi came home and turned 12.
And I made a Baked Alaska. 👍🏽
While that was happening, Luke was in El Salvador for the Jr. World Surf Championships. Hundreds of surfers from 55 countries…
AND HE WON!! 🤩
THAT was exciting.
Then Luke came home for a minute before taking off for Indonesia to train.
Jonah got to spend the whole summer with us while working remotely and hydrofoiling a lot. 🙂
And he turned 21 while he was here.
Josiah turned 23 (without us — ) Then, stopped in to visit at the end of summer. He and Jonah crossed paths for one quick night.
I did two rounds of book edits over the summer.
-As many as possible from my favorite office space — Turtle Bay Resort. 😀
I soaked in time with Josiah before he left to travel around Europe for a month with a friend. (See his adventures on IG here.)
By August all of the older boys were gone and Levi and Dave and I had a new normal…
Levi has had some adjusting to do with being an only child (not his favorite!) but we have bonded over iced (decaf) coffees (sugar is his love language, unfortunately 😜) ping pong, the driving range, and a fresh new homeschool year!
Jonah took a trip to Alaska before college started. He caught a LOT of salmon and halibut.
Like, a lot a lot.Then, Luke’s summer travels kind of went on and on. What we thought might be a month in Indonesia turned into 2.5 months. Then he was invited to Waco, Tx (wave pool) for some training (and did this new move there) After that he needed to stop back in California for some surf-related business, and when we found out he was invited back to Indonesia for a contest in September, Dave, Levi and I decided to meet him in the middle! We flew to San Clemente last week to hang out with Luke for a week. And I’m so glad we did. We had a blast.
It was good for Luke to rest a bit. He had a bit of an ear infection which Dave helped him figure out. And we fed him well. And got him a hair cut. (scroll over to see before and after!) And he golfed a few times.
Levi was one happy little bro.
Luke is currently on his way back to Indonesia for the Stab High surf contest. (follow my IG feed in case I can share links to the contest.)We’re hoping to get him home in October. (And then I may never let him leave again. 😂)
Finally, the three of us had to return to work, homeschool, and our no-fall-fall in Hawaii. Ever notice — Leaving for a trip is much more fun than coming back? awwww.
Well…That was too much even for a coffee date! I’m not sure if you had enough caffeine to stay awake for all of that! haha.
Of course I’d love for you to whip out your phone next and show me your photos, too. I would love to hear what your summer has been like. Hopefully a little more restful than ours! And how does the fall look ahead?
Before we wrap up, I would have to mention how excited I am to be starting my first ONLINE BOY MOM BOOK STUDY on Monday (9/19). (If you aren’t signed up yet, please check it out here. It’s free and it’s gonna be great!)
I’d also tell you that I’ve been busy preparing for my next BOOK (releasing in Feb. 2023) and I’d promise that some BIG UPDATES are coming about the book (title, cover, who wrote my Foreward, and so on…) in just a couple weeks! 🎊 I’m also going to be sharing some little/big changes coming to the PODCAST in the new year then! To be first to hear all of that make sure you are on my EMAIL LIST!
*Also, FYI: In my weekly emails I often share favorite books or recipes, links to helpful or interesting things, and much more. I think you’ll be glad you joined!
In October I will be sharing a Q & A episode on the Podcast so this is a great time to leave me questions about ANYTHING at all! Also — and speaking of the podcast — Thank you for listening! Our downloads have quadrupled this last year, and we have so many more great topics and guests coming up this fall and winter!
NOW FOR A GIVEAWAY!? Leave me a comment below, and I’ll enter you to win one of TWO $50 ANTHROPOLOGY GIFT CARDS! Winners will be chosen randomly on Friday (September 23rd).
Giveaway is closed!! Thank you SO MUCH for all of the awesome comments! I LOVED Hearing from you all!
Congrats to Colleen and Stephanie! (I have emailed you directly!)
TELL ME: What would you want to chat about if we could have coffee…just the two of us!? (+ anything else you’d like to update me on!)
If you’re an email subscriber, let me know and I’ll give you DOUBLE entries! (If you share this post on social media, same! Just be sure to tag me on IG @monicaswanson_ or Facebook – @Monica Swanson- the grommom
I hope you know that I pray for all of you and thank God for this amazing community! Thank you for doing life alongside me, from all over the world…
So much love and hugs to all of you!
PS Ten random things about me in my Aloha Friday Introduction post on IG.