When I think back to the days when I was a child, I can’t help but let my mind wander down Memory Lane. There are moments when I yearn for that point in time when life just seemed simpler. With my cousins by my side, there were watermelon seed spitting contests, great canoe races, counting chicken pox spots, taking turns licking brownie batter with the same spoon and learning to drive a stick shift at the local dump (at the age of twelve).

When Andrew Ruimerman and his bride Kimberlie appeared on the Texaco doorstep about a week ago, my mind when whooshing back to all of those fantastic memories of my youth. It wasn’t necessarily them that brought me there but it was their tiny babe Maria who was my ticket back in time. Maria was visiting her grandparents home—Janet Weidner and Tom Ruimerman—for the very first time. Walking through the doorway at grandma and grandpa’s house is somehow like time traveling to another dimension. You know, there’s always that one particular stair that creeks as you’re sneaking down for a late night glass of water. There’s the sound the screen door makes when it whacks the frame or that smell that billows as you sneak through lilac bushes to retrieve the football cousin Ben tossed too far. No matter what your age, stepping into your grandparents house almost always prompts those memories to flood in. Looking at Maria’s sweet little face and cooing vocabulary made me hopeful for a future filled with memory making.

I bumped into Robert Hannemann a week or two ago and he mentioned it was fast approaching two decades ago that he typed and sent me news of the arrival of his and Margaret’s very first grandchild. We had a little chuckle and I suggested it was, perhaps, time for a familial update. A message popped up in my inbox and, voila, the 2024 version of the Hannemann grandchildren update appeared. Huck, that little boy he mentioned so long ago, is now preparing for his first year at Grinnell College.

In the interim, they’ve added eight more grandkids to the fray. As Robert said, it’s a “complete team, except no designated hitter.” Huck has been joined by sister Emma and cousins Teddy, George, Lula, Frankie, June, Finn and Parker. The whole gang was together for the Fourth and the three have jobs with the Beach Department, so continue to add just enough chaos to their grandparents lives.

Stephanie (Bouchard) Neipris and her two younger kiddos, Alan and Dorothy, ventured to town to enjoy family time and Stephanie’s old stomping grounds. Much time was spent wandering from her childhood home on Flanders Lane to Menemsha Beach, enjoying time with cousins Mikey and Hailey Waters and participating in general island frolic. If you didn’t have a chance to catch up with her and the gang, have no fear, they will return in August.

Spider and Sarah Andresen’s youngest, Whitney and her two little guys Wilder and Bodie have been in town along with dad Michael Morris. They’ve been pulling crab traps, eating ice cream, wandering the dock and managed to have some quality time with Whitney’s brother Tyler, his wife Kelly and their three children, Violet, Casey and Maya. It’s so fun to see the next generation doused in drippy ice cream with sand between their toes and hair spiked with sunscreen.

Chic and Chris Lee’s grandson Clifford Moniz, his gal Bethany and brand new pup Martha have been vacationing in Menemsha harbor this past week. It’s always fun to catch up with someone I’ve known since they were little.

A rousing hip, hip, hooray goes out to Della Darling who recently celebrated her ninetieth birthday. Not only did her children Peter, Susan and Scott cheer as she blew out the candles but Whale Hill was a revolving door of well-wishing visitors.