Every year on my birthday my mom and her husband Joe take Tim, Isabella and me to Woodman’s in Essex for fried clams and chowder. Afterwards my mother insists on this endless drive around Cape Ann for a mini version of ‘Lauren Gillette, this is your life’ complete with numerous signposts of my young life. My husband usually falls asleep, and my daughter looks at me like I owe her big time, but I kinda like it. So, in case my mother has neglected to tell you, Nelson Beach holds the unique distinction of being the locale of my first beach trip. She will also tell you it took 4 hours to pack up enough baby crap to get there and which we stayed half an hour because I was not in the mood for the beach. Oh yeah, in case she hasn’t told you, my bathing suit was orange with horizontal stripes.