Thursday, July 15, 2010


We just returned from a "family vacation" last night around 8:00. I'm starting to wonder why people call these trips "family vacations". There was plenty of family there, but it was no vacation for me, let me tell you. An ideal vacation for a stay-at-home-mom would be a week a few days  a DAY without any kids! A day of peace and quiet and 24 hours of "me" time. But I digress.

We journeyed down to Amsterdam, NY last Friday to visit Daddio's family. His aunt, his cousin and her two kids were visiting from Pennsylvania, and his sister and her two kids were visiting from North Carolina. We hadn't seen his sister's family in a year and this was their first time meeting Ben! There were some good times, some bad times, and plenty of tears and yelling had by all.

The highlights:

*We were able to swim in a REAL pool. It wasn't an in-ground pool, but an above ground. But in my mind, anything that is not an inflatable kiddie pool is a REAL pool. The boys loved it, even Ben, which I was surprised because he is always fussing when he is in the kiddie pool. Owen had a blast playing in the pool with his cousin's mermaid Barbie. Hmmmm. Nothing wrong with that.

*We went out on the boat. On Saturday we went to a "mini" family reunion on the lake and Daddio brought his friend's boat with him. The kids had a blast riding on it, and Daddio let them drive it! Even Ben! I had my camera with me, but of course I left it in the diaper bag while we were on the boat, so I didn't get a single picture of the kids driving it! I'm hoping that someone else did.

*We went to the beach. Nothing says family vacation like a day at the beach with cousins! The kids all enjoyed swimming and playing in the sand.

Ben enjoyed eating the sand.

Owen practiced going underwater and breathing underwater with his aunt, and now I'm jealous because he can do it a lot better than Mommy! I told him that he would have to teach me how to do it.


*We had air conditioning! Usually we stay at Grandma's house when we're visiting, and her house is always like a sauna. But this time around, we stayed at Uncle Matt's apartment and it was air conditioned! Sooo much better.

*I had some "girlie" time. While Daddio took the three older boy cousins to the store, I played dress-up with Kaylee. We dressed up like princesses. I told her that I don't have any girls at home so I needed to make sure I got in as much dress-up time as possible with her.

Check out the bling!

*We went shopping. With just Ben. What a change that was! Granted it was only to Old Navy and Target, but it still counts! Especially since we don't have either store where we live. I was able to find three t-shirts that I actually liked, AND a pair of jeans on clearance for $7.50 at Old Navy. It was one of the best Old Navy stores that I have been to.

*We ate at Panera Bread. We don't have anything like this where we live either, so it was a nice treat! I had the Chipotle Chicken Sandwich and it was awesome! I didn't even notice that it had MUSTARD on it! Sneaky, sneaky. (And I just made the mistake of looking up the nutrition information online and recommend NOT doing that before eating it. Wow. That was probably not the healthiest choice! Who knew).

*The kids rode a motorcycle. In theory, this may not sound like a "highlight" but more like a mother's worst nightmare, but it wasn't bad. Daddio's uncle owns a motorcycle and we went over to their house for dinner one night. He took each kid (with the exception of Ben) for a little ride around the yard. They had a ball!

He remained expressionless through the whole ride. But he loved it!

*Going home. Yes, I am saying that going home was a BIG highlight. We had been there 6 days and the kids were getting tired and irritable thanks to 6 days of no naps, late nights, the hot sun and being off-schedule. Not to mention that by this time the adults (as in Daddio and his siblings), were getting sick of each other and each moment together was starting to turn into a fight session rather than something fun.

The Lowlights:

*The heat. It was hot, hot, hot.

*The sleepless nights. Owen kept waking up and crawling into bed our air mattress with us. Ben kept waking up because he was getting stuck in the top corner of the Pack 'n' Play with nowhere else to go. We were sleeping on an air mattress in a living room without any curtains. 'Nuff said.

*Teething. Ben is in the (slow) process of cutting his top two teeth. Do I really need to elaborate any further as to why this would be a bad thing?

*A motorcycle accident. As we were leaving the beach, we were about ten cars away from a fatal motorcycle accident. The driver of the motorcycle did NOT have his license and was riding near the yellow line while rounding a bend and collided head first with an on-coming car. Neither he nor his passenger survived. So sad.

*The car rides. A three hour ride with three kids is HELL! Especially with one who is teething. The boys slept for maybe one hour and cried, yelled, and made annoying noises for two. Fun, fun, fun.

*Coming home. Yup, including it here too. Nothing is worse than coming home to a hot, dirty, stinky house. At 8:00 pm. With three whiny boys. We had to unload the truck. Unpack the boys' bags. Get them ready for and in bed. The there's the loads of dirty laundry, the unpacking of the three bags of toys the boys received from Grandma, Great-Grandma, and the four aunts. (Which, while appreciated, was totally unnecessary).

Just like Mommy.

And tomorrow I get to do it all over again when we go out to my mother's house. But at least this time it will only be for a weekend.

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