It has been a week since we returned from our family vacation to the beach for the 4th of July, and I finally feel able to relive it. I have spent the past week doing laundry, wrestling the kids back into their schedules, and eating salads to lose the weight I gained snacking all day long.
The thing that I have discovered about vacationing with my children is that it really isn’t a vacation for me at all. You see, when a stay at home mom takes her children on vacation, she is technically just taking her work with her. There are still mouths to feed, diapers to change, naps to take, discipline to dole out, and the added stress of sunburn, sand in the sheets, and a huge ocean just waiting to drown an unsuspecting 2-year old. What kind of vacation is this, exactly?
Not to say I didn’t have a few hours of relaxation (thank you, Gramma), but I can see that the days of lounging by the pool with my ipod and a good book are over, for now at least. I managed to take the kids out on the beach for a couple of hours each morning, where Charlie dug holes in the sand, built sandcastles with his dad and Aunt Jill, and after a few timid days raced towards the ocean like a madman. Maddie and I sat under the tent playing for as long as she would tolerate the sand and wind. After lunch and naps we returned to the beach for a few more minutes.
We used to go out for dinner every night that we were at the beach, but our family was willing to cook and eat at our condo several nights. The long waits at restaurants and inevitable late dinners just aren’t conducive to babies. We did have wonderful meals at home, though, so no one seemed to mind!
Charlie got to have his first real beach experience, so I can’t call the vacation a total wash. It was really fun to see him running through the sand and water to pick up seashells and jump over waves. And I didn’t have to do any ironing, so that is always a plus. Maybe after Christmas Jason and I can go on a real vacation, somewhere that doesn’t allow anyone under the age of 18!