Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Good & Bad Beach Trip

This trip to the beach was wonderful, but it was also very tainted. Lauren's dad had booked the trip back in May and was going to take them for a full week. That was before he died suddenly of cancer in July. It was still important for them to go on the trip-very sad and very fun all in one. I took my kids and we spent half the week with them to help out with just our presence. We had big plans of late night talks, watching movies, long days at the beach, but we should know better than to have expectations for a vacation. We had some hiccups-northern winds brought flies that bite, red flag water, a baby with an ear infection, and after I left Lauren's family was hit with the plague, aka the stomach virus. Been there, done that, no fun at all. So, now that the full, negative update is out of the way, let's move on to the good stuff:

The beach. My kids love the beach. The water, the waves, the people, and the sand keep them entertained for so long. We had a day and half of really great water (no waves, tide pools, and sandbars) that made it like a kiddie pool with action for the babies. That was probably my favorite time the whole trip. We had a great time with that! 

I also had fun playing in the sand with them. I've let go of the expectation that I'm going to relax and read a book at the beach, which has helped me immensely as I have fun playing with my kids. I so enjoyed this part as well! And sometimes, I just sat in the beach chair and watched them do their thing. They are very busy little children with an agenda in mind.

Other beach perks included dressing the kids up and taking them to dinner: frozen yogurt. My favorite thing about this was when I got them ready, Burl said enthusiastically, "Fern, you look sooooo pretty and I look awesome!" He kept saying it over and over and was very cute when it was time for a picture.

Meal times become big occasions on vacation. Breakfast with friends on the screened in porch, donuts at a swanky playground, and new fun foods make things extra special.

Lauren and I commented on how well our kids got along. They were very into playing together and being kids and it was fun. While it was sad that Lauren's dad missed something that he was so excited about, we tried our best at getting through the week and planning future family trips to the beach together.

If you think of it, please say a prayer for Lauren and her family as they fight the stomach bug and ear infections for the kids. It's no way to end a vacation. 

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