Precursor, I wrote this a loong time ago and then went into stall mode for blogging. Hope you still enjoy and I will catch up soon!
In most cases I hear the word vacation and I think... hmmm bad sleep, germs galore, cranky kids, bad sleep, spilled drinks (at restaurants, on airplanes, etc.) lots of apologies to the people in front of or beside us for the spilled drinks or for the kid sticking their spoon in a drink that's not ours, and bad sleep. But, undoubtedly, there are fun times to be had and great life lessons to be learned for sure in between those moments and I know I have it better than many who never get a change of scenery.
Somehow I have great memories of family vacations as a child. Probably due to the fact that I wasn't the one entertaining, cleaning up the puke, and making up beds on the floor at 2 a.m. and then washing up the "wet" sheets in the morning. Additionally, my mother was the master of creating wonderful, enjoyable vacations for us with no dvd players, a minimum of many hours in the car to get anywhere (living in Kalispell, MT does sound metropolitan, but is actually very remote), and 5 kids by using creativity, positivity, and lots if singing. I recall the arsenal of weapons my mom used to combat boredom and mutiny in the minivan. We each had a 9x13 pan with a lid stashed below our seats filled with sundry entertainment possibilities: stickers, crayons, coloring books, stencils, etc. The lid was essential to contain each rolling crayon and to function as a desk. We each got a pillow, mostly for sitting on if you were the pip squeaks. If you were older than 14, you slept with your pillow not only as padding for your head, but as a buffer to all the "entertainment" going on in the background, at least that's what I saw :). And the occasional book on tape. I loved the book "Herself, the Elf" but I think I was herself's only admirer, lots of buffering going on during this one. Also, we left for our trips just at the moon was departing and yellow dripped into the sky. Sometimes we left long before the sun would appear and spend half the night in the car, all of us asleep, genius.
The point of the rambling and recollections: vacations are so much work for the parents involving late nights or no nights, hours of preparations, dealing with all the kids excrements on a moving vehicle of some sort, etc, etc, But I loved family vacations. I love that my parents extended themselves immeasurably to fertilize my little garden of experiences. And I am just about crazy enough to want to give that to my children as well. I am sure I will, and I have, but this vacation we just returned from was not that one. It was cush. Granted, the sleep was still not amazing, but everything else was just that.
Google "Aspen Grove" and you will see, "an actual vacation for parents of young children. or parents of any age. or people who are not yet parents." This is where we went last week for the Morgan family reunion.
Ryan in combatKate with Jamisyn, her leader of the little play group she was in, "Rompers." Kate got to play in that group from 9:30-12:30 and 1:30-4:30 everyday! She loved it most of the time!
Ryan saw one of his professors from BYU there. So did I, but we didn't get her picture! Where else do you go in the world on vacation and see your professors from college?
Maybe Ryan's not a billiard man.
The little Morgans. Look at Ryan, look at Robby, good family pictures are for the birds.
Me and Rob at the pool. This is Rob's default face. He looks sad, but really he's just thoughtful. He'll flash a smile at you at lightning speed most of the time too.
On the foot bridge. It was pretty ugly, good thing they had lots of fun activities.
The fam trying to convince Kate of something. Maybe it was not to jump from that high thing, she's very daring if left to her own devices.
Ropes course. I'm going down while Ry's going up, hope there's not a metaphor there.
My baby at the pool. Look at those chunks! (Robby's that is)