We're on Day 11 of magical family vacation time and I am having such a good time I can't even muster up any sarcasm about family "vacation" like I used to be able to do. I mean, this morning I sent three kids off to camp and took one to the library and then out for ice cream. She is napping right now and after doing a bit of work I am sitting on the porch with an absolutely spectacular view (the weather is sunny and warm--70 degrees warm, not 100 degrees warm like at home, which is nice because yesterday it rained all day and never cracked 65) and talking to you good people. Stay tuned, though, because today is only the third day Ryan has been back in Texas and there is PLENTY of time left for things to go south before he returns on Saturday.
Also, did I mention that we DROVE HERE FROM TEXAS? Obviously I have about a novel's worth of blog material from THAT experience, but that seems like a loud, fuzzy, fighty memory. Maybe I will go through the pictures and write that up in installments or something. Or maybe I'll have another noon-beer and do some writing while the kid naps. Time is fluid and weekends mean nothing. I feel like Lady Grantham.
I don't know what happened, but Mary turned fourteen somewhere between here and Tennessee.
Also, based on the marks drawn on the doorjamb to the dining room, Mary is as tall as Charley was when he was ALMOST FIVE. She is almost four, for those of you playing along at home. Sorry baby girl, jeans shopping is going to SUCK when you are older.
One foggy day we took the kayaks and a rowboat and paddled out to an island for a picnic.
These are the pictures I will hold dear when we are back in Texas and I am wondering if I am ruining their childhood by ferrying them from school to piano to the tutor to choir to homework to chores to bed.
Don't you remember when you rowed to a freaking ISLAND? Just DO YOUR MATH!
The next foggy day we went to Reid State Park, where Wes either went swimming or subtracted seven years from my lifetime, depending on how you look at it.
Pan out to the sensible younger sister, playing demurely in the sand while Wes hurls himself into nine foot ocean swells.
We had swimsuits in the bag, but whatevs.
Next stop: clam digging workshop.
To get to the clam digging workshop we had to go on a half-mile hike through sand and shallow water. Everyone else was apparently expecting this because they were not carrying multiple toddler-sized bags full of snacks, towels, bathing suits, and sunscreen along with two folding camp chairs like a couple of assholes.
Mary dug up five huge clams. She was ALL. IN.
It was so enjoyable. The day ended with James chasing Wes through a foot of water and screaming in such an extravagant fashion that I could not respond and stood frozen in my spot as James caught up and flung his body at Wes. James would make a great defensive lineman day, if I ever let him play football.
The first day we were here we rode a lobster boat out to tour a medical mission ship that sails around to all the islands in the area. It was a beautiful boat with a large meeting room where they gave us cookies and coffee. The captain spent half an hour answering Charley's nautical questions, pulling out reference books and showing him pictures. I eyed the woman whose job it was to ride around on the boat and make cookies for the locals and wondering when she would be retiring and what sorts of things I should start adding to my resume so I could apply. Because making cookies on a boat and making friends with people sounds like my dream job.
In between our outings we've been spending a lot of time jumping into the water from tall things, going out in boats, tubing, walking to the store, eating donuts, and hanging wet things up in the kitchen near the stove.
This is actually kind of a big deal for C. In fact I sent this picture to his doctor who said it "made her day." Made mine too!
Oh, and sailing!
And Mary ate a lobster!
Which was kind of funny because yesterday I took her to the aquarium and she pointed to a lobster in the touch tank and loudly exclaimed "MAMA! I ATE ONE OF THOSE YESTERDAY!"