Tag: vacations

It is surely a Monday kind of a Tuesday. The day is dreary and I woke up at my usual too early to be awake time convinced that it is still the middle of the night. For good reason, too—I haven’t had to get up before 6 AM for almost two weeks and found that no amount of coffee helps remedy a case of the Mondays Tuesdays.

It is finally 2017. Many, and I among them, say that 2016 was a difficult year. It remains to be seen what 2017 will be like, but I’ll be optimistic and wish everyone a Happy New Year! On to bigger and better things — how we spent the holidays. This year Hannukah and Christmas overlapped giving grown ups much to think about and kids much to celebrate. The girls celebrated Hannukah on New Year’s eve with a New Year’s tree—a tradition from my childhood—opening presents. Please note that *all* the presents you see in this picture are from my sister. To say that she is a firm believer in eight nights of Hanukkah is an understatement but more than that, she is an amazing aunt. My kids are incredibly fortunate. 

After opening all of these presents on 12/31 because it was, after all, the last night of Hannukah, we feasted on homemade chicken noodle soup and herring under a fur coat. Evan and I barely lasted until the ball dropped that evening having flown home from warmer climates where we spent time with Evan’s family.

Warm weather always brings a smile to my face. The girls finally embraced the water… mostly… kind of … sort of …

Digging for treasure keeps kids occupied for quite a bit of time. We found shells, built castles, dipped our feet in the azure blue atlantic ocean and embraced the  “its vacation so you can eat whatever you want” mentality. That meant that Sophia now consists of 70% pasta and 30% ice cream and Eliza 60% pizza and 40% something else. And if you ever find out what she means by something else do let me know because I’d really love to know. Terrible twos appear to be roaring and here to stay. 

Two-on-two vacations continue to be quite a bit of work mostly where meals are concerned. We had a lot of fun, warmed our cold limbs thoroughly and listened to the calming sounds of the sea. Lovely. Beautiful. Relaxing for the mind not the body. Happy to get home and still have two days off, we embraced the remainder of the weekend in what has becoming more or less the typical; the girls spent most of Saturday catching up with Alex, Baba, and Deda and, for the first time in years Evan and I piled up on the couch binge-watching tv and resting from vacation.

Life Moments

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There were no plans on our calendar for the break between Christmas and New Year’s. We had been content to have a staycation but were lured out with the promise of chocolate and quality time with Evan’s parents at Hershey.

The trip, which lasted just a few days, really was spontaneous and we rushed to make sure everyone was packed and ready to go. I am still shocked, though no longer really surprised, about how much stuff little kids require when traveling.

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The girls went to Chocolate World and learned all about how chocolate is made. Sophia participated in cookie decorating and played reindeer games while Eliza napped. Sophia had the best time! Evan and I enjoyed seeing his parents and watching them enjoy their granddaughters. We finished the trip up with s’mores on the terrace in the dark warmed by a roaring pit fire. Just lovely!

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Life

This space has been decidedly sparse this past week because we went on a beach getaway with my family. As they say, the early bird gets the worm and this year, my parents got the worm by inviting all of us on vacation. Better still, my sister and I chose the destination, the date, and all else. Baba and Deda babysat, my sister and I caught up on … on everything and the kids did what kids do best—played and bonded. There was also, plenty of peace, quiet, and relaxation for Evan and me.

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It just so happened that our vacation marked a few firsts; Sophia’s first voluntary and mostly enthusiastic venture into the ocean, her first time actually swimming (ice cream scoops) in the pool, first time having sushi (raw fish and all), and Eliza’s first birthday.

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We chose Fort Lauderdale, Florida as our destination because we wanted to vacation early in the summer, enjoy a warm, azure ocean, and see palm trees without leaving the country. We could have, and did indeed consider the gulf (of Mexico) with Destin being a particular favorite but did not want to drive three hours after a three hour flight with young kids. In any event, after settling on Fort Lauderdale, we rented a spacious house with a pool on the beach.

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The house worked out extremely well and we enjoyed lazy morning swims in the sea, afternoon pool time, and leisurely evening dinners followed by even more leisurely post-child-bedtime relaxation. Evan and I accepted my parents’ and sister’s offers for help with the girls and had plenty of time to enjoy the sea together, relax and unwind.

I have amazing memories of vacationing with my parents and grandparents as a young girl and would like to create the opportunity for my children to form similar bonds and memories. I want them to cherish spending time with family and to know that, while you don’t choose your family, you do choose to make time to be with them.

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Life Moments