We just completed a three week vacation across the country to visit the grandparents in New York. The flights were hard. I get little or no exercise. The children are sometimes intractable. But my takeaway this morning, after 6 hours sleep? I love this trip. And the kids love it too. What a great way to build our family memories and future adventures!
We split our time between Long Island, Baekeland Camp in the Adirondacks, and this year we added New Jersey to see Auntie Margaret and her new husband. We also slipped out to the Hamptons for a beautiful weekend with some of Linden's robust cousins.
I rigged a sailboat one day and actually got up the nerve to sail! But generally, vacation does not afford the Daddy such luxuries. The kids take attention, and work, supervision, energy, etc. It's pretty similar to my job at home, except that Linden was around 24/7. And Ama is a huge help. We mostly just increased our family time together.
The kids played together, of course. But they also found time away from each other, building relationships with family members and pursuing their own interests. Jude made a great friendship with his cousin Lukas while the two of them went off on a summer camp adventure. And Ada had a weekend alone with the grandparents!
I have a some final thoughts that prompted me to post. Before our trip, I could not predict how this vacation would play out. The kids have been scattered, dissatisfied, and a little difficult. I think I was surprised by their resiliency and bravery in the face of new challenges. Jude learned to dive from a diving board, paddle a canoe, make friends, conquer fears, and ride on a tube behind a boat. Ada learned to eat clams ("too tasty!"), swim on her own, ride in a boat, sleep in a hotel room, and make loon calls.
We had fantastic weather, good fortune, and great food. I am happy to be home. But this year I did not allow my own restlessness get in the way of a good vacation.