Monday, July 23, 2012

Vacation 2012: Days 1 & 2

We are currently on our yearly Florida family vacation. We travel with Josh's family each year and stay in a large house together for a week of fun and relaxation. This is the third year we've been at the same house in Mary Esther, Florida (near Nevarre and Destin). We started staying here the year there was an oil spill in the Gulf, because the house is on the sound, which wasn't as affected as the shoreline areas. We fell in love with the house because it has plenty of room and a pool. The pool means the kids can swim any time they feel like it without having to load everything up for the beach or deal with sand and salt in their eyes. We do still go to the beach, but usually just one or two days, and we are always glad to get back to the house, where we can go inside anytime the kids start to get too hot or tired. Maybe one year we will go back to getting a house on the beach, but we're all pretty happy with the arrangement we have now. It really is easier when there are small children, and we have 3 toddlers and an infant. There are also 10 adults (one of which is carrying the future newest addition, who should be around 9 months old this time next year). It makes for an interesting vacation! I'll do a quick sum-up of days 1 and 2, since I was too lazy to do it when they happened...

DAY 1: On The Road Again...
We started out the trip by meeting up at Walgreens at 5 am. Well, that was the original plan, anyway. Josh, the kids, and I were there then, but someone overslept and someone else had brake light issues, so we ended up meeting and leaving around 5:30.
We stopped for breakfast at an IHOP in Missouri. I had stuffed french toast for the first time ever, and I must say it was wonderful. :) 
The food was great, but the IHOP visit was a little weird...
First of all, when I went to the restroom to change Eliana's diaper, the changing table wasn't in the sink area of the bathroom. I assume it was in the handicap bathroom. I have to assume, because I never actually saw inside it. When I went in, I could see a person sitting on the floor. At first, I was scared and thought they needed help or something. I went back out and told my family what I'd seen and my sister-in-law said she hadn't seen them, but she'd heard someone in that stall talking on their phone. I had to use the restroom myself anyway, so I had Josh hold El and I went to the restroom again, hoping the woman had left. She hadn't. She was still sitting on the floor of this public restroom (ewwww, I still can't get over how disgusting that was!) and this time I heard her talking on the phone. I was thinking she must be either hungover or crazy, which was confirmed when she started making these really loud, gross burps as I was washing my hands. I got out of there as soon as possible.
Secondly, when we were seated, there was an older couple right behind us that kept shooting us dirty looks. I think we must have been too large a group and were being too loud for them. We weren't being 'loud' at all, but 9 people (Josh's younger sister wasn't with us yet since she lives in FL), 3 toddlers, and an infant can be loud as a whole. Some time later, the man yelled at the waitress to be seated somewhere else more quiet. It was very rude, and as I said, we weren't being rude or loud, just talking to one another normally.
Oh well, like I said, the food was really good and we had a sweet waitress. 
P.S. When we left I used the restroom again (it's a rule when you're on the road to always go or try to go, folks), and the lady was still in there. This time she was actually sitting on the toilet and was apparently choosing a new ringtone for her phone...or just letting it ring...I didn't ask.

The road trip had a few little bumps. We were nearly left at the gas station once and were left another time; our windshield wiper flew off right before we were getting near some rain (Josh had taken the car to Walmart for an oil change and we assume they didn't put them back on correctly after checking them, but thankfully he'd worked on the car the day before we left and had applied Rain X to the windshield; also, the rain stayed ahead of us for the most part, thank goodness); and we ran into plenty of traffic jams.
For the most part, though, I thought the trip went well. Ezra slept before we got to IHOP for breakfast and took a nap after breakfast as well. He was goofy, but in a pretty good mood most of the trip. He did have one difficult period where he really had to pee but we were stuck in traffic, but he made it! Eliana slept most of the way and was only up for short periods, mostly when she was hungry. We tried giving her a bottle, but she just can't figure it out yet (we've tried two types--one kept gagging sdeher, and she just couldn't get latched on the other either). I had learned two years ago how to lean over Ezra's carseat to feed him, so that's what we did this time, and it worked! She was a little gassy once we got to our destination since she didn't get to be burped after some of the feedings, but she was happy the majority of the time.

Once we got to the house, we got our bags to our rooms and let the kids run around outside and swim a bit (the water was a little colder than we'd have liked, so they didn't swim very long). We ate barbecue shrimp and the non-seafood eaters (like me) had hamburger gravy and mashed potatoes. We went to bed around 11 pm.

Eliana at the beginning of the trip
Ezra sharing his beach towel (blanket) with Ellie
Traveling newborn-chic
He was like this the majority of the time as long as he had snacks--and wasn't about to pee himself, lol.
She was like this unless she was hungry or gassy.
Day 2: A lot of R and R...
Eliana and I were the first ones to emerge Sunday morning, followed shortly by my father-in-law. We sat outside, facing the sound, and eating breakfast pastries and sipping juice and coffee, respectively.
Breakfast with my princess
People slowly trickled out of the house as they woke up. When Eliana needed to nurse again, I took her inside and ended up falling asleep with her for a few hours. As a mommy of a toddler and an infant, this is so rare! I was very thankful for the rest!
When I got up, I had lunch and we put the toddlers in the pool to wear them out for naps. Ezra is such a water baby! He LOVES being in the water, and is starting to do some real swimming with the help of Juliana's floatie/swim trainer (see picture below). We bought him his own floaties when Josh went on a Walmart run, so we'll see how he does with those today. Eliana rested in the shade in her swing.
Ezra on his 'boat.'
Eliana swingin' the day away...
When she wasn't swinging, she was doing this to stay cool!
That night we had hamburgers, french fries, and tater tots for supper. Josh's brother made regular, bacon and cheese, and jalepeno hamburgers. I had a bacon and cheese and it was really good! Ezra never did take a nap, so not long after supper, he passed out. Eliana followed her regular schedule of nursing and sleeping as Josh and I joined some of the vacation-goers in a game of Cranium. Josh and I were a team, and we lost. We did catch up some towards the end, though, which was pretty good considering we were waaaay behind the first half of the game!
Eliana and Daddy hanging out late last night
We went to bed around midnight and I got up around 6:30 to grab something to eat and write this blog. Now it's 8:15 and I'm about to go check on Ezra, get Eliana situated, and possibly grab a shower. I don't want to sleep today like I did yesterday, but soak in every precious moment of vacation with my husband and our sweet babies. :)

I'll try to do an entry for the other days as well, when I'm not busy living them!

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