Since this was a three-day weekend, and we desperately needed a break from the house and its to-do lists (and springtails), but we can't spend any money for the next six months and being within 25 yards of the house seems to require us to spend money (BOTH a/c units have broken in the last 10 days; they were under the seller's warranty still, thank goodness, but we still had to pay the service fee and we were still without a/c for a few nights each time), so we decided we needed some sort of magical free vacation that wouldn't require any planning, any money, and because JP is so overwhelmingly busy at work and would have to work all day on Memorial Day, would only require 36 hours of our time.
Enter, my parents' lakehouse. It's about a 4 hour drive (3.5 if you don't stop and take the speed limit as more of a suggestion than a rule) and we get a comped room and meals since we know the owners. We piled the kids and canine in the car with a few swim suits, a ziploc of dog food, and some packed lunches to eat on the way and off we went!
We pulled up to the lake about 2 p.m. and Landon was in the water at 2:09, where he remained until forced out for dinner.
Cbear took some convincing with the life jacket (we require the kids to wear them any time they leave the house; there's several hundred feet of dark, deep water front and I can't handle the idea of one of them falling in and us not being able to find them), but she decided it was an acceptable fashion statement and wore it with surprisingly little protest for the rest of the trip.
And this is the other reason the life jackets are required-- the gaggle of dogs. Ours, my brother's, my brother's girlfriend's, and the two that belong to my parents.
They had to jump in and cause chaos every time anyone got into or out of the water. Tex tried to keep up, but all the other dogs are about 8 years younger, so he mostly took the rear guard position.
Landon got to take a ride on the jetski with JP, and then Claire wanted a turn. She was very focused and did NOT want help steering.
Then it was time for more swimming. Despite many trips to the lake, I think this was my first time to get in the water since our post-wedding breakfast in 2005. 2005 was also one of the last times I wore a bikini. It was a weekend for feeling 22 again (except for the whole two kids thing).
Sunday morning bright and early with blue skies and calm water, so we headed out for Claire's first boat ride.
Which led to Landon's first tube ride!
Landon was brave all weekend. Last time we were at the lake (outside of Christmas when we don't use the boat), he was only 2 and he did NOT like the boat to go fast AT ALL. This time, he sat up front with Gigi and let the wind blow his hair back. It was so fun to see him have so much fun.
We made a pit stop (i.e., the boat got grounded) near Pine Island, so the men headed out to look for buried treasure (we just finished the Magic Treehouse book #4, Pirates Past Noon). They returned with a flip flop.
Later, in the spirit of carefree fun, I jumped off the top of the boat dock.
I think I look very graceful.
We spent the rest of the day swimming, playing, eating, and swimming some more.
My dad anchored one of the tubes near the boat dock so Landon could have a "private island" that he thought was the coolest thing ever. I burned the sides of butt cheeks laying on the island with him. I'm pretty obsessive about sunscreen, but I can't remember the last time I had to worry about my behind getting too many rays. The drive home was not so comfortable.
I'm not sure Landon has ever had so much fun. I love that he raised his drink for the photo. I take no credit for that.
Tex would also classify this as one of the greatest weekend of his life. He's been sleeping since 4 p.m. yesterday in an attempt to recover.
We headed home at 4 p.m. yesterday after a lunch of brisket and s'mores (s'mores that nobody wanted except the little boy who had been promised a marshmallow roast and had been so good we couldn't rescind).
JP and I were both over-sunned and under-rested, so we thought for sure the kids would sleep on the drive home. But in the end, it was JP who fell asleep immediately upon pulling on the highway and the kids remained bright eyed and bushy tailed (and luckily, perfectly behaved) the whole 4 (3.5) hours. We'd been talking about installing a car DVD player for their birthdays, but now I'm thinking we can divert those funds elsewhere, like to a third bugman.
All in all it was a fabulous little vacation that I know Landon will be talking about for months. And even though JP had to work from the lake on Saturday, and work after we got home last night, and work all day today, he did get a little break for jet skiing and washer playing and the eating of delicious food. And I loved that I got to have fun jumping off boat docks while watching my kids laugh and make memories with their uncle and grandparents. It was a perfect minication.
And now JP just alerted me that there's a lizard in our shower, so I suppose that means we're back to reality. Happy 3-day weekend everyone!