Friday, July 25, 2014

Staycation 2014, or "let's make the best of things"

As I mentioned in my last post, we decided to take advantage of the fact that Neil took a few days off work & have an impromptu staycation (aka if we all stay in the house we'll go crazy & I am always much much happier when we are making fun memories rather than folding laundry and the like). 

So...we made a big list of things that we wanted to do and tried to cross off as many as we could. Most days we tried to time it so that I could have a couple of hours to rest in the afternoon, since I seemed to be okay for the morning and then abruptly crash about 2 pm with crazy nausea and vertigo. And we also tried to be outside as much as we could since that was another thing that really helped me to feel better (noise in an enclosed space was the worst! instant headaches and extreme nausea). And lots lots lots of physical exercise since that is my #1 way of self-medicating.
We kicked things off by making everyone furiously mad! Wednesday evening I really wanted to go for a walk in the woods, but I also wanted to go for a run. I suggested that we could go get ice cream (thanks again, summer reading program!) and that Neil could drive the kids to the park & I would meet them there, we'd grab ice cream, and then we'd go hit the woods. Except I was still feeling sort of vague/confused and never actually nailed this plan down with Neil, so we didn't have the ice cream coupons. I ran 4 miles to meet them and arrived feeling SO great (mostly because I caught up with and passed the high school men's cross-country team, which may have been one of the greatest moments of my adult life) and the kids were furious because nobody could find the ice cream coupons, and so we literally dragged the girls screaming into the woods (Jules tried to make a run for it and I chased after her and wound up with poison ivy all over my leg for the first time in decades!). Anyway, long story short, everybody cheered up within about five minutes and we had a lovely walk until we realized the mosquitoes were feasting happily, which is why everyone has awful mosquito bites in all the rest of the pictures.

On Thursday we started crossing off our list items. First thing: donuts. Lotsa lotsa donuts. And then the zoo! And then the train at the zoo! (And then home to collapse and I slept most of the rest of the day).

On Friday we headed south to a state park and hiked--it was absolutely glorious weather and so incredibly beautiful and cool and breezy. A bit too breezy, in fact, for Luke, who jumped into the river, completely soaked his little shorts, and ended up running through the woods in his undies the rest of the day (we hung his shorts to dry on the backpack, but...they were still sopping when we got in the car). It was an amazingly wonderful perfect day and I was so happy all day long.

not us swimming...all kinds of "stay-out-of-the-water" signs posted and my kids were pretty mad that I made them obey!

 We did this same hike back in May when we camped here, but this time we remembered to bring a camera AND we packed water sandals for everyone in addition to hiking shoes! (We probably spent half an hour every time we changed all our shoes, but oh well...)

I forgot to get a photo with the kids until we'd been hiking for six hours and we were almost back at the car...they did NOT want to pose! It reminded me of the photos of my family near sisters & I all look so miserable and furious at those parents who forced us to come to Europe--lots of folded arms and pouting and one kid (Elise maybe?) who isn't even in the pictures because she just flat-out refused and took off running through some crop circles or something like that (my poor parents--we were so awful on that trip! I remember at one point telling 7-year-old Rosalind that the fly paper hanging from the ceiling was the light pull and laughing when she got stuck to the nasty paper coated in flies. Yeah, I was 17). 

 The next day we went to our favorite Indian restaurant for lunch, stopped by our local children's museum (we were the only ones there! Sweet!) and the kids introduced Neil to the glories of the hurricane simulator (I stayed outside since I was already pretty queasy). We also swung by the fabric store and I got some really gorgeous yarn to knit a pouf ottoman--knitting is really soothing to me and I haven't done much of it lately. 

 Then I slept most of the afternoon and when I woke up we went on an 8-mile bike ride to get blizzards at Dairy Queen. I was so proud of the kids--it was NOT an easy ride (one of the biggest hills in our city is a good 2 miles of the ride!) and they were amazing!! We stopped at the playground afterwards. So fun and I really loved biking along in the twilight with the kiddos on our way back. 

Sunday was a hard day since we were inside for most of the day. I ended up having to leave church early because I was so sick--I spent most of the day in bed and Neil was Superman and made an awesome dinner and took care of everything with the kids.

Monday was the vacation-is-winding-down day...we spent the morning at the pediatrician's office doing physicals & vaccinations for three of the kids (although we have the world's best pediatrician so it's always fun to catch up with her--soooo different from the pediatricians we had in Utah/Michigan!). More resting in the afternoon and then we finally finally finally for the first time this summer went swimming--no photos, but it was absolutely wonderful. We hit the water park pretty late in the day and so most people left about an hour after we got there, and then we had a good two hours where it was practically empty (Abigail rode the water slides upwards of 40 times...there was no line and we just floated around on the lazy river watching her! Jules, Neil, and I rode the slides too but we didn't have quite Abigail's enthusiasm.

All in all it was a really delightful little break from our real lives and such a nice way to ease what could have been an incredibly difficult weekend. (And we even got an extension on our staycation when I had to call Neil to come home from work the next day & take Isaac back to the pediatrician with a crazy reaction to one of his vaccinations! Fortunately steroids and antibiotics restored him after 48 hours).

And I'm kind of in love with this makes me realize how much our family has grown since we did the same thing on the Brickyard!

1 comment:

Melanie said...

Oh this post leaves me longing for Indiana! The green, the bike path, the zoo and even that round table at Dairy Queen! From boring old Iowa, your staycation looks like a dream! I'm so glad you were able to make good memories on such a difficult weekend.

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