I have come to realize something: three nights is definitely my critical mass when it comes to sleeping outdoors in makeshift 'homes'. Three nights of dirty children hopped up on the sugar cereal and root beer we allow them to consume freely once a year. Three nights of smelling like campfire smoke - and the breathing in of said smoke. Three nights of sleeplessness because I have supersonic Mom Hearing and am awake at every little noise.
The ocean front, sandy beach resort with spacious, private campsites turned out to be a windy, dusty parking lot across-the-street-and-through-the-houses away from a rocky, barnacle-covered, no sand, bit of ocean. We could hear it, but we couldn't see it. The kids went swimming once but got tossed around in the chuck and thrown onto the barnacles. That was the end of the beach.
That being said, the first 97% of the trip was really fun, even when we were holed up in our friends' motor home during the torrential rainshower on Sunday. You might think that a monsoon would be a trip ruiner but we drowned our sorrows in a cometitive game of '31' where the person with the lowest hand every round had to do a jello shooter. (I think Jon was throwing the game on purpose...) If you don't know, booze makes everything better so the afternoon was A-OK in my mind. The naps ensued as we are all officially too old to drink in the middle of the afternoon.
The adults were outnumbered by children 6:4, plus a 9 week old puppy, but we wrestled them all into submission when they misbehaved*. And when that didn't work we bribed them with money. Whatever will get 10 minutes of peace. There was even a playground that held their attention for brief moments and as long as they stayed out of the way of the cars, they were free to run wild like little savages. Think 'Lord of the Flies'.
After filling spiking their bedtime hot chocolate with vodka* the children went to bed without a fuss each night. All except for our friends' 2 year old, he wasn't so easy. He was onto us and our vodka trick and he wasn't having any part of it. We had to bring out the big guns - tequila*! - but the tequila had the opposite efffect on him and the party was ON. His mommy had to resort to handcuffs and once tied to his bed*, his only option was to sleep. Next year I'm bringing the Valium*; that should fix him.
We were with good friends, rested and relaxed at times, so it was just fine. If we could just shake these kids for a few days we might actually have a relaxing vacation but that'll have to be another time...* not reallyPhotos here
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