My hubby starts preparing two weeks in advance. Now, I’m not just talking about his normal anal-retentive self with packing lists, special containers and packing systems (not kidding here). That is a given and Lord help the person that messes with his system. What I’m talking about is he has to mentally start preparing himself for vacay with my family. Otherwise known as The Griswald Factor.
He’s been on four vacations with us now and he is finally starting to understand the ways in which we operate (or don’t in his eyes).
Yes, we are a bit chaotic and cannot make decisions. My dad is a bit spastic. My mom wants to make everyone happy. My brother is a worrier. Our boys, hey, we just want them to keep their clothes on and not urinate in public. And our oldest is a mini-me understatement…going with the flow is just not her style (like father like daughter). Throw in my ADD self, a newborn, two rowdy boy cousins and my sister- in- law who would rather shop than do just about anything else…it is a wonder we even make it out of the cabin at all.
My parents rent a cabin every summer in Colorado (our favorite place on earth, especially in August because in Oklahoma just walking to the mailbox can cause a heatstroke). Not just any cabin, it would be Jessica Biel’s cabin. Seriously. And my parents had no clue (God love them) who she was. They told us that they thought some actress lady owned the cabin. Jessie Somebody, they think she dates some singer in some band…(umm, that would be Justin Timberlake).
(Apparently Jessica and Justin stayed in OUR room (I guess it is really HER room) the week before we were there…so does that make us celebrities by association??…but I digress…).
ANYWAY. Regardless of the fame surrounding the cabin, it is a piece of heaven right here on earth. There is a beautiful huge deck with a hot tub. The hot tub is the main attraction of the under the age of ten set (which now would be the majority of us). For the rest of us older folk, it is the fact we can sit on the deck in the middle of the day and not melt into a cesspool in half an hour.
In fact, our friends are starting to catch on. This year some of our best friends and their families escaped the heat and joined us for part of it. Talk about chaos. But it’s the good kind of chaos, kids running around everywhere, twenty conversations going on at once, and the only thing you are worried about is running out of Skip and Go Nakeds (my new fave drink…thanks Candace!).
Although Baby J and I both got colds, Shane got food poisoning and Tristan got a stomach virus (and almost drowned on the Arkansas River, but that is an entirely different and scary story), I would rather be sick in Colorado than well in Oklahoma. (Okay, that sounds a little warped, but hey it’s the truth.) But I’m only speaking for myself; apparently Shane will never eat lasagna again in his life.
Besides the almost drowning incident, the mother- and- son hike which ended in a major temper tantrum (by both of us), the group family hike where every child suffered some sort of injury that required boxes of band-aids, the occasional indecent exposure by our boys who just don’t like to wear clothes, a couple of public urinations and a near death experience on the merry-go-round, it was a picture perfect vacation.
And I still cried the entire way home. Griswaldish or not, summer vacation is the best time of the year…bar none. Just hold the lasagna.