Thursday, July 17, 2014


We took our boys on vacation for a week.  I was told by a friend that if you are exhausted when you get back, that's the sign of a great vacation! In that case, we had one HELL of a great vacation!  Let me start by saying, one of my twins has NEVER travelled well.  Never.  Not as an infant, a toddler, nor as an eight year old.  Five minutes into ANY trip, whether an hour away or ten minutes down the road, he is asking, "Can you find our house?  Are we still near home? How much longer will it be?"

Our destination should have taken about two hours to reach, give or take a half hour.  We went the weekend of July 4th.  I know, not the brightest decision.  We sat in traffic at every highway junction we crossed.  Bumper to freaking bumper, with idiots who drove over medians, cut into traffic and generally made things more chaotic.  All three boys were restless, but my little homebody was beyond over it.  "Daddy, what's wrong? Mommy, are we almost there? Daddy, if that man can drive in the grass, why can't we?" Oh, and did I mention that our minivan was packed to the top with various and sundry crap that we had to take?  Argh!

We made it to our destination and stopped at a pizza place who's known for a giant rodent mascot and games.  It was the first time we'd ever been there. I took extra headache medicine, because even though I have a large group of small children living with me, I'm not overly fond of places frequented by large groups of children hyped up on soda and parents who decide to let them run wild.  And yes, I know such places are made for children to run wild, but...

Anyway, I ended up having a blast at the restaurant and enjoyed playing games almost as much as my husband and kids did.  After a couple or three hours, we left and went to our hotel to check in.  Thank God, some brilliant soul decided to put us on the first floor.  We'd gotten two rooms because our boys are big enough that we need the extra space.  After we checked in and got everyone settled down, it was time for showers and bed. 

We went sightseeing for a couple of days, and to a science center.  The boys liked it, but they were holding out for the big one.  We took them to Six Flags; two days at Six Flags.  Taking my boys to any sort of amusement park is an adventure.  Two of my three children under eleven enjoy riding roller coasters and that kind of thing.  My oldest child of forty-something is a thrill ride nut;  the higher, the faster, the better. My other child under eleven gets bored quickly.  He can entertain himself for hours at home, but go anywhere and expect him to do the same and NOPE! 

Day one at Six Flags was for the water park.  We played in the wave pool, went on a lazy ride on inner tubes, watched the boys play in one of the areas designed for children only.  My husband and one of the twins disappeared to ride a couple of rides. 

All-in-all, a good day. Minus the time my husband disappeared with one of the twins for about an hour and I had to send my other two to the bathroom by themselves because they wouldn't let me take them in the women's restroom. (How's THAT for a run-on sentence?!) I stood right outside the restroom yelling, "Don't talk to anybody, if anyone looks at you yell, don't leave each other alone, and get right back out here as soon as you can!"  And for those who dare call me overprotective, I wasn't the only mom of boys doing that. 

Day two at Six Flags was for the rest of the amusement park and the rides. One of my sons and I were waiting for the others--my husband and other two sons--to get done riding roller coasters and other such fun (read HELL no, we hate them!) rides. We were playing some of the skills games. The first was a water pistol one. You shoot at the target and win a cape. EVERYBODY wins! (My kind of game!). I said I wanted a Batman cape.

 "Batman? What about BatGIRL instead? You know, since you're a GIRL?" the young man asked.

I stared at him a minute. "I'm not a GIRL, and I SAID I want BATMAN!"

He gave me my cape. Then I skipped around the amusement park with my son singing, "Nah-nah, nah-nah, nah-nah, nah-nah, Batman!"

Then we see...da, da, dumm! A video arcade! We go in because, well, it's a video arcade and my eight year old is in heaven on earth. He immediately finds the token machine for me. So helpful, isn't he?  We (the royal we) purchase tokens and I give him a handful. He finds a shooting game in a matter of nanoseconds. It gives no tickets for reward. The reward is killing off massive amounts of horrendously frightening robotic skeleton creature thingies. Whee. But whatever. 

I wander over to a game that lights up and sounds like a casino game. Woohoo! Some 20 minutes later, the rest of the boys find us in the arcade. I have a fistful of tickets and tokens, and am grinning like a fool. Life is good. 

Then we decide to head towards yet another thrill ride. This one is close to the kiddie rides. My partner-in-crime is beyond excited. We head over to the kiddie rides while the hubby and his two thrill seekers get in line for more upside-down, faster than the speed of light, puke-fest fun! 

I dutifully stand by, waiting for my little guy to get on one ride after another. He even helps calm down a couple of younger kids. (Go ahead, ooo and ahh--you know you want to! Are you done yet?) Next year he will be way too tall for any of the rides.  (Mom moment here--my baby's growing up.)

The other three join us in a while and three of the four run from kiddie ride to kiddie ride. My big boy, the hubby, was a too tall for these rides. He was a little disappointed, if you ask me. 

By the end of the day, we were dead tired.  We ate dinner and got everyone ready for bed.  Nobody protested.  The next two days we spent sightseeing and lazing by the pool.  The boys were ready for some down time and didn't complain much.

We decided to head back a day early so that we could rest before my husband went back to work on Monday.  We were even more jammed in the van on the way home, but thankfully the drive was much less chaotic and stressful. We asked the boys what their favorite parts of the vacation were.  The answer?  ALL OF IT!  That makes it all worthwhile. 

Thanks for reading!

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