First Beach Trip, October 2009
Addison & Mackenzie were six months old when we they visited the beach for the first time. This was before the state of Alabama was completely broke and everyone in our office still got to attend a conference each year. (I'm just a little bitter about the loss of that perk, can you tell?) Perhaps the phrase "visited the beach" is a little misleading. Although there was gorgeous fall weather, I think we walked down to the beach twice and stuck the girls' toes in the sand.
I know my family thought we were crazy to be taking the trip that year. Looking back, I think Jeremy and I were so overwhelmed with the difficulties of adjusting to the first year of life with twins that we were desperate to do something "normal" again. We thought a nice fall getaway might give us some time to relax and enjoy spending lots of time together.
Looking back at my posts from that first trip, I see that I had an overall pretty good attitude about the trip. But I remember that it was hard. I remember Mackenzie having her first-ever public meltdown in a restaurant, and I remember sitting in the backseat, between the carseats, singing "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" over and over to keep the girls calm. I do remember that we were glad to spend several uninterrupted days together as a family, but I also know that we weren't at all sad to pack up and head home.
Once again, when the opportunity for a work conference/vacation presented itself, we weren't about to pass it up. Although we said after the first trip that we would NOT be doing it again anytime soon, we were positive the second trip would go more smoothly than the first. After all, we had one-year-olds instead of six-month-olds, which sounds so much better, right? (Right???)
In some ways it was a much more fun trip; at other times, not so much. We drove at night again, and I remember the trip down being fairly smooth, except for an exhausted mama and daddy. Since it was May, the weather was much more beach/pool friendly. We schlepped over to the beach once (we were across the road at an amazing resort), where Addison slept the entire time and Mackenzie cried when she touched the sand. After that, we spent a lot of time at the pool. (Not in the super-awesome lazy river, which I didn't get to enjoy even once...not that I'm bitter!)
The upside to this trip was my sister and her friends staying with us for most of the week. Having a few extra hands around to baby-wrangle was nice, and Jeremy and I were able to go out to dinner alone several nights after A & M were in bed. That was definitely a high point for us.
A few days into the trip, the girls seemed to grow tired of being in an unfamiliar place and started to get cranky and have trouble going to sleep. Rather than fight it too much, we gave in and headed home an entire day early. We left at bedtime on Thursday night, leaving the condo to my sister for the last two nights. I know I was very, very glad to see my bed around 2 a.m. that night!
Third Beach Trip, September 2011
Because Jeremy and I went on a cruise in May of last year, we didn't really plan to take another vacation. But come late summer, we were itching for another getaway. Luckily, his parents were up for a short trip as well, and we made it happen in late September.
Finally, we had the laidback, fun, relaxing family vacation we'd been dreaming of since our first attempt in 2009. Addison & Mackenzie were not just well-behaved...they were sweet and happy and just pure awesome. We didn't have to pack up half the house with us for this trip. We didn't even have to take those dreaded pack n' plays...the girls shared the bottom bunk in their own room and they have seriously talked about it ever since. It was the highlight of their year, I believe.
We had such a good time last year that we wished we could stay a couple more days. This time, we have almost an entire week to enjoy together, and I am ever so hopeful that it will be our best vacation yet!