Our February Vacation: Seat Battles, Dehydrating Pools and Isaac Newton

Spending so much quality time with your family can open your eyes and make you learn things you never knew about them.


Another February vacation has come and gone and as I didn’t have to work last week, I got to spend some quality time with my little cherubs. We spent the first few days at home and then headed to the Cape for a little R&R, a change of scenery and some chlorine-filled bliss at the indoor pool.

Yup, five days off with the kids (nine if you count the weekends) and I think it’s fair to say that by the end of it, we were all happy to return to our normal schedules. Lest you think you know your children well, I pose this challenge my parenting comrades: spend just two-and-a-half days in a one-bedroom condo with your family (more if you’re feeling particularly cocky) and see what you learn about them. It may just surprise you.

Things I learned about my family during February vacation

  1. The devil rides in the middle seat – OK, fine, I’m no stranger to sibling rivalry (I’m one of three girls after all), but perhaps the most ridiculous fight had to be about the middle seat in the minivan. That bloody seat – the captain’s chair in the second row of a Honda Odyssey – must be like sitting on a cloud in Heaven with the way the kids fought over it. Every time we’d approach the car, no matter if we were going 100 miles or simply across the street, a fight would erupt over who got to sit next to Quinn in “the good seat.” We wound up doling out the dreaded punishment that NO ONE could sit there, forcing them both back to the roomy third row together. Yes, I know. We’re so tough.
  2. An object in motion tends to stay in motion – And by object, I do in fact mean my 2-and-a-half-year-old son Quinn. Whether he was dancing in the hotel lobby (many times with no music actually playing), running up and down staircases or LITERALLY riding a scooter indoors, he didn’t stop. EVER. At one point I actually considered there might Red Bull in his sippy cup instead of milk. By Friday I had pulled a muscle just watching him.
  3. Time flies when you’re at the pool – Thank goodness for Andy, who will swim with the kids no matter how cold it is, because being in the water was the only place they wanted to be. Three trips to two pools per day and luckily for me, I stayed with Quinn when he didn’t want to participate. A vacation tip for all indoor pool-attending families: bring an industrial-sized bottle of body lotion to rehydrate your reptilian-like, post-chlorine skin and don’t forget some deep conditioner for your daughters’ dry, dry hair. I’ll be working the dreadlocks out of Georgia’s curly locks for weeks to come.

Despite the arguments, the exhaustion and of course the need for moisturizing, it was a great trip. A whole lot of together time might have pushed our patience to the limit, but it will be one of those memories the kids will have forever.

And come April vacation, if you see a minivan captain’s seat at the end of our driveway on trash day, you’ll know why.


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