We are back from spending the weekend in beautiful and hot (80 degree temps) San Diego. Before jealousy wells up inside of you, let me dash the vision of me sipping umbrella drinks in the sand while the rich and the famous jog by. When I first heard Brian had to work the weekend in San Diego, I too fell victim to the scenario; a stupid smile crossed my face as I looked off into space and a fuzzy white ring appeared around me sipping the earlier stated umbrella drink with my toes in the sand and joyous children hugging one another and building sandcastles beside me. I should have known it would be a farce as soon as I saw myself in a bathing suit two months after having a baby, but a woman can dream.
The plan: Leave the house by 10 am., drop the dogs off at the boarding place, drive halfway eat lunch at Rainforest Cafe where the kids will be in awe of the sights, reach San Diego around 4, eat dinner, hit grocery store for food for room fridge, take the kids to the pool, put them to bed by 9.
What actually happened: Left the house at 1. Our 2 lb. dog that won't even jump off the couch, lost all depth perception and jumped off my lap and out the window of our moving truck. Ten minutes of seizures, she amazingly was okay. Arrived at Rainforest Cafe. Vance was afraid of any animal thing that moved. He whined for fear we were abandoning him in the jungle if we bent over to pick up a napkin. Freeway closed down due to an accident. New route had two accidents - very slow at times. Two kids claiming motion sickness. Arrived at hotel at 8. Brian didn't tell the front desk he brought his family. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. Two times. Bed at 11.
The plan: Donuts, park, nap for the younger four, school and Bible study for the bigger kids and myself, funburger joint, park, dinner with Brian, pool, bed at 8:30.
What actually happened: Kids up at the butt crack of dawn. Threatened kids with going home if they didn't quiet down so I could shower. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. On the quest for donut shop. Thirty minutes, six strip malls later - success. Quick grocery run - disapproving looks. Keely drops a bottle of Vitamin water all over the floor didn't help our case. Park - super fun. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. Nap for Vance and Sadie. Keely and Ryleigh out of control. Kids punching one another. Me threatening. Big kids on Facebook. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. Little Cesar pizza for lunch. Beautiful park. Hot and tired momma. Nursing a fussy baby on a bench while the other children watch Vance jump around in a mud puddle behind me. Only shoes he has. Costco for snacks. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. Times two. On the brink of losing my mind, Brian arrives. Thank you Lord! Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. No pool, family walk. Nice. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. Leftover pizza. Bed at 9:30.
Plan for the day: Pack up. Legoland at opening.
What actually happened: Kids up even earlier. Grumbling. Brian has to work half day. Packed up after Brian left. Loaded truck. Back stairwell. Three flights. Four times. More grumbling. Double check room. Everyone potties. Back stairwell. Three flights. Six kids. Off to another park. Pick Brian up. Off to Legoland. Arrive three hours after they open. Fun is had by all. Dinner afterward. Kids are melting down. Mom is spent. Dad is the only semi-reasonable thinker. Pee accident. Two kids with diarrhea. Dessert. Head home. Bed by 11pm.
You would think at my age and with six kids I would realize that my expectations and romantic notions rarely match reality. Despite the fact that my plans rarely matched what transpired or that I was completely exhausted, I'm thankful that I'm not cynical because this trip really was great. It reinforced with me what great kids I have; very go-with-the-flow, funny, and helpful when it counts. So even though I didn't get to sip drinks on the beach and rub elbows with the elite; I did get to eat donuts in the park with some of the greatest people on earth and after all those stairs that bathing suit might just be a reality next year.