Today is the first day of fall, and I’m celebrating by living in complete denial that summer is over. It is, after all, in the mid-80s for the next week or so; our pool is still open and I still have to water my potted plants every 12 or so hours or they start to wilt. SOUNDS LIKE SUMMER TO ME!
At the end of August we went on our annual Krieger vacation to Lake Anna. These photos are about a month old, but they seem so much more removed than that. I blame having to get up and get dressed everyday to make it to the bus stop on time. It’s aging me.
These photos are a whole month old, but I’d be failing in my role as a blogger if I didn’t over-share all the details of our summer vacation.
Let’s start here, with one of the very last photos from the week. Thomas is screaming and David and Berkley Grace are the only ones half-smiling. I’m entitling this photo, SORRY FOR TAKING YOU TO THE LAKE, KIDS!
From this photo, it looks we had a miserable time. Mediocre, at best. But we actually had a great time. Like, a really great time. Like, I’m calling it our best vacation ever. And I wasn’t even able to drink!
Sometimes the tired mom in me dreads vacation. There’s a lot of prep work, and being in a different environment with kids can be a lot of work. Then the biggie: my kids are awful sleepers. Anything can set them off, and the first thing on that list is a new sleeping environment, the second is the strict rule that the amount my kids sleep will be equal and opposite to the amount of fun their parents are having. Vacation sleep can be a nightmare, so I kind of go into the week prepared to be completely exhausted.
But they did great. And I mean great in every way. They slept pretty well, played well with their cousins, and nothing of great importance got hurled off the balcony. As far as vacations with kids go, those are all major wins.
I’ve been calling it our best vacation with kids to-date. Here are a bunch of pictures to prove it.
Every morning started early with something like 20 scrambled eggs, two pounds of bacon, a lot of coffee, and Moana on the stereo. The girls would dance (that’s what Mary Virginia is doing, above) and the rest of us would sing along. By day four we didn’t even really need the stereo because we all knew the words by heart.
MAKE WAY! MAKE WAY!
Our house was on a quiet, shallow cove with a sand area that was perfect for the kids.
Mary Virginia spent a lot of time feeding fish treats she made with sand. The crazy thing is that the fish actually seemed to like it, too.
Thomas and Psalm were the ultimate frienemies of vacation. At their age (about 27 months) they’re supposed to parallel play — play next to each other rather than interacting. THAT IS NOT WHAT THEY DID. Instead, they spent all week identifying their things as if we’d asked. THAT’S MY BALL! NO! THAT’S MY HORSIE! MY BOOK! MY MAMA! And what grew to be our all-time favorite, “My Moana!” (Which sounded a lot like MY WANA!)
Even now, if I say MY WANA! to Thomas, he furrows his brow and starts looking around for something to claim like a baby conquistador.
I love this photo because Psalm wants affection; Thomas wants a Goldfish.
You probably think the kids are looking at the eclipse. They’re actually looking at my bare pregnant belly.
Caleb got the paddle boat stuck in what had been dubbed “the sea monster’s lair” and squeamish, cautious Mary Virginia volunteered to rescue him. When she swam out there my jaw hit the dock and I still haven’t recovered.
Thomas grabbed the hose and started spraying the big kids. They were great sports, but eventually everyone had kind of had enough. When I tried to take it from him, I swear I heard him say, “You can pry this out of my cold, dead hands.”
Siddhartha on the dock. That sort of reading only happens on Krieger vacations…right?
What follows is an entire series of photos of the heroes of our vacation — the paddle boards. I have so many more photos just like this because the paddle boards were a mainstay.
Everyone, from adults to babies, used and loved the paddle boards in their very own way. The boys played pirates, the girls played mermaids, the adults took leisurely rides, and even me! Testing the laws of physics, me and my pregnant center of gravity took one very wobbly paddle board ride. I ended up wiping out in front of maybe four boats and three middle-aged men enjoying an evening beer on their dock. Not ONE person made a Shamu joke. For that I am thankful.
I have an entire series of photos that look just like one below — sorta far away, not in great focus, nothing is really happening. I couldn’t figure out why I’d taken these photos and almost deleted them until I realized — the girls were jumping in the water, a first for both of them.
Berkley Grace and Mary Virginia are both hesitant about getting their faces wet, but on this vacation they BOTH grew a lot in their confidence in the water. The adults kind of joked about how daintily they dropped into the water (and did so without getting their faces wet) but it really was huge for both of them.
And while the girls were swimming without getting wet, we just had to make sure the boys came up for air once every five minutes or so…
Post-dinner ice cream.
Here are some smiles! See, we had fun! We made memories! (The most incredible of which being that David ate a bratwurst!)
Farewell, summer 2017.