After writing two kind of complain-y posts about our trip to a beautiful lake in a phenomenal house, I would be remiss if I didn’t say: our vacation was awesome. I love finding humor in mishaps and sleep deprivation, but those moments were honestly the exceptions.
There was a lot of work, sure. We were always, at every moment, entertaining, supervising, and filling up water bottles. That stuff didn’t stop. I’ve already said it, but there were eight children ages 7 and under. That’s a lot of little kids.
But even though we had a full house, I also think that having a lot of kids makes things easier.
Hear me out.
When you have a bunch of kids, each kid had someone willing to play, read, jump of the dock, or beg for a snack. All of the cousins have different strengths, weaknesses, interests, and dinner preferences, but they all get along incredibly well. Like, INCREDIBLY well.
In the Krieger family, each kid has a corresponding cousin. We didn’t necessarily plan it that way, but boy is it a gift.
Caleb and David
These two play together so much, so well, and so intensely that it’s hard to even have a conversation with one of them. Once, they were playing in the lake and I swam over and dunked David underwater. He went underwater and came up without even noticing because he was so entrenched in conversation with Caleb.
This year these best buds spent most of their time swimming, using the kayaks and paddle boards, and playing Battleship. Plus, they joined the adults in relaxing on vacation with a good book.
Berkley Grace and Mary
Our girls love princesses, horses, books, their mamas, and each other. They spent most of vacation either in bathing suits or princess dresses. Berkley Grace and Mary slept in a double bed together, which also felt like a huge big girl milestone.
They are also growing so much as confident swimmers, especially Berkley Grace, who only needed a teeny bit of encouragement to jump off the dock, and once she did it she did.not.stop. Mary watched her from a safe splashing distance. “Maybe I’ll jump in next year,” she told me.
Psalm and Thomas
Psalm and Thomas are actually closest in age, but it’s taken them longest to forge a friendship. We don’t know if it’s because of their personalities, gender difference, or just because they’d both rather play with big kids than with a fellow three-year old. On this trip, though, Psalm and Thomas discovered each other. Whenever we found them playing, we’d notice quietly, careful to not disturb them. Observing content three-year olds is absolutely a “don’t poke the bear” situation.
Of course, our best memories are of when they were poking each other. When they thought they weren’t being supervised, they snuck off with their siblings’ toys, bossed each other around and imposed rules that they themselves weren’t following. Our favorite memory, the one that made us cry-laugh, was when Psalm threw her finger in the air and shouted at Thomas, “YOU GO TO TIME OUT!” Thomas responded by throwing a huge tantrum. To Psalm.
And I do have to admit, Psalm handled it spectacularly. She remained calm and stood her ground. In the end Thomas went to time out, just like she asked.
Anna and Joshua
The babies! On their first vacation! These two future buddies didn’t get to swim or get ice cream with the big kids, but babies still know how to vacation, ya know? At least three times a day I’d look at Joshua, all snuggled up and cozy, and feel sincere jealousy of his dock nap.