In the past, it seemed like our family had emergencies or crises on a regular basis.
Now we live on excitement!
Not the excitement of climbing a mountain, or running a marathon, but the excitement of trying to get 4 girls up and ready for church, after they have been up way too late giggling and laughing and having a good time together. Couple that with a mom who is past her prime, trying to prepare pancakes, one of which escaped and the dog grabbed, all before Poppa is ready for church!
Now that is excitement! That is living!
Annabel, Grace, and I went on our much anticipated trip to Cancun last week. When I made the reservations, I was concerned that Gillian and Darcey would be here and we would hate to leave.
Of course that happened.
I came very close to cancelling the trip because I feel like the time for all 4 girls to be together is so important, but since it was non refundable, we went ahead. Also the fear of taking the trip was part of the thoughts involved in considering the cancellation! Yes, I will admit, it terrified me to take this trip. I used to be concerned that something would happen to my parents if I left for any length of time, but this time I was concerned that something might happen to me and what would my girls do? I don't think I am spoiling the ending, but nothing happened there or at home either!
Last Sunday evening we eagerly waited for Lisa and Ken to arrive. They were flying out of DFW the next morning for their vacation to the Florida Keys.
They took us all to La Calle Doce. If you are not familiar with this wonderful restaurant, check it out here http://www.lacalledoce-dallas.com/. It was fun to enjoy some excellent Tex Mex before heading to Mexico! They have the most delicious flan even better than in Mexico!
Thankfully Dad volunteered to drive us to the airport, as I was not sure how I could juggle suitcases and girls and parking!
Without incident, we made it to our fantastic resort that our wonderful friend arranged. If you need a great travel agent look here http://www.rudisteele.com/ and ask for Josh! He found us this incredible resort and flights on American Airlines for cheaper than we could have stayed here!
We were whisked to a private check in desk and treated like royalty. Our room was fantastic with a beautiful view of the ocean or is it the gulf? I didn't take a good camera, just a disposable one, because there was no way I could capture the beauty of this place. I have included the link and it really looked like this, but just imagine it with LOTS of chubby Americans wearing too small swimsuits and a few locals mixed in. So check it out http://www.paradisus-riviera-cancun.com/. Check out the prices! We flew there for less than the price of the room!
As quickly as we could we changed into swimsuits, which I left my biggie one at home, and jumped into the ocean, then the pool, and finally back to our room to get ready for dinner reservations!
It took us a while to relax and get into a rhythm of slowing down.
Our days included breakfast buffet that included everything you could imagine, including fajitas! And guacamole! Changing into swimsuits and hitting the water. Taking a break in the afternoon so I could have a nap while the girls watched Nick TV in Spanish! Sponge Bob had a much deeper voice than he does here. One afternoon they fell asleep. First time either had a nap in years!
We took advantage of the option for room service, for FREE!!! Loved it for breakfast and lunch, but dinner each day was a reservation at a different restaurant with a different cuisine each night!
The last evening we ate at the French restaurant, so the girls could have DUCK! Grace was so disappointed that the duck did not come with the tongue or the feet, but they muddled through! During the week, Annabel and I developed a taste for lobster and Grace for steak!
After dinner we visited the local vendors selling their local wares and the gift shop. To travel to Cancun or Playa Del Carmen cost so much that I could not see spending the money to go spend money, so we made do with what we could buy there. Sorry, not many souvenirs! We knew we needed something for Gillian and Darcey though!
Each night we walked back to our casa seeing the moon filling up to full before we left. Our conversation turned each night to who we had left at home. The girls decided we could stay there forever if we had Gillian and Darcey, oh and Grandmother and Poppa, and yes, and Ollie and Nina. But we could not see staying there without them.
While there, it was the one year anniversary of us arriving home from China with Annabel. She has learned so much but one of the things that touches me most are her prayers. We say the usual "now I lay me down to sleep...." but Annabel always adds, "please take care of GG and Darcey and Grandmother and Poppa while we aren't there".
There is lots more to tell about the trip, but getting home had us running.
The girls were so excited about seeing each other that I insisted they spend the night. They crashed pretty early which was good since we had to be at the new school North Hills early. I found this school thanks to our friend Holly in Colorado. She suggested I look for an International Baccalaureate school and I found it right before their open house. With over 2000 applicants and only 200 opening we were fortunate to get in. Here is a link to their new school http://www.northhillsprep.org/home.aspx. Both will be in 6th grade. Most of the 6th graders are new to the school so they will be on an equal footing!
We had to pick up their schedules, try to find a carpool, check out used uniforms, find the band director for Annabel, etc, etc. There was lots to do and lots of people!
From there we headed to Parker Uniforms. I have always heard of buying uniforms there, none of the stories good, just about how much they cost! The stories were no exaggerations either! Last thing was to find the shoes and my poor girls had such messed up feet it was difficult to find some that fit!
We pressed on and our last stop was Brook Mayes music.
Annabel chose band even though she had never played an instrument. The band director suggested we go there to help her pick what she wanted to play. I had not realized that Annabel had no idea what any of the instruments were but she chose the flute! Just like her Mom! Thank goodness I still have ours, I hope! Save a lot there!
Of course our day was not over and made a trip to the swimming pool before consuming EVERY bite of dinner Mom prepared.
I insisted that the girls spend the night again as we have to take them to meet their dad today. It makes me so sad to take them today as it signals the end of our summer and our long visits. It is so hard to fit in visits during the school year and I worry about what the year will bring.
Prayers for all!