I'm back from a long stay on the lovely island of Kauai. In every way this was a dream vacation, in the works for the last two years, the dates solidified 12 long months ago, the longest vacation we have ever taken with our children.
The plane ride was easy, the weather when we arrived perfect!
Since we had a kitchen our first stop was Costco where we loaded up on 2 weeks worth of groceries and headed up to Princeville. Not eating out every meal saved us the GDP of a small country but here's the thing...I had to COOK. And every morning I had to make FOUR different kind of sandwiches to satisfy four different diets.
Oh, don't get me wrong. Everything was perfect. Except the kids STILL BICKERED. And they STILL GOT BORED. Bored??? In paradise?
My perfect Kauai vacation involves a lot of relaxing, reading by the pool or at the beach, maybe doing some art. It also involves a lot of activity...snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, running.
The kids idea of the perfect vacation was watching as much TV as they wanted and then violently trying to dunk me in the not-quite-warm-enough pool. Hiking was too hard. Kayaking was only cool for the first 30 minutes, then it was too hard. Snorkeling was too hard and it was scary...too much current...we might see an eel!
I imagined a vacation not just from the stresses of my job but also from the every day stresses of home. Never did I consider that our vacation would be filled with stresses of a different kind! We've taken many vacations with the kids and all have been pretty wonderful. I'm not sure why this trip was different, but it was, and three days in I was ready to call it quits and head home!
Then I came across this quote that had me laughing and put things into perspective:
A "trip" is what you take with children,
a "vacation" is when you leave them at home
I realized that traveling with children is not necessarily easy but I'd rather deal with the bickering and boredom in paradise than at home. And even with all the unexpected stress the family time was priceless and the memories made will last a lifetime. The hard moments are already fading from memory, kind of like childbirth...and as I download the more than 500 pictures I took I am in awe of the beauty that surrounded us for two weeks and can't wait to go back.