A year ago, shortly after my Grammy had passed away, my family started discussing taking a family vacation together. We settled on the Outer Banks and actually ended up in the same house Chris and I had stayed in with friends two years ago. Now that our family has spread out a bit, it's pretty rare that we are all together too often, so it was an opportunity for that to happen.
We left early Friday so that we could get down to Virginia. The kids were pretty good on the way down but were definitely happy to get out when we arrived at the hotel.
After dinner and a swim in the pool, bedtime actually went relatively easily for having all 5 of us in the same room.
It helped that my parents were down the hall so we were happy that we could spend a little time with them before bedtime.
On Saturday morning, we left early so that we could get onto the island before any major traffic. The day was a LONG one though because we didn't get into the house until close to 4 and keeping occupied proved to be a bit difficult.
After stopping at the visitor's center, we took a ride over the Wright Brothers Museum thinking it would be a good way to kill time, just like we had done in the past.
However, since our kids were off schedule, had been in the car for a long time, and it was hot, this was not the best idea. Instead of walking, they both needed to be carried and it proved to be way more work for Chris and I.
This is not the most flattering picture of myself, but this was on the way down, the wind was blowing my hair in my sweaty face and I was hefting a 40-something pound little boy up and down what seemed like a mountain.
Once we were finally settled in the house, we could relax a little bit, BUT, bedtime that night for Colin and Kailey (Colin especially) was a nightmare. It took HOURS to get Colin asleep, but he had also slept for a long time in the car that afternoon and was in a new place with new sounds that he couldn't quite get used to. Thankfully the bedtime routine improved over the course of the week.
After a crazy and long first day, it turned out to be a really enjoyable week, especially on the days we were all together.
"Other things may change us, but we start and end with the family." - Anthony Brandt
Typically, we would spend about 2 hours at the beach in the morning. We were all a tad bit nervous with the shark sitings that kept popping up on the news, but it didn't stop us from having a good time nonetheless.
It's always a little bit hard taking the kids out of their home and normal routines, especially for a week, but once they got settled and into a new routine, things got a little easier.