Sunday, July 10, 2011

On Returning from Vacation...

We're home. With another 1725 miles under our belt, and 10 fun-filled days of memories, we're back from our Canadian Grand Tour. Photos are forthcoming, but for now, here are some questions we answered and life-lessons we learned on the way.

-Is it possible for a six month old baby to take a 750 mile, two-day, 15 hour road trip without making a single peep? Yes. Thank you rock!
-The best solution for getting a good night's rest for Mama, Daddy, toddler and baby in a single hotel room is to put the toddler in his own "special bedroom". As he will quickly point out, it's a bathroom. You can just say "Yes, it's sort of like a bathroom. But for tonight, it's your special bedroom." This solution also works well at cabins.
-Celebrating Canada Day in Canada, after many years away...awesome!
-Missing 4th of July, the annual Garnavillo parade and a sweet block party...not so awesome. But if you're in Canada, you might not remember it's even the 4th until well after noon.
-Can a six month old and a two year old share clothing? If the baby is Liam and the toddler is Iain, and the clothing in question is a swim-shirt and trunks...apparently, yes.
-No matter how cold the water is, Liam will never make a peep, cry real tears, or kick up a fuss. No matter how warm the water is, Iain will always scream, cry or have a fit. Then he'll like it. It's just their personalities.
-No matter what the activity, and no matter how hard you try to convince him, Iain will always wait until the last minute to like it. It's just his personality.
-If your baby's been watching you eat with great interest for the last month or so, he will take to solid food like a duck to water. No big ordeal for this hardly merited a video.
-You will never spend a week at the cabin without getting towed somewhere on a broken pontoon boat.
-If you're planning on fishing, always take more minnows than you think you'll need!
-A fall into a 2x4 studded wall will sure produce a shiner on a little boy. Tell him he looks like a hockey player and give him a drink of Ovaltine, and he'll be better in no time.
-Watching your kid doing anything for the first time (jumping off the dock, playing with a sparkler, fishing) is pretty great.
-Shakespeare plays are definitely better enjoyed in a vineyard, with good friends and a bottle of Baco Noir.
-Barbecues with old friends aren't the relaxing affairs that they used to be, now that there are 10 or so kids running around. But they're a lot of fun!
-There are some friends who just "feel right", even though you don't see them for weeks, months, years.
-No matter how long you're "home", it's never long enough.
-It makes it easier to come back from vacation knowing that you have a nephew to meet, a niece to squeeze, a sister to catch up with and a brother with a brand-spankin' new job! In Iowa! Not in North Carolina!!!!
-Just because your kids are well behaved and cooperative on the first leg of the trip, does not guarantee that the miracle will repeat itself on the return journey. Gah.
-When you come back to Iowa in July, after spending a wonderful week in breezy, beautiful Canada, and step out of the car into 100 degree heat, 95% humidity and annoying allergies, you will always wonder why you don't just get back in the car and head straight back to Canada.
-Aforementioned relocated family, spice-treats from Penzey's, an amazing jungle of promising produce in a garden (watered by awesome neighbors with plans for fun up their sleeves!), an affectionate kitty who missed you and a little air conditioning will do a lot to reconcile you to sticking it out another day. Or maybe it's just the dreaded prospect of 13 more hours in the car.

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