The Ultimate Staycation

Ok, so maybe not the ULTIMATE. But, I’m sure you follow. My mother had taken a few days off and offered to take the girls during her vacation last week. Let me tell you, if you haven’t taken advantage of a few days “off” in your home without the children to tend to, drop what you’re doing, call your favorite grandparent, pack up the kid’s stuff, and RUN!

First of all, it must be said that my mother is going through a divorce right now and the weight of that made me a little wishy-washy about leaving my kids with her for a few days; she has had some rough moments and during a recent visit, took out her anger on my children. We did discuss this after it happened, so I had to get over it, forgive her, and trust that everything would be fine. I realized she needed them as much as I needed the time away from them.

I met my mother half way (we live about 2 ½ hours away from our parents), dumped the kids with her on Thursday afternoon and turned around to drive home, with the music blasting, a Chai in my hand (that I stopped to pick up at a local coffeeshop without a drivethru) and the DVD player nowhere in sight. Ahhh. I came home, actually talked on the phone to a good friend for an HOUR, get this — without a child screaming in the background! Crazy, huh?! The hubs came home and we hung out, had the first of many long-overdue, uninterrupted conversations, then casually went out to dinner after, holy cats, ! That’s my youngest’s bedtime!! Hit up our favorite Mexican joint and had a shot of Herradura without the evil glance of the judgmental waitress I usually get when I do a shot of tequila with the kids in tow. *rolls eyes* Isn’t that fun? Especially when you just do one shot and drink a few glasses of water with a meal. Yes, I have kids… sympathize and understand that I really do need that shot or beer to make it through the rest of my day, dammit!! I’m not pounding shot after shot. And, I’m not pregnant. Sorry, I just pictured *that* waitress and I had to tell her off. Anyways, after dinner, we hit up one bar and still managed to bring out the lame by heading home around 10p. Still, later than we EVER stay out when we have kids in tow. We knew we would be bar-hopping the next night too. Don’t underestimate responsible partying. And yes, there is such a thing. Believe me, I’ve learned the difference through experience.

Friday morning, we couldn’t sleep in. I don’t know if it was a combination of excitement, or pure routine. The hubs took the day off, and without a plan we enjoyed winging it and ended up getting a late breakfast, drank several cups of coffee, ate our food very slowly and enjoyed every minute of a meal without children! After that, we did a little local shopping, then went back home, grabbed our gear and hit the beach! The waves were 3-5 ft: crazy by Lake Michigan standards. And, definitely not kid-friendly. The red flags were up, but anyone who could swim was in the water. It was way too warm not to enjoy! The hubs & I played in the big waves for at least an hour and then crashed on the beach, completely wiped out, yet well-aware & appreciative that we didn’t have to deal with kids at that point.

We weren’t even half way through our big day off, and I needed a nap before heading to the “5-dog years” birthday party for our friend. I almost fell asleep on the way home from the beach, and practically sleep-walked to bed where I crashed for another hour. I woke up and felt GREAT and ready to PARTY!! J I swear, businesses would be way more productive if they allowed for a 30-60 minute naptime in the middle of the day. My nap was productive in preparing me for my next big task: painting the town red!

After taking my time primping, we met up with our friends downtown, and although I’m still not completely on-board for a full night of drinking (damn you mono!!) I spaced out my drinks enough to feel confident I would be ok to be the DD (yes, again, responsible partying) Then… it happened. I fell. Oh yeah. Klutzy Kelli can’t go barhopping for someone else’s birthday without hurting something. The thing that frustrates me is that when I do these foolish acts of klutziness, I’m not even remotely drunk. In fact, this time, I had ONE beer in me. A yummy stout. Oh man, it was so good… and I was thankful I had at least a little alcohol in me because when I fell, I twisted my ankle into a very small pothole, and my knee broke my fall. I bled the rest of the night. As it was happening I swear I said “NOOOOOOO” in slow-motion. I thought for sure I was heading to the ER instead of Stella’s. Just what I needed 10 weeks after being diagnosed with mono: a broken bone. But, my ankle was absolutely fine, and I even laughed as everyone around me asked “ARE YOU OK?!” I was ok. I was GRATEFUL I was all right, and as usual, I made a joke about it “Guess I need to put a little alcohol on it” and avoided the inevitable buzz-kill something like that can create. One friend got me a bandage, another ordered me a cocktail. I ended up having a really fun time with the hubs and our friends. And the hubs even cut himself off so he could drive my sorry, klutzy ass home. Ain’t love grand?!

Well, the fairy-tale we were living was about to come to an abrupt halt. Saturday, we woke up happy again, actually slept in, since we stayed out until *gasp* ! But reality quickly set in as I talked to my mother about whether or not she would be keeping the girls until Sunday. Decided that we would wait to see how things went after my youngest’s nap and take it from there. The hubs & I didn’t discuss the possibility of having one more night alone… we both secretly hoped for one more night off. We were having so much fun, and were truly enjoying spending some uninterrupted, stress-free time together. We got brunch at one of our favorite bars (Birch Lodge has the best bar-food!) and headed home to attack the mess we had ignored since the girls left. Seriously felt so good to disregard the huge pile of dishes in the sink, laundry, dirty floors, etc etc. We hadn’t spent much time at home since the girls weren’t there, so it was an easy thing to ignore… until we realized that our clock was ticking.

As we silently tackled the main-floor mess, music blaring, the weight of reality was heavy. But, we did it. Got the main floor as clean as we could minutes before my psycho mother called at 4p and screamed “WE ARE WALKING OUT THE DOOR RIGHT NOW!” *click* That is not just the click of the phone, that was the click of a bubble bursting. Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids more than life itself. But the responsibility sucks sometimes. And, when I told the hubs about the call and that we needed to hit the road, I swear, we turned into different people. The lovey-dovey crap went out the window. I was pissed my mother didn’t discuss the possibility of her keeping the kids for one more night. I was also upset that I wasn’t going to get one more night of freedom, of course. The hubs was upset too… he turned into the biggest dragass on the face of the earth… and we turned into a couple full of rage. I probably should’ve stayed behind and rested up because I was not a happy person on that drive. Neither was he, but at least he could’ve enjoyed some alone time in the car on the way there, like I did on the way home on Thursday.

I’ll spare you further details… when we did get home with the kids, we were back to whatever you want to call normal. It was probably best that we got the kids away from my mother who is really struggling through her divorce right now. The hubs & I had a great time, and I want to focus on that. And, lesson learned: the bubble will burst at some point – ya gotta enjoy the time you have and appreciate it for what it is. Not for how it ended. Trust me, it was 48 hours of bliss and even though it ended way too fast for our taste, it was all worth it, and something I highly recommend you do if you have children. It was good for us, it was good for the kids, and it was even good for my mother. What a concept! 

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