The McCools (my sister and her in-laws) go to S. Padre every summer because their family owns a condo down there. I was in desperate need of a vacation this summer since we hadn't been anywhere since the year before Harper. Plus, I had been redoing the interior of our house for 3 months and was ready to relax. So we decided to meet my sister down there and spend the week hanging out at the beach and doing nothing.
Harper hates driving in the car if it's any distance over 20 miles, so she and I flew down to Padre Thursday morning. Of course our plane was delayed, but Harper had fun meeting lots of new friends. She even charmed the pilot, who was waiting there with us. Cody was driving down with my parents and sisters, so they didn't get in until later that day. They found us hanging at the pool.
Friday we all got up and played around the condo. Carleigh and Taylor came over at 5:30 to take care of Grayson because that kid gets up at the crack of dawn. So we watched Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (the first of hundreds of times), had breakfast, and played. Then, we went down to the beach midmorning and Harper got to experience the beach for the first time. She was kind of iffy, and then a big wave scared her pretty good and she was done with the water. We sat on the shore and she enjoyed being outside and watching everyone play. Everyone played frisbee and the girls went boogie boarding. Grayson loves the beach. He played in the sand, ran in the water, and hit his golfball up and down the beach.
Grayson is my favorite little boy ever. I don't get to see him as much as I'd like, but I try to find ways to win him over when I get to visit. This time, I brought him a nerf super soaker and he loved it! Of course, Kristen and Brian didn't, but that's what aunts are for. And Brian reminded me many times that I will get paid back in full from them when Harper grows up.
At lunch, we came in, ate and all the kiddos took naps (that includes Kristen and Baby Reese). We played cards and hung out. In the afternoon, we went to the baby pool and Harper got to walk around and play with Grayson in the water. We had dinner and relaxed in the condo. Eric also came that night with his girlfriend, Erin. It was good to see him because he and Dane are always busy on the busses now. But, Carleigh and Taylor were sunburned pretty bad so they went home early. Sometimes it's better to listen to your older sisters when they tell you to put on more sunscreen.
Harper finally started really walking at the condo. She's a speed racer now.
Saturday morning was a repeat of Friday. Wake, eat, beach, nap, pool. This time I joined Cody in the ocean and we went boogie boarding. After about 30 minutes of trying to figure it out, I asked him "Is this it?" Spending 5 minutes chocking down water for a 10 second ride didn't do it for me. So we went back to relaxing on the beach.
Grayson bored in the condo.
That evening we all got ready so we could take a family picture and go out to dinner. We spent about 30 minutes standing on the beach while we set up the camera and took tons of pics. Sadly, not one has everyone looking at the camera. I guess we should have expected that with two kids. Eric was the camera man so every time he set the timer and ran back to his spot, Harper would turn completely around to see where he was going. Thus, no good pictures. But I think that's just the way it goes.
Dinner was about the same story as the picture taking process. It was a nice, outdoor patio with the beach in the background. Harper was exhausted and fell asleep in the car and slept for half of dinner. But then she woke up with a vengeance and dinner became chaotic. Grayson doesn't really like to have to sit still for an hour in a chair and do nothing so he was up and down every five minutes. He got to watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on the ipad for awhile until he kept touching the screen so his parents put it away. I tried to tell him that if he touched the screen Mickey would die, but I don't think Kristen liked that very much.
Grayson helping push Harper to the restaurant.
He's gonna be a great big brother soon!
The kids were bored and the adults were tired.
After dinner, we celebrated Father's Day with my dad, Cody's 31st birthday, and Taylor's 16th birthday. Besides the cake and presents, we got visited by a huge cockroach that supposedly almost dive bombed Kristi. All in all, a fun evening but I was definitely ready for bed.
Sunday morning, Kristen, Brian, and Grayson were flying home so we just relaxed at the condo. Taylor and Carleigh were too sunburned to go outside and Eric and Erin went back to sleep at 10am. But it ended up being a nice quiet day. That afternoon Eric, Erin, Dad, and Carleigh went fishing off the pier and Cody, Taylor, Kristi, and I went shopping. Dinner, a walk on the beach, and it was bedtime again.
Harper eyeing Brian's sandwich.
Grayson and Harper watching (very focused) Mickey Mouse
Clubhouse while we packed/cleaned.
On our way to shop.
Sunday morning, Grayson ran out of diapers so he used one of Harper's.
I guess they weren't big enough because his little cheek was hanging out all morning.
Monday morning was Cody and Taylor's birthday so it was a good day. Kristi always makes the girls pancakes in the shape of their age, so Cody got to enjoy that too this year. Then, we went to the beach again and this time we tried to convince Harper how fun the beach was. The water wasn't as frigid and the waves weren't as big and she actually seemed to enjoy herself. At lunchtime, Kristi and I took Harper up and fed her and put her down for a nap. Then, we went out on the patio to read and a book and relax in the sun. About 2 hours later and some nap time somewhere in there, I realized I was burnt on the left 1/2 of my body. Sweet.
Taylor hanging out of the port hole.
The Birthday Buddies
After dinner, we went out for a scenic tour and birthday ice cream. We saw jumping fish, drove on the ocean floor (where the tide had gone out for the night), picked out some nice real estate to buy, and shopped for souvenirs (always with cashiers following us around like we were shoplifters). When we got to the ice cream parlor, Dad said to get the large cup, which came with 4 flavor options. The cup looked to fit about 1-2 scoops of ice cream. Well, when they say 4 flavors, they mean 4 flavors. After I ordered, Dad busted out laughing because after they filled the bowl with the first scoop, they proceeded to shove the other three scoops on top until it was overflowing and almost falling off. So, obviously I shared with Dad and the others got smaller cups.
The small cup
Tuesday morning was all about packing up and cleaning the condo, a last walk on the beach and one last trip to get a coffee mug souvenir for Carleigh. They drove Harper and I to the airport and then they headed home. Harper and I landed in Dallas and were at our house by 2pm. Sadly, Cody's drive lasted until about 9:30 due to traffic and rain. All the luggage in the back of the truck means you have to deal with rain a bit differently. It was a great vacation, a MUCH needed vacation. I might go back later this summer, but maybe by myself.