Sunday, June 29, 2014

A Summary

Did you ever stop and look at yourself in the moment and think ... "I never thought I would be this cliche." ?  Perhaps most of us like to think we are unique and a multi-prismed person of fascinating interests and activities.  We are thus different from the masses.  Yet, I  must admit that I am not.

I am one side of a set of grandparents that own a time share that is movable.  I am one of a set that vacations with grandchildren in all the traditional places such as beaches, cottages by lakes, amusement parks, major historical monuments. I am one of a set that loads a car to the brim and overflowing with bicycles, towels, coolers, snacks, games, drinks and DVDs.  One of those people I used to observe never thinking I was anywhere like that.  (Just look at that knobby-kneed grandma attempting to fit one more cooler into the back of that van!  Look at that balding man trying to get his bike lock around both old bikes!)

I have a son-in-law and daughter who manage to program every single hour of every single day on a family vacation.  We can go to a place that my husband and I went to years ago and see far more of it than I ever knew was there!  Of course, much of it is geared for a younger audience and that is why we bypassed it.

Son-in-law is adamant that every single thrill ride MUST be experienced.  He does push to include the kids, but since they are young he cannot get them on EVERY ride.  He is into mathematical data and knows which one has the most turns or goes the highest or has the biggest drop and maintains a memory list of those he has experienced as closely as a birder keeps his life list.  As he described a ride I would be terrified.

Of course time must be left to stand in lines (they were very short this year) for rides that barely move but make the small kids think they are running the show. 

And grandparents forced time to be left for the animal shows, the stage shows and the diving shows.  With the price of tickets we felt these shows were really high end and professional. 

No, it isn't IS an amusement park.

Daughter wants to hit the TravelAdvisor's top rated restaurants and we include as many as we can within limited budgets and small children's tastes.  Both parents set aside an evening to hit the outlets.  Son-in-law got several free vouchers for the golf course so he worked that into the very end of the day and skipped a few dinners with us.

Hubby really wants to be anywhere on the water, but when he cannot do that he is happy with a history lesson or two or just spending 20 minutes talking to the stranger next in line.  His neck surgery means he can no longer go on crazy rides, but his ego is small and he will ride the smallest of rides with grandson.

We did sleep in every morning until about 8:00 and then were out of the unit by 9:30 and not home again until after 7:00.  I was amazed and glad that the little ones had no melt-downs and were able to keep up with their parents.  It was a very telling time when the oldest boy, nine, did say on the last day he was looking forward to getting home as he was getting tired of going to "fun places."  When I commented that they were so upper middle class, I did get a surprised look from Dad.

Never knew I would be one of those folks who go on master vacations.  I used to be the weekend camper.  Times change.


  1. We vacation with grandchildren not so we can do what they do but so we can be where they are. Sometimes that takes us to places we would not choose, but we adjust because it is important to do so.
    That said, it sounds like everyone needs a vacation from that vacation!

  2. I really hope you enjoyed yourself. That kind of holiday would end with me screaming for mercy.

    Actually, I wouldn’t go the second time.

    It would be nice for holidays with grandparents to be different from holidays with parents; gentler, perhaps a little more cerebral, less hectic but with more depth.

    I do accept that everyone has different priorities and not everybody is a boring, sedate old fart like me.

  3. I do it to spend time with the kids. Sometimes I get them over here and let them do laundry and cook with me, real life stuff. This year though I am actually camping again with my Portland family, but the last two night I will be in a nearby motel, A/C and a bed so I will be in condition to drive home again. :-)

  4. We don't routinely vacation with either of our kids' families. They take their vacations where they like and I don't think they invite either set of parents. We do things with them though, like camping as we did with our parents when our children were small. It's wilderness camping though and no amusement parks. The only time we did Disneyland, the kids were teens and we did it with another family.

    I do enjoy having the kids out here at the farm without their parents, but besides play and watching videos, they helped set irrigation pipe, helped grandpa set a lamb's broken leg, and cut back blackberry vines that were infringing on our solar panels which keep electrical lines working to keep the cattle in.

    I think it's every family for what works for them. And the important thing is trying to give grandkids precious memories, whatever that involves. It's also important to have good relationships with in-laws; so you do what you gotta do. :)

  5. That sounds very similar to my last week. Cliche or not, making memories with grandchildren is more important than doing my own thing. Being retired, I have plenty of time for myself all year round.

  6. It's good, though, that you can roll with the changes.

  7. We can't afford that so I wave at you. We have had some fascinating weekends with some of the 14. We aren't very Christian, so that has cut us off a lot. Bravo to you.

  8. Poverty does not eliminate good memories. I took my children on a vacation once when we drove the long way around to the other side of Tulsa and stayed at a motel with a pool ate in the motel restaurant. The kids met children traveling from various parts of the country. My son and daughter still count that as one of their best vacations ever.

  9. I think your activity level separates you from the masses.

  10. RYN: Unused furniture? Most of it is either dismantled in the garage or hanging from the ceiling in the garage. There's not much of it. I've given it away and hope it doesn't return.

  11. We're kind of lazy grandparents, I guess. I don't like dealing with a lot of stuff and I'm not fond of mob scenes. Our grandson has started complaining that, unlike most of his classmates, he's never been to Disneyland! He'll never get there with us! The other side of his family has big reunions, and maybe he'll get there with them.
    Nonetheless, we will be having everyone out to Hawaii for Christmas and maybe we'll attend a luau.

  12. Me too.... Since all of my grands are older teens now, things have changed. BUT--I am one who thinks that kids are 'over-programmed' these days... Times certainly have changed... Not sure that kids can entertain themselves now --unless they have some kind of cell-phone/game type of equipment... Kinda scary to me... I am just old enough to think about playing games outside --which we made up---and having a great time entertaining ourselves. Glad it was YOU on that trip and NOT me... ha


  13. I'm tired just reading it. I don't think I've been with my grandkids for more than a day and a half. But they do push me to do things and be ways I wouldn't otherwise do/be. We can be just so uncool when in love! And they so broaden my horizons and heart.


Take your time...take a deep breath...then hit me with your best shot.