Wednesday, July 02, 2008

What I did on my summer vacation

Have you ever noticed that mothers are never asked to write a paper about what they did on their summer vacation? That’s because summer time is no vacation for moms. If anything, it’s more work. More housecleaning, more laundry, more sticky scissors to clean that the kids have been using to cut open their Otter pops. You know the drill.

Just for the record, there is a way for moms to get a break – go on a cruise. I didn’t think about laundry, cleaning, trying to get the kids to make their beds, or worry about what to make for breakfast, lunch and dinner for over four days of bliss. No family vacation is perfect – it’s just your family in a different locale. That said, ours was enjoyable nonetheless.

The very best thing for me about our trip was all the feedback we got about the kids. Not a day went by that someone didn’t comment on how well behaved, “well adjusted,” or well mannered they were. One couple at breakfast described them as “refreshing.” Wow! (Beans later described us as “mean” parents. The other kids agreed. But apparently being “mean” parents yields refreshing children. I can live with that.) The top photo, by the way, is a veiw from our stateroom. The girls watched a lot of Cartoon Network, and one of them wore a clean pair of panties on her head for a time. But at least they all behave when we’re out in public.

We got onboard the Majesty of the Seas in Miami on Monday. Tuesday was spent in Nassau, Bahamas where we went on a harbor tour and boarded a semi-submarine to see fish over a coral reef. (We saw a shark, parrot fish, ballyhoo, a starfish, angelfish, and many more.) The girls also got their hair braided. (It was the big souvenir purchase of our trip.)

We spent Wednesday at Coco Cay – a private island owned by Royal Caribbean. Lou and I parasailed, and Bug and Lou did a little snorkeling. They saw a manta ray. Bug almost stepped on it.

Thursday we went through immigration on the ship and disembarked at Key West, Florida. That’s where we decided that we missed the dry heat of Utah. We made the kids wander around a bit, but we didn’t stay off the air-conditioned ship very long. It’s not fun to be wringing wet with sweat and not even be exerting oneself. Bug and Lou had a contest to see how many soft-serve ice cream cones they could eat. Bug won with eight! (Lou’s best was seven in one day.)

Friday we left the ship at about 7:45 AM. Our flight home was scheduled to leave at 6:45 PM. Instead of spending the day at Miami International Airport, we signed up for an Everglades tour. Smartest move of the trip (see previous post where I wax eloquent about Infinity Tours service).

All too soon we were touching down at Salt Lake City International Airport – at 11:50 PM Friday. After a couple hours in the car we finally made it home. Where we slept and slept and slept.

Summer vacation has resumed as before. The kids are catching up with friends, doing daily chores, practicing the piano, watching TV, playing on the computer and teasing and misbehaving. And I’m back to doing laundry, cleaning, emptying the dishwasher, and planning the family menu. Oh, and riding my bike with the dog on a leash. Having a good dog just may beat going on a cruise.


Science Teacher Mommy said...

What a blast. The girls' hair looks adorable and your kids are just awesome. What fun ages--old enough to mostly take care of themselves, young enough to really lose themselves in a little family time. Some time I'm going to email you about your decision to have three children. . . .

Allie's Antics said...

My summer vacation stinks compare to that. How fun! I loved the girls braids. They did that a lot in Africa. It cost like three dollars to get your whole head done. Your kids are always well behaved! Maybe they could just see the "glow" of family unity coming from the Hansens. I see it!!

Flashlight Girl said...

"Well-behaved, well-mannered, well-adjusted, refreshing. . ." Whoa! Do you give mean parent lessons? I thought I had that mastered, but as of yet my boys still give me a run for my money--very often in public.
Awesome trip! I just listened to a NPR broadcast about the decline of the family vacation. I think you had better start advertising the advantages of cruising versus the roadtrip. You almost have me convinced, and I'm a freak about getting out on the ocean. GREAT TRIP!!!