I feel like I haven’t had a vacation in years.  Actually, the last “vacation” I had was in 2008, and I didn’t even take a whole week, so I don’t know if that even counts (although I did do an entire scrapbook about our four days in Missouri, so I guess that makes it official).  Prior to that was Florida in 2003, but that’s another story.  Anyway, back in 2008, our whole family (and then some) went to Missouri for four days, and it was pleasant, but looking back it seems like we were “doing” every day, and I really didn’t take time to relax.  Since then, I have only taken a couple of days here and there and we have not taken any trips.  All of that is about to change.

As a rule, I don’t recommend “separate” vacations, but I am going to take a week off and leave my husband at home alone.  The teens will stay with their mother for the week, and I am taking the toddler with me.  I will be going “on vacation”, but by virtue of being home alone to do whatever he pleases for 7 whole days, so will my husband.  The trade-off is I will be travelling with my mother and my 97-year-old grandmother.  No sightseeing, no plans, just a week at the lake, relaxing, reading, swimming and eating ice cream.  I am really looking forward to the trip since I am sure we will be building some memories that will last the rest of my life, but it will be somewhat bittersweet.  After all, this will probably be the last vacation my grandmother ever takes.  The fact that I will be able to accompany her on this trip is truly a blessing.  I am planning on taking a ton of pictures so that, in years to come, the 3-year-old will be able to look back at the pictures and try to remember his great-grandmother.  And I do have some very specific plans regarding what I want to “do” on this trip.

I want to read and swim and teach my child about feeling the “stuff” between your toes when you swim in nature’s pool.  It may sound somewhat sadistic, but I want to see his reaction the first time the tiny little fish nibble at the ends of his toes while he is dangling his feet in the water from the dock.  I want to see how he behaves in a boat that he can see both the front and back of at the same time.  I want him to understand the greater cosmic meaning of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”, and truly wonder “where you are”.  I want to sit and just “be” with no expectations and no deadlines (Mother suggested bringing a clock with us, as there is not one at the cabin, and, for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why).  I am so close in my mind to this vacation that I can smell the scent of the pine trees, feel the dappled sun on my face and hear the loons calling to one another in the twilight.  The countdown has begun.

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