Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Fourth Of July Weekend

You guys. I've finally figured it out. And I've been doing it wrong all these years.

I'm a planner by nature. I like order. Structure in my life is a must. In fact, there was a time in my life when I once labeled myself as a control freak-- & actually took pride in that self proclaimed title {insert shudder}. But something's happened to me over the last several years & continues to happen to me as I grow older & sink deeper into my role as a mom & wife... I'm becoming more relaxed. The reigns of life I held onto so tightly at one time, I am learning to loosen that grip & simply go with it. And the outcome? Well, it has been tremendous in my life. 

Take this weekend, for instance. It was so, so good.

I'll be honest. I was a tad apprehensive about going into a three day weekend at the lake without a working boat. We had originally planned this Fourth Of July trip around the excitement that my in-laws had purchased a new boat at the tail end of summer last year & we were chomping at the bit to get it out on the water & give it a go. But as lake life goes {or life in general}, it's unpredictable & the boat we were so looking forward to putting around the lake in, is sitting in a shop waiting to be diagnosed by a mechanic. With no boating opportunity at hand, we were left to fend for ourselves in the fun department. But what would we do?

Come. Take a look. I'll show you what we did.

This kid & fireworks. Lordy, Lordy.

This was the victory dance that ensued after a firework buzzed high into the sky & after several long seconds, the sky finally spit it out & it came down with a BAM...right onto the roof of the house.

Me & my girl. We served as the audience to the boys & their shenanigans...at a safe distance away, of course.

Lake Time.

The weather & water were the just the right temperature this weekend & we spent several hours swimming & jumping & cannon-balling of the dock. And for some added entertainment, we watched as Jett & Coach tried luring real fish into kid-sized buckets using goldfish crackers as bait. 

Cutie cousins.

 Jett & Lulla are head over heels in love with their baby cousin, Raegan. I mean, look at her...can you blame them? For real cuteness, right here, folks. This was Raegan's first overnight trip & she was a little champ! She was such a good baby the entire time & she shared her toys & puffs & squishy little cheeks for kissing. I love this girl & love that our kids are growing up together.

I made a decision before stepping foot into our weekend get away, to go with the flow. No plans. Easy does it. If we want to go swimming, we throw on our suits & go swimming. If the kids need a mid afternoon nap, we hit the pause button to chill in the living room for a half hour to take the edge off. Make a sandwich when we get hungry. Get some fresh air when feeling cramped. The plan I usually stick to, even if it's just the made up one in my head, I crumpled it up into a ball & tossed it into the trash. Best. decision. ever. Because inside that crumpled up ball was the intertwining of unnecessary stress & expectation that almost always sets me up for failure & misery.

Now, that's not to say that every moment of every day was smooth sailing. No siree. You do remember we were traveling with children, right? On Friday night, while sitting around the bonfire, Lulla spun into orbit over the combination of the loud fireworks the guys were shooting off & the melted marshmallow from a s'more being stuck to her fingers. She must have spazzed for a good half hour or more--all through bath time, all through jammie time & not a second of relief during that entire saga. I got frazzled & ruffled & tense like I do when I can't calm my own child. But once my over tired girl was smelling good from her bath, feeling fresh & cozy in clean pajamas & snuggled up in my arms with her Lambie & binky, she was good to go. We both felt the steam of stress release from our bodies...& we moved on.

Grill Masters.

My brother in law so graciously cooked the most delicious grilled steak dinner one evening. Nothing beats a summertime steak, baked potatoe & corn on the cobb dinner. Yum.

Fireworks display over the lake.

The wait for dark was long for two anxious little ones & the chiggers were fierce, but a treat from the local gas station & a quilt on the lawn served as a perfect set up for watching the fireworks displayed over the lake. Jett quieted once the starbursts boomed in the night sky & Lulla nestled into the crook of my arm & hid her face under her chubby hands, exclaiming, "too bright" & "all done" after each loud boom. 

I must say that our Fourth of July weekend left me feeling incredibly refreshed & relaxed. I walked away with a renewed vision & focus on the things that are important in my life. It wasn't that I got an overwhelming amount of sleep {let's face it, a pull out couch is no substitute for my Tempurpedic that I left at home}. It was because I made a conscious effort to look at what I have--a campout in the living room with the three people in my life I love so much I cannot even put into words. The delight on my children's faces as they run their legs off exploring the field & trees & property. A place to gather with grandparents & aunts, uncles & cousins to share good food & even sweeter memories. It's all pretty special. And I would be a fool to overlook what I've got because my "plan" didn't go accordingly.

My secret to a successful getaway is to do just that--get away--to leave my everyday normal behind. Like I said before, I truly enjoy the process of planning & organizing. It's a part of me that I think can be useful & beneficial & I don't want that to be stifled, completely. But when it comes to get aways? I'm checking the check list at the door. Allowing myself to break free from me, it feels good sometimes.

And all those years I had it all wrong? Well, I've got plenty of making up to do. Luckily, we've got one more lake trip penciled in on the calendar & I'm ready to do more of getting it right.

I hope you had a fabulous Fourth, as well!

1 comment:

  1. Your kids are so cute and are getting so big! I'm glad you had a good weekend. I know getting away is always fun, but at the same time it is hard with little ones.