Tag Archives: vacation


I really needed a vacation. 2012 has not been my year. Unsuccessful knee surgery. Huge medical bills related to unsuccessful knee surgery. The trauma of having Ace bullied out of his middle school. Constant money stress. Coming within reach of my dream job and not getting it. (Not once, but twice. Another opening came up in the department, but the job was given to the other of the 3 finalists. Out of the 3 people who had interviews with the dean, I am the only one without a job offer. I’m having a hard time scrubbing the mental L off my forehead.) Having to leave Irish dance because of the unsuccessful knee surgery.

It has really not been my year, and I was eager to go to the beach for a week and get away from my daily life.

So, of course, I got sick. Really sick.

Last week, I picked up a cold from one of my little Irish dance campers. It really seems like Irish dance is trying to kill me. I dragged myself and the family to the beach on schedule and promptly fell to hacking, sneezing pieces. I soldiered through going to the beach and playing cards with the cousins on Monday and Tuesday, but, by Wednesday, it was clear I wasn’t going to be doing more soldiering. I ended up paying $125 to go to a walk-in clinic (that didn’t take my insurance, of course.) I was diagnosed with acute bronchitis AND sinusitis (I never do anything half way) and then paid another $40 for antibiotics.

At this point, it was clear that I wasn’t getting any kind of break from the 2012. It even followed me to the beach and turned my vacation into lamecation.

It wasn’t until yesterday that I started to feel human again. By last night, I was able to take the wads of Kleenex out of my pocket. Today I even swam in the ocean. We’ve been here for a week, and this is the first time I’ve felt up to actually diving in. I’m finally feeling up to vacation, and it’s almost time to go home. I am determined to squeeze some vacation worthy moments out of the next 2 days, though. I really need to focus on the positive where I can find it right now because the negative has become overwhelming.

Therefore, here is some positive:

Last night, we took our kites up to the beach. We picked up dinner on the way, and then had a picnic on the beach followed by kite flying.Flying high

Ace let's the eagle fly

Let's go fly a kite

We had a lovely breeze and all was going well until Tink’s line snapped and the dragon kite made a run for it. (Of course, it did. It’s never happened before, but it’s 2012.) The kite flew across the beach, down the boardwalk and then disappeared behind some condo buildings with Tink and I in hot pursuit.  I was positive we weren’t going to find it until we turned the corner off the boardwalk and saw a group of 10 people standing in a circle around the now non-moving kite string. The string was hanging down in front of two balconies and disappeared onto the roof of a three-story condo building. I ran up and, while breathlessly apologizing to everyone around, grabbed the string and yanked. Nothing happened. IT Guy ran up and started to investigate. It turned out that the kite was not on the roof of the first building. It was on the roof of the neighboring three-story condo building. The string was on the first building and wrapped around a stack on the roof. Then the string draped across to the second building where the kite was stuck on the roof. It was clearly never coming down.

In a matter of minutes, we had an audience of an entire extended family, who came out on their balcony to examine our hanging kite string and offer suggestions for how to get it down. IT Guy wandered around for a while trying to find a way onto the roof of the second building. I stayed by the first building, talking with the family and occasionally yanking on the string to see if I could dislodge it or the kite. I had given up on recovering the kite, but we couldn’t leave this kite string hanging on these balconies. I was contemplating how hard I’d have to pull the string to break it off when IT Guy came back into view under the second building and gestured for the string. Then he laid out some insane plan that involved tossing the plastic kite string holder, which was still attached to the string, over the roof of the first building and then he’d be able to pull the kite off the second building. The 10-year-old boy watching this from his family’s balcony thought this was an excellent idea. I was less confident.

IT Guy moved into position to execute his plan and gave the string a last tug.

“HEY!” yelled the 10-year-old boy, “I SAW THE KITE! DO IT AGAIN!”

IT  Guy yanked the string again and suddenly the dragon kite popped up into view, dropped over the edge of the building and into the bushes.

Against all odds, Operation Kite Rescue was a success.

Kite Rescue Squad. They recovered the escape dragon kite from the top of a 3-story condo building

IT Guy gave the runaway kite a stern talking to about the dangers of flying off while he walked it back to the beach. (Not really, but it looked like that’s what he was doing.)

Giving the runaway dragon kite a stern talking to

Then he found a new string for it and sent it right back up into the air to fly with the other kites.

Walking the escape kite back to the beach

The moral of this story? Lamecation be damned. 2012 can break my kite strings, but we’re going to figure out a way to get our kite off the roof and back in the air again.

Kite menagerie

2012 can suck it.


I won’t be water-skiing in a tutu, but I’m still excited

When I was 11, I spent a lot of time in the basement with my sister and our friends pretending to be The Go-Go’s.  My sister was always Gina, the cute drummer.  Our friends were Jane, Charlotte, or Belinda.  Somehow I always ended up being Kathy the bassist.  No one wanted to be Kathy the bassist.  I didn’t mind the instrument.  I actually prefer rhythm to melody, but Kathy wasn’t the cute one or the fun one.  She was the one nobody could remember.  I was Kathy.

Despite my Kathyness, air-guitar Go-Go’s was fun.  We generally “played” songs from Beauty and the Beat. I think that album might be one  of the first albums I owned, if not the first.  (Tina the Ballerina doesn’t count.)  I did some mean air-guitar or, um, bass, on a yardstick.

The Go-Go’s follow up album, Vacation, wasn’t as exciting.  It didn’t get much play in the basement and evenutally I hung up my yardstick.  But the title song still stuck. It has been playing in my head today on permanent loop almost 30 years after my air-guitar Go-Go’s stardom.

I’m not sure I will be water-skiiing in a tutu and crown, but regardless, I’m packing and I’m excited.

It is time to get away.

YouTube Preview Image

Ok, well, in the 30 seconds between me embedding the video of Vacation and pushing the Publish button, embedding was disabled on the video. Sooooo you have to go to youtube to watch The Go-Go’s fake waterski against a green screen.  Sorry.


My mother has a picture of the air guitar action!  Look at my hair.  (Why do I have Shaun Cassidy’s hair?) Now you know why I’m Kathy.  Belinda would never be caught with that hair. Apparently, my sister switched off drums to play the ironing board on occasion. I can’t remember which Go-Go played the ironing board.

The contents of my refrigerator and cannibalism

This is the contents of my refrigerator right now, after our long weekend away:

Carton of eggs, ricotta cheese, maple syrup, jelly, gogurt, orange juice, chocolate syrup.

What can I make with that so I don’t have to go to the grocery store right now?

Where are you super-creative chef types when I need you?

I also have a little minced garlic . . . .

I have a grocery list in hand, but I’m laying spread eagle on my bed instead of driving my car to the store when IT Guy walks by.

“NO!”  I yell at him (not that he had noticed me.)  ”NO! I”m not going to the grocery storre! I refuse.”

“Fine by me,” he says.  ”After this weekend, I’m happy to never eat again.  The kids might have a different opinion, though.”

“If we starve, I’ll lose weight,” I say, still flat on the bed.

“They’ll start to chew on your legs, ” he says.

“If I can get them to work on the belly area first, that would be fine with me.  That’s my problem area.”

Yes, I’ve resorted to encouraging my children to take up cannibalism to avoid my two most  dreaded tasks – losing weight and grocery shopping.

Yeah, yeah.  I’m going to get my car keys right now.

Chocolate syrup on ricotta cheese doesn’t sound that bad . . . . .

(I hate coming home from vacation.)

Maine. Home. Maine.

We’re home.  Unpacking. Grocery shopping. Laundry. Mail. Email. Cleaning.  Wanting to go back to Maine.

I could stay there.  I can see Ben and I there years from now.  I did see us, actually, loading our Suburu in Elllsworth. My long white hair was braided.  My face was tanned and lined and soft looking.  I wore hiking boots and khaki shorts.  Ben was loading wine and groceries into the trunk.  His hair was white now, too.  He had a ponytail and a white beard.  His baseball hat was pulled down low and he wore a t-shirt, jeans and sandals.  We were on our way back to our lake house.  I write there.  Ben makes found art.  We kayak and read books and maybe I’ve finally learned how to garden, so we have flowers.  The kids are grown now and they come visit.  Happy. Someday.

On the plane ride home,  I was already planning our next trip.  We’ll work hard here, so we can get there.


(More pictures are on Flickr. Click through on the sidebar or here.)

Weekend Away

I have to write my post early this morning because in a few hours IT Guy are I are GOING AWAY FOR THE WEEKEND WITHOUT THE KIDS!

Yes, it really does need to be in all caps.

The last time we went somewhere without the kids was in April 2007.  IT Guy had to go to a resort hotel in Miami for work and I tagged along to sit on the beach and relax.  The relaxing lasted less than 24 hours though.  The same night I arrived, my mom called to tell me my grandfather was in the hospital and she needed to go to West Virginia the next day.  It was the beginning of Louie’s decline.  Since my mother was watching my kids, it meant I was going home as soon as possible.  I spent that evening trying to get a flight out.  I did manage to sit by the pool for 2 hours the next morning and then it was back to the airport.

So saying we are overdue for some grown-up time is an understatement.  I finally stopped waiting for an opportunity for adventure to present itself and just decided to make one myself.   See, Tigger.  I can snap out of it.

The kids are headed to Grandma’s house.  IT Guy and I are headed to the Page House Inn in Norfolk, Virginia to lounge in bed, soak in the jacuzzi and have someone else cook us breakfast.  We’ll also be spending time with GenieAlisa and Puckeater.  I’m really looking forward to a good, old-fashioned couple’s date.  After kids, you barely find time to hang out with your spouse, much less with other like-minded adults.

I am breaking one of my cardinal rules about vacations.  I am taking my laptop because I signed on for NaBloPoMo.  There will be a post tomorrow and on Sunday.  (The B&B has wireless.  I checked, which right there tells you how much the internet has inflitrated my life in the last 6 months.)

Time to get packing.  Next post will be from Norfolk.