In the midst of grieving we have been trying to have normal too. Over the past month we have packed in three really great getaways.
First we took a weekend trip to the spot where we were married. Eleven adults and five kids crammed into one house for a camp over. We had an impromptu ball gown birthday party for my sweet niece, Finley. We went to the thrift store (where Adam scored his wedding suit) and bought out all of the fancy dresses. (This was actually my dream for our rehearsal dinner. Everyone would have to construct an outfit from the nearest thrift store and then winner would earn the right to officially witness our marriage. The timing didn’t work out 8.5 years ago so it was nice to finally fulfill my thrift party fantasy).
After that adventure we headed to the beach for our annual family beach week. Each year, in lieu of gathering for Christmas, Adam’s family goes to the beach for a week. This year we had 15 people (including 5 cousins). It was relaxing (as relaxing a vacationing with little ones can be) and tons of fun. The kids are all getting older and more independent. They were all obsessed with observing the fish Uncle Andy caught each day. We even snagged what I am sure is our last baby beach nap.
This past weekend we took on camping with five kiddos under 6 (because we must be crazy :)) We headed to nearby Jordan Lake with friends from Peace Corps who live in NC now. We are basically family so camping with the five kids was actually surprisingly easy. We enjoyed the full spectrum of seasons in our 24 hour trip. We took advantage of the summer-like 80 degree weather to swim during the day. At night it got down into the 40s and felt downright fall-like. It was cool, but clear enough to sleep without the rain-fly (a camping first for me). In the morning the kids went for a paddle in the mist.
Taking 3 trips in four weeks isn’t really our “normal” but in this case it was just what we needed.