Traveling with kids pretty much promises to be anything but relaxing. Sure, it's slower paced, but kids are never quite the same when they are away from home. They sleep wonky, protest naps, fall asleep at odd times and in weird places, and are just generally off kilter.
At least that's true for my kids. Nugget slept with us every single night, didn't go down for a rest once, and by the end of the day her eyes were red and you could tell she was just plain done. Either that or we got sunscreen in her eyes. And Doodey. It still makes me sad to think of his whimpers every time I went to lay him in the pack-n-play. He wasn't at home and he knew it.
So it's times like these that I try to sneak in some extra one on one time with my littles, love them up a little more, teach them to appreciate these moments we get to experience.
On one of these particularly cranky days, I laid Doodey down for a nap, and Nugget and I snuck out for an island date while Daddy stayed back and fished off the dock.
Now, when you're on an island you are quite limited on date day choices. Like swim in the pool, swim in the ocean, or go to the pool bar and get a treat. So we did the later. Nugget ordered a "pink drink" aka Shirley Temple, and I got a virgin Pina Colada. Yum. While we sipped our tropical drinks, we worked on a little project together. Nugget's Florida book.
Upon returning home, we made a little scrapbook, adding pictures and trinkets from our trip. She hasn't put it down. It goes a little something like this (all answers recorded verbatim Nugget's words):
Florida looks like:
Blowing wind, palm trees, the ocean, sea shells, and butterfly wings.
Florida sounds like:
Waves in the ocean, airplanes
Florida tastes like:
Salt, pink drinks
Florida feels like:
Sand in the desert, warm, sweaty
Florida smells like:
My favorite things about North Captiva Island:
Collecting seashells, finding houses that are the best, swimming, getting pink drinks, playing in the bunk beds.
I love her little Nugget answers. Seeing things through her eyes. And although she was off kilter and tuckered out, she was able to find the good in our vacation. And with this sweet little book she will always be able to remember it.