Friday, July 31, 2009

First Family Vacation: Day One

Sunday afternoon, our little family left our humble abode and set off on our first family vacation. Our original intention had been to travel to California during this week to visit Josh's aunt and uncle that moved there recently, but after thinking about Eli on a plane, in a confined space, for 5-6 hours, we changed those plans. As of the Wednesday before our trip, we knew that we wanted to go to Destin, FL, but we didn't know where we would stay when we got there. I wanted to do a beach trip because I absolutely LOVE the beach. Unfortunately, Josh doesn't like it at all, but he conceded and said that if I could find a good deal on a condo we would go. I spent every waking moment (at least it seemed like that) for three or four days scouring the internet for condo deals in Destin, FL, only to find out that it's really hard to find a condo available for rent four days before you want to be there. Finally, when it seemed like my eyes would forever cross from staring at the computer screen, I found a great deal on a condo just 300 yards from the beach in a nice little resort called Tops'l Beach and Raquet Resort. Do I play tennis, you ask? Ha! Not at all! But, beggars can't be choosey, so we made reservations and began packing for our trip to Destin.

Josh's mom, Sue or Zue-Zue, came with us to help with Eli. We knew that Eli would not be on the beach for more than 45 minutes to an hour and we needed someone to watch him so we could stay out on the beach a little longer than that. Sue hadn't been on a vacation in about 20 years and was excited about getting to see a new place. Plus, she didn't really care about getting a tan, so she said she wouldn't mind coming to watch Eli for us.

Sunday afternoon, we loaded up our bags and set off for Destin, FL. One of my friends, Cheryl, has taken several trips with her baby, who is six weeks older than Eli. They have always traveled at night during Brody's normal sleeping time to make things easier on them. We decided to try this with Eli and I'm happy to say it worked like a charm! We left around 4:30 and stopped for supper at 7:00. We gave Eli his last bottle, changed him into his jammies, and turned Praise Baby on for him to watch to relax. Since he's still rear-facing, he has to watch the DVD through the reflection in his mirror, but it still worked! He didn't move an inch the entire time. Finally, once he was relaxed, he dozed off and slept until we arrived in Destin around 11:30 that night.

"Woo Hoo! Road trip!"

Ready for his first vacation

Entranced by Praise Baby
(Nicki and I refer to it as "baby crack")

The plan was for us to take all the luggage to the condo while Sue stayed with Eli in the car. Josh and I got everything unloaded for the final trip up there when we heard a squeal of delight from the backseat. Eli had decided to wake up and he thought it was time to play! We got to the condo and he immediately took off exploring everything and finding new things that would make Mommy and Daddy say, "No!".

Checking out the fake bamboo tree

"When they're not looking, I'm SO going to climb this thing!"

"Drat! Mommy caught me!"

Off to explore something else

For a last minute reservation, we were VERY pleased with our condo. The furnishings were very nice. We were so pleased. We put everything up that needed to be put away for the night and left the rest of the stuff for the morning; we were so tired and really wanted to go to sleep, but a certain little boy had his second wind and was ready to play, play, play. I thought I could trick him into going to sleep again, by doing his normal night time routine with him, so I gave him a bath, put his jammies back on, and gave him a little bottle. It worked! He went to sleep and so did the rest of us. We knew that we would have a very busy, fun-filled day the next morning!

Guest room

Guest bathroom

Kitchen

Dining room

View from living room

Living room
(Those pictures stressed me out all week!)

Living room

Check out Eli's rent-a-crib on the left. He hated it! We would lay him in the crib sound asleep, his hand would feel that thin mattress, he'd start patting it as if to say, "This is NOT my bed!", and then he'd proceed to stand up and cry. We should have taken the pack-n-play as a back up because he spent most nights with us in our bed. He always started out in his crib, but usually during the early morning hours when I couldn't get him to settle down again, I'd finally cave and just let him snuggle with us. We're trying to get back into our normal routine, now that we're back home. This taught us a lesson though...always have a back-up crib!

Master bathroom

Master bedroom

Master bedroom
(the door on the right leads you out to the balcony)

1 comment:

Audra said...

How nice!! What great accommodations and what a super little traveler you had! Can't wait to read the rest of the posts!

p.s. between yours and nicki's posts, i feel like i know zue-zue!

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