In the past 5.5 years since Alex was born, Keith and I have rarely left our kids except for an occasional date night. We had one overnight shortly before Max was born, and the kids have stayed overnight (one night) with grandparents several times. Last summer, the boys stayed with their aunt & uncle for two nights…but Jensyn was still at home with us.
We’ve been anxiously waiting for the day when Jensyn was weaned, allowing us the opportunity to get away for several days without children. At the same time, I *dreaded* the thought of being away from my children for several days. My “mama heart” had a very hard time with the idea of leaving my kiddos!
A few weeks ago, we did a ‘trial run’ and left all 3 kids with my parents (an hour away) for two nights. (We did exciting things like steam-cleaning our carpets and organizing closets and cabinets while they were gone.) The kids had a great time, and they really didn’t seem to miss us at all. Thanks, Grandma & Grandpa S!
So, this past week, we decided it was time for this Mama to get BRAVE about going more than an hour from her kiddos. We left the kids with Keith’s parents for 3 nights and 4 days…where they had LOTS of fun playing in their new sandbox. (Picture sent to my cell phone, compliments of Papa.)
We gave lots of hugs and kisses, wished Grandma & Papa good luck, and then we headed to Sandusky, OH for a few days at Cedar Point. My cheap-o cell phone was our only camera, so the picture below are far from stunning.
Alex left us a sweet smiley face on the car so that we wouldn’t forget him while we were gone. This was a nice little discovery when we arrived at our hotel!
I did hate being away from the kids, but it was lots of fun to spend quality time with Keith. Lots of time to talk uninterrupted, eat dinners without scolding or cleaning up messes, and get in and out of the car without buckling three carseats…ahhhh, how NICE!!!!
Being the crazy mama that I am, I managed to pack for all three kids…but I didn’t pack very well for myself. I forgot to pack SHOES! Who on earth forgets to pack SHOES when spending 2 days at an amusement park? My ‘souvenir’ for the trip was a new pair of tennis shoes from Walmart. I’m grateful I didn’t have to wear my cheap flip-flops to the park, as it was only 50 degrees on our first morning in the parks. It was cold enough riding with socks and tennis shoes.
We tried out the new rollercoaster, The Gatekeeper, and we visited old favorites (from our visit about 7 years ago) like Top Thrill Dragster and Millenium Force. We found out we’re not too old for roller coasters, but we’re glad we had two days and could end each day early!
We went out for dinner each night, did a little clothes shopping that Keith has been wanting to do, picked up some little souvenirs for the kids at Walmart, and then we headed back to the hotel to play cards or use the swimming pool. While playing Quiddler one night, this was my deal…
We had our first ever meal at Famous Daves, and wow, was it delicious! We had fun sampling all the BBQ sauces while waiting for our food to arrive. (Did you know that, if you bring along your Cedar Point parking receipt, the Famous Daves at the Cedar Point marina will deduct $15 from your bill? I’m glad I was bored & reading the fine print on the parking pass while we drove!)
On our last morning, we grabbed a quick breakfast at our hotel before packing and heading out. Our plan was to drive straight home, but we got a little sidetracked and ended up going to the Shipshewana Flea Market and the Rise & Roll bakery. Then we stopped in Mishawaka for lunch, took a road construction detour, and ended up taking an accidental tour of the Notre Dame campus. (It’s really quite pretty!)
The kids really didn’t seem to care all that much that we were home…which is always a good sign that they’ve had fun and were well-loved while we were away.
Life has been more than a little chaotic since we arrived back home, but we are so thankful for those few days to just ENJOY time together!
Thank you to BOTH sets of grandparents for taking good care of our kiddos in the past few weeks! We are SO grateful for the opportunity to get away, relax, and just enjoy spending time with each other!