Sunday, August 16, 2009

For Posterity's Sake: Week in Review 32

We spent last week on a family vacation in Destin, "Soda" (or Florida for those of you who don't speak Audrey), visiting some close friends and a town that Jason called home for a little while. We had the sort of week that gives you sustenance for weeks to come: beautiful surroundings that beacon you to come outdoors, gracious hosts, two date nights out (one at an amazing restaurant on the beach where the photo above was taken), home cooked meals that make you miss your grandma, and conversation that sparks new creative energy.

Of course, the setting was also perfect for some Audrey-originals:

Jason and I found ourselves being serenaded during our 13-hour drive (14 with stops) with a song that went something like this:

"Mommy's going to Soda. Mommy's going to Soda. Mommy's going to Soda. Yes she is.
Daddy's going to Soda. Daddy's going to Soda. Daddy's going to Soda. Yes he is.
Audrey's going to Soda. Audrey's going to Soda. Audrey's going to Soda. Yes she is.
Emmy's going to Soda (yes, the dog went, too). Emmy's going to Soda. Emmy's going to Soda. Yes she is."

Of course, at every stop (gas station, hotel, restaurant) we were asked if this was Soda.

As has been our trend, Jason and I have been taking the rain with us everywhere this summer, including Florida. Several days, we told Audrey she had to get out of the pool because we heard thunder. One day, after just getting into her suit, thunder clapped as she stood at the edge of the pool about to jump. She shook her finger at the sky, looked up, and yelled, "No, thunder! I'm swimming."

While Audrey slept great on this week (always a bonus on vacation), on our last night of the trip she was suddenly afraid of the dark when we put her to bed. Following her bedtime routine, we were about to leave the room when she began crying. "I don't want the dark on," she said, "I want the dark off." Luckily, a night light was all it took to soothe her.

This awareness of the dark continued on our drive home last night as the sky turned to shadow, only this time she decided to be the brave one and thought my husband could use some comforting. "You're okay. You're okay, Daddy. You don't have to be scared," she said.

My favorite description of the week occurred as we crossed the Midbay Bridge to drive home and Audrey looked out the window and said, "There's boats swimming."

Audrey experienced close encounters with several new animals this week, including tiny lizards, and our hosts' turtles with which she became quickly fascinated. But we were surprised one day by a little visitor in the pool - the frog you see below. Jason fished this one out with a net, only to have a smaller one jump in. I scooped that one up in my hands and helped him to the side of the pool where Audrey watched him hop away. I think this act raised me just a few notches on Audrey's cool-meter, as this afternoon she was still talking about mama holding a frog.

But my favorite story of the week involves one of our hosts, David. He came back from a meeting one night and relayed a funny story of an acquaintance (George) mentioning that he thought David had gained a little weight (as the man's wife stood by a little horrified, I'm sure). David laughed and said that "George lost his filter." We moved on from the conversation until a few minutes later, when Audrey said, so nonchalantly that she didn't even bother to look up from the toys in her hands, "George lost his filter." Those little ears are always listening.

As kids go back to school and summer weans away, I hope that you have all had a chance to spend some time somewhere beautiful; to get outside and play like a kid; to eat food worth remembering; and spend time with people who build you up and energize you until your steps feel light and your mind feels fresh. We feel blessed to have spent such a week and have such friends. If only we could bottle them up and hand a bottle to each of you. The world would be a better place. (Thanks, Susan and David)!

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