I just now got back from the beach.
Did I mention we'd be going to Florida after Christmas? We traveled to the panhandle to visit with family in a palatial rented beach house for a few days. Sure, the house is a short walk from the sand, but it's a serene walk through nature on wide and sturdy boardwalks. And, sure, I wore jeans and a long sleeve T because it's not exactly balmy, but there I was at the beach, in December. The Quartet is having a big time digging holes in the sand and searching for shells, visiting their cousin, running along the boardwalk and watching cartoons on the house's gigantic television. The adults are having fun relaxing, eating, drinking wine (15 bottles to start with, Steph) and watching cartoons.
This vacation, however, almost didn't happen. We stopped at the Walgreen's just a few blocks from our house when we first started on our nine-hour drive and C chose that time to put a movie in the Mazda's DVD player. And that DVD player did not work. I almost turned the van around then and drove back home, because I've never done a road trip with these kids without the distraction of the blessed DVD player. I know that in the old days people used to travel without television and I can only assume that they played games or read or (shudder) conversed, but I didn't think I was up for it, I didn't think I had the right stuff for such an endeavor. But I have to say that the kids behaved famously. They took the lack of optical stimulation in stride and took the opportunity to nap, eat junk food and to stare out the windows.
Of course, we still have to drive the 500 miles to get home in a few days, so I better go now and nap.