My Least Favorite Night of Vacation

Our Summer Vacation – Day 10

The last night of vacation is traditionally my least favorite.

2018 was no exception.

It was time to try to pack up everything we brought, plus the souvenirs we bought, into our suitcases and eat up all the leftovers in the refrigerator.  I know, I know.  You are not supposed to be sad that it’s over.  You are supposed to be happy that it happened!

As Forrest Gump might say “I guess I’m always a little of both”.

Check-out was 11 am sharp the next morning.

It was time for some last minute pictures to help us remember the fun we’d had during the week.

Off we went to the Deerfield Beach International Fishing Pier, a mile down the beach.  It is a perfect setting for family pictures.  I captured several of my son and his beautiful family.  I wanted to make sure I got at least one picture in which they were all looking at the camera and smiling.

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Four out of five smiling was the best I could do

In baseball, four hits in five at-bats is a heck of a game.  Taking family pictures, four out of five smiling is about par for the course.  In every picture, our three-year-old grandson stood with his mouth wide open.  When I asked him later why he did that, he offered the following explanation:

I SAW A TREE FROG!

So much for Grandpa’s expertise with a camera, although if you want memorable, it definitely fills that bill.

As it turned out, their Mother, Maria, had already captured one of my all-time favorite pictures of my grandkids.

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For me, this picture sums up perfectly our week in Boca Raton and the good times we shared.

I don’t know if any of the kids were smiling.

All I know is that it brings a smile to my face every time I see it.

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The 2018 Reece & Strobel Family Vacation attendees, less me taking the picture.  In 2019, Grandpa Strobel (second from left, standing) plans to increase the number to 18, including 9 grandkids under age 12.

 

 

One Tyke Over the Line, Sweet Jesus

Day 6 of our Summer Vacation

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The Little Man Who Wasn’t There (wink, wink) joining me on the porch for an outdoor breakfast

When I booked our accommodations for our family vacation, I limited my search to places with at least 3 bedrooms.  Making the trip would be two sets of grandparents, one set of parents, and three grandkids ages 3, 7 & 10, who on vacations past have bunked on the sofa bed in front of the TV.

One review especially caught my eye.  The title was:

Family Friendly like staying at Grandma’s beach house

That sounded like the perfect place to spend a week with grandkids.  I booked a 3 bedroom unit for a week.

When I checked in to our condo, I was given a sheet of guidelines for our stay.  The final guideline was “A maximum of 8 guests per condo REGARDLESS OF AGE”.  It has been my experience that MOST places overlook a small child when tallying the maximum guests allotment, but apparently NOT at “Grandma’s beach house”.

We were one tyke over the line.

When I listed the names of all the guests, there were only 8 spaces.

I omitted our three-year-old grandson’s name.  He would be the easiest to hide.  In one review of the property I found a picture of a cute kid hiding in the cabinet.  I now understood why the kid was in there.

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This is not our kid.  Apparently another family was one tyke over the line and found a creative solution.

Our youngest grandson’s “absence” on our vacation brought to mind a poem by American educator & poet William Hughes Mearns.  In 1899, Mr. Mearns wrote a poem that was eventually set to music titled The Little Man That Wasn’t There.

It goes like this (with a few minor revisions by me):

As I was going up the stair
I met a (little) man who wasn’t there!
He wasn’t there again today,
Oh how I wish he’d go away!” (NOT!)

When I came home last night at three,
The (little) man was waiting there for me
But when I looked around the hall,
I couldn’t see him there at all!
Go away, go away, don’t you come back any more!
Go away, go away, at least when housekeeping is at the door.

Last night I saw upon the stair,
A little man who wasn’t there,
He wasn’t there again today
Oh, how I wish he’d go away…

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The Little Man Who Wasn’t There – Fortunately there was no limit on kids at the beach!

I usually mention the names of the places we stay on vacation.

Not this time.  Although we had a great time, I’m not sure when the statute of limitations runs out on “exceeding the guest limit” in Florida.

Sure would hate for the “little man who wasn’t there” to start Pre-K with a record in juvy.