.... and glad to be here. We had a great time in Florida, but it's nice to sleep in our own bed and be in our own space again.
I don't even know where to begin really, so I guess I'll start at the beginning. We left last Wednesday, and everyone was up early, which turned out to be nice because Taisim slept through almost the entire flight down to Florida. Taipan loved pulling his suitcase through the airport, and he and I chatted and played during the flight while Yuta enjoyed some alone time across the aisle with his iPod. We had a minor drama/delay with the rental car, but got it sorted out pretty painlessly. (Y: The rental car Budget had for us was a Mustang hardtop coupe. I looked at our cart with 2 suitcases, 2 car seats, 2 strollers, & 2 backpacks, looked back at the counter agent, and laughed. Luckily, we were able to get a 4-door after waiting for 20 minutes.)
We spent our first four nights at the Oceanwalk condos in Daytona Beach. We'd stayed there twice before, and knew that the kids would love it - it's right on the ocean and has a terrific kids' water play/pool area. We checked in around four or five, got to our room to get our swimsuits on, and headed right out to the pool for a couple of hours.
On Thursday a friend of mine came to hang out for a bit with her two daughters, and we tried to do the beach/ocean thing, but my kids weren't digging it (literally or figuratively). We hung out at the kids' pool and the lazy river (oooh - that was so relaxing - the only time Yuta or I got to really sit still during the entire trip) and headed back to the room around midday. We also went camera shopping that afternoon. Why? Because on our first night our camera was plunged into the water when Yuta had to do a quick rescue of Taisim coming down the water slide. My mom came out for dinner, and after dinner we headed back to the pool! Grammy even put her suit on and had fun splashing with Taisim.
Friday was our day to socialize a bit. We were invited to a friends' house for lunch and playing, which was followed by a visit to my hair dresser, and dinner and more swimming at my dad's house.
You'll notice in some pictures from the last half of our trip that you can see Taipan's eyes again, and that's because he asked me to cut his hair while we were at the salon. He didn't want all of it cut - just the front. So I had my stylist show me the best way to do it (i.e. how to not do it all straight across), and cut a bit off. Apparently he wanted the hair out of his eyes.
Pizza night at my dad's was fun - got to see my brother and sister, and Taipan really enjoyed playing on a huge air mattress-like raft my dad has for his pool.
Saturday was another day hanging in the sun. We had a lazy morning, and my sister, niece, nephew and mom came to hang out with us in the afternoon. The cousins had a great time playing together, and Taisim took her nap floating around the lazy river with me.
Sunday was check-out, followed by family pictures, which we were an hour late for (sorry, everyone... really, we didn't plan to be late). So when we got to the pictures, things were hectic - folks were understandably kind of peeved about how late we were. But I think we still got some great pictures. We have a really nice on with my mom, my dad, my stepmom, and all the kids and grandkids, and I'm happy to have it. Gotta find a frame for it now. Maybe we'll take a picture of the picture and post it :-)
So, after pictures I took the kids to my mom's house for a visit, and for some Grammy's noodles (one of Taipan's favorite meals), while Yuta got to spend some time with one of his Florida buddies.
We then went to stay at my sister's house for a couple of nights. Oh, how Taipan loves her house. He really enjoys spending time with his cousins, but he is truly in love with her ceiling fans. So much so that he asked us to take video of them to bring home with us. We had made plans to do bumper bowling with all of the kids, but Taipan didn't want to go, so my sister and her kids went without us. And my sister hosted everyone at her house on Monday night so we could see everyone before heading home, which was nice.
The flight home on Tuesday was pretty good - Taisim slept for a good portion of it, but when she woke up, she did not want to be in her seat for landing, so there was some screaming there. I ended up holding her in my lap, but she squirmed quite a bit. Yuta's mom was at the airport waiting for us by the time we collected our luggage. It's amazing how much stuff you can pile onto a SmarteCarte. My MIL always vacuums our van while we're away - isn't that incredibly nice? We leave our van at her house, and she cleans it for us. Those kinds of things are so helpful and thoughtful.
So I think I've covered the major bits of our vacation - since we've been home we've been doing a lot of dancing. Oh, one thing I forgot to mention is that we were introduced to High School Musical while staying at my sister's house, so we have more dances & songs in our repertoire!