Last week was spring break and I flew the coup and headed to California for four days to hang with two of my best friends. (They live a mile away from each other and minutes from the beach. This is the part where I try my best to not get stupidly jealous.) Originally I was supposed to drive out with Greg, but then plans changed last minute. I found a relatively inexpensive flight at the eleventh hour, and so it was Junebug, Agathe and me on our way to sunny California.
I was a little worried about how much Agathe would enjoy the break. She was to spend the first couple days with me and then she was going to stay with a family friend in the same area starting Wednesday. I warned her that hanging with three women (two of whom are pregnant, one who is nursing) and their combined five kids might not exactly be the "spring break" a seventeen year old French girl envisions. She said she was fine with it, though, so she came along for the madness. We basked in the sun for four straight days, skipped naps any time we could, and played for hours on the beach. At the end of the two days I asked Agathe if she was bored with all the kid stuff/ mommy conversation. She replied she enjoyed it all except for the conversations about childbirth, which absolutely terrified her. OOPS.
And now, a bajazillion pictures. I shall narrate as we go, whaddya say?
DAY ONE: RELAXED BEACH DAY. I stayed most of the time with Akasha. She has three (going on four) kids. The kiddos adored June and June adored them right back. It became alarmingly clear to me that June needs siblings stat. Here are Akasha's kids entertaining June with the best, biggest baby toy they could find. Naturally, June did not oppose. I mean, who would?!
Yes, we are quite the crew! We went to the beach three days in a row (including a day of surfing) with all five kids (ages six and under) and no men around. I'm right proud of us. NO excuses for missing out.
This is Amy- expecting her baby in June. She has more confidence than the rest of the world combined. I love her with all my soul.
June LOVED the beach. Blew right through her nap time like it was nothing. She watched the other kids play (I hate to tell Greg, but he's got another hardcore extrovert/ wants to be outside all the time family member on his hands) and dug her hands in the sand over and over and over.
Day 2: SURFING. Agathe had never tried it so we pretty much forced her into the wet suit and out to sea. 16 week pregnant Akasha showed her the ropes while Amy and I manned the army of children on the beach. Also, children are SO easy to watch on the beach. I think if I lived close the beach like Amy and Akasha I would go every darn day because the kids just entertain themselves. For hours! They are so content. No screaming no fighting no crying- they just want to play in the sand and water. I am investigating a theory that the key to successful child rearing is living close to the beach.
After Agathe and Akasha came back from surfing it was mine and Amy's turn to give it a go. Amy is 28 weeks pregnant but she doesn't believe in slowing down for fetuses so she took me on out. I am kind of a whoos/ terribly uncoordinated so I didn't have a lot of hope in myself. (SIDENOTE: HOW DO YOU SPELL WHOOS? WOOS?) Plus I have tried surfing several times and I always biff it for every time I try it. But Amy was bound and determined to get me up on a board so out we went. First we had to pose, because you know, if you went surfing but didn't take pictures did you even go surfing at all?!?
I lasted about twenty minutes out on the surfboard. June was crying back at shore and I couldn't quite enjoy myself knowing that my baby wanted her milk/ needed her nap. So I went in early and Amy took Aspen out for a minute. Yes, Aspen is six, and yes Aspen likes to surf. (Notice all the A names in our crew? Akasha Amy Aspen Agathe. It's madness!)
After surfing I promptly took a nap.
She then woke up from her nap NOT PLEASED. June's crying face is about as cute as it gets.
Of course, it seemed fitting that we take some jumping pictures. The "almost jumping" pictures are always better than the successful jumping pictures, dontcha think?
Not pictured Day two activities: The best fish and shrimp tacos I've ever eaten. I could live on a straight diet of shrimp tacos and die a happy woman
DAY THREE: HUNTINGTON BEACH. I was the one that suggested we give Huntington Beach a shot even though Amy and Akasha warned me that it is way too touristy and kind of a drive. They were gracious enough to take me anyway and we found it to be... well, way too touristy and kind of a drive. It was also windy and a tad bit cold (cold in California = 65 degrees.) Also, I think two straight days of no schedule and weird naps had June acting fussy and me acting a bit fussy too. So it was awesome, but not as awesome as day 1 + day 2. Not everything can be perfect all the time, guys, and that's okay.
At night we went to watch the sunset over the ocean. You know, typical Wednesday night stuff. I swear, these two girls live on vacation!
Time for me to head home. But first we hit up the park in the morning and played a round of cards before Amy took me to the airport at 2:00 to catch my 4:00 flight. (Poor Akasha was stuck teaching preschool.) By now I had said goodbye to Agathe and was embarking on the flight by myself with June. I'm not usually that scared of doing things by myself, but flying with June without another adult had me shaking in my britches. What if I need help!?!? We had a layover in Las Vegas and the Vegas flight was delayed five hours, so instead we went to Phoenix in a futile attempt to get home a little bit sooner. But the Phoenix flight was also delayed and by the time we were home in our own beds in Utah it was 2 am. Twelve hours in airports and planes. I would've been faster to just drive home, sheesh! Luckily, June pulled out her best baby behavior and the twelve hours was pretty seamless. Sometimes I think this child really gets me. Like she knows when I really need her to just be chill and so she chills. I swear, she senses my stress and anxiety and turns into an angel baby. Where did this child come from and how is she mine?!
Bon's book club that is coming up next week. I am about 200 pages into Unbroken. This is my second time reading it and I love it just as much as the first. (Although I might add that my best idea was not to read about planes crashing while waiting to board a plane.) Hillenbrand's attention to detail and to getting the story "right" is unsurpassed. My fingers are crossed that she will write another book. (Her other book that I absolutely loved is Seabiscuit).
Other California things that were not pictured:
+ The most amazing maple bacon donut I have ever had at a little donut shop in Newport. It was $4 for that donut and I declare it was the best $4 I have ever spent.
+ Swimming and hot tubbing- Akasha lives ACROSS THE STREET from a pool and hot tub and Amy has one in her apartment complex. There is so much that is unfair about this whole set up.
+ Akasha made me the most killer orange smoothie I have ever had in my life. She dropped an orange right in the blender, threw in some concentrate and ice, and voila, it was absolute perfection. I need to get a better blender. Anyone want to spot me $500?
+ We played a rousing game of Bang! one night. I love playing that game so much, but gosh it brings out competetive, mean Bonnie. KILL THE SHERIFF.
Alright, that's a wrap. It sure was good to get home to Greg. It was good to be away and good to come home. Sometimes I think relationships need oxygen, and whenever I spend a few days without Greg I am always giddily excited to see him again. Friday we were both still off for spring break and we relaxed and cuddled our sweet baby and soaked up that time together. Spring break always goes too fast, doesn't it? Also I know a lot of teachers complain about low pay, ungrateful students, ever changing curriculum, ETC, but after a week in California in the middle of April I have to think to myself, geez oh man, I chose the right profession.
Over and out.