Coadster looking a little annoyed at the beginning of our trip.
Sometimes I wonder why I do it. Is it really worth all of the hassle? All that running around, acquiring things and packing and shopping and forgetting stuff and shopping again. Then there's the driving and the getting lost, or not really getting lost but thinking I'm lost because the Mapquest mileage seems to be off by quite a bit.
Stinky knocking her elbow getting out of the teepee we found during out hike.
Then when we finally get there, we go through that transition period. The girls are suddenly out of their elements and their phones don't work, and there's no computer or friends to talk to and it's all a little bit disconcerting for teenage girls.
There's usually weird attitudes and meltdowns to contend with on the first day too. One kid always seems to want to do the exact thing that her sister just said she hated. I've been through it during almost every vacation, but I always hope we can skip that initial transition phase. It seems no matter what age they are, we still have to suffer through it.
The girls during our kick-ass hour and a half long hike.
Without even being aware of it, the next day things change. Everything is easier and the girls are so much more amenable. We're having actual conversations about books and music, instead of what some dumb boy at their school said or which girls are pregnant.
My daughters finally adapt their "guest" personalities - the ones they usually reserve for other people's parents. They take it upon themselves to help. They decide between themselves what activity they'll be willing to do. Suddenly, we're all going on long hikes and laughing and then cooling down at the beach.
Stinky stuffing herself with s'mores.
On the last night, we've all but forgotten the initial stress of the trip and try not to think about all the musty smelling clothes we'll have and the sand that will follow us back across the state line.
The girls all hopped up on sugar on our last night.
We make s'mores and we all get a little sugar crazed. It's okay, though. Because everything is hilarious and my girls are totally charming. I am in it and aware of it at the same time. This right here makes all the other stress worth it. It's always nice to be reminded that we can all hang out and have this much fun with each other. We're the entertainment and we don't need glowing boxes, or texting or social networking sites. Right then, we're enough.
My girls with my brother in Madison.
We ease back into civilization and home, by way of a visit with my brother in Madison. We wander around State Street and go to a Chinese buffet for lunch and the girls' phones are working again and Stinky goes on a texting rampage to make up for lost time. While we all look forward to going home and blogging and messaging and reconnecting with our friends, we're also glad that we got away from it all for a little while. The perspective is always worth the bother.