This was the view from our rented townhome. It was definitely beautiful, peaceful, relaxing. Well, at least for a few hours before the kids started showing up. Dave and I went to Reno the day before we checked into our rental on Saturday. Reno was fun - luckily Dave was a winner. In fact he was the winner the whole week. I could not get on a lucky streak with the gambling which should have been a clue to me to just stop. It was still fun and uneventful.
On Saturday morning we got an early start to take the hour drive over to Lake Tahoe. I had called a head of time and found out that we could check in after 10 am - yay, lucky us. Usually check-in isn't until 3pm. When we got there to check in there was a discussion on whether we wanted futons or twin mattresses delivered to our place for the extra little sleepers. All the sudden someone took over my husband's body - this personality was NOT welcome. He was a real jerk and very difficult. He ended up leaving me standing in the lobby of the resort because HE wrote down the wrong license plate number....great, just great. I was ready to call the whole thing off (actually it was more like I was ready to send him packing). We quickly resolved the issue for the time being and I happily started settling in and eagerly awaited Stephanie et al to arrive. In the mean time we got some sandwiches (I had been on WW for one week so still wanted to stay on track). As I took my second bite of sandwich I hear this 'crack' and quickly discovered a front tooth was missing - shit, where the hell is it??!! Whew, found it. But now what? What the hell am I going to do for the rest of our vacation? Within 10 mins the kids showed up and the games begun. I never was able to take care of the tooth while we were there but I figured if I was going to have any kind of a good time I would have to check the ego at the door and say fuck it.
It went clear sailing pretty much the rest of the week with the exception of the 'hag woman from hell' at the trout farm (you will find the story here).
I was lucky enough to have all three of my kids come with their spouse/fiance/girlfriend and my grandkids. It did me a world of good to spend time with all of them. Especially my youngest, Christina, since she lives so far away and just got engaged. I was looking forward to spending some quality time with her and to get to know Joe (fiance) better. In my son's case it was his birthday while we were there so we gave he and his girlfriend a hotel room for two nights. I didn't particularly want to witness his drunkenness. When it comes to Michael one never knows what you're going to get. He is a Cancer and very true to form. He can be extremely crabby but usually it's because he is super sensitive. So, I was a little cautious until I could get a read on his mood. It turned out that he was great. I don't know if it was because his girlfriend was there or what but he was the good/funny Michael that we all love. With the exception of the 'episode' referred to earlier of 'hag'. We all went out on the boat - so much fun. I even went out on the tube with Stephanie and Leah. It was especially fun to watch the guys out on the tube. Jimmy did a great job giving them a wild ride and the spectators quite a show.
One day we went to a beautiful beach for a few hours (too short) and it was just perfect. Unfortunately Stephanie thought the kiddos were sunburned even after dousing them in 50 spf - it was super hot that week. Luckily they were not burned. I loved watching Mike and Christina with their partners. Susy, Mike's g/f, was really sweet and seems really good for Mike. I've never seen him be this way with a girl before. It was evident that he cares very much for her and visa versa. I was so happy to see this. He has had issues with women so I hope that this will last for him. And then there was my baby girl and her fiance, Joe. I think my heart could have just burst watching them over the week. Joe is just so good and doting to her. And she is definitely in love with him. She can and does depend on him and he doesn't let her down. Stephanie and I were discussing them and she hit the nail on the head in describing them - he is the male counterpart of her. I wasn't sure that she would ever meet someone so right for her but she has. Dave and I believe that they are soulmates (and I never used to believe in that).
Even though she lives far from her beloved family and they're poor and don't have much in material things those two are on top of the world having each other. They make my heart melt.
While we were at the beach Joe was in the water the whole time we were there. One of the great things about him is that he's so good with the kiddos. My grandkids LOVE him. He's like the pied piper when it comes to the kids. So he was out in the water going back and forth from the shallow area to the deeper area in between taking time out to make a guppie trap for the kids - sure enough that sucker caught guppies! When we were getting ready to take off he grabs Christina's hand and takes her out to the deeper area (4 ft clear water) and shows her this heart of rocks that he made for her.....awwwwwww. He won over all of our hearts last week. He is already part of the family.
I am happy beyond belief when it comes to my kids and their choices in partners. Stephanie's husband, Jimmy, is a wonderful husband and father and I really could not have handpicked him any better. They are both good parents and devoted to each other. Michael seems to have found an awesome woman and hopefully their love will grow and flourish and Christina and Joe are definitely off to a great start of a long and happy marriage. Now, we can get started on planning a wedding.
As far as Dave and I are concerned I was so proud of him for doing things that he might not choose to do if it wasn't for me and my preferences. The best part is that going out and hanging out on the beach turned out to be fun for him. It gave him another chance to bond with and get to know my kids. They are all so very important to me and my biggest wish in life is for all of them to accept each other as family and care for one another as I do.
Now for more picture memories of our vacation.
Dave, Leah and Stephanie
Michael and Susy
Dave and Jimmy - living the life.