Friday, April 5, 2013

Spring Break - Valente Style

I have to say that we aren't known for having "smooth" vacations. I think this trend began with our honeymoon, and if we ever have a chance to chat over a cup of coffee, I'll share that one with you. We keep trying to break that trend though, and have great plans for a wonderful summer vacation out East this year.

When Spring Break rolled around we decided to take a mini-vacation, and get away to the family cottage for a few days. It had been far too long since we'd been up there, and even though it would be chilly, it still would be fun to do something out of the ordinary. Being the flexible lot that we are, we decided to head up on Tuesday. This gave Jason the opportunity to take our car in on Monday, just to catch up on maintenance and make sure it was "ship-shape" for the trip (this will be an important bit of info later).

We packed everyone snugly in the car and headed off for our adventure. About an hour into our trip we stopped off to get some Abby snacks. Abby was in full "charm" mode as we tooled around the store. As always, Abby smiled and greeted everyone we passed, but this time it paid off - she walked away with a sucker and a dollar, given to her by workers who were bowled over by her sweetness.

At this point, things were going smoothly, and Abby was wonderful, even when we had to hang out in a parking lot for about 45 minutes while Dad fielded some calls from work. Little did we know this wouldn't be only time we'd be sitting in a parking lot this trip.

It was another hour into the trip that our oil pressure light went on. Apparently, when they changed our oil they failed to fill our tank completely, nice huh? So, while Abby, Bruiser, and I waited in the car, Jason crossed five lanes of traffic in order to reach a store where he could buy some more oil. This "little" incident had us questioning whether we should just head home and call it quits, but we forged ahead.

Finally, finally we made it up there, and all of us were happy as clams to be at the cottage.....well, almost all of us. Bruiser is as much of a homebody as I am, and therefore he was all kinds of mixed-up to find himself somewhere new. I'm sure he thought we would be leaving him at any minute - and never coming back. I'm guessing that's why he kept up a pretty constant stream of whines nearly the whole time we were there.

We all ended up having a good time, even though it wasn't warm enough to go swimming or boating. Abby helped Daddy get firewood, and helped Mom try to wear out Bruiser by taking him for a walk. We played and took a day trip to the "big water", and even indulged in some world famous bacon. Even Nana and Papa came up for a day of fun. How much better could it get? We'd planned on staying until Friday, but that wasn't to be.

See, Abby had been fighting a cold all week, and being the good sharer that she is, she passed that on to Mom. By Thursday, I was a mess. It was time to come home.

We packed everything up and pointed the car towards home. Luckily there were no unexpected surprises along the way. Sure it took us a little longer, since we stopped off for a quick visit with Grandma (a visit where Abby told Jason and I to go out on a date, so she could spend time alone with Grandma having pillow fights, hmmmm....), but we finally made it home safe and sound.

And so, Spring Break comes to a close. You know, even though it wasn't what we'd anticipated it was still nice to have all of us together. The very best part though was how wonderful Abby was through it all. She was a trooper, and never lost her sunny outlook, no matter what was happening. I can't tell you how many times we would mention what a joy she is to be around. She's just happy, and therefore makes those around her happy as well. We were left with hope for a great time this summer - out East, and up at Nana and Papa's cottage on the lake.

Abby was an awesome wood stacker....who knew?

Dreaming of the summer ahead.

Despite the fact that it was freezing (and there was still ice in the water)
all Abby wanted to do was play in the sand and go swimming. We
kept a tight hold on her, lest she decided to go for it anyway.

I couldn't help but get flashes of the teen she will be one day as I looked back at
her in the car with the headphones on. We've come a long way from having
to listen to The Wiggles and Elmo during car trips - thank Heavens!

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