As you know, the Water Man is a marine contractor. Last week we traveled with him to Lake Possum Kingdom a couple hours northwest of Fort Worth, TX for him to install a residential dock. We are VERY blessed to be able to travel with him, especially right now. The kids have really, really been missing him over the last couple of months. Since the Texas floods, he has worked almost around the clock. My Sunshine has had a really hard time with it; he told his Daddy one night “Daddy, you can work during the day but at night you need to come home to your family”. The Water Man has been coming home after the kids are asleep and gone when they wake up so they wonder if he comes home at all!
We rented a cabin for the kids and I to tag along and get a little vacay in or so we thought. We imagined the kids and I would eat leisurely breakfasts on the porch, play on the playground a few feet away, spend the days playing on the beach, swimming in the lake and having supper with Daddy in the evenings. Here’s what really happen…
Two Mondays ago, we got a late start to leaving and I put a 1 year old and a 4 year old in the car at 6pm. Minutes before this, My Sunshine went on the back porch to say goodbye to his animals, was attacked by mosquitos and had an allergic reaction. He had about 30 bites on his feet, the bites swelled to the size of half dollars, his feet doubled in size and his poor toes swelled together. I couldn’t get him in shoes for the next couple of days. We were traveling with the crew and all three vehicles including mine were hauling trailers. Before we made it 10 miles, one of the trailers blew a tire. Just an hour down the road we stopped to grab dinner and one of the guys locked his keys in the car. We finally arrived at our cabins at 1am and they were locked up. We got in about 2am after the Water Man jimmied the locks. My Wildflower woke up during all the commotion and went back to sleep around 4am. I should have known how the trip would go with this kind of start. Surely day 2 would be better right?
Well, day 2 started at 7am with 3 important realizations. #1) the dam on the lake has been opened recently and the water was chocolate brown so the children and I could not swim in the lake. #2) the “playground” at our cabins consists of 2 swings and a METAL slide so we could play on the playground until about 10am before the Texas heat would claim the skin on the backs of your thighs. #3) there is not much else for preschoolers to do in this town or anyone for that matter because no one keeps regular hours; in fact everything is closed on Tuesdays! Do you remember our plans? Swimming, playground playing… oh and also, the Water Man worked until about 10pm or later almost every night so we barely saw him anyway. After being locked in the cabin most of the day, we went for an evening drive to see the deer with the windows down because the air conditioning in my car went out on the way in the night before! The kids loved seeing the deer and we even got this sweet picture of a mama who stopped right in front of my car to nurse her babies. She wasn’t embarrassed at all to feed her young in public, right there in front of us, so weird! (I hope by now you know my sarcasms) Anyway, it was a neat little drive until I looked back and My Wildflower was vomiting everywhere, all over her brand new car seat. This was quite fun to clean up with no water hose. It was a whole lotta by hand and wash rags… being a mother is gross!! My sweet girl was a trooper but continued to have water diarrhea that even diapers wouldn’t hold for the next 24 hours. She also refused to sleep in the pack n play so we were 3 deep in a full size bed, not a lot of sleeping going on! The details of the trip go like this for the next 5 days.
It was almost comical how many things went wrong on this trip. How exhausting and frustrating it was, I had to work very hard not to lose my patience with the kids. I was ready to go home on day 3 but had to haul the trailer back so the kids and I had to wait out the completion of the job. Thankfully on day 3, we did see some improvements. We found a great auto shop to fix my A/C in my car, thank God, you MUST have A/C in Texas in the summer! And daddy came home in time to go to dinner with us and mama had a margarita (after a decade together, the Water Man knows when mama has reached her limit and needs a little break).
On Friday when we realized we were staying another day and had to check out of the cabin, we moved over to a beautiful hotel overlooking the lake called The Cliffs. The views were spectacular and they had a pool, giant playground area with multiple play scapes and a restaurant that was open every day, imagine that! I did check in and check out every day thinking we were going home, but at least we had something to do and honestly the naps in the car were pretty peaceful.
Overall this was a very trying trip for everyone, My Sunshine asked to go home every single day. I would never take 2 preschool age kids on vacation by myself and being stuck inside without a lot to entertain can give anyone cabin fever. But there was a lot of positive too! With kindergarten coming in a year, we won’t always be able to tag along. And the older I get the more I see how important it is to practice gratitude and finding the good to be thankful for in all circumstances. I’m not perfect and I struggle to always be in this mindset but it helps tremendously. If you read this post then you know the best part of the trip was my littles learning to get along, Hallelujah! The babes and I also had some really fun times in between the insanity!! Here’s a little peak at the good times and did I mention the Water Man can build one gorgeous dock! The biggest dock on Lake Possum Kingdom and it’s a beauty!