Jul 28, 2014

Grayson & the missing contact

Those of you who wear contacts: Have you ever been standing completely still, in one spot, dropped a contact, LOOKED EVERYWHERE FOR FIVE MINUTES AND NOT BEEN ABLE TO FIND IT?

This has happened to me countless times over the decades I've been wearing contacts. My dad taught me a trick when I was in high school, which is to turn all the lights out and use a flashlight to find it. Theoretically, the light will reflect off of the contact lens, making it easier to find. It works sometimes, and I'll tell you one thing: the flashlight that's built into my iPhone certainly makes it more convenient than when I had to run down a set of stairs -- BLIND -- to grab the giant Black & Decker flashlight off of its charger in the kitchen when I was in high school.


This story isn't about me. No matter how hard I try to make it so.

One recent morning, Grayson dropped a contact while getting ready for work. He looked and looked and looked for it. No luck.

Not all that many places it could be, really, because I'll go ahead and tell you that it hadn't fallen on the floor and it wasn't stuck to his cabinet door. It's in the picture below.

See it yet?

Here's the funny thing: He didn't find it until over a week later, probably when he went to change out his hand towel.

It wasn't even BEHIND the hand towel ... I think it's just that he doesn't look at that wall, and it never occurred to him that he would've flung his contact there. But he did.

And there it stayed, just hanging out, for a week or so. And when he found it, do you know what he said?

He asked me, "Do I need to leave it there for a few minutes so you can take a picture for the blog?"


Jul 25, 2014

Slices of Life: BEACH 2014 EDITION

Playing Scrabble as Debbie's partner, Jake was tasked with drawing the letters, while Debbie's job was to build the words on the board. Eventually Jake got frustrated because they had such bad letters in their tray.

Jake: "I wish we had better letters!"

Debbie: "Well you're the one who's been picking them."

Jake: (rolls his eyes) "WELL WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING?"
• • • • • • •
Jake, lying on the beach:

Jake: "I'm bored. All I wanna do is play more Scribble."

• • • • • • •

Charlie was really concerned about the hurricane, and his mom Tiffany kept reassuring him it was going to be okay.

Charlie: "I really really REALLY think we need to evacuate."

Tiffany: "We're not evacuating; it's gonna be okay."

Charlie: "Okay, but if we die, I'm gonna kill you in heaven."
• • • • • • •
If you follow me on Twitter, you know that three of the kids' cousins got lice the week before our trip. They treated it aggressively, but we were still careful about hugging, sharing towels, etc., at the beach.

Jake was sleeping between two queen-size beds on the floor, and at one point during the day all the kids were in there playing.

Tiffany: "Jake, can Jack sit on your air mattress?"


• • • • • • •

Kim's husband Andrew handed me a glass of wine one evening as the kids were going to bed. PRAISE GOD.

Nick: "What's that?"

Me: "A glass of white wine."

Nick: "REALLY? I didn't know you drink that."

Me: "I don't, usually, but he offered and I accepted."

• • • • • • • 
We sent all the kids into one bedroom on Hurricane Day because they were being too loud. Later in the evening, Nathaniel came to me, hands on hips:

Nathaniel: "Don't send all the kids into our room anymore."

Me: "Why?"

Nathaniel: "They came in here and messed everything up! They tore the sheets off the bed, our quilts are on the floor ... The whole ROOM is a wreck!"

Me: [eyebrows raised]  "WELCOME TO MY LIFE."
 • • • • • • •

Walking down the beach on the last day, just the two of us:  

Jul 23, 2014

Beach 2014: Friday

Before I show you the glory of Friday, let me remind you what it looked like on Thursday:

Now, if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn't have believed it. From the same spot on Friday morning:

I swear to you, I WAS IN THE SAME SPOT WHEN I TOOK BOTH OF THOSE PICTURES. Right at the bottom of the dunes. Yep.

Looking to the left on Thursday:

And looking to the left on Friday:

Looking to the right on Thursday:

And looking to the right on Friday:

Another one to the right on Thursday:

And to the right on Friday:

Arthur sure did leave behind some beautiful weather. When people say that, they aren't kidding.

We headed out early and got right down to business.

I'd venture to say that the waves on Friday were probably more fun for the kids than the waves on Wednesday had been. THEY HAD A BLAST.

I regret to inform you that it is possible that the kids may never be satisfied by any future beach vacation. Ever.

And it will all be the fault of Hurricane Arthur. He gave them the waves of a lifetime.

While I was watching the big kids play in the waves, I happened to notice Grayson and Amelia walking away, down the beach. Sweet.

Grant and Nathaniel started a game that entailed crossing their arms over their chests and falling backwards into the waves.

They (on the right) did that for like 30 minutes while the other kids rode their bodyboards.

They just ... waited for the waves to come in, and then fell into them.

As utterly FASCINATING as that was to watch, after a while I turned and noticed that Grayson and Amelia were on their way back.

After seeing her become such a little waterbug this year, I'm excited to see what she does next year when we go back.

Jake played so hard that morning that he collapsed in front of our chairs before lunchtime.

He was so tuckered out, he stayed there for about half an hour with his eyes closed, at times rubbing his fingers on the sand, at times lying completely still.

If I ever lie down in the sand like that, call the coroner. I'm dead.

I had to take some pictures of half of our crew out in the water.

It looks like some emergency is taking place, but no.

There were just 25 of us there, so if half of us got in the water at the same time, it looked like a mob scene.

I'll tell you this: With that many people in the ocean, it made it substantially harder to find my three bile-green rashguards.

But I managed.

It really did make me laugh, though ... I was thinking, "If there's a family of four around here looking at us, they think we're NUTS."

Just when I thought it couldn't get any busier out there, two surfers joined us.

One of them was able to catch a wave pretty quickly, but the other one wasn't as experienced.

Amelia was so excited to see a real surfer!

I'd never really seen anyone get up and STAY up, so I was paying close attention, myself.

I've heard it's harder to surf smaller waves than the bigger ones like they have in Hawaii, so I was impressed that he was able to stay up for so long.

So was Amelia.

He did some nice carving ...

I kept looking back to see if his buddy ever caught a wave, but I never saw him get up.

This guy had a great run ... and then I happened to catch him totally biting it right in front of us. Oops.

I think the surfer inspired Gerry, though. He hopped on one of the bodyboards right after that.

The master at work.

The afternoon found some folks engaging in more relaxing pursuits ... Andrew and Will played cornhole (the game with the worst name ever).

Adam spent a little time taking a nap. Otherwise known as LIVIN' THE DREAM.

Internet, he was out cold. I probably could've smacked him across the face without waking him up.

Gerry was also having a pretty good day.

Everyone spent as much time as possible outside on Friday, since it was our last day on the beach ... we were mad at Arthur for having taken an entire day away from us, and yet it ended up being quite the experience.

Not something I want to repeat, but something I'm glad to have experienced once.

On Friday Jake and I spent a lot of the day combing through the wet sand, looking for the tiny little clams that burrow deeper every time a fresh wave rolls in. He was fascinated by them!

We were careful to keep them moistened and safe, but we must have dug up and played with more than 50 of them over the course of the day, then watched them borrow back into the sand moments later.

Well, I think that does it in terms of our Beach Week Wrap-up! Hope you enjoyed it, especially since I endeavored to cover it WITHIN THE MONTH IN WHICH IT OCCURRED.
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