The Boy and I are heading to Virginia Beach early morning on Saturday. This should be an interesting trip. It is the first time EVER that my ENTIRE family is getting together for a week-long vacation. Gulp. We've obviously all been together in one space before -- Christmas, Thanksgiving, birthdays, and other big deals -- but we've never spent a week together in one house. Now, of course, the house if big enough for us all. It has six bedrooms and sleeps between 18 and 20 people. We have about that many. There's Mom and Dad, The Boy and I, My sister, her two girls, and her boyfriend, my eldest brother, his wife, and their two kids, and my other brother with his wife and fours kids. Let's count. By my math, that is 18. Gulp. all of the kids are between 10 and 5 except for my niece Sami (who is 13 .. I think) and her brother Corey who is 19 (I know). That means there will be A LOT of rugrats running around.
Don't get me wrong. I love my family. I really do. They are a wonderful group of people. My nieces and nephews make me laugh all the time, and they are a lot of fun. The problem is that I spend approximately 50% of my life in complete solitude (which isn't as depressing as it sounds!) and the other 50% surrounded by 11- and 12-year-olds. I enjoy my quiet time. I like a quiet house with no screaming or yelling (unless, of course, it is my screaming and yelling. That's a different story.). I like to be able to read a book and relax whenever I want without any interruptions. Having The Boy move in this summer was an adjustment enough. I went from almost complete solitude to being with another human being in my space almost constantly. I live him and am thrilled that he is here. It just takes a while to adjust out of my solitary state. Now going into a situation times 100 is going to be an ... adjustment. I will makes sure to smile and be merry as much as possible.
It will be fun to see my nieces and nephews and brothers and sister for an extended time especially since I only ever see them for one or two days twice a year. I often feel detached and distant from my family since I live so far away and only get home a few times a year. I'm also the only one without children (if you don't count Bailey, which I of course do!). My eldest brother, while I love him dearly, still struggles with the fact that I am no longer his "baby" sister. I'm actually a grown up with a real job and real responsibilities.
Wait up. I'm digressing. Seriously. Refocus.
The family vacation should be good fun as long as we all get along well. You see, my family is composed of some seriously strong personalities (Big shock if you know me, right?!) and we often ... butt heads when we are all together. We (my siblings and I) all are so very different but similar at the same time that things don't always go smoothly. We have strong opinions and stronger tempers to back them up. Or would it be weaker tempers since we explode more easily? Either way, you get the idea. I'm just hoping that everyone enjoys the opportunity and the vacation. We'll be at the beach which is always wonderful. We'll get to all reconnect and make some solid family memories. And, most importantly, we'll make Mom happy because she is the one who planned, paid for, and is most excited about this.
Let's be completely honest though. I'm most excited about the beach. Well, the beach and my parents. But mainly the beach. :) I'm looking forward to walking B along the water every morning and every evening. I'm looking forward to watching the sunrise once or twice (getting up early isn't my strong suit). I'm looking forward to dipping my toes in the warm salt water. And I'm also REALLY looking forward to taking a drive on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. I haven't done that since I was a little kid, so it should be fun. I just hope it is as good as I remember it being! I'm looking forward to drinking cocktails at three in the afternoon with my dad. I'm looking forward to beating The Boy at some bocci. I'm looking forward to just simply relaxing.