There's something I love about family vacations. Especially low key ones with not a lot of plans. I'm talking the rent a house and go to the beach type vacations, as opposed to exploring a new city, every day has an itinerary type of vacations.
Something happens when you have that kind of time to spend together. To eat meals together, to get to know each other's quirks, to just be together. You get the moments that end up being my favorite memories from vacation. Not the baseball game or the children's museum or the beach - as fun as those might be.
It's hearing my parents read E a bedtime story from the other room. It's discovering that he knows the "If You're Happy and You Know it" song, and will start clapping as soon as you start singing. It's watching my dad push E up and down the lanai in a wheely chair as he squeals with delight. These, can't be planned for, almost too small to remember, moments. These are my favorite.
Now that E can crawl, he loves to explore. Crawling from room to room, following you around, checking everything out. One thing we didn't consider, when we planned this trip, was how he would react to crawling in shorts, on a tile floor. Most houses in Florida are tiled - which makes cleaning up easy, but they're apparently not so great for crawling. His little knees started to get red and sore, and he was not happy. He started crawling with his legs completely straight so his knees wouldn't touch the ground. It was equal parts hilarious and sad. Unfortunately, since the weather was in the high 80s the entire time we were there, I packed mostly shorts and rompers for him. I did have a few pairs of pants which I put on him, and that helped a bit, but we also ended up spending more time in rooms with carpet so he could move about easier.
In one of the rooms that was carpeted, there were these box like end tables. They had a shelf on the bottom for storing books or other things. Or babies apparently. E crawled right up to them, and figured out how to climb onto the shelf. He could then sit down, and was the perfect height so that his head didn't hit the top of the end table! He thought it was hilarious. He'd laugh and clap, and the best part was that the top of the table was glass - meaning we could look down at him and wave. Most of the time we were in that room, you could find him in his special hiding place.
I don't know what E would say his favorite part of vacation was. I'm not sure he even realizes what happened that mysterious week when we weren't at home. But I think he at least enjoyed himself for the most part, which is all I can hope for.