We've been back from vacation for just over a week now, but I guess my brain has a hard time catching up, because I'm just now blogging about it. And somehow, that short time lag is enough for me to get very nostalgic. Wasn't it great, that time we rented a beach house in the Outer Banks with Keith's extended family?!? That was probably the best vacation we've ever had! It was all sunshine and laughter, and nothing ever went wrong! Eleanor cooperated by always eating what we served, going to the beach or pool without a fight, cheerfully napping on schedule, and she definitely did NOT puke in the car on the way home.
That's not to say the vacation was the complete opposite of perfection. It really was one of the best vacations we've had. BUT we all still had our trying moments, because this is real life, and I find it fascinating how my memory refuses to remember those parts of vacation. Even only a week in the past, the minor irritations and disagreements are like footprints in the sand, being washed away by the tide ....
So anyway, that's not even the main point of my post. Or I guess the main point could fit under the general vacation theme of: Didn't See That Coming. We took a ton of beach toys, and were very excited to build elaborate sand castles with Eleanor. I mean, I understand she's only 2.9 years old, so these weren't going to be works of art. But I thought it would be fun to spend a lot of beach time digging in the sand and using our imagination, instead of always being in the water or sleeping/reading on a beach towel and not paying much attention to the beach itself. We didn't do many beachy vacations when I was a kid, so I didn't have much of a sand castle building phase. I was looking forward to reliving the youth I didn't have.
If any of you have thoughts like these about your toddler, be forewarned: They don't care about the castles. Only about destruction. To Eleanor, the very best thing about sand castles—sand anything—was destroying it. She didn't like the big waves, and she had no interest in building the castles and decorating them with seashells. But the minute I had put together a decent group of building, BAM!, Destructor arrived. With a gleeful grin, she would push, kick, and render obsolete anything we had built.
The mother in me was very happy to see her having such a good time. But the 7-year-old child in me pouted a little bit. After the first morning, I quickly set aside any dreams of careful building and focused on quantity over quality. Then I didn't mind so much when she effectively razed the ephemeral structures mere moments after their erection. She wasn't a good builder, but was an amazingly efficient Destructor, our little cherub!