Anyone who tells you that vacations are relaxing, clearly doesn't have children. On vacation, you are together 15+ hours a day. Which means you are constantly entertaining a whiny little dictator. If your child is like Max, they wake up even earlier on vacation, rarely nap and go to sleep even later. This means there is little rest for the parental units, like myself. This also means you have to buy a kings ransom in Matchbox cars and other bribery.
We went down to Naples, Fl a week ago to stay with my parents. We were there for six days and we did nothing but swim and play. I came, I burned and I conquered.
Max was amazing in the airport and on the plane. Our first couple of flights, when he was younger, were horrible so I have a Max-proof strategy now. It includes toys, treats and lots of iPad time. We only do early morning flights, I pack his backpack with new toys and I pray for the best.
He was really well behaved on the flight, which is pretty impressive for a child that can barely sit still.
Once we got to Florida we spent all of our time at the beach or in the pool. Max is the most active child I have ever met and water is the only way to exhaust him.
I bought him goggles and diving rings and taught him how to swim under water. We also searched for seashells, had water gun fights and spent hours splashing each other.
This was every night of the trip. By the end of the day, he could barely stand up and he would fall asleep within seconds of his head touching the pillows.
He is a full on surfer dude now! He even told me that he wants to wear his hat backwards, like the "surfer dudes".
On our last day of the trip, I took him to the Everglades Wonder Gardens, which is a historic roadside attraction in Bonita, Fl. It was opened in 1936 as a place to stop on the way to Miami. It was originally an alligator farm and they recently restored it.
There were alligators, flamingos and a peacock. It was so much fun and Max loved it.
Sadly our vacation ended and we had to go home. I made a rookie mistake of a night time flight back to NYC and it was rough. We landed at 8pm and didn't get home till around 10pm. The dude was so tired and refused to go to sleep till we were home.
I came back to mountains of emails, dirty laundry and a slightly traumatized dog. We are finally starting to get back to our normal schedules but it took a lot of nap time (for both of us)!