August 1, 2011

I did it.  I booked a vacation.

Does anyone remember last year?  Remember my after-the-fact affair with fate ?

And this year, planning has continued to be difficult for me.  Partly because of work*, partly because of kids **, partly because of money (directly related to the kids’ summer plans).

But the more we talked about getting away that week, the more it came clear that the entire family wanted this.  We want a chance to chill, to get away, to rest.

We really only had one week that would work with the various camps and the potential visit from their father — the week before Labor Day.  And that is likely the week that fall crew starts for Lemon.  But she – on her own – spoke to her coach and said, “it’s the only week we can go on vacation, I just did summer crew right after spring  crew, I need to miss this week.”  He said fine.

I toyed for a little while with going away for a longer weekend over Labor Day.  This would mean somewhere local – the Cape or Maine, perhaps.  But Lemon in particular pouted.  “I don’t want to!  I want to go to North Carolina, like we were going to last year.”  I think we’ve done enough quick-trips in the easier-accessible places that it doesn’t feel special to them.

And from my end – if we did a longer weekend, we also wouldn’t be able to do a house.  We’d end up in a hotel or a motel.  And up here, Labor Day is the last of the summer, school-year wise, and comes with premium pricing.

But in the south, school starts in mid August (if not before), and so the week before Labor Day is practically off season.  Price-wise, it’s somewhere between peak and off-season.

Hotel in Bar Harbor, Maine for a few nights?  Probably $900.  House in the Outer Banks for a week?  $800.

Guess what we chose?

We looked at several houses.  For a while, I had my mouse hovering over a 2 bedroom home that was slightly removed from the beach. But it was very cute, and only $600.  But I hovered too long, and it was snatched up.  I started looking at a few in the $700 range, but couldn’t really pull the trigger.  WD was still away, and he’d said I could decide on my own, but I put it off until he got home.

Most of the houses in the area have wireless internet. But some do not.  As I was comparing the amenities for the various remaining options, I realized the most did not have internet.  How sad is it that I was having a hard time finding this as an okay situation?  Am I really that addicted?  I justified my issues by pointing to work.  “What if I need to log on?!”  WD wasn’t really disputing the desire for wireless.  (I mean, seriously.  He has FOUR blogs and a very active twitter account … clearly a wireless connection is not too low on his priority list.)

So we started to look closer at a house that was $800.

When I was seriously considering the $600 house, $800 seemed like a huge increase.  But once we were looking at $705 or $750, $800 seemed feasible.  Throw in an uptick in the decor/furnishings, a third bedroom so the kids don’t throttle each other, a shorter distance to the ocean, and WIRELESS, and it became a no-brainer.  I mean, look how pretty:

The living room/dining area – wide open spaces!




The view from the deck.

One of the many porches (one of them is screened in, and has a table).

And so, we are going.  We are driving down (12 hour road trip!  Yee ha!), and we will probably get a hotel/motel for a night on the way down.  We’ll explore the islands and towns thereon on our way down, and then will spend a quiet week in our pretty house mere yards away from the beach.  We’ll stroll for ice cream, maybe hit a clam shack here and there, perhaps catch a movie if we tire of the sun, or if it starts to rain.

And just when we’re starting to feel antsy – missing our friends, our cats, our own beds, we’ll load the car back up and come home in time for a flurry of back-to-school shopping, removal of Lemon’s braces, and school.

We have wanted this for a very, very long time.

Please join me in crossing fingers that a hurricane will not strike & force our evacuation!




* This year, it isn’t a trial.  It’s kind of the opposite.  Work has been slow enough that I am concerned about meeting my minimum billable hours.

** Lemon has fall crew, Mouse was trying to work out a time to see her father.



  1. that looks brilliant!

  2. fun times i really like the look of this!

  3. I like the living room. It looks comfortable.

  4. I wish that we didn’t start school until after Labor Day so that we could go to OBX too. Luckily for you, it shouldn’t be too crowded and the water should still be warm-ish.

    Depending on how far you’re planning to drive the first day, I’d suggest stopping in DC for the night and maybe hitting a museum or something before you set off again. DC to OBX is about 4-5 hours, depending on traffic where in the OBX you’re staying. With ideal conditions, you’ll hit the Wright Bros. bridge from the mainland to OBX in about four hours.

    Another mid-point option would be Baltimore. The inner harbor area is a lot of fun and the aquarium alone would be worth the stop.

    • Any thoughts on Ocean City or Chincoteague? We had a FANTASTIC D.C. vacation a couple of Aprils ago – so we feel like we’ve had a good run of the museums. I do have family in Baltimore – maybe Annapolis (okay, I don’t really know where they live) – but would rather do something exotic 🙂

  5. […] could not have been more excited about the pending vacation.  I couldn’t think about or talk about anything else for […]

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