Our Beach Vacation to Cutchogue
We are back from a fun and impromptu vacation to Cutchogue, Long Island. It is truly a magical place that we've been going with our best friends (whose family owns a home there) since before we had kids. We hadn't planned on taking any trips this summer but we got a wild hare and miraculously there were still 6 days free for renters this summer, so off we went!
I had dreaded packing for all five of us and had fully expected to be up until 2am getting it done, but thanks to my mom coming for the day and entertaining the kids, I made actual progress during the day and our car was packed by 7:01pm!
The ride was an uneventful 3 hours, which we've found to be the maximum amount of time we can comfortably travel right now without too many stops and/or meltdowns. None of our kids are big car nappers, so we always plan on them being awake the whole trip, which they mostly were.
We only had to make one quick nursing pitstop in the Bronx on the way there and Queens on the way back, which brings my nursing tally to 4 of the 5 boroughs of NYC--just have to hit up Staten Island one of these days to make it 5 for 5!
We arrived and were unpacked and on the beach by 11:30am. And while this little guy did this for a whopping three hours (because of aforementioned non-car-napping)...
...we got to spend lots of beach time with the big girls. We've never really had a true beach vacation as a family, and it was a big hit. Staying ON the beach was so convenient, because our baby monitor reached from the house so we didn't have to worry about George's nap constraints. We did let the girls skip nap/quiet time the first two days because they were so excited and having so much fun, but by day three we went back to our established schedule because exhaustion caught up with them.
While I'm certain no vacation will be totally relaxing for the foreseeable future, this felt like our first true VACATION, as opposed to a trip with young children. After the initial setup for the day, the beach is so low impact for the parents and high impact for the kids--the girls were totally content to swim, explore, and go on the paddleboard we rented, which was a HUGE hit.
The only time we ventured away from the house/beach was to get ice cream one afternoon--thanks Pop!
Morning and evening walks on the beach was one of my favorite parts. So peaceful.
This is 7:30am, and Mimi insisted she wear her bathing suit. Just wondering at what age kids start sleeping in?
Smartest thing I've ever done--wash and fold delivery the second to last day of vacation! Wash Hampton, you are a lifesaver!
This little guy was a peach. Makes me wonder why we never traveled with the girls when they were younger? I think the earliest we went anywhere with them was around the 9/10 month mark once they were mobile. Four months is much easier! Or maybe it's because he's the third child. Or both.
Room sharing meant he had 24/7 access to the mom buffet which he fully exploited. Before we left he had been mostly sleeping 6pm-6am but he quickly reverted to his newborn feeding schedule. This is why I kick my newborns out of my room within weeks, sometimes even days, after their births! Thankfully he's adjusted now that we're home and he's giving me at least a 10-hour stretch again.
Not sorry about it, Mom.
I even got to read a book! During the day! On the beach! Alone! My idea of heaven.
It was wonderful to soak in this little family of ours without the typical duties of daily life, and it was so nice having Nick around the whole time. It was a balm to my guilty soul that we got to do something fun with/for the girls, who have been such good, content sports since their brother came along and some of our usual fun and outings have had to take a backseat to feedings, naps, etc. They have not made a single complaint, and are so sweet with him. It was really special to get to spend one-on-one time with each girl and see the wonders of the beach through their eyes. While so much of their life is home-bound, simple, and marked by routine, it was refreshing to get outside of our usual bubble midway through the summer and be renewed by some novel experiences.
Of course the MVP of our vacation was this guy:
He works hard, NEVER complains, and does it all with a smile on his face. He dealt with 99% of the potty training, made 99% of the meals, and did 99% of the schlepping. I married up.
And one last word to the wise: If you potty train your child and then go away two weeks later, she will absolutely forget everything you taught her and there will be lots of poop (don't worry Robertsons, your house went unharmed!). So much, in fact, that your other children will begin to feel sorry for you.
We are so grateful to have gotten away to such a special place! Thank you Robertsons for allowing this clan to stay in your beautiful home!