By the time I got home from work on Thursday, the muppets were sound asleep. When I woke them up two hours into their good night’s sleep, Search eyed me suspiciously. We headed off to the airport to meet Auntie Beeca and Uncle Bryan. When the Portlandian’s flight landed, I texted Beeca, “I hope your hubbie plays a mean game of Tetris.”
When we bought our new car, I was adamant that I would not find myself in a minivan. The three row soccer mom SUV would have to do. We loaded the third carseat into the middle row – so this is what it would have been like with triplets. We put one of the seats in the third row up, Bryan crawled in behind the three kids and Becca and I stacked up our strollers and luggage around him. The muppets stared at Bryan, unused to having entertainment in “front” of them; Bryan looked back with a hint of worry that Becca and I would do such a good packing job that he’d never emerge from the not-a-minivan.
Finally, after a brief delay involving an over-eager ticket machine and stubbornly closed gate, we were off. I’ve heard the drive down Highway 1 into Camel is gorgeous. But it was pitch black. When we arrived at our rental house, the television was on – blathering on about the royals as the clocked ticked down to Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding. The delicious scent of freshly backed cranberry orange scones wafted through the air. The girls had set their alarm to watch the nuptials live. This was our generation’s version of Charles and Diana. One we hoped would have a happy ending.
I went to bed. Paul and Steph were en route, so I let them know to call me when they arrived. I figured it would be perfect timing to perhaps catch the kiss.
At 5:45 a.m. my phone buzzed. I woke up with a start – this was really late. “We’re here,” read the text. I sat up from my air mattress. The muppets were still sleeping soundly in their portable playpens. Paul and Steph were sound asleep in the master bed. So, why are you texting me now, I wondered. Way to pass on the information in a timely manner AT&T reception…
Friday morning we woke up to a gorgeous view. The sun was out and happy – most of the household went out for a run. I stayed home and played with muppets and ate scones while reruns of the royal wedding played in between episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress.”
That afternoon we headed over to Carmel-by-the-Sea to peruse the local shops and check out the beach. It took us longer to load up the car with all the guests and kids than it did to drive. We found a parking spot and reversed the loading process to get everyone back out. I credit the old-school Nintendo games for successfully venturing out with all the people big and small.
There are a significant amount of art galleries, which I normally enjoy looking through. But after several creepy clown paintings (Clown cooking, Clown golfing, etc.), we decided to check out the surf. Did you know that Carmel-by-the-Sea is on a very steep hill?
We had a great time as the muppets experienced their first taste of the sand and surf. Two little beach boys in the making? After all, Search’s original NICU blanket was decorated with windsurfer dudes.
After enjoying the scenery for a bit, we decided to head back for a bite to eat. Remember that incline I mentioned? Who needs to go running? My tushy was going to be in prime condition for Maureen’s wedding! Bryan took over after three blocks. Becca was carrying Leila. Julia was wearing heels. We were all winded (no pun intended) by the time we made it to the top.
Like our college days of old, we headed off for dinner. But we quickly realized we’re grownups now. It took about 10 minutes to get seated – and not due to any sort of crowd. We needed to situate the munchkins and collapse the stroller. Before ordering, the muppets enjoyed sweet potatoes while Leila sang. As we waited for our food, we continued our workout – now moving to core strengthening as the kids picked up toys, threw them on the floor and looked expectantly at us to fetch. Dinner was enjoyed at an arms length – trying to keep muppet arms out of soups and salads.
That evening, being the hardcore party people we are, our little group closed out the night with a raucous game of Apples to Apples. All of us were down for the count by 11 p.m. – getting much needed beauty rest for the big event.
The Lovely Wedding.