The game has changed.
Man-on-man defense is no longer employed. We’re watching our nephew, Mikey, this week so we’ve had to switch to a zone defense plan of attack when wrangling children. My sister had to go to Las Vegas on business so when our brother-in-law decided to tag along, we volunteered to watch Mikey for the week. Of course, Violet decided the minute Megan and Mike left for the airport that it was the most perfect time to start being mobile, so things have been just a little hectic around these parts (i.e. I wouldn’t eat off the floors). We’re a few days into life-with-three-kids so we’ve learned a couple of important lessons thus far.
Behold the power of the van. I drive a Subaru Outback, which is perfect for our family of four. I love my car. It is small enough to maneuver in tight places but yet rugged, and big enough to accommodate two full-size car seats, a stroller, and a dog. But accommodate three full-size car seats it does not. So we’re using the Volvo XC90 as our main source transportation. I also love this car – I drove it for years before we traded in Clay’s truck. It has over 100,000 miles and still going strong. But I do not love this car for a family of five. Yes, it has a third row but it is impossible to look graceful when climbing into the car from the back door just to buckle/unbuckle Weston’s five-point harness because my bum can’t manage to navigate itself through a second row filled with carseats. All it took was one quick trip to the store for Clay and I to declare that if a third child were in the cards for us, we’d be succumbing to the power of the minivan with no shame whatsoever.
Vacation without guilt. We currently have a bit of sticker shock while researching possible just-the-two-of-us vacations. Like many others, our lives are filled to the brim with IRAs, 529s, mortgages, and other little nest eggs scattered about. Our vacation fund is currently low on the list of priorities and it has gotten to the point where it feels wrong to spend money on a big vacation when it can be pumped into a resource that will benefit us later – delayed gratification if you will. I think this can be a dangerous precedent. Seeing my sister and her husband escape for a little bit has given us the kick in the pants we needed to reassure ourselves that it is okay to spend money on a vacation without our kids.
Chaos can be good. I like having two kids. The fact that we have a boy and girl just adds to the ordered and structured environment I tend to crave. But a little chaos never hurt anybody and sometimes it is good to have a solid wrench thrown into your plans to remind you that you’re never as in control as you think are.
We’re lucky to be stationed so close to Megan and Mike – only a three hour drive. The boys are super close and love seeing each other on a regular basis. While life hasn’t necessarily been smooth during our week with Mikey, it certainly has been a lot of fun. And since Megan is due with a little girl in June, Violet will have a cousin close in age as well and things will become even more chaotic when we’re all together. That isn’t such a bad thing, right?