Our family wanted to have a relaxing mini vacation before the rigorous school schedule starts up again this week. I say “wanted”, but I think we all really needed it. Our Summer has been full of running around and activity. While that is fun, I felt like we needed to recharge our collective batteries, and get out of dodge for a few days. What better place than Lummi island?
We left on Sunday for the beloved Island. As we were packing up, I told our youngest to go out to the car wih her bag. A minute later she darted inside screaming and crying. Through the sobs, I decifered the words “Mama Mouse” and “Babies“. I ran out to take a look, and there were brand new pink mouse babies and a whole lot of stuffing in the rail of the sliding door of our van.
We stopped what we were doing to think about what to do next, and spotted the Mama carrying her little ones further into our car. *sigh* We haven’t even gotten on the road, and we now had three more passengers signed up for the trip, whether they knew it or not.
Since we could not see where they went, we decided to continue on.
Let me pause here to let you know about our 10 year old daughter, Falafel. She has a knack, let’s say, for being the one to find nature in crisis, and the one to be moved to tears by it. Always. She is the one who found the abandoned nest in our yard, even though my husband had mowed the day before, and the yard is an acre. Last month, she was standing beneath a tree in our front yard, when suddenly, a young bird plummeted to the ground next to her feet to it’s ultimate demise. Only after, mind you, a few hours of our girl trying to give it water and bring it back to health, amidst lots of sobbing.
Now there are newborn mice to fret about, and they are somewhere in our car.
So we take two ferries and drive a few hours to get to our home away from home (for a few days). It is beautiful. The home has been remodeled, it has brand new appliances, and the view is spectacular. And then we go into the master bedroom, and it smells like sweaty man pits. Serious body odor, and I cannot find where it is.
I sometimes feel like we are living in a Seinfeld episode.
I proceed to wipe every surface (including the door frame because that is where it was the strongest), and I STILL CAN’T GET RID OF IT. We ended up spending the night in there with a fan running, but because I am a “super smeller” according to my husband (and I have to agree. I really am- I can smell obnoxious odors from a block away if the wind is blowing right), I buried my face in a pillowcase that I brought from home, the entire night because I just could not un-smell it. The next day, we stripped the bed and washed the sheets, and I located another strong smelling spot which was on the pillow shams. I can only guess that a smelly guy rested after being at the beach on top of the bed, and the odor stuck. The odd thing is, it was only in that one room.
The next morning, I took the girls down to the beach, which is full of barnacle covered rocks (I am sure you know where this is going). It was so peaceful and beautiful and quiet, until Falafel slips on some seaweed, and falls onto the barnacles. I sent her back to Jim at the house, crying and bleeding, and turn around only to see The Bee do the exact same thing.
I kid you not.
We all got in lots of relaxing after that, which is what the whole point of the trip was.
We even hiked two of the three nature preserves on the island.
Mostly, though, we just sat and looked and listened.
There is a peace and stillness on this island like no other.
We have only stayed on the opposite side of the island (here and here).
It was nice to have a different experience this time.
The second night, we go into the room, and it still smells. Jim and I give up at this point. Luckily, there is a pull-out couch in the livingroom (with a gorgeous view of the water), so we bunk there. The Bee, evidently is nose-deaf, so she took that room, and our Falafel had the whole downstairs to herself. Everyone was happy.
It felt good to read a whole book in a few days (which usually takes me weeks or months to do). And I brought a craft to try out (which I will share with you later this week).
I pre-cooked all of our meals before we left, so all we had to do was heat things up. That right there was brilliant, if I do say so myself. Not having to actually think about meals was heavenly.
Our girls both were excited about making smores (GF and EF, of course). Sadly, there was a burn ban, so no fires allowed. We made them in the oven, anyway.
We realized that our girls need nothing more than a beach to explore to keep them happy every day. They looked at every rock there was to look at, and had a blast doing it.
There was plenty to keep them entertained for the entire trip. It was lovely.
We have enough rocks and seaglass to start our own beach, now.
There were moments when they couldn’t comb the beach, but the high tide didn’t stop our 10 year old. She insisted on playing on that rock, singing, happy as could be, in the cold (I was wearing a fleece sweatshirt) for an hour and a half (and would have stayed longer if it weren’t for me).
Overall, we had a wonderful mini vacation. None of us wanted to leave, which is always a sign of a successful time away.
This week, we journey into a new school year, with fond memories of our time on Lummi.
Where have you recharged, lately?