This year we headed down at the end of June and came home at the beginning of July. Normally I plan some sort of excursion into Boston since my relatives live just south of the city. However, this year I opted for a more laid back approach. We planned plenty of time to enjoy the beach and just play. In fact, on the morning of our first full day there, my middle son made this list...
We managed to pretty much hit everything on this list and then some. It was one of the best trips we've had so far.
Lego Store - check
Beach - check, check, and check
Just about every morning we were there, we would go down to the beach for an hour or so. The first day we walked. It's only about a half mile but you do have to haul everything you want and we go to a section of the beach with no public restroom. This means we stay until it's time to go if you know what I mean.
On our last full day my aunt drove us down to a different section of beach nearer the boardwalk. That means there is a longer stretch of really sandy beach - even when the tide is higher - and there are public restrooms within walking distance. It's the important things.
The boys had so much fun trying to catch the waves. More often than not they missed, but I'm pretty sure the entire three mile stretch of beach heard them when they caught one!
One evening my uncle asked if it would be okay to give the boys some quarters and take them to the arcade. I knew they would love it. We ended up having to cut them off after an hour as they still had about half their quarters left and all their energy! We did go back the next evening for them to finish up their quarters.
Yes, my oldest came too. He was watching his brothers play a car racing game.
This is a flight simulator type game. My youngest guys loved it - especially my middle son who adores planes. They also loved that it only took $1 to start and you could continue to play after losing for just twenty-five cents. They each spent quite a bit of time in this one.
Retro arcade games! He was playing space invaders.
Jurassic Park shooting game. My oldest invited me to play with him. It was HOT in that little booth where you sat to play.
Playing a Marval Avengers game together.
Mini-Golf - check
I was too busy playing and being scorekeeper to take many photos. These two were quickly snapped near the last few holes. We had a great time playing. My uncle even joined us. I won, but it was a close game all around! The course is a bit on the dated side, but it didn't deter us from smack-talking each other and just laughing our way through.
Merry-Go-Round - check
There are always a few things we like to do when we go to visit my aunt and uncle. One is visit the T-shirt shop and the boys all get new t-shirts. The other is to visit the carousel. This is left over from when there was an amusement park in town. My boys haven't quite gotten to the age where they are too old, but I fear it's coming close!
Here is my son's completed list before we headed home. We managed to go to the Bay. This is just a few feet from my aunt's house. I realize when looking at this list that I didn't take as many photos as I would have liked, but we accomplished all that was on here and then some!
Our first night there we headed to the tide pool but the tide was heading back in so all we found was this little hermit crab.
The boys had a great time exploring nonetheless. I'm so glad they like the ocean and beach as much as I do and as much as their Ninny did (my mom). I know she would have loved to have spent time with them like this playing in the surf and sand.
We did go down to "The Gut" for a time as well. This is an area in the town where my aunt lives where there is a deep channel of water that goes between the mainland and an island. Ships large and small go through here. The commuter boat leaves from this area to go to Boston. You can see Boston from here. The boys spent most of their time tossing rocks in the water - or rather - the largest rocks they could find! I enjoyed spending the time chatting with my aunt.
Just before we headed home.
I asked each of the boys to rate the trip on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the best. My oldest gave it a 10. I'm sure he would have rather stayed home. He's not in to water or sand so I didn't make him go to the beach with us, but he did go everywhere else with us.
We went out for pizza one night. We were all sitting in a corner booth since there were six of us. My boys and I were sitting on the benches while my aunt and uncle were in chairs. This meant I couldn't get out of the booth unless my aunt moved. This is important to know. My oldest doesn't like pizza so he had ordered chicken tenders and french fries. I went to steal a french fry and he blocked me. So I tried again. He then accidentally hit my very full glass of soda directly at me. It soaked my entire lap. I couldn't move. I couldn't get out of the way. Worse of all? I didn't get the french fry! I'm sure that will be a lasting memory though.
My middle son rated the trip 10,000. He had such a great time and even said, "I could live down here." I wonder if he would feel that way in the middle of the winter? And the youngest also gave the whole trip a high rating. I think his was 10 million.
I asked them if they knew why I take them each year. I shared that I do it to build memories. I want them to remember the times we went down to the beach and visited with family. I want them to remember the fun they had at the beach and the arcade. I want them to smile at the memory of their brother dumping my soda all over me.
Some of my favorite childhood memories center around visiting relatives. I used to spend many summers at my aunt's house and with my grandparents. I want my children to have those same wonderful memories to look back on one day.