On Monday night at about 7pm when Michael was off at a leadership team meeting at the church I decided that we needed a getaway. It had been a rough week for us and we needed some time to refresh ourselves, some time to talk without the kids, and a really GOOD night's sleep so we can keep on keeping on.
And so... I found our credit card reward points and went about looking for a hotel in Orlando for us to get away for the night. I found one- a night at Gaylord Palms for $38 after using our rewards! Then I called up my parents, and Mike's parents, and arranged a babysitter as well. I texted Mike during his meeting to see if he could get Tuesday off and go in late on Wednesday. He got off noon to noon, and I was good with that!
On Tuesday morning I brought the kids to school, played with the 3 at home and packed an overnight bag for Michael and I. I arranged for Mike's mom to come at noon and keep the 3 at home, my mom to pick the other 5 up from school and drop them off, and for a babysitter to meet them at the house at 2:30 to help Mike's mom out. The details of that ended up not quite working out as well as planned... but everyone survived so I guess it did work. Then at 8:45 or so my mom went to the house to relieve Mike's and she and my dad stayed the night, got the kids up for school and hung on to the 3 at home until 9:00 when we got home this morning!
Though it's not the "well oiled machine" that it could be, it WORKED.
Michael and I went over to Orlando, had a quick late lunch at Chipotle, wandered around at a shopping plaza, checked into the hotel and changed clothes for a 'fancy' night out. Then we walked around at the hotel visiting the different atriums that are there and just getting to talk and relax! We went to IKEA, all dressed up, and walked through there leisurely (not somewhere we usually go with all the kids). Last on the agenda for the night was dinner at Crave using a gift card I'd been given by Mike's mom for my birthday to pay for part of the meal. All in all we had a great day! We went back to the hotel and watched an episode of Castle (if you've never seen it, it's a good one!) on the computer then went to bed by about 10:30. We slept ALL NIGHT LONG, got up about 7:30 and headed back to town by 9:30!
We were ready for a refresher, ready for a full night's sleep (Lynae has been getting up several times at night and occasionally another will as well, and Brianna is up every morning at 4/5:30am!). We knew that if we don't intentionally make time for each other, that we won't just "find" it. It's a rare commodity around here!
The kids, tho I hear it wasn't smooth sailing, all survived :) So did our parents and babysitter, and we are better for it!
This was our 'early Valentine's get-away' and not just a lot of fun, but a necessary part of life with lots of little ones.
In an "ordinary day" a lot of things happen... and being able to prepare some of those ahead of time and then set them down and 'forget' about them for 22 full hours was quite a blessing.
A HUGE Thank You! to both of our sets of parents for taking care of the kids for us to get the reprieve!