Well, God bless Facebook. I have been trying to post pictures on this ridiculous thing for days and was pulling my hair out when a high school friend who I've reconnected with on Facebook introduced me to the miracle that is uploading to Flickr and imbedding the photos in the blog. What would have taken hours took just minutes. BLESS you, Jennifer!
Now Jennifer's saving advice means you all get to look at entirely too many pictures of our vacation, entirely too long after it happened. Sorry, but this is as good as it gets.
Our rental house. It was wonderful. Ours was the room on the second floor in the front--please note all our swimming laundry hanging out, white-trash style, on our balcony.
Our little hooligans after their first swim.
Man, this girl loves the beach.
She tried out boogie boarding for the first time and LOVED it, though her coordination left a little to be desired. When she would get a good wave, her face was the perfect combination of terror and delight, which is pretty much exactly what I felt watching my baby get tossed around by the ocean.
And here's the middle hooligan, whose attitude at the beach can only be described as happy-go-lucky. He didn't care what anyone else was doing, didn't need attention or anyone to play with. He just hung out with the ocean and the sand.
His favorite thing to do was stand in one spot and jump over every wave that came in. He could do it for an hour and never get tired of it.
And then there was the littlest man. Aaron loves the water as much as his siblings.
Unfortunately, he got a nasty diaper rash while we were there, so he was stuck in his stroller for much of our beach time. He's like his mama, though--give him a good book to read and he's as happy as can be.
Our house came with a couple of bikes that had infant carriers on them. Matt procured a toddler helmet for Aaron and took off the first chance they got. Aaron LOVED the ride.
A couple of times, Matt stayed at the house with Aaron while I took the older kids to do something with the group. Both times, Matt and Aaron took long bike rides that ended with lunches at little cafes. I have my suspicions that they were using the cuteness of a baby on a bike to strike up conversations with pretty girls, but they both deny it.
I mean, look at them. Who do you believe?
Our last night at the beach, we went to a crab house for dinner. While waiting for our table we decided to take a few pictures. Here's the best one of our family:
This is my oldest brother Michael, his wife Siobhan, and their children Claire, Aidan and Natalie. I tried to sneak Aidan home with us in my pocket but he wouldn't let me.
This is my brother Jacob, his wife Patty, and their boys Josh, Jake and Drew. Josh and Drew are twins. Really. I promise.
This next set of pictures will give you the best sense of what our vacation was like. All 9 kids all together. Siobhan had to hold Claire as she was not in a mood to humor her pushy Aunt Nancy. The pictures make me laugh every time. While there was no chance of getting one where they are all actually looking at the camera and smiling, I was just so happy to have them be still for 10 seconds.
This is what WOULD be a fantastic family picture if SOMEONE had not made a goofy face. I'm not naming names, though.
And this is what we had to say goodbye to. Boo.
A huge part of our trip planning was that we were going to take our kids parasailing. The story is too good, and too long, to be in this post, so it gets its own. And now that I have the gift of Flickr, it will come with pictures! Lucky, lucky you.