Spring Break 2012

For years in Chicago, every time my spring break week rolled around, LCB and I went somewhere beachy and warm. Spring break was usually in March there, about the time we couldn’t stand one more second of winter, so we’d spend the week basking in the sun and the ocean, hoping to avoid running into one or more of my high school students all the while. You might laugh, but I’ve known teachers who have shown up on cruises or at small resorts far from Chicago only to find some of their students there, too. Let me just tell you, I love my students, and I’ve never planned anything remotely nefarious on my spring breaks, but I still wish for some privacy in that regard. Trust me, when I’m on vacation, the idea of diagramming sentences or doing anything work-related is even more nauseating for me than it is for my students.

Whew, I’m glad I got that little tangent out of the way. Sorry, it just came all quick-like out of nowhere before I could stop it.

So anyway, when we moved from Chicago to an island, suddenly we were living in exactly the sort of place we’d travel to on spring break, so we began the new spring break trend of staying home and just enjoying our beach. This year was a tad different, since we are now on our new island in a house a bit farther from the ocean than our old one. This year, therefore, we returned to the old house for the break.

It’s a very strange thing to go on vacation at what was, until a few months ago, your home. That being said, it was kind of, well, cool. Other than the final steps of a spring cleaning I’ve been working on there to prepare for seasonal renters returning, the small people and I were essentially on vacation, with LCB squeezing in beach time during lunch breaks and so forth.

In no particular order then, and with no real significance frankly, we did the following:

We used the old broken boogie boards and our beach towels to make tents of varying shapes and sizes.

We were followed around by this little creature for three days straight. Seriously, he hung out with us. He had the most distinct voice, quite loud even above the sound of the waves.  I even tried to capture an audio of it to share on this blog, without success. Every time I approached him, he became mysteriously silent. In summary then, while he didn’t invade my personal space (a euphemism for “defecate on me”), he did nothing to notably improve my relations with the aviary species either.

Suddenly weary of beach football, the boys moved into a new sport: beach-wrestling. Unlike regular wrestling, beach wrestling involves, I’ve now observed, lots of laughing and sand caked everywhere on the participants.

Baby-girl honed her skills in writing with feathers, moving from writing in the sand to writing on actual boogie boards when she decided she needed more of a challenge. We have yet to determine whether she actually believes she accomplished anything with the boogie boards.

In a fit of nostalgia over his basketball season that ended a few weeks ago, my eldest set up lines in the sand so that the men of the family could practice basketball drills that involved mainly running and push ups. I have a couple of pictures of LCB doing these drills that would earn me the cold shoulder for a week if I chose to post them. Let’s just put it this way: I’m not posting them, but I’m not deleting them either.

Baby-girl convinced LCB to give her numerous rides across the sand atop her boogie board/giant tube contraption she created. I guess that’s where being naturally blonde is an advantage in life. Of course, the fact that at 32 lbs, she’s the lightest family member by far, may have worked in her favor as well.

In retrospect, we definitely got bang for our buck with our boogie boards this spring break. Even on a day where my eldest decided he didn’t want to get wet because the wind was coming in cool off the ocean, he found a way to nevertheless surround himself with water. Yes, he is his mother’s son.

What about all of you? What are your favorite spring break memories, either from 2012 or from past years?

5 Comment

  1. My favorite spring break memory is from the years 1999-2001. Hubby and I were married and living in Texas. My dad lived in Florida, within driving distance of spring training baseball. We spent those 3 spring breaks staying with my dad and taking day trips around So. Florida watching baseball. We loved it. When we moved to the beach, we were still close enough to make trips to spring training for long weekends. It sure beats my spring breaks as a kid when we took road trips from the deep south to Michigan to visit family.

    1. Yes, the Deep South to Michigan is a trip I’ve done a couple of times, believe it or not. There’s nothing like 16+ hours cooped up in a car. I especially love the moment where you step out of the car and find it’s 50 degrees colder than it was when you left, and suddenly your shorts and tank top are grossly inadequate. Fun times. My trips to southern Florida have all been taken from Chicago I think, where my primary concern upon arrival was simply reveling in the warmth and the beach. I still remember a business trip there right around Labor Day, however, where, for the first time, I was blown away by the heat. I kept laughing at LCB because his glasses kept fogging up, something that rarely happened in Chicago.

  2. My family moved from Chicago (and NW Indiana) to Texas in 2009. I can remember wanting to get away from Chicago by February or March each year, and we often ended up driving down to Florida with my in-laws.

    Now that I live in Texas, where winters are much milder, getting away for spring break isn’t so urgent, because if we went to Florida in March, the temperature is going to be about the same as it is here in Texas anyway, so what’s the point?

    Having said that, it looks like we’ll be going to Florida each spring breach anyway – my mother-in-law still lives in NW Indiana, but this past winter, she bought a second home in Florida, and we have decided to take our son to Florida each spring break, so that he can spend some time with his grandmother, who is now a widow.

    1. Good to hear from you! Wow, you’re from Chicago too, so you understand that cooped up feeling you get toward the end of winter, when snow and cold have officially lost all appeal.

      I’ve always wished we had family in Florida. Even now, while the weather is not a factor, our kids are eager to try out all of the amusement parks there, so it would be a nice combination to take the kids to see family and spend a couple of days at a park for our family trips.

  3. We’ve also kind of given up vacationing elsewhere during the “usual” times because now that we live Up North, we are where we most liked to vacation. That said, we may escape south with more regularity for a spring break because you can only be subjected to 5 hours of sunlight and frigid temperatures for only so long before it begins to have ill effects.

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