Oh the Beach...

First off, a weekend down the Jersey shore is not enough.  Four days, five nights. Perfect.  Unfortunately our custody arrangement and of course the fact that someone in this house needs to be employed makes it a little hard to do that one.

I had an insane day trying to get things done and together before we left.  Little man has an infected finger (which I believe I mentioned before, but am not going back to read) so we picked him up Thursday night so that I could take him to the doctor on Friday.  That was fine, very little adventure involved; he was his usual well-behaved self and now we have pink-stuff to take three times a day.  But it took far longer than I anticipated (I under anticipate the time that is involved in doing nearly everything) so we were a bit rushed already when we stopped in the shop at the mall to get the little man a haircut.  It was as necessary as the doctors visit, the boy looked like a Beatle.  So we got a buzz on number six and hauled our butt to my moms so that he could nap while I went to my doctors appointment.  She's awesome like that.

I went to see my Rheumatologist, and I don't know if anyone else find this offensive or not, but if I'm paying for health insurance and a co-pay on top of it, and coming in for a re-evaluation after a major medical event and hospitalization shouldn't my doctor have tracked down the results of all of the tests that were done in the hospital before I get to her office and she determines that she can't make any definitive decision until she sees the results of the high-resolution CT scan that I had on JUNE 3RD.  Little frustrating when all they give you is a stack of prescriptions, a stack of blood work to be drawn and no answers.  "Well it might be scleroderma, or CREST, but we'll have to see those tests so come back in a month and we'll do this lovely little dance all over again." Grrr....

After my doctors appointment, with the heat and my obvious limitations, even with the oxygen, I was done.  I had, however, promised the boy that when he woke up from his nap there would be Cars big-boy underwear waiting for him.  So I managed to haul my rapidly fading ass to a retail giant boy the aforementioned underpants.  He was thrilled.  By about 15 minutes after we got home and showed Dad, he peed in them.  Not ready for the underpants yet.  He's made the connection that he has to poop in the toilet.  Made it fabulously; I haven't changed a poopy diaper in more than two weeks.  But peeing seems to be beyond his grasp.  He knows it's coming, he know's he's expected to go in the toilet, but he will either go in his pull-up or sit down, leave three drops in the toilet, say he's done and then finish it off in his pull-up three minutes later.  And I know, he'll do it when he's ready, but it's not that he's not ready, he's ready and stubborn.

Anyway, a change of clothes, a quick packing of the bags by BF while I sucked down some oxygen on the couch and tried to recover from the day's heat and away we were.  We made excellent time and despite leaving home at 7:15, we made the usually 2-2 1/2 hour drive in 1 1/2, without breaking any speeding laws.  Apparently this was not the weekend that everyone else wanted to go to the shore too - Lucky us!

With the sun already below the horizon and two exhausted parents, we put the little one to bed and almost got to sit up and have some time together.  This was interrupted on course by the fact that I couldn't get my eyelids to stay up.  So much to BF's displeasure I left him to the satellite dish and went to bed myself.

The next morning we were all energized and ready to get to that beach that the little man had been mentioning at least once an hour since well before we left Pennsylvania.  We threw on our swimming attire, covered up appropriately, and hit the pancake house (we're not allowed to call them Diners anymore because the little man is sick of diners, he is not sick of pancakes though).  After a rousing game of "get the boy to eat the damn french toast" we packed off the the beach shop to get goggles (he was very excited about the prospect of getting goggles, his best little friend has a pair and he was highly desirous of his own).  On the way I discovered that I'd left my purse at the restaurant, so we had to venture back to get that after picking up some oh-so-cool green goggles and an over-priced kite.  And then is was off to the beach.
Nothing so far has beaten the look on the little man's face as we topped the hill that leads to our street's entrance to the beach and saw what was had been talking about for weeks.  It was an awesome combination of shock and awe.  It wasn't a pool after all and Rachel was right it was bigger than big. 

We set up our little spot and went over the rules for staying nearby and not going anywhere near that ocean without Daddy or Rachel.  He was really good about both, especially since after our first venture down to the water the edge of the tide managed to knock him right on his butt.  Cutie.  He held my hand like we were physically attached after that one.  So after playing in the sand for a while with his dad and kicking over any sandcastle that reached a height of more that eight inches, BF decided that it was time for a swim.  Unfortunately my body had decided it was time for a sleep.  For the previous twenty minutes or so I had been desperately fighting the combination of nice warm sunny day, beach blanket, and, well, being me.  So BF loaded the little man up with his water shoes and his nifty floatation device that is not only safe-beyond-safe, but matched both his swim trunks and his cool UPF 50+ rash shirt.  Everyone is wearing one of these things this year!  I think it's great, I just never even saw them on the general public before.  Being a pale, burn-only, easily sun-damaged Lupie, I have a full set of full protection gear - no worries about the sun even touching this skin (though that doesn't stop me from reapplying sunscreen incessantly) - I have (all UPF 50+ which blocks 98% of both UVA and UVB rays) a swim shirt that comes down to my elbows, a pareo that is full length and awesome, and a bucket hat that would embarrass BF to no end if he didn't know that the sun is my mortal enemy.  And the bonus is that it gives me a great excuse to all of my least favorite parts of my anatomy!  So I got to nap for a good twenty minutes while BF and the little man played in the ocean and had a great time.  When they got back I was actually refreshed enough to get into the play myself and the little man and I had lots of fun playing in the sand.

On our way back to take a nap the little guy got bitten by an awful green headed fly which was so persistent that it kept coming back after he frantically waved it off.  The damn thing actually made him bleed.  He survived though, after some brief crying, and it was all he talked about for the rest of the weekend - we'd meet someone new and right off the bat he'd tell them all about the nasty bug that ate him.  It was hilarious.

After nap time and some dinner and relaxing, we went to the next biggest thrill of the weekend - the amusement park.  We'd told him about the ferris wheel before he slept and afterwards it was all we heard about.  It's a kiddie amusement park of course so he could ride nearly everything they had there.  BF and I we a little apprehensive at first about the solo rides, would he like them?; would he cry to get off?; would he get off when it was time or would he throw a fit?  He impressed us on every count.  He rode every ride that his height would allow and he loved them all.  When it was time to get off he'd come running to where we were waiting and be off to the next ride.  

I was so happy we went.  I loved that place when I was a kid and it ends up being a really cheap vacation if you don't eat out too much.  I can't wait to go back again.  My grandfather was thrilled with the little guy; glad to have kids back in the house again, it's been a while.

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