lifejackets and leashes

During the “off-time” with no job, Rob was presented with a great opportunity in gaining some compensation by his Auntie Carol. She had lots of renovation work that she needed to have completed on her condo out in Florida and wanted to know if Rob ‘could please come!” Having already been through three contractors with nothing to show for it, she was really seeking someone trustworthy and capable of going through her rather long wish-list of improvements. And in that state of determination, and desperately wanting Rob’s help, she was very willing to cover the cost to fuel his truck for a trek across the country and provide housing so the whole family could come and stay. So with all logistics taken care of, it was a no-brainer what we decided to do. And off we went, out east, driving 20 hours straight, towing a trailer full of tools; all so we could make some extra money and let the girls get their first experience of the ocean.

The condo is in a senior housing community (all residents are 55 and older) located in Long Boat Key, FL and Carol was able to find another 2 bedroom rental-unit just 5 houses down from her own. It was such a great arrangement because Rob could just walk down the street in the early morning to start working, I could bring him breakfast after all the kiddos woke up, and at lunch time everyone could be together. There was even a pool in the center of the community and the beach was just a 1/2 mile away that would keep the girls and I occupied while Rob worked.

But before you go and start feeling sorry for Rob about not getting to experience the water fun, you must understand that it was ME who had the more difficult task! For one, Rob likes to do all this handi-man stuff anyways and was going to be enjoying himself for the most part. And while I do like the pool and the beach on normal occasions, this particular scenario brought lots of anxiety at the thought of me (the only adult), three kids (all non-swimmers), and water water water (drowning, rip-tides, undertows, sharks, pirates, tsunamis – honest, I feared them all). How in the world was I going to keep them safely in my sight and their bodies afloat at all times? In my overly paranoid state, my first solution to keep myself cooled and collected, with so many possible dangers, involved life-jackets and leashes. But after I calmed down and rationalized most of my worries away, I reasoned that the leashes would be a bit much. I settled with the conclusion that the life-jackets and lots of alertness would have to suffice. Also helping to help alleviate those first fears of Florida (the girls and mine) was that Rob and his Aunt went with us the first time. So in the days to come with just us girls, it would be a super-fun, non-stressful time. And it was!!

almost there

when we all made it to the beach
***** fun at the beach *****
Dee and Gracie enjoying the waves Dee and Gracie

** Rob at work **
Rob at work

This little fella (more than 3 feet long) was found in our carport, where I also had to do laundry! I also got the privelege of seeing many of his friends on the side of the road when I would go jogging (and here I was worried about sharks?!)
snake in our carport This is Rob checking his email. Whenever we wanted to go online, we would wander around in the street until we could find someone’s wireless to connect to
searching for a wireless connection

hanging out on a sandbar in the middle of a ship channel
sand bar in the middle of a ship channel Auntie Carol

The whole stay ended up being two weeks and was so worth it in so many ways.
We had a great time!

and if you want to see more pictures, click here

the whole family on an evening out

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2 Responses to lifejackets and leashes

  1. Nonnie says:

    Hey, leashes are good! When Rob was Dee and Gracie’s age, we spent Christmas in Florida, on the Atlantic side. And BECAUSE he was not reliable enough to keep himself out of the incredible surf when we were not watching, we DID tie him up … one end of the rope around him; the other around a sign post. Worked like a charm!! :-)

    And it isn’t a ship channel … it’s the beginning of the Intercoastal … ! DID you go shelling … I keep forgetting to ask.

  2. Nicole says:

    I totally understand how you felt! I am always worried there is not enough of me to monitor two frisky two year olds….and now there is about to be another one! I admit, I have thought about buying leashes, too!

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