Instead of Aquapalooza, the family traveled to the Texas coast for Portapalooza.
It was like joining the circus.
I'm kidding. We actually try to take a vacation as a family every year so I have been a part of this circus for several years =) (We'll initiate Julie next time. There is usually a water-balloon toss and a wicked game of spoons involved).
The weather was perfect for the entire trip. As a group of 9 adults, 5 kids, and one revolving guest in a huge house in Port Aransas, we took turns cooking/cleaning/swimming/relaxing. Port Aransas is a small coastal town near Corpus Christi... we usually head to the coast once a year on our own, but always in the winter (Hello Winter Texans!). So this was the first time I actually swam in the Gulf. Once you get over the copious amounts of seaweed (and the stench associated with seaweed), it was pleasant.
"Similar in color to the English Bass Ale. Brewed with chocolate malt and 2-row malt barley with East Kent Golding hops."
I honestly don't know what most of that means (other than beer and chocolate sound nice). But Peter said my choice was the best one there. I'm lucky he traded with me.
One of my favorite parts of this trip was the lighting inside the house (is that odd?). It really was amazing natural light. My youngest niece and nephew are not wise to my shutterbug tendencies so they took the brunt of my picture taking. Here are a few of my favorites.
We also take a few family photos at our get-togethers. I have a remote for my camera... we're high-tech. I also need to learn how to hide my hand. Here is the whole crew.
Overall, the family 2010 vacation was a success.
I believe we are planning the 2011 familyVacation. Any ideas are appreciated!
The only way I could determine the right suitcase was by pretend packing. My packing plan for 10 days will be much less than my test pack. Mostly because I will utilize a washer/dryer at some point. My day job does not require fancy clothing, and neither do my vacations... so everything packed is casual.
My list included:
5 tank tops
2 casual pairs of pants
1 pair of Jeans
2 lightweight sweaters
1 long-sleeve t-shirt
4 bathing suits (Too many? Well i'm going to the beach!)
1 small purse
2 pairs of running shorts
2 pairs of yoga pants
Fancy flip flops
I also have my unmentionables packed. Commando for 10 days would be a little uncomfortable. So throw in those items as well. I decided that the best way to get everything into the suitcase was by rolling the clothes.
By rolling all of my garments I was able to pack the suitcase with room to spare. Some observations about packing light:
100% cotton t-shirts take up a lot of room
Lightweight blends roll nicely and release wrinkles easily
Denim is heavy and takes up a lot of room
Pack your favorite clothes
I will also have a third pair of shoes (either hiking or running) worn on the flight. I will layer my tops so there will likely be another long sleeve shirt... which will be good if we decide to do this.
One problem is all of the electronics we "need" to bring. It will be mid-semester, but because it is a virtual classroom, I need to bring the laptop. I only need to be on campus 4 times for this particular class), which makes for easy trips during shoulder seasons.
Which is pretty cool.
I will definitely pack the kindle (which actually saves a ton of room compared to books), along with a number of ipods, shuffles, phones, and assorted gadgets (the power cords alone need a carryon). Unfortunately my camera bag is way too big. More on that later.
The hardest packing light challenge... no room for Darcy.