It's Sunday evening, the last day of Easter holidays. Tomorrow the boys return to school and life returns to "normal". I have to say that I'll miss them and the lovely holiday anti-routine we've enjoyed. It's been a new era for us in so many ways, and I am reluctant to let that slip away. But I know that over the next few weeks the momentum we built will grow and the boys will continue to develop. And hopefully I won't drag my feet toward the next school holidays, but leap with joy and thanksgiving straight into them.
We went to visit good friends last week who live in Buxton, England. This is a lovely part of the country where people say things like "Love" and have the greatest accent. Brian and I used to stay at a B&B in the area long before we had kids, and visiting with our boys felt like looking back on two other people we once knew long ago. We visited the grounds (and fantastic playground) of a stately home called Chatsworth and saw chickens, piglets, horses and goats. We also visited a place called Blaize Farm and enjoyed their award-winning ice cream. We walked every day to the city's Pavilion Gardens and let the kids slide on the Bouncy Slide. Sandra and Derek cooked us some great food, and we had time to chat and catch up on life. Now and again we had to quell a few fires amongst the kids (and patched up the occasional finger caught in the door!) but overall it was a great week.
One of the things I can count on when we travel someplace is that Adam will be unpredictable in his reactions and behaviour. This was just as true for Buxton as anyplace, though I have to say the end result did not leave me in tears this time. We even slept all together in one room and survived. It was actually nice to get a sense of each others' rhythms, which I think we miss out on when we always sleep in separate rooms. I learned that Caleb talks in his sleep, and that Adam still snores (though quieter)! I learned that proximity no longer equals disaster, and that gives us hope that this summer we might be able to do something crazy like rent an RV and travel together. This is also possible because even spending 18 hours in the car with the boys to and from Buxton was great fun. Not once did I wonder in my head "how much longer is this going to take?!" And this without the DVD player I really thought we'd need!
One of the highlights of the trip was at Blaize Farm in the sheep barn. They had a lamb pen, and several lambs out for the kids to pet. Brian sat in between our two and the son of our friends. Adam petted a lamb for a minute, but then became too rough with it and Brian took it away. He stayed seated with the group, though, and a few seconds later belted out the loudest "BAAAH!" you've ever heard. It was priceless. Yes Adam, these are sheep!
And the holidays ended in a blaze of warm, sunny, blue sky glory after beginning in snow and sleet. What better start to spring could you ask for?