I think it had been something like 2 years since the last time Josh was home in the US. And as a family… well, it hadn’t been since we left 5 1/2 years ago. I normally take the kids by myself to the US and Josh comes for work and visits during those times. We wanted to use his vacation time for travel in Europe since we knew our time here would be limited (we say that every year only to find ourselves still in Europe). Only since he changed jobs almost 2 years ago, there hasn’t been a need for him to be home. And it’s important that, like us, he go home on a regular basis.
With our first two weeks focused on my family and the kids’ friends, the next week + was spent with Josh’s family and his friends from when he was growing up.
Since the kids’ friends were all off Cape, our time spent down there was solely focused on family with the exception of one day with Josh’s old high school friends and their families. It was much needed time with Josh’s family as like mine, they often get the shaft when we were in town.
The time we spent on the Cape was reminiscent of old times for us, only now our kids aren’t babies. Some of our favorite memories as a family have been spent down there only this time we were staying with family instead of at our own house (which is rented). But it gave us some nice quality time with Josh’s parents by staying with them for the week.
While there we took the kids to Plymouth to visit Plymouth Rock, the Mayflower and Plimouth Planation (more on that in another entry).
We also spent a lot of time with Becky and Ray and were out on their house float twice (not to be confused with a house boat – for more on house floats check out this old article from the Boston Globe. Like the rest of our families, we haven’t spent nearly enough time with them over the last few years and it was really nice getting to spend time with them and for the kids to have quality time bonding as well. I’d also like to thank them for the surprise 40th they threw for Josh and I out on the house float and for including my BFF Michelle and her boyfriend meant the world to me! How surprised I was when we pulled up (my back to the float) and Aidan yelled out – “hey Auntie Michelle is on the float!”
We did have to go off Cape a few times – to close on our house, dinner with some old friends, a family bbq and meeting our niece. More on those later.
Our last days were spent bringing the kids up to Camp Wekeela – the same camp that Josh and Becky went to as kids – and going to Portsmouth, NH. It was Josh’s (and Becky’s) first time at Wekeela in about 30 years and while the weather was certainly not welcoming, the camp was. We spent a little time reminiscing while dropping off the kids before Josh and I headed to Portsmouth, NH for a few days by ourselves.
Having Josh with us on this vacation made a world of difference. It was us as a family at home, yet on vacation. A new twist on something old, but something great. While I hate that it had been almost 6 years without us together on US soil, I actually think the timing was perfect for all of us to come together at home after what was a pretty rough year in the Netherlands.
Unfortunately all good things come to an end. For Josh, he came home to leaking ceiling and no electricity…welcome back to the Netherlands Josh!
Knuffels en kussen,