Well, we’re home! I was too tired/lazy the last couple days of the trip to write anything, so now that we’ve been home for a day (two days–I wrote most of this yesterday and am now posting it), I am ready to recap things. Our last full day we had warmer weather and sunshine, so we parked downtown and just walked around. Clinch Park was lovely, with a nice beach and fountains for kids to play in. We weren’t really up for swimming as the water was pretty chilly, but enjoyed walking along the bay shore. The downtown was also fun to explore. We browsed in a bookstore and had lunch in a neat little sandwich shop called The Dish, where the food was delicious and service extremely friendly.
Later, after Liam had his nap, we took him for one more swim in the pool and went to dinner at Schelde’s, another casual diner-y place near our hotel. Our Hampton Inn was fine, but the location wasn’t very convenient for going downtown. We still found good places to eat within a five-minute drive, though. We noticed that we always are seated near the kitchen–they must recognize little kids won’t be the quietest patrons! And yes, Liam did have fun tossing his toys and food and water cup on the floor:). It was a good thing we chose not to risk one of the cute little French bistros–his antics might have bothered anyone seeking a private, romantic dinner experience!
There are definitely some things we’d like to do if we ever return to TC. Kayaking or canoeing, touring wineries and breweries, dining in finer restaurants…those are things that just don’t work very well with a toddler. We had a blast showing him new things and places, and we are okay with the fact that in many ways, we’re limited now that Liam is in our lives. It is still only for a short time, relatively, and we want to appreciate the years while he’s little!
Thankfully, we didn’t stay past Friday…during our final night there, we had some noisy hotel neighbors. A man was very loudly complaining about his food not being what he ordered, swearing about it at midnight. We were really irritated for a few minutes until we finally managed to get the A/C running steadily and loudly enough to cover up the sound of his voice. I guess we were fortunate the rest of the week to have fairly quiet hall neighbors! And we were so glad that Liam didn’t cry much at night, so we didn’t have to worry about being “those” people ourselves.
The trip home on Friday was looooooong…we took 31 south all the way to Grand Haven, which was a two-lane highway much of the time, and took a lot longer than we’d hoped. GH was our planned stop because my brother and his family live there. It was relaxing to just hang out with him and his wife and three of their four kids for a few hours. Liam loves the attention his cousins always shower upon him.
From Grand Haven, we had another four hours or so to drive. It seemed like we needed to stop a bunch of times and it took much longer than it should have. Liam only napped for an hour, and then seemed crabby enough that I decided to sit in back with him, to keep him company. That helped his mood as he was not so bored or lonely. We did finally arrive home around ten, so tired.
Today has been a recovery day. Everyone always needs a vacation from their vacation, right? We are so glad we were able to get away as a family with only minor inconveniences and frustrations. On to the next journey!