In which I fish Wren out of a pool and other notable events from our vacation

Bright and early at the crack of 10:30 am (just like we planned) on Ruth’s birthday, we left to go see Scott’s many relatives and my aunt and cousins in Florida. Ruth was very excited to “have [her] birthday in Florida.” I had just bought some fall/winter church shoes for Ruth and Rose, and they insisted on wearing them in the car on the way to Lakeland, Florida. We knew that we would spend most of the day in the car, so Scott and I reluctantly agreed. The shoes, specifically, were these . And let me tell you, they are the worst. The girls had to stump around like Frankenstein’s monster to keep the shoes from flying off their feet. And that method wasn’t even always effective. We got some weird looks dragging two girls walking around like their knees didn’t bend into the Chick Fil A when we stopped for lunch.

And the heavens opened up and welcomed us into Lakeland. Apparently, it had been raining nonstop until we arrived. The weather while we were there, however, couldn’t have been more beautiful. Scott’s grandmother and aunt had a birthday cake for Ruth waiting when we got there, and her two little cousins had decorated the place with super hero decorations. They even had sweet gifts for her. She loved it. 

 That cake was delicious.

On Sunday, we headed to Tampa to go to mass with my aunt and uncle and cousins. Ruth and Rose had no fewer than five false bathroom breaks, and Wren was a holy terror as usual. My uncle ended up walking with Rhea in the back while my cousin chased around after Rose and Wren. Ruth very kindly allowed me to sit through the rest of the mass.

After mass, we headed back to my aunt’s house for some delicious Cuban food and birthday cake for Ruth and my cousin Grace, who also had a birthday that week. 

 Rhea is about as big as my cousin Ben.

On Monday, Scott’s dad flew into Tampa to visit and help Scott’s grandmother with whatever she needed. Scott and I immediately volunteered to go to Tampa to pick him up and hurried out the door, leaving all the girls with Scott’s selfless aunt and grandmother. It was like a fabulous vacation for us. We chatted all the way to Tampa without constant interruptions coming from the back seat (“Excuse me, mom! I see a cloud!”) and took a leisurely walk from the car to the airport to wait for Paw Paw’s plane to land. Once he arrived, I convinced the men to go get dinner at the Tampa International Plaza’s Bay Street as the traffic heading back to Lakeland was at a standstill. We drove past the gorgeous bay and ate a delicious meal at the Bay Street restaurant.  I was on cloud nine. Then, Scott’s aunt sent me a text delicately informing me that Rhea had refused her bottle and was being an all-round stinker, so we hurried back to relieve the beleaguered troops. I could not be more appreciative of Scott’s aunt and grandmother for holding down the fort so that we could escape for a little while. What a blessing.

Monday night I got the text from my dear friend Cody asking if we were ready to visit the Happiest Place on Earth, and the rest is history. BTdubs, I wore these shoes  walking all over Disney, and I could not be more pleased with them. It felt like I was walking on clouds, and not a mark was left on my feet. But they also breathe really well and worked perfectly on the surface of the sun during that hot day. 

 That it is, that it is. (As you can see, my snapchat addiction continues. The handle is sylcell, for those interested.)

Tuesday night, Scott’s aunt hosted us and Scott’s childhood friend and his family for dinner. They have a pool in their backyard, so we packed the usual two tons of swimming with toddlers paraphernalia. Wren hates the water and wants nothing to do with it. She even shrieks in  protest during her baths. So we strapped her puddle jumper on her and let her waddle around while her older sisters swam with Daddy. There was a ball that she liked to hold in her arms while she waddled. I’m sure, my dear readers, that you have already guessed what happened next.  As if in slow motion, I watched her drop her ball in the pool, lean over to reach it, and fall headfirst into the water.  I rushed over to the edge of the pool to drag her out. She was wearing her puddle jumper, so she was floating on her back, but I was still anxious to grab her ASAP. It is amazing how difficult it is to fish a toddler out of a pool. I felt like it was taking me forever to get her to shore as she floundered and thrashed. I can only imagine how stressful that would have been if she hadn’t had her puddle jumper on.  Needless to say, if her feelings on bodies of water weren’t that of deepest distrust before, that event certainly sealed the deal. She wanted nothing to do with even being near the pool after that. 

 Sweet sisters keeping warm.

 We left for St. Augustine to visit Scott’s maternal grandparents on Thursday. We wasted no time in heading to the beach on Friday.  



f you observe Ruth pretending to be a mermaid in the background. Ok, I have no idea what is going on with that last sentence, but the WordPress powers that be have decreed that I cannot fix it, so pretend that it gives my blog whimsy. 

 We enjoyed some fabulous seafood and Scott’s grandparents’ hospitality. Rhea, however, was totally thrown off her groove being away from home and was waking up every hour all night long.  So I can’t say I was totally disappointed to finally be heading home on Sunday and getting some sleep! 

 Not sure how she can possibly that smiley after a sleepless night. 

 Scott had to immediately leave on a business trip on Monday, and I have been single-momming it ever since. It is the worst.  Thank goodness for my mom and sisters. I don’t think we would have made it without them helping me with dinner/bath time/bed time (aka, the most hectic and work intensive part of my day which is coincidentally when I am most exhausted.) Counting the seconds until he is home again. 



About sylcell

Wife, mom of four girls, Catholic, insatiable sweet tooth
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15 Responses to In which I fish Wren out of a pool and other notable events from our vacation

  1. Rebekah says:

    I laughed out loud at least twice reading this. I’m not sure what it is about others journeys through motherhood makes me laugh, but I’m so glad it isn’t just me having these experiences! (And some to look forward to!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Karianne says:

    Love following your blog. 🙂 You have a wonderful family. And such a blessing with a large family as well. I am a mom of 4 kids. Boy, 9. Girl,8. Boy,4. And boy, 2 months. Life for us is hectic and husband is often away at work. When it comes to taking care of 4 kids alone (or fewer for that matter) I think the biggest thing is what you are used to. If your normal is doing it alone, you find a rutine and grove that works. (You kinda have to). If you are used to doing it together and the other person isn’t there, enter caos. 😉 Hugs to all the moms out there. Singel, married, spouses that work away or that are there. It’s tough being a mom, but is hands-down the most rewarding jobb out there. 😉 And most all-consuming, thankless, exhausting and fun. 🙂 It over all too fast they say. (“Raises glass of caffinated beverage”) Here’s to raising kids, having fun and enjoying all the things we still have an excuse to do (building forts, snowballfights, fingerpainting, going to kids movied in theaterd and so much more)…. Hugs from Norway 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karianne says:

      Typing too fast….late at night in cell phone….. enter typos….. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    • sylcell says:

      Thank you so much. And yes, it is true! It really makes such a difference getting a routine down and getting into the swing of things. I always have a short stint after a baby is born where I am floundering with even the most simple tasks, and then somehow I hit my stride and everything becomes easier. I can’t explain it, but it happens!


    • morgan says:

      totally agree on the thing about what you are used to. I’ve been doing the morning routine on my own for almost 5 years, and then we bought a second car so my husband can save a lot of time on commuting (it’s taking him about 15 mins by car, 45 by bike and something between 45 minutes and 3 hours by train depending on schedules, detours, delays and missed connections) and since then he’s not leaving the house at about the time we have to get up, but spends our whole morning routine with us. This was in March, and we are still not back to normal…

      @Karianne: Norway is beautiful!!! Where are you located?


  3. Poor Wren and Mama- I would have had a heart attack. And yes, single momming it IS the worst of the worst.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. morgan says:

    Looks like you had a LOVELY time in Florida. Never made it souther (is that even correct?!?) than DC (once in February. It was ice cold, snowed, windy and every house in DC is white. we walked aeons to find the right one. it had a fence. i was not impressed. because, you know, wind, snow and cold.)
    Laughed at your mention of your alone trip with Scott. We usually end up sitting in silence in the car. Silence. FINALLY 😀
    Oh my gosh, I love your shoes! They remind me of my summer vacations in Spain as a child. Huh, they are made in Spain, so chances to get some here (for a reasonable shipping fee) are pretty high 🙂 Hope I remember next year, we’re experiencing the first frosty nights here, so I don’t think I’ll wear sandals again soon.

    I Pray for you on your single-mom-time (I guess it is over now?). Business trips are the worst (unless you are the one doing it, maybe). My husband left me once for 2 weeks with a 2 year old and a 10 month old (after that trip I took a pregnancy test. It was positive). Hardest 2 weeks of my mom life. Since then I admired my neighbor even more whose partner is only home on weekends. How on earth is she doing it?!? And how do real single moms even survive? We are so, so blessed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • sylcell says:

      I know, we had our first chilly day today, and I was so sad that I couldn’t wear my sandals! Scott got home last night! Yeah, I am friends with some moms whose husbands are consultants and are gone Monday through Thursday of every week! I can’t even imagine.


  5. Kim Johnston says:

    I love all the pictures of your babies’ faces. So darn cute. Please take video of Frankenstein walking when you have spare time. Also, I have 1/2 the work you do (I divided 4 children in half because I’m super smart) and if my husband EVER left for business, I would not make it through one night of 5p-7:30p.m. I.cannot.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Ashley P says:

    Thanks for sharing. I love reading all your posts and relating to your difficult but blessed times with the little ones 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  7. christywulz says:

    Love hearing all the details about the vacation! Miss your girlies!

    Liked by 1 person

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