Back From a Club Med Vacation

Photo by Masana.
This will be a quick post since we just returned from our family vacation and I still have sand in my hair.

Let me start by saying that our family vacations are usually anything but relaxing. Dave and I have always taken the kids on adventures rather than vacations. We map out a course whether by car, plane, foot, or a combination of all three, and soak in the local surroundings. Our first real vacation with the kids took us on a plane to San Diego, CA, where we rented a car and drove over 1,000 miles along Pacific Highway One.
We slept in a yurt, ate on the beach, went for hikes, and hugged redwood trees. When we finally got home after 10 days of nonstop action, I was in dire need of a vacation from my vacation. Between 2007 and 2008 we drove to Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington, and the Outer Banks on separate road trips. We took the kids to see shows, visited museums and aquariums, and ate a LOT of food. In 2009, we drove out to Chicago from New York. On the way we stopped by Toledo and Cleveland, Ohio to watch the Mud Hens and the Indians play baseball. The kids discovered Arby's, Dairy Queen, and the fact that Pennsylvania is one boring state to drive through (my apologies to the state of Pennsylvania). Last year we took the kids to London. We rented a flat in the Southwark section, walked everywhere, ate everything, and collapsed every night with full bellies and tired feet.

This year I demanded a real do-nothing (or die trying) vacation. So despite Dave's pleas for Ireland or Scotland, I firmly planted my foot down and said NO. My only requirements were: 1) warm weather and 2) that we not leave the country. So Dave booked a Club Med vacation in Florida.

At first I was skeptical because the website for the Club Med Sandpiper Bay resort didn't have any real photos at the time Dave booked our vacation. It was undergoing extensive renovations and had these strange computer generated* images. And for someone with a fairly active imagination, that part of my creative brain couldn't grasp that I could be just like the happy and brightly colored avatar in virtual Club Med world. *(Their website has been updated with actual photos, though they are still building their wellness center.)

But I'm quite happy to report that our family vacation was a complete success.

The view from my covered beach bed. I saw lots of jumping fish,
birds that I think were pelicans, and dolphins. (Yes, I said dolphins.)

The boys abandoned their shoes at the beginning of every day.

Sand art?

One of the many sand castles we built. 

New sea legs created by my daughter.

I'll try to write more about the experience later on. There is a lot to say about this place that may be of some use to another do-nothing vacation seeking family. But right now I'm just going to bask in the glow of our first REAL family vacation.

Many thanks to the chief of the village, Lionel Pirotte, for a fantastic stay.

And, of course, thank you, Dave. Now that wasn't so terrible, was it? ;)