Two Saturdays ago we booked a suite in the Catskills, totally on a whim. The kids had been home all week on winter break and needed a change of scenery. A quick one (!) because Monday morning we had to return to school and work.
I called every resort within a two-and-a-half-hour drive to see if they had any last-minute cancellations. We booked at 10am and were in the car by noon. My Sweets is much more spontaneous than I, but we both get a kick out of surprising the littles. Staying overnight in a nearby hotel -- for no reason at all -- definitely surprised them.
Buby and Bleu passed me in the upstairs hallway tossing bathing suits and snow gear into a big roller board. They didn't even ask. My Sweets packed some adult beverages (for after hours), and I made a requisite stop at our village chocolatier for my box of nut clusters and English toffee-almond crunch.
By the time we arrived at our destination the kids were dying to know what's up. So we went ahead and filled their heads with visions of a 24-hour slumber extravaganza to include bowling, dinner, swimming, ice skating, arcades, popcorn, and a movie in bed. (Oh yes, breaking the rules!) I popped some corn at home and called ahead to make sure the room had a DVD player.)
Dance party in Room 253. Music optional.
A ball pit like I haven't seen since the mid '80s.
(Funny story about the ball pit... remind me to tell you later.)
We have three kids who LOVE to swim.
One game of bowling equals 10 frames.
By the fourth frame our small people were out of steam.
My Sweets and I wanted a final score though. (P.S. I won!)
Meanwhile, Ollie wanted to steal another curiously strong mint from my bag.
He was quickly approaching survival mode.
I must say he handled a 6 lb ball pretty well for his first time.
Once Ollie saw the pencil he insisted on keeping score for us.
No computerized technology at this rinky dink alley.
Bleu's balls took their sweeeeeeet time reaching the pins,
but she won the award for cutest technique. Hands down.
After bowling came dinner off the main lobby. The food was decent, but I ate so fast I got a belly ache. I've trained myself to eat fast while dining out with three kids. I actually have to remind myself to slooow down and savor each bite when I'm on a date with Tom. Ollie was tired and couldn't stay in his seat for too long. Bleu hardly noticed her dinner because she was so focused on swimming next, and Buby wouldn't stop hinting at the gelato counter across the way. "Oooh, gelaaatooooo."
The place we stayed is dated (think Kellerman's from Dirty Dancing), but it was bustling on this particular Saturday. Tons of people chatting and music blaring. We couldn't figure out WHO else was paying this much to stay at an old resort in the middle of nowhere. Upstaters? City dwellers? Suddenly it hit us: Snooki. Within an hour a friend texted me about an episode of Jersey Shore being filmed there.. or planned there.. or whatev. I've never seen the show, but it sort of explains the ball-pit incident :)
By the time we finished our long walk of shame from the pool house (dripping wet and shivering in our bathing suits and snow boots) we were all ready to relax, but no DVD player meant no movie night. The littles took warm baths instead. Then it dawned on us that we'd have to turn off all the lights and pretend to sleep in order to get Ollie to sleep IN THE SAME ROOM... so we all just went to sleep. Sometimes slumber parties are better in theory.
Gelato in the lobby at 9am. Don't we look tired?
After checking out the breakfast buffet we headed over to a friend's house nearby.
Ironically, the little play date was our children's favorite part of the whole adventure.
Did I mention the turtle races? Oh yeah.
Elaborate turtle gambling on the main stage.