We decided to go easy on the ozone and our our wallets and vacation close to home this summer. We drove to downtown Houston for three days and two nights of food and fun. Then we headed south to League City for a couple of days with Poppy and Nana. Some observations and points to remember for future trips are
1. plan, plan, plan (but be flexible!) — I mapped out our itinerary carefully, I thought, then realized in the car that I scheduled us for the zoo in the heat of the afternoon. We just flip-flopped activities to keep us indoors in the afternoon and moved the zoo to a morning. We also had a nap problem when we got lost driving to our room for naptime, causing Caroline to fall asleep in the car. My toddler doesn’t transfer well, and if she falls asleep in the car, even if it is only for ten minutes — that’s the nap! We just had to be flexible again — we moved our evening swim to the afternoon, ate dinner a bit earlier, and put the tot to bed early that night.
2. toddlers love animals — The zoo was an obvious hit. The dog at the Bed and Breakfast was an unexpected delight as was feeding the fishies at the Kemah Boardwalk. All future vacations with toddlers must include animals.
3. Bed and Breakfasts are great — We’d never before stayed in a B&B, The Lovett Inn. It was just fabulous!! Nice and cozy, not too busy, great location. The first night, John said, “From now on, let’s stay in Bed and Breakfasts on vacation.” I agree.
4. spend more time at the Contemporary Arts Museum — I put the Contemporary Arts Museum as a maybe stop on our itinerary. Admission was free, and I thought we might want to stop in for a few minutes. The current exhibit features Texas artists. I wasn’t sure what to expect. Modern Art can be a bit of a joke, I know, and my first reaction was just that. This is art? But then the old English teacher in me came out and I began asking, what does it mean? I want to go back sans toddler some time (she did GREAT at not touching the toy trucks and bicycles that were right there on the floor for her to play with, though), take plenty of time to examine the exhibits, and then discuss them with my hubby or friends over a bottle of wine.
5. always get recommendations from friends who have lived or been there — My fabulous sister-in-law Carlye, mother of Georgia Peorgia, lived in the Montrose area for a few years. She emailed me a list of recommended restaurants and spots that was just fabulous. She knew that John would appreciate THE HOBBIT CAFE and that I would love THE CHOCOLATE BAR. (We did!) EMPIRE CAFE was also really neat.
6. I am a 70 — I now know my Sleep Number. Our room had a Select Comfort Sleep Number Bed, and with the same sense of curiosity and adventure that made me beg as a child for a quarter to put in the vibrating bed in our motel room, I had to fully experience the Sleep Number Bed. I laid on the bed, which was set around 60, and moved the dial all the way down to its lowest setting of five. I felt the bed slowly deflate under me. And I wondered why on earth would anyone want to sleep on such a soft gushy mattress. Then Caroline hopped onto the middle of the bed and rolled right into me. Nope, let’s move the dial back on up. I decided that 75 was a bit too stiff, so I eased back down to a 70 — a nice average number. I sleep better at home, and I’ll stick with my individual coils and memory foam.