Musings from My Family Vacation

Phyllis Lifestyle 29 Comments

We just returned from a family vacation to Nantucket to celebrate my twins’ 40th birthday. We had the whole family there, and it was a glorious week. I had so much fun being with them after a year of separation. I realized many things last week that I wanted to share with you.

First, there is no way I could be old enough to have 40-year-old twins, but I cannot seem to find a fact to support that. Nevertheless, it is true, and they are grown men of whom I am very proud.

I realized with the grandchildren that what is important to them varies drastically to that of an adult. Now that seems obvious, but have we really stopped to think about that? Adults love to eat at wonderful new places. Kids are looking for normal places that are familiar to them. They are not adventuresome in their eating.

All that matters is a swimming pool! After that, everything else is just icing on the cake. The grands could swim for hours and never tire of it. And if they can get everyone else in the pool, then it’s even more fun.

My grandson said all he wanted to do was spend time with Gigi (me). Shopping and seeing the town was irrelevant to him. Now to most people that is not good. As the others were leaving to stroll the streets and shop, we stayed in and played Uno for four solid hours. I told my kids that a whole morning with your grandson is a huge treat and one that I will cherish forever. As he gets older, I imagine that will not be the case. He could recall every game he won, which was most, and I recall the wonderful conversations we had—just the two of us.

My granddaughter was the opposite. She wanted to explore the island and shop with Gigi. Of course, she did—I would want to shop with me, too! But I was put in charge of determining if the swimsuit she had seen and wanted was a good choice. Oh, my goodness, that was tricky. When I saw it, I was horrified as to the lack of fabric in the suit that was to be worn by a 10-year-old. As we shopped in this cute store, we talked about choosing a style rather than wearing something because everyone else was wearing it. We ended up with cute suits, including a one-piece that she looked fabulous wearing. Girls always want to grow up fast, and I could totally relate to that. We didn’t get the skimpy suit; we got the cutest thing in the store, and she loved it!

My sons were quite entertaining, and I realized they are grown and don’t need my advice on everything. Can you imagine? In fact, they made the decisions on activities and restaurants while Neal and I enjoyed not having to make decisions. They planned the trip, giving great attention to detail. They are grown up, and I celebrate them!

So, what did I learn?

When your kids are grown, let them be grown.

Seeing things through the eyes of children as they are growing up is quite different than seeing things through the eyes of adults. That’s oftentimes where we mess up—trying to get them to think as an adult. Swimming in the pool will always trump any other activity on the priority list. They don’t want new strange food, they want pizza.

Kids want your time! Knowing they have our undivided attention is the best gift we can give. And the best gift they give us is intriguing thoughts and delightful conversation. Their perspective on things is fascinating.

I will treasure memories from this week and look forward to more times together. The love in our family was very evident, and that is the ultimate gift for all.

Comments 29

  1. Nantucket! We love the island! A perfect place for a family vacation. And we are so glad your grandchildren enjoyed the trip. We get a different perspective on everything when we see through the eyes of grandchildren!

  2. What a wonderful musing! I too have twins, they are 22. Boy/girl twins with different interests, different style and polar opposite personalities but they still love their time together and with family. Your words “when your kids are grown, let them be grown” struck a chord (I play and teach piano so I had to use that) with me and as they graduate college in December and they head into careers (well one still wants to go to law school so a few more years for her..) I realize they won’t always be home for Christmas Day, or Thanksgiving or many other holidays and while it makes me sad and I cherish each and every Christmas morning they are still coming home for that special day, I know I can be proud of the young adults they have become. Happy Birthday to your twins! It made me smile to think about family vacations in the future with grandkids like you just had! I love your magazines, books and especially the CD’s – I just ordered a few more as I have worn mine out – I do hope you will find time to make another piano CD. Your Christmas CD is on repeat rotation as my sister and I cook our big holiday meal – it’s wonderful!

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  4. This was such wonderful writing about the week of vacation spent with your family.
    You will all have fond memories of this for years to come.
    I’ve missed your posts, Phyllis.
    Happy Summer.

  5. How wonderful you got to be with family finally!!! We are getting to see ours for the second time and I am just as excited as the first! For us, the year and one half we did not
    get to see them I cant get over how much they have grown and changed. Maturity wise!
    Its like getting aquatinted with a new little person! They are at that preteen age and I hope this trip I am better at relating . So happy for all of us to see our family and friends again!

  6. Beautiful pictures & memories of your family trip! The most fun times are one on one with our Grands! They share everything. Don’t worry about your Grandson not wanting time with you. Garrett was 20 on the 4th and although I thought our time together would end, he still wants time with just me! And he still shares everything! And Grandgirl will always want one on one shopping time with you! It’s the best! Love y’all!

  7. My 15-year old grandson loves to golf with his “Mimi” and I couldn’t be happier! It makes my heart sing to know he enjoys this special time with me.

  8. Oh my! How wonderful for you and your whole family 🙂 We love Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard and have several whole family trips there, and they are both everything you have said…grown kids, grands, and how we all spend time together. Kudos to your sons for planning this!!

  9. Yes to article with Susan Branch. lLove her work. Your boys are glowing with life. Job well done,Mom. We insist on a week a year with grands and Mom and Dad at the beach for waking up together and coffee to late night card games and readers reciting early. Precious times.

  10. I can not believe how grown up your grandchildren are. Family vacations are the best. You all look so happy and contented. Love your hat Phyllis. Nantucket is lovely. I agree,I would love to see Susan Branch in Victoria. Hope your sons have a great year full of happiness.love and blessings. God Bless.
    Marilyn

  11. You sound like you had a good time celebrating your sons’ birthday. Glad you had a relaxing time. Happiness and blessings to Brian and Eric.
    Marion

  12. Don’t forget about Block Island, RI as a beautiful spot to visit. I began going there every Summer (from the time I was 2 months old…I am now 75). My parents met there in the 1930’s. My Dad would rent a cottage very Summer( for entire Summer) for the family .Only way to get there is by Ferry or small plane. Check it out.

  13. What a lovely way to celebrate their 40th – a family vacation! Beautiful photos and great fun – delightful. Thank you for sharing.

  14. I can’t believe the twins are 40. I remember them being teenagers driving by our house in Meadowbrook. What a wonderful trip and so glad you could spend time with your grandchildren. You will both remember this trip forever!

  15. What a wonderful vacation with your family, Phyllis. I love Nantucket, it is a beautiful island. We are planning a family vacation in September to make memories with our three small grandchildren!

  16. P.S. I meant to add because the state’s are small, you can get a lot in, in a day. The famous illustrator Susan Branch lives on Martha’s Vineyard not far from Nantucket. Don’t know if you are familiar with her; but it would be fabulous to have a piece on her in Victoria!

  17. My home state is Massachusetts. I am so glad you got to see one of the bigger islands there. I understand about your grandchildren, etc. but, I sure hope you and your husband were able to enjoy Nantucket. Sooooo much to see and do there. Actually all over Massachusetts and New England. It is a place steeped in history. That is where our great country had it’s start. I grew up in Lexington, Mass. where the first battle of the American Revolution started. Some people think it’s Concord, but it wasn’t. I went to high school in Concord where my favorite author Louisa May Alcott lived. You can your her home Orchard House where she wrote Little Women. Her desk still there. Many of my favorite posts lived in Concord as well as other authors. I hope someday you and your husband can visit the very historic parts of Mass. and New England. History and beauty in all 6 states. They are small states (except for N.H. Vermont ) but they are sooooo beautiful!

  18. I love it! What you shared is so true! I’m so happy you all got to go somewhere to enjoy quality time together. Just recently, our own family was fortunate enough to go for a week to a rented house that had it’s own pool and tennis court. My little people {and big people too, one of whom is 42! – yikes…you and I had our children very young.} didn’t want to do anything else either besides swim, swim, play tennis, play games and be together. We didn’t even ever eat out!

    We are even more grateful for times like this now. {BTW- your twins are wonderful men, and your grandchildren will always want to spend lots of time with you. } Such precious times, Phyllis. xo Lidy

  19. So glad you had a wonderful vacation. I love that area of the country. I’m following close behind you with my two boys – they’re not to the stage of having their own children, but as you said, it rushes by quickly! And no . . . you couldn’t possibly have 40 year olds!

  20. My children are in their 60’s.(Hard to believe, I’m not that old am I?) I have found that I can go to them for good, solid advise. How refreshing that is to this Great-Grandma. I love the wisdom that comes from my daughter and son. I love that I can go them and know they have my best interest at heart.

  21. I know that was a special week for you with ALL your family together. Those are precious memories that will never be replaced. Of course, your family has always been special to me and my family. The many great times we had together when the kids were growing up will always have a special place in my heart.

    So glad you were able to spend this time together – making memories for all to remember. Love you

  22. I love all your share in this Journal. It is always so well stated. We will have our grandkids for a week in July and will be making special memories with them. Priceless times, especially after such a horrible year.

  23. Sounds like a fabulous vacation! And grands make everything wonderful! I hope to make it to Nantucket someday.

    1. Thank you for sharing pictures of your precious family, and for your words of wisdom- so true.
      Time spent with family is one of our greatest gifts – so wonderful you are enjoying a vacation
      with your family and making memories that will last forever. Thanks again for sharing.

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