It took us about 4.5 months, but we finally took our first vacation with PJ. Last Friday, we headed down to San Diego to meet up with one of DQ’s friends and his family. We decided to leave at Penny’s bedtime, hoping she would sleep most of the way to our stopping point in Orange. Except for a 20ish-minute stretch about 2 hours into the drive (which involved me climbing into the backseat to help soothe her back to sleep), she did a good job sleeping. I know DQ got really tired towards the end of the drive and I took a little nap, but mostly I really enjoyed the drive down because it was quality time for us to just talk and spend time together without having to deal with Penny.
We got to the hotel at around 1:30 am. Exhausted and ready to get to our room, set up the pack ‘n’ play and crawl into bed for a few hours, I waited in the car while Derrick checked in. He came back to the car with fresh, warm cookies, some bottles of water, and keys to our room for the night, the Presidential Suite! Yes, we got upgraded to a swanky suite that would have cost more than 3 times what we actually paid. And yes, I did feel fancy and important. And yes, it ended up being really nice to have the extra space, even if it was only for one brief night. Check it out:
We had a living space, a dining space, a kitchenette, dual vanity, 1.5 baths, a shower that probably could have comfortably held 10 people, a sauna, and a spacious bedroom, which meant Penny’s pack ‘n’ play fit with room to spare. It was an awesome surprise for sleepy parents in the wee hours of the morning. And the warm cookies were delicious.
Penny actually did pretty good sleeping in her pack ‘n’ play; besides the night we were in the ER with my appendicitis, she has only ever slept in her crib in her room for bedtime, so I wasn’t sure how she would do with the playpen or with being in the same room as us. But we all got sleep and were all happy campers in the morning.
Saturday, we finished the trek down to San Diego. What should have been a quick 90-minute drive down turned into almost 3 hours in the car sitting in horrible traffic (something about a high speed chase and idk some other traffic drama, apparently). BUT we made it to San Diego, checked into the hotel, regrouped and then went to meet up with Derrick’s friends. We spent the afternoon walking around Balboa park, just enjoying the sun and the stroll. After dinner at a small local Mexican restaurant near their hotel, we called it a day.
Sunday was Zoo Day! We spent a few hours at the San Diego Zoo. Penny was actually awake for some of it, despite over visit overlapping her normal 3-hour afternoon nap time. Apparently, she’s like her mama who loves the zoo, and didn’t want to totally miss out on getting out of her stroller to check it out. She might have done more people watching than looking at animals, but she seemed pretty content with that and that’s just fine with me. I also slathered sunscreen on her multiple times during the excursion, despite the fact that most of the time she was covered in her stroller and she had a hat on and we weren’t even out in the sun that long. But she didn’t get sunburned, and that’s all that matters. Derrick got her not one, but two stuffed animals so that she would have a little souvenir from her first big adventure to the zoo.
I think Derrick was hoping we could have done a little more during our stay (we never made it to the beach), but I feel like it was a fun and successful trip. Penny had fun just hanging out in the hotel too:
We managed to not have any major mishaps, I was properly packed and prepared to take care of her and we didn’t have any emergency trips to the store because I forgot things. The drive home on Monday was pretty easy, and even though Penny was awake for a lot more of the trip (which we did all at once this time), she only got a little cranky once or twice.
Now, if only I got a vacation from vacation! I may still be trying to catch up from getting back Monday night and having to get right back to work the next day….but that’s what Saturdays are for, right?
Happy Weekend, y’all.