Thursday, January 17, 2013

New Year's Memories

Today Jade tells us about her families getaway in the middle of winter. Spending some adventure, fun-filled days in Jamaica is the way to bring in the New Year's and have some great memories. Hopefully everything is back to normal [note: the picture that she included is not cooperating, but as soon as it does; you will see just how much fun she and her family had. And yes; I was a little jealous of the bright sunshine and white beaches]  
    Just four days after Christmas, my husband, son and I waded through ravaged wrapping paper, empty boxes and left our adorned Christmas tree behind. We were on our way to Sunset Resort in Montego Bay Jamaica. There was a lot to celebrate. It was Quinn’s eighth birthday and we were ready to bring in the New Year in a country we had not yet discovered. The snow and sleet were easy to leave behind for 7 full days of all inclusive fun, white sand and crystal clear water. Before you go getting jealous, leaving frigid winter for sparkling hot summer was one of the worst decisions ever. Not because we had an awful time. It was more fun than any of us could have imagined. Even after my husband stomped on a sea urchin with his bare foot and the next day sliced the same foot open after the difficult task of walking while on rum, each day was better than the one before it. The problem set in once we exited the plane. The bite of winter clenched us before we had the opportunity to dig out our winter coats.
            The long drive back to Leesburg from BWI took forever. The three of us were silent.  Bob Marley and Beres Hammond took turns serenading us all the way home.  Flashbacks of climbing water falls, kayaking and searching for starfish took over. Pulling into the driveway was comforting but it made everything real. We ushered our luggage into the garage. Anytime I travel I refuse to bring the bags inside immediately. We didn’t need any stowaways. We dragged our cold tanned bodies up the first flight of stairs. The smell of pine had dissipated. Our once full tree now resembled the one Charlie Brown made famous. Pine needles covered the presents we left behind. 
            The week we returned was a rough one. We all had catching up to do. Quinn took it a step further and caught bronchitis. He ended up missing three more days of school and his teacher sent home a mountain of make up work. My husband’s sea urchin incident was easy to laugh off and ignore in paradise. We even joked that the needles the resort nurse could not remove were souvenirs. Back in VA we started thinking about that terrifying show “Monsters Inside Me” and decided the doctor would be the safest option. I was left to nurse the limping husband and the not so comfortable eight year old. By weeks end we were all cranky and cursing Jamaica. If it weren’t such a beautiful place and if it wasn’t such an amazing trip, Virginia in January wouldn’t be so miserable.
            It’s been a couple weeks now and things are pretty much back to normal. The pictures make us smile and conjure up pleasant flashbacks. At random times we remind each other of the adventures we experienced together as a family. The memories we have are our own. They motivate us to return at the end of this year.