Well the day didn’t go as planned but who keeps to a schedule while on vacation?

Remember, after yesterday’s early morning travel (6:32 a.m. flight) unconventional breakfast (snickers bar and brownie) swimming until we could get in the room (5:15pm) running out to get groceries and back to find broken elevator (GASP!), we were all pretty beaten up.

So we slept until 10, then lay in bed until noon. I guess when kids sleep that long they wake up famished because Cole ate a bowl of cereal, leftover Chinese food and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in about 7 minutes. It was a little like watching pigs at a trough; all I saw was the top of his head, food flying in every direction punctuated by an occasional grunt or two. Casey ate about half as much but was equally silent.

We made out way down to the pool and camped out at a table close to the bar (do you need to ask?) The kids swam while I addressed Cole’s thank you notes in between sips of some expensive, fruity drink with too much ice and not enough active ingredients. Which is why I had to have two.

Pretty soon, I couldn’t even hear them screaming my name. Not my God given name, Rene, mind you but the one they are always wearing out, MOM!

They fight over the most inane things. Casey didn’t answer Cole when he called her name. Cole splashed water on Casey. Casey ate the last push pop. Cole left the lid off the milk. You name it, they’ve had a fight over it.

And it’s gotten worse. A few years ago, I had a friend, mother of two girls who fought like cats and dogs. She asked me about Casey and Cole. I waxed poetic about how well they got along, maybe it was a boy girl thing but they are just so great together and blah, blah, blah. Wow, that crow is tough to swallow now.

Once, while they were having one of their then infrequent arguments, I explained to them that they needed to learn how to find a compromise because at some point they would be on their on own.

“Daddy and I are not always going to be around. Some day it’s just going to be you two. All you will have is each other.” Casey looked at me and in all seriousness said, “You mean like when we go away to camp?” “No, when we’re DEAD!” was my reply.

To that end, it’s been amazing what they can accomplish when I’m not there to break up a fight.  I find that my reaction can help or hinder the situation and the thing I have to tame is my immediate peacekeeping response. I hate to hear the bickering so many times I step in and quash it before the issue is resolved. So I’m trying something new from here on out. I am going to let them work it out on their own as much as I can. When I hear the piercing “MOM”, I will not run unless I see blood or projectile vomit.

Exhausted and famished, we retreated to our unit upstairs where they were able to agree on the most important issue of the day, what to eat for dinner.