OK not a great photo, but a good story.
Mark is going away for sometime. I wanted my parents to come out and help out with the kids. I thought that it would be fun for all and helpful to me. Here is the time line of the events that followed my request:
Z: Mom could you come out and help out while Mark is gone?
Mom: How about you come to Philly? We could take care of you here.
(ha lets see I could drag my kids 2 car seats, pack-n-play... through 2 airports to go to my parents house that is (I love you both but ) not the most child proof place in the world (fine for Elijah not as easy for Ada)).
Z: Thanks but no thanks that sounds like more work to me.
M: OK well we will talk about it.
A week or so later, while talking to my mom again.
M: Your sister and I were talking and we where thinking it would be fun to go on a family vacation. We where thinking that we could go camping, I just got a new tent and it is really big and wonderful. We could meet in Arizona or someplace like that. Your sister thinks that we could meet you in Chicago and help out with the kids. (this is a nice thought, but how am I to get to Chicago?;) What do you think?
Z: (silence) I will think about it.
*ahem* how do I tell my mom that the idea of camping with my 9 month old does not sound like it would make my life easier.
Z: How about we go to Portland OR? My friend lives there and she has a nice size yard. You and the kids can stay in the tent and I can stay in the house. ( this is a nice compromise right?)
M: What and be blown up by the volcano?
OK time to talk to my sister.
Z: So I hear mom wants to go camping. I do not think that I am up for that. I know that you and Lewis would love it and I am thinking that I should just tell mom to go without me. Do you think she will take this OK?
Alyssa: I think she will be fine with it, but I do not need to go camping, why don't we get cheap flights somewhere and meet for a vacation? How about Vegas? I hear you can get cheap flights there.
Z: That sounds like fun I will talk to mom and dad about it.
Time to talk to mom again.
Z: Mom I am not really the camping kinda girl and I think that you should go camping with Alyssa and Lewis, but it does not sound like that much fun to me.
M: (silence)(I think that she is more disappointed that I am not a camping kinda girl then anything else;)
M: That is OK we can do anything you want. (What a great mom)
Z: I want you to come here and help while Mark is gone.
M: Of course we will do that!
Z: (thank God!)
M: But I still want to go on a family vacation.
Z: I will look into if for us if you want.
M: Sounds great!
So after MANY calls to the travel agent (she is GREAT) and to my family (how hard can it be to find something that all 9 of us would like and a time for all of us that would be good?) we decided on a cruise!
So to sum this up we started with a simple camping trip and ended with a cruise (much more up my ally;). Way to go mom and dad for sticking with us.
Sorry this is so long, but I had to get it down so we could remember it.