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Being the haters of long lines that we are, we went to see Santa (or Santa’s Helper since nothing gets past Mikey because he remembers a photo with a different mall Santa when he was two!)  All mall Santa’s are helpers of the real Santa because there are so many children that want photo’s with the jolly old fellow, but not to worry, they report back to the big guy on behavior and gift requests.

We still waited for a little bit, so I took several pictures of my children embarrassing me…

Thanksgiving was spent with a very small group of my family who lives local, and I have to say that it was wonderfully relaxing for all of us.  Great food, spirits, company and laughs!  Grammy and Papa kept the boys for the night while Greg and I came back to the house and built a fire pit in the back yard, watched a show,went to bed early and slept in to the delightful hour of 7:30a.m.

We decided to take Pierce and Mikey out to Port Orange, Florida to see the lighthouse.  The last time we went out, I was two weeks from giving birth to P. so it was fun for us to revisit it with my bump that is now three years old.  Well…that is until he realized we weren’t going to let him walk the spiral staircase to the top.  With tantrum commencing and yowls echoing up the cylinder, Mikey and I started up, while Daddy dealt with Mr. Terrible Threes.

Clipping along nicely to the midway point, we ran into a couple with a baby coming back down.  The mom was carrying this 6 month old lump and I was aghast at what kind of shape she must have to be in to do such a feat.  Naturally, I commented, and she explained that daddy carried his little bundle “up”, but mom also said that she didn’t go the last flight of stairs because she was tired and it was too steep.  Michael heard “too steep” and undoubtedly had visions of the side of a cliff he would most assuredly tumble over and immediately decided half way was plenty far for him.  So back down we went navigating the steep metal staircase around more up and comers.  It was just great because we had another mom, her screaming tot, and boy about Mikey’s age following too closely at our heels making my ears and eyes bleed—at least I think my eyes were bleeding, because I was beginning to see red!

After a nature walk, on the grounds, some playtime on the playground, Greg taking a trip to the park bathroom where the urinal leaked everything he emptied into it back onto his feet, we went off to the beach to look for shells.

The tide was coming in and it was really rough so there were a lot of small shells to find and throw back into the sea.  Pierce in his second and only justifiable meltdown of the day couldn’t out run the tide at one point, freaked, fell to his knees while I grabbed him by the hand getting my own feet wet and scrambled him back to the water’s edge.  With his jeans and feet pretty wet, he really hollered, for about two minutes.  Daddy, in his infinite wisdom said “Let’s keep going.  You’re alright.”  He didn’t want to leave the beach on that note for fear that Pierce would be traumatized.   So, carry on, we did and had a whole lot more fun now that the game was figured out.  Being chased by the tide was thrilling, and then throwing shells and sand back at that mischievous water was gratifying for them.

The roiling surf created a bunch of sudsy foam, that would wash up and then skither and chase the tide back out.  Mikey and his fabulous imagination said, “Look at the alligators swimming back to sea!”  And sure enough, the long, lumpy strands of foam really did look like the backs of gators trolling through the water.  Brilliant!  That strange kid of mine!

On the way home, I started sneezing and I don’t know if it’s allergies, the sun in my eyes or what, but Greg said that my sneezes were crazy loud and obnoxious.  This is an ongoing gripe between us.  Mine don’t scare the shit out of everyone in the room like his do.  In fact I confessed after almost 18 years of marriage that I really hated his sneezes, to which he expressed shock and amusement.  So, to give him a bit of his own medicine, I made sure not to hold back the vocals when I sneezed the next few times until Mikey and I were in stitches and Daddy threatened to punch Mommy the next time she sneezed like that.  Typical…nobody likes to see their reflection held up to them when it is so unbecoming!

Shortly after the fun of teasing Dad, the boys passed out in the back seat until we got home and then continued to sleep on the sofa for the next couple hours.  In fact, Mikey woke up about thirty minutes ago, went into the other room and fell asleep in a chair.  Greg put him in his bed, where he will surely sleep until 3 a.m. then he will come to MY bed and ask me if I will feed him.  This will also be the time that Pierce is probably going to bed since he took a long nap and even a 30 minute one goes a long way for revitalizing him.  I better get to bed now…I hope Pierce locks up when he retires…