When The Vaca Doesn’t Go As Planned….

We have all had THOSE kind of days. You know the ones where NOTHING seems to go right for you and you demand a do over? You keep trying to make the day go better. Finding the positive and laughing about it all because if you don’t laugh you are going to start bawling! It is on those days that no matter what you do, you realize that at some point you are standing there with the white flag of defeat raised in your hands and the tears you fought so hard to keep at bay are now streaming down your face. You decide it is in your best interest to just unwind and go to bed. Tomorrow is a new day after all. But what happens when your ENTIRE week goes like this? I mean ALL 8 days……Yea, that is what happened to us on this week while we were on vacation. So, sit back, grab a drink and laugh with me.

Friday Sept 5- Sept 6

I spent most of the day getting laundry caught up, making lists of things I did not want to forget to pack. Chasing kids out of the stuff I had already packed. I missed a call with my Bio Mom’s surgeon. She was having back surgery in a couple of days and wanted me to talk to the surgeon so that I knew all the details.

I have been blessed with several Moms in my life. I have the woman who gave birth to me, the woman who my father has been married to for over 20 years, my Ex Hubby’s Mom who is still in my life, my current Hubby’s Mom. I am one seriously one lucky woman to have the love and support of these women in my life.

Back to my story…..

On Friday, my Hubby had plans to go out and hang with friends in the evening. It was a standing thing he did every week. My Mom In Law (MIL) was coming in and we had a list of things to accomplish. I had to run several last minute errands etc. It was a typical crazy day right before vacation type of day.That night my Hubby and I had something that I will not discuss on my blog happen to our family. The only reason I am bringing it up is because I got NOTHING (and I do mean NOTHING) I had planned done that night and that event then ricocheted into the next day causing us to still get NOTHING done until late afternoon. I think we were all experiencing what I can only describe as complete shock. That left us trying to get everything done in a matter of hours. Plans were quickly altered and things left unpacked etc as there was just NO time left. I got to bed at about 6 am Sunday…..

Truck packed and ready to go...
Truck packed to enjoy the week…

Sunday Sept 7

We had planned to leave at 7 am. However, with me getting less then an hour of sleep, that did NOT happen. We opted to let me sleep for about 3 hours. Something about driving with an hour worth of sleep. We were finally on the road at about 11 am and arrived at our final destination (THE BEACH) at 4:30 pm.

First time feeling the ocean.....
First time feeling the ocean…..

The weather was so NOT the glorious weather we had envisioned. It was cold, rainy, the seas were ROUGH and it was WINDY. They had warned everyone to stay out of the water with riptide advisories and “Water Is Dangerous” flags everywhere.

We got quite familiar with this flag.
We got quite familiar with this flag. These are posted on all the life guard stands along the beach.

That night we opted to try out our hotel’s indoor swimming pool. They also have an outdoor room pool.  I am a water baby by nature so I really LOVED this perk at our hotel. Although their indoor pool would be considered on the small side , it was well laid out. They had three areas actually. One was a small kiddo type pool, then a slightly larger sized 5 ft pool, and hot tub.

Our favorite place to swim...Stock pic of the indoor pool.
Our favorite place to swim…Stock pic of the indoor pool.

Monday Sept 8

Ready to check out Virginia Beach!!!!
Ready to check out Virginia Beach!!!!

We woke up to find that out that the beach was not going to happen. It was still far to windy to even begin to think about walking the beach, let alone playing in the surf and sand. So, we decided to trying shopping. Yea, we got 1 block from the hotel when my 4 year old was almost taken from us Dorthy from the Wizard Of Oz style. Seriously, it was that windy. Unfortunately, we were not the only ones that were pool destined. Needless to say, we opted to wait to go to the pool as it was SUPER crowded that day. An impromptu bath with ALL the beach toys was exactly what the kids needed! After the bath, they spent the rest of the afternoon crafting and doing school workbooks.

Coloring and school books.
Coloring and school…..

Night time consisted of the pool. What better way to let the kids get their pent up energy out then to swim for 2 hours. Turns out they are water babies too……

Hello Cy. Learning to swim.
Hello Cy. Learning to swim.
She LOVED the feeling of swimming on her own.
Reine LOVED the feeling of “swimming” on her own. Trust me, the pool was small enough that we were always an arms length away….

Tuesday Sept 9

We wake up to semi sun, almost no wind, no rain, and slightly chilly temps! YEA!!! Time to go shopping and to the playground on the beach!!!

Loving life...
Loving life…
Waiting for Sis....
Waiting for Sis….
On the move!
On the move!
Their smiles say it all….

 We met and bought 2 NEW mermaids and their hermit crabs!!!!! The hermie’s shells match the mermaids tails. That was the what sold the 4 year old on them!

Meet Pink....
Meet Pink….Yea, we have NO idea where the name Pink came from.
Pink's Hermit Crab....
Pink’s Hermit Crab….
Meet Blueberry....
Meet Blueberry….I know her hair is purple not blue!
Blueberry's Hermit Crab....
Blueberry’s Hermit Crab….

We had our first pretty major boo boo happen that night. Cy decided to see if gravity and the beach ramp worked in unison together when you accidentally slide down it on your knees…..The results were pain, blood, tears, and of course being done at the beach for the day and night.

Boredom setting in....
Boredom setting in….

Wednesday Sept 10

Beautiful day to wake up to. The sun was shinning, it was not too cold. We immediately gathered all our things and decided it was our first actual go to the beach to actually enjoy the beach kinda of day!!! Right before we went to the beach we applied our sunscreen. I took it with us to the beach and kept a VERY close eye on the time so that I could reapply it when it was time.

Reine is enjoying her pool. Cy building sand castles.
Reine is enjoying her pool. Cy building sand castles.
Cy LOVING the beach....
Cy LOVING the beach….Me LOVE LOVE LOVING her amazing smile!
My precious Reine in her sun hat!
My precious Reine in her sun hat!

We played in the surf, picked up seashells, kids sat in the water as it splashed them in their face. They LOVED IT all! We were having an AMAZING time. We went back up to our little tent, we ate lunch, and I reapplied the sun block within 1 hour and 15 minutes on one of the kids and 1 hour and 30 minutes on the other one. I reapplied it to myself and so did my MIL. No signs of even slightly turning pink. No heat on the body anywhere. We were just getting ready to go back down to the water when the lifeguard started yelling something over their load speaker on their truck. Very quickly, we began seeing lifeguards up and down the beach blowing whistles and getting people out of the water. Confused and curious as to what was going on, I questioned one of the buff lifeguard gods as to what was happening. I immediately got sick to my stomach!

Beach closed do to high bacteria and fecal matter...
Beach closed do to high bacteria and fecal matter…









We IMMEDIATELY gather all our things and high tail it back to the hotel. MIL and I deciding on who got the job of SCRUBBING out their open oozing knees. She spared me that job and I made us a snack.

About 2 hours later…….

We are thinking about what we are all wanting to do for the evening when Reine starts ITCHING her back. She seems to not be able to stop. We check it out and GASP at the what my eyes and brain are trying to decide if what I am seeing is real or not. About the same time, Cy says she is in some serious pain and not feeling so hot. We immediately check Cy out and I can no longer deny what I am seeing.


Everywhere the sunblock covered, they fried.

It will take about 4-8 hours before the burn is fully out on the skin.


This is 2 hours after we came in from the beach. It only got worse as the night progressed….

Some seriously angry sun burned skin!
Some seriously angry sun burned skin!

Wal-Mart was our outing for the night. We had to buy Cy new clothes that were super soft and NON scratchy. I also purchased baking soda and Epsom salt for detox baths to help sooth the angry skin. Then we made up a solution of cold bottled water, Peppermint and Lavender essential oils (INCREDIBLE burn relief spray) and used it when ever we needed to.

Movies were used to create zombies. Very little movement…..

I emailed the sunblock company that night and sent them pics after we went on their site to see what we obviously MUST have done wrong! We could find NOTHING. We checked the tubs too. I had 2 of them. We did notice that they were 2 different colors. No idea why. Below is my copy of the letter I sent to Butterbean ( I spared you from the rest of the pics I took. They showed the sunburn in all it’s angry glory.)

Hi, I recently bought your 3oz sunblock to take while on vacation this week at the beach. I applied it to myself and my daughters ages 4 and 10. I even reapplied it after 1 1/2 hrs. We were only at the beach for about 2 1/2 hrs total. Needless to say, your product did NOT work for us and my kids are in SERIOUS pain as they FRIED. I am just sunburned. I applied it from the tops of their heads to bottoms of their feet both times. I am not loving my vacation right now as we are scrambling to figure out what we can do as ALL our plans pertained to the great outdoors.  I have included pics of my children taken tonight after a bath to try to relieve their pain enough for them to sleep.

I did receive a response from them 3 days later…..

Mindy, I am so sorry to see your burned babies! How upsetting! It certainly sounds like you have done a god job of reapplying the sunscreen. With mineral sunscreens the protection is barrier based which means that the sunscreen does not absorb into the skin but sits on top of it. At the beach especially with the sand and ocean it is easy to have the sunscreen rub off. Also, if the sunscreen is not applied thick enough it is hard to achieve complete coverage. For an average body in a swimsuit that means about 1oz for full coverage.

I realize none of this helps to soothe sunburned children. I do apologize that our products did not meet your expectations. We are happy to give you a refund of $10 for the sunscreen portion of your order. If there is anything else I can do please let me know. 

I have decided that we will NEVER use this particular sunblock again. It did not work for my family as the pictures prove. As for the amount I used on each of us….we did not use a full ounce on us. NO where on their site were we able to see that that was the correct amount we were supposed to use. We did use enough that we were ghost white. We looked like idiots!

Thursday Sept 11

What do you do when the rest of your plans get altered while on vacation….You go to the aquarium after Hubby transfers more $$ into your account! I will save you from the million and one pics of us at the aquarium. I will instead show you my favorites. It was a LONG HOT day. Kids were in pain by the time we made it back to the hotel.

Hello Aquarium.....
Hello Aquarium…..
Ready to enjoy the day....
Ready to enjoy the day….
Learning about Harbor Seals.....
Learning about Harbor Seals…..
That is a BIG turtle....
That is a BIG turtle….
Up close and personal.....
Up close and personal…..
Reine taking a pic on her camera....
Reine taking a pic on her camera….
Meeting the rays! They LOVED this....
Meeting the rays! They LOVED this….

That night, we went out and about that night for one other thing we HAD to have…

Reine picking out Hermie supplies……
4 out of the 6 hermies we bought.
4 out of the 6 hermies we bought.

Friday Sept 12

This is what was finally built. The construction on the beach outside of our room was finally revealed….

No idea what it was used for.....BUT, it took a week to build it.
No idea what it was used for…..BUT, it took a week to build it.


Hermies needed a new house to call home.

Cy  and Daddy project.....I got to decorate it!
Cy and Daddy project…..I got to decorate it!

Once home it was hours before it was decided that it was a great night to start to move Hubby’s office downstairs and my classroom into his office.

Hubby’s Office Before….
After…..It is not done by any stretch of the imagination. But it is started…..
Hubby’s office before I took it over….

A week later…..

Hubby’s office no more….
They LOVE the classroom!

I am going to tell you about the US Navy and our hotel below.

We heard fighter jets pretty much non stop on our vacation. More than I have EVER heard there before. It did not go unnoticed by others as well. They flew constantly day and night while we were there. I am also going to show you our “little house” as my kids called it. It is the hotel we stayed at while at the beach…..

United States Navy

The thing you need to know is that the United States Navy LOVES to fly over Virginia Beach.

Why you ask?

You have 3 bases to choose from that are all within about 30 minutes of Virginia Beach.

Naval Air Station Oceana 6.6 miles

Naval Station Norfolk 21.6 miles

Joint Base Langley-Eustis 34 miles

During our vacation, they were flying overhead non stop. Day and night! Often flying low enough to shake everything in our hotel room, including our beds.

Oh and if you are lucky, you will get a wake up call at about 7:00am when the Navy runs their PT on the boardwalk. Seriously, it is impressive if you have never heard the military do cadence.

Our Hotel

We stayed at Beach Quarters Resort Virginia Beach. If you are looking for a huge room, this is not the hotel for you. It was a smaller room. However, it was the perfect size for us. We spent a lot more time in the room then we spent anywhere else. It worked perfect for us.

Beach Quarters Resort in Virginia Beach
Beach Quarters Resort in Virginia Beach

We walked into a bedroom with 2 double beds.

A stock photo of what our  bedroom looked like.
A stock photo of what our bedroom looked like.

There was a small hall that had to a nice bathroom off of it before opening into a small living space. We had a full kitchen to use. It was a tiny kitchen, but a full kitchen none the less. It worked perfectly for us.

Our tiny kitchen.
Our tiny kitchen. Online photo. Ours looked EXACTLY like this one.

 There was a couch and a small table in the room that seated 2 comfortably. We used the patio chairs at the table to allow all of us to seat 4 at it in a cozy get to know your neighbor kind of a way.

Stock photo of our living area....
Stock photo of our living area….

The indoor pool that saved our sanity.

Our favorite place to swim...Stock pic of the indoor pool.
Our favorite place to swim…Stock photo of the indoor pool.

As you can tell by now, it was NOT the dream vacation or even the vacation we had planned. We attempted to take each thing that the Universe threw at us in stride. It was not the uneventful and relaxing trip we had planned and envisioned in our heads. We tried to enjoy the vacation to the fullest anyway. Reine got see her dolphins and survived her first trip to the beach. We tried to laugh and enjoy it all. The Hotel was awesome. The cleaning crew is top notch. I would HIGHLY recommend the hotel to anyone who wants a great place to stay.

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