8 things I now know to be true after a 2 week family staycation in Chicago.

Just a little background info: this was a 2 week staycation between the Southside and the Northside of Chicago.  There was a rotating gathering of family and friends involving my immediate family which now includes: my parents, 4 siblings, 3 significant others, and 5 nieces and nephews who are 5 years old and younger. In no particular order, here’s what I learned:

-Nap schedules dictate everything. Not mine, unfortunately, but my nieces and nephews. Meals delayed, conversations hushed, plans CHANGED due to nap schedules. I like a plan, everyone who knows me is aware of this. It’s been an adjustment having to relax my planner tendencies and go with the napping flow. Do not mess with naps. War will ensue.

-My retired parents drink more than I do. This has been slowly happening over the past year. My parents now put down more beer and wine than I am capable of. While I do not burst their bubble that they “discovered” Moscow Mules a year ago, I am jealous they can drink them faster than me. I’m not sure how I feel about this. I am going to Italy with them for 3 weeks pretty soon, wish me luck.

-Trolls is actually not a bad movie. When that silver troll farts glitter, I lost it. That might have been the funniest moment for me. My nieces love it.  They dance to it, and sometimes they’re even quiet during intense parts of the movie. I watched it about 3 times. Bergin is now part of my vocabulary.

-My meat, cheese, and beer intake has increased dramatically. It has caused me to have insane dreams and nightmares (because meal times don’t exist on staycation), but my taste buds are so happy. I’ve been well-aware of my family’s love of deli meats and cheeses. But when the “deli” drawer in the fridge got stuck because it’s filled over its capacity, I realized the depth of the addiction.

Time somehow does not stop when I am on vacation. Though I felt like it does. How is it July?  Our family staycation started in June. I’ve missed social gatherings, street fests, you  name it. I always think time stops when I’m out of the city. Now I have a good amount of FOMO for the friends I haven’t talked to. My family provides PLENTY of social interaction, but within our own little world. Time to start socializing with others again.

Working out is nearly impossible. Made more impossible by the fact that I forgot a sports bra and gym shoes half the time. Just when you’re getting ready to take a power walk around the southside, your niece comes up and begs to go on a nature walk (they don’t have lighting bugs in California!). When you’re gearing up for a leisurely  waddle (due to the meat and cheese intake), your  65 year old dad starts musing about how nice the sun is right now. And you can’t go running away from him.

You sleep where and when you can. All bets for pre-assigned sleeping arrangements are off. If you thought you’d spend the night in the guest room upstairs where the high-powered fan is, too bad. Your sister or nephew is probably napping in there. You thought you’d go to bed early in the downstairs office? Nope. You fell asleep on the couch and now there’s no getting up. Hopefully someone put a beach towel on you for cover.

No secrets are sacred.  In case you thought your mom kept quiet about that awful break up/ghosting episode back in April, she didn’t. Your dad and her five closest gal pals heard the Cliffsnotes version. They pretend to ask questions, but they already know the answers. And details you don’t remember providing. #Southside


Now that I’ve cleared my fridge of leftover pepperoni slices, 4th of July cupcakes, and half-eaten wedges of cheese, it’s time to go to the grocery store and buy some fresh food. Then drag myself to the gym because it’s only going to get harder the longer I wait. And then get ready to go on a date that I forgot I agreed to go on when I was buzzed last week…

Filed under: Advice, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

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