Super Grandma Vacation Advice: Pace Yourself

by Donne Davis on July 1, 2010

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I just returned from a six-day Girls Getaway with my daughter and two granddaughters. We flew to Portland, Oregon and spent five fun-filled days with our cousins. I invested so much energy into creating a memorable adventure for my granddaughters that I forgot to pace myself. When I finally got home, I realized I had “hit the wall!”

Amazing Girls Getaway in Portland, OR

I had the joy of witnessing my granddaughters’ first meeting with their cousins. The two sets of sisters bonded instantly and it brought back memories of my own childhood summers when I visited my cousins or they came to stay with us. Now I appreciate what my parents experienced as they watched another generation become friends.

My seven-year old granddaughter and I shared a room. She’s an early riser and wanted to read or play cards at 6:30 in the morning. We spent two nights at Seaside and I was the designated hand-holder when the four little girls waded into the ocean. I also got in the pool and helped my three-year old practice her dog paddle. I don’t think I ever said “no” to any of their requests. My “pecs” got a workout from carrying the little one whenever she got tired.

I glowed with pride when my cousin referred to me as “Super Grandma.” On our last day at the beach I did four loads of laundry, packed all the suitcases into our rental car and drove back to the airport while my two little cuties dozed in the back seat for the entire 90 miles.

We had the usual “hurry up and wait” routine at the airport with check-in, security, and the wait to board our plane. The only thing I didn’t have to worry about was the car seat, which my daughter lugged through all the stops. We landed at Sacramento airport at 6 pm and walked outside into a 100-degree furnace.

Exhaustion Sets in

When we got to my daughter’s house, I took the girls swimming for an hour to cool off. By the time I fell into bed at 11:30 pm, I realized how exhausted I was. I’d planned to drive home the next morning, but then my daughter asked if I would take the girls to the library so she could do the laundry and organize for their backpacking trip the next day. How could I say “no” to one more opportunity to be with my two dolls? We read books and sat through story hour.  When it came to checking out the pile of books they’d chosen, I nearly had a meltdown. They each wanted to scan their own books and the machine wouldn’t cooperate.

By the time we got lunch and came home it was nearly 1 pm. I wanted to hit the road before rush hour traffic and threw all my stuff into the car. We all had a hard time saying goodbye after spending so many days together.

Lessons Learned

On the drive home I could barely keep my eyes open. I relived memories of our vacation and congratulated myself on having so much energy. But when I finally pulled into my driveway, I was completely drained. I realized that I overdid the Super Grandma thing and should have conserved my energy by pacing myself more and treating myself to some down time.

I hope I’ve learned from my mistake, but I understand that once you’ve taken on “super” status, it’s hard to be anything less.


Susan Adcox July 8, 2010 at 6:50 pm

Love the picture! I’ve hit that wall quite a few times myself!

Monet July 2, 2010 at 11:32 am

Hey Donne….it’s hard to know when we’ve hit the wall till we splat! Have a restful 4th.

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