How I Spent My Summer Vacation Away From My Family (While They Went On A Real Vacation)

Two of my people.

The scenario: My wife wants the family to go to the beach, not once, not twice, but thrice this summer. But I can’t really be gone three separate times, which is why I opted out of the first trip. Which means that right this very minute, my wife is on “vacation” with five kids. I know. That’s hardly a vacation. But at least she has help. Sort of. She went down with a girlfriend who brought three children of her own. If you’re doing the math, that’s eight kids and two adults. Which is why I’m really the one on vacation. Even so, I was kinda sad that I’d be separated from my brood for so long.

Okay. No I wasn’t. Truth be known, I was very excited to have a little time to spend however I please. This is probably best evidenced by the following: my family left last Friday at 8:30 to head to the beach, and I left at…8:31 to go camping. All of that said, I’m not afraid to admit the following: once the camping trip had concluded on Sunday, I found myself a bit lost without them. Know what else I learned?

My GOODNESS do the kids account for a ton of the laundry we do. Same deal with the trash. I’ve changed out the bag under the kitchen sink twice. TWICE, mind you. In an entire week. When the crew is about, that bad boy’s getting changed twice before noon.

Anyway, I’m not the only one who has learned something about my (temporarily) estranged family members, as my crew, it seems, has discovered something about me now that they’ve been JCO-less for a full week. When it comes to pictures and videos, I pretty much tow the load for the whole family.

Translation? Without me at the beach, ain’t nobody taking no pics. (Like that authentic southern dialogue I just busted out for y’all y’uns?) Not that my wife has much of an opportunity to take the aforementioned pics, now that I think about it. You know, what with five kids trampling all over her.

And suddenly, it dawned on him why he’d become the de facto documentarian.

Well, regardless of how I got my role of photo-taker/video-maker, get it I did. And I’m pretty darn good at it, too, if I do say so myself. Part of the reason why is that I always find new ways to present the content — whether it’s Flickr-powered slide shows on my personal blog, a video/photo montage embedded from YouTube or a good old fashioned photo album, I will document me some memories, y’all.

Which is exactly what I did with part of my free time while my family was away. Document some memories, that is. See, it’s simple. They were missing someone to document all the fun (and me, too — I hope they were missing me, too) and I was missing my peeps. SO, I went to Wendy’s awesome scrapbooking app and organized the very best photos of all our beach trips. The app was incredibly easy to use and, what’s more, you can share it on Facebook, order a hard copy of the book OR even win a free hard copy of your creation. You should check it out.

Especially if you’re somehow separated from your peeps. Because a funny thing happened while I was putting it together. Suddenly I felt like I was right there with them.

A big thanks to Wendy’s for sponsoring this campaign. Click here to see more of the discussion.

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