We went off to Santa Cruz to take Sarah and her cousin to the Boardwalk and beach.
I'm not much for rides, so I only did the Carousel and the Ferris Wheel — and even that was a bit high for my tastes, since I am a serious wimp.
The girls also did this one:
Sair's cuz wanted to do the more exciting things, but she'll have to wait until she goes with her own folks — and I seriously doubt they'd okay it, which I was also keeping in mind.
Sair, like me, is a victim of serious motion sickness, so she didn't want to try their more twisty rides since she's strangely reluctant to go puking on people.
I gather her cuz was being snarky in her direction on the subject of how un-fun this was compared to hanging upside down — not that she's ever done that.
Just more of the joy of families.
Anyway, we took them on down to the beach.
It was a Friday, so there was a band (Eddie Money?) off in the distance, and the fog wasn't in yet.
They did some romping around and then Sair got into the sand for a while:
I'm not sure that the object is – star ship? spermy thing? alien head?
So we fed them and delivered them to my sister and BIL, to be taken off to a bookstore for a Harry Potter event.
Sair's turn for patience, since she is not a fan.
My BIL took the opportunity to stick foot firmly in mouth, by drawing Tom aside and expressing his concern for Tom's concern (non-existent) for the shortness of Sair's skirt and the possibility of shocking the public at the bookstore.
Tom is more patient than I am (they aren't his family) so he mildly expounded on the virtues of picking one's battles, thus sidestepping many of the potential issues.
Then Sair and her cousin came out prepared for the bookstore event:
You see, we actually trust her to have good sense, and she almost always does.
Anyway, we then took off and left the two girls with their other cousin and his wife, their new baby, my sister and her husband.
The theory (my sister's) was that the cousins would then all bond.
I don't know if I could call the visit bonding, but Sair feels much better acquainted with her relatives now than she used to.
She used to just think they were boring.
I don't know exactly what she thinks now, but I know that I am officially appalled.
So anyway, here begins the unillustrated part of the visit.
To begin with, the kids stuck the two girls out in the yard in a tent — with dire threats about making any noise since the neighbor's windows, and their own bedroom windows, were all right there.
Did I mention that there is an extra guest room?
They gave the girls cereal for breakfast, and Sarah was handed the baby.
(Her cuz is believed by her family to be rough and boisterous, and so was less likely to be handed a baby.
She isn't particularly either, but they have certainly made her gawky by constant criticism.)
I think she spend the day reading the new Harry Potter while Sair babysat.
Sair reports that babies are actually really cool.
She had the baby all day.
Yes, she said, the baby was really nice, but when she got a break to go to the bathroom, she hadn't expected to just be handed it again, all day.
There was no lunch.
The young parents then went out to dinner, and the girls got leftover takeout for dinner.
(Oh, and my sister was doing the 2am and the 6am feedings, not the mom, all that week. And the afternoon feedings too when I was there.)
The next day my niece-in-law freaked because my BIL had the baby sleeping on his chest with a towel on his shoulder, and he had used her special hair towel
He might have gotten baby barf on it doing that.
So she pulled it out from under the sleeping baby.
She is expressing breast milk, and bottle feeding only, with substantial formula supplementation.
I have been there twice, about three hours total, and I have never seen my niece hold the baby – she keeps it in a little bouncy chair.
Oops, I did see her holding it once, right after she'd fed it in its bouncy seat.
She was sitting up, holding it upright at arms length and bouncing it on her knee, saying "C'mon poop! Poop! You've got to poop so I can change you."
In two days Sair never saw her just hold the baby.
My nephew sits on the couch and holds the baby up at arm's length and plays airplane.
(Sair did wickedly enjoy observing one of the natural consequences of his doing this to a just-fed baby.)
At least when they both run out of paid parental leave in a few months it will be in excellent all-day workplace daycare.
Probably the employees there will cuddle it.
Oh, and the cuz picked up an ear ache sleeping out in the tent with a cold.
So she told her dad her ear hurt the night before they were going to fly home.
So he yells at her for being irresponsible and not telling them any sooner.
"I did tell you," she says.
"You did not," he says.
Repeat about three times.
"She did too," Sair says.
She told him her ear hurt after the first night the girls were sleeping outside, in a room filled with all the adults who were busy paying no attention to her.
Sair asked her about it and found her some tylenol.
"Well, it's your fault for not making sure I heard you," he says.
First he just runs off to the drugstore and returns to report that they won't just give him an antibiotic over the counter.
Then, after much discussion, I persuade him to call the advice nurse about it.
She tells him it's viral, take some antihistamines, rest and keep warm.
"But her eardrum will explode," he tells her somfortingly.
He wants magic antibiotic pills to prevent this (?) and so drags her out the the emergency room at 7pm, and gets her back after midnight with — of course — no prescription (because it's viral).
So she can get up at 7am to go get on a plane.
Sair is somewhat comforted to know that BIL and niece-in-law are not actually biologically related to her.
But that doesn't do much to help with my sister or nephew.
I mostly just want to kidnap the minor children.
Does this count as venting?
I haven't done any cursing.