Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Long Weekend in Miami


Last week, Michael called from Ohio to say he might be heading to Miami for nine days starting the following week. I looked at points and realized that maybe we could all go! I have been waiting for just such an opportunity. Later that day, Michael called to say the job had been assigned to someone else. I was crushed. Then last Monday, Michael told me the trip was back on and he was leaving on Thursday. I was torn as we had some pretty great plans for the weekend- a UU middle school retreat for Davis and tickets to Chris Rock for me. I also didn't have a budget for this trip and I knew that even though the flights and hotel and car were free, we would still spend money on fun. But you know me, I cancelled everything and bought tickets for Miami!
Thursday morning the kids went to school for an hour so Davis could do a presentation and Sam could take a quiz. Then we picked them up and headed for the airport. The flight is long, but it was easy. The kids are great travelers. We had a little trouble getting our car, but we eventually got one and headed for our temporary home away from home, Hyatt House Miami.

Our hotel is right by the Miami airport, but is also on a lagoon and has two resident peacocks who dine with you at breakfast. The pool is heated and right down the stairs from our room. We have a little kitchen where I can cook and a pull out couch in the separate living room for the boys. It's great. It was dark when we arrived, but the next morning, long after Michael snuck out for work, we got up (time difference!), had breakfast and explored. The boys and I hit the pool and I swam laps and they played. The sun shone all morning, but then it got really cloudy and windy. Michael had the car, but we wanted to get out and explore. We decided to take a Lyft up to the Miami Auto Museum. The boys absolutely LOVED it.

There was a wing for supercars, a room for movie cars, a bat cave filled with all things batman and a James Bond wing.
We spent over an hour checking it out. The rain looked like it had cleared, so we took a gamble and took another Lyft to Ocean Drive in South Beach. The purpose in going was to look at all the cool cars driving up and down the road. I also wanted to see the beach and do some people watching. We saw lots of amazing cars and the kids loved it. I was hoping to hang out until Michael got off work and have dinner in south beach, but it started to rain and the kids were cold and bored and we gave up. We huddled in a souvenir store until Michael could come pick us up.

The next day was Saturday. Michael still had to work, but we all got up and had breakfast together. Then I drove him to work so that I could have the car. The weather was much nicer. I came back and got the kids and we went back to Miami Beach. We rented bicycles and rode up and down the boardwalk. Then we walked over to the beach, which was stunningly beautiful, but was extremely windy. They had a red flag out and no one could go in the water. The sand stung our legs from the wind. We ran back to the boardwalk and slipped into the car. We decided to drive over the bridge and get Michael for lunch. We had lunch at the riverwalk in Miami. We ate delicious cuban food and then Michael took a taxi back to work and the boys and I shopped and spent the afternoon in the sunshine on the bay. We had ice cream and watched the boats and then watched a Latin band set up and play. I loved it.

That evening we met up with some old friends of Michael's at a restaurant called Ms. Cheevious with gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches and a courtyard. It was a nice evening and the kids played and we chatted.

On Sunday, Michael took the car again. We did some laundry and home work and then rode around outside in our parking lot on scooters. We spent some time at the pool in the sunshine. I made lunch. That afternoon we took a Lyft to Little Havana and we had ice cream and a cuban coffee. We watched people play dominos and stuck our head into several cafes with live bands playing great music. We bought coco frios for the boys and watched the guy chop off the tops of the coconuts. Then we walked through the neighborhood for a while before getting another lyft back to the hotel. That evening we played Catan on our kitchen island until Michael came home. I made us all dinner and we watched a movie. It was really nice.

On Monday, we were supposed to fly home, but our flight was cancelled due to high winds in Denver. We spent the morning on our devices. The kids did their homework and i spent over an hour trying to secure us new flights. I finally got us on a flight leaving at 5PM on Tuesday, going through New Orleans. After our morning in the room, getting work done, we went on a long walk along the lagoon. I chased the kids on the their scooters. Davis and I then went to the gym and worked out some more. We had lunch and a rest in the room. Then Davis did more work, while Samuel and I went across the street to another hotel, where they took pity on us and lent us their tennis rackets and balls and let use their courts. We had such fun playing tennis together, and Davis was able to join us halfway through. After tennis, we walked over to the Publix supermarket to get a few things for dinner (wine) and came back and relaxed. We hung out until Michael came home and then played more Catan and watched another movie.

Today is more laundry and homework and then we will head for the airport. It has been so nice to be in the tropical air and spend quality time with the boys. I am so lucky that Michael's job allows us these special times.

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