Ah, California for spring break.  I needed a long look at the ocean before moving to dusty Central Asia and a friend offered us her apartment for the week at Redondo Beach in L.A.  I had big plans to blog about our wonderful family vacation, full of lovely pictures of children enjoying the beach and me enjoying my Kindle and an adult beverage.  I planned to eat seafood, drink wine and build sand castles.  I bought new flip flops.  In my dream world, I even got a hint of a tan.

This is not me. There aren't any used tissues in the picture.

We drove a 1,000 miles, got within two blocks of the Pacific Ocean and came down with the worst flu ever.  Seriously, the worst, ever.  Fever, chills, shaking all night long.  Jack Jack had a bad case of croup and Dash was a feverish mess.  Poor Violet, for the most part felt okay, and asked every 30 minutes or so if we could go to the beach, now??  But, the worst part was that both parents were struck down as well.  We would pull our selves together and go out for a few hours but couldn’t manage much more then sitting very still on the sand.

Grouchy, Delirious, and Tired. The lesser known, less fun dwarfs.

We were taking so much flu medicine, trying to stay upright and somewhat cheerful that we didn’t get an adult beverage between the two of us.

The kids felt better in different cycles so at some point all of them had a morning of fun on the beach, followed by a tearful, grumpy afternoon and a racking cough and fever filled night.  So much fun, I tell ya.

Jack Jack had no use for the water, but loved the sand.

My big girl, Violet, made us smile with her fascination with everything California.

Dash was the sickest and spent most of the time wrapped up in his jacket, but he was such a good sport when we ventured out.

The good news is, that everyone finally felt better — on the second day of the drive home, somewhere in the middle of Utah.

Mr. Incredible really stepped up, even though he felt awful, because I developed bronchitis and couldn’t do much at all, without coughing up half a lung.  He got us home in one piece but has had a much slower recovery.

We slept through most of Easter Sunday, and the kids escaped the usual hundred poses for pictures and “get in the car now for heaven’s sake, we are going to be late”, craziness that Easter morning usually is.

One pretty pathetic Easter morning picture, but at least they're all dressed!

Jack Jack participated, briefly, in the Easter Egg hunt this year.  He obediently followed directions by finding eggs and putting them in a basket, but he clearly thought the whole thing was a waste of time and after a few minutes, chucked his basket on the ground and went to go play on the tractor.

This...this is it?

He did show us, however, that he’s paying attention.  Mr. I put out eggs in plain sight for Jack Jack to find and he put one of them on the edge of Grandpa’s metal fire pit.  He pointed it out for Jack Jack to pick up, and Jack Jack cautiously approached it, knocked it off quickly with his finger and admonished his father, saying, “no-no Dada. HOT!”  So, yay, for fire safety.

Now we are home and I’ve had time to reflect on our “vacation” and to think if there are any lessons, or deeper spiritual truths to be learned.  I can only think of this: there is snow in the forecast here in western Colorado.  I’m pretty sure the universe owes me a margarita.