The Girls’ Weekend – Lessons Learned, Tips and Tricks

The Girls’ Weekend. Mysterious and strange to the opposite sex. Especially NINE women. En Masse. Hitting a bar and grill for Bloody Mary’s or trying to corral each other back together at an outlet Mall without losing one or two to the shoe stores forever.

Having had the privilege of spending three days with friends centered around a Half Marathon in an idyllic location, I am filled with good vibes and refreshed (yet oh-so-tired at the same time)! Here’s what I observed along the way:

  • Food and beverage are KEY. We had enough to feed a small country and stock a mid-sized tavern. Thank God many calories were burned during the race!
  • Leave your watch at home. It takes a TON of time to relocate nine women. There were bathroom stops, shopping stops, coffee stops, stops for head counts, double head counts, beers, a Kentucky Derby to watch, more bathroom stops, a stop for chocolate chip pie,  oh – and 13.1 miles to tackle on foot. Girls’ Weekend defies the space-time continuum. And only a woman could understand that and be okay with it.
  • There are no pillow fights, guys, so stop wishing it so.
  • We like to eat. While eating we talk about how to make what we’re eating and who needs a copy of it for their own kitchen, but NEVER any calories or any guilt.
  • LOTS of coffee is paramount.
  • Sadly, a lot of talk centered around potty talk. I don’t mean a potty mouth. I mean literally talk of using the potty too much, too little and how to train my two-year old quicker. Which by the way, ladies (if you’re reading this!) she is 5 days with no diapers and doing awesome! Thanks for the push off the cliff!
  • No matter how far in advance you plan, it is all over WAY too quick. And for most Moms, the planning in advance takes three times the amount of time the trip lasts.
  • A little humor I found on one of the shopping trips…


  • With the right group of women, the amount of support and encouragement you can receive would put your friendly neighborhood therapist out of business. Feeling dreary? Score the perfect pair of wedges at the outlet mall. Too tired? Have another cup of coffee and do some cartwheels. Need some excitement in your life?  Mix some wine in with your fire pit and get your groove on.  It feels like it can all be fixed with your girlfriends. At least for one weekend.
  • Everyone is so interesting and unique. We all work, shop for groceries, gas up the car, run to appointments, carpool, fold laundry blah, blah, blah. Lurking under all that is an amazing woman with good stories to tell, full of surprises and lots of laughter.
  • These trips are a Must-Do. Find a friend and make one happen. I don’t care if it’s downtown wherever or back country nowhere. It’s so worth it.
  • One final thought…WHEN CAN WE GO BACK?!
Love these Women!

Love these Women!

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Mission Accomplished

So now the trip…My Mom always said it’s fun to have something to look forward to.  I feel like I have lived my life looking forward to things.  The upcoming concert, the big party, the wedding, the birth of a child and on and on.  The trip I was looking forward to for a couple of years is now over in a blink.   And looking back, Mom is right – the anticipation was fun!

Five women leaving their spouses and kids behind for adventure, Florida sun and sand, daily transportation by trolley, side-splitting laughter and snorts, inside jokes, vodka tonics (too many!) and very little sleep – how lucky am I?

It was so fun to learn more about these women in my life as the trip unfolded.  We had everything covered from the navigator who rode shotgun to the cook who prepared the best homemade scrambled eggs in recent memory.  From the “cruise director” who planned our big excursion to the best parallel parker who shouted turn by turn instructions from the back seat (thank you).  And for each one liner that had us all in hysterics I’m sure there is a stand-up comedian somewhere who is jealous.

I loved hanging out in the company of four great friends anticipating the half marathon we would all run together, the relief we would feel when it was over and the ensuing celebration.  Having put a lot of pressure on myself to make this race count and try for a “PR” or personal record I was very focused on making that happen.  However, I was never so relaxed before a race as on this trip. It could have been the location, the company I was with, the vodka tonics or the delirious lack of sleep. But it was a new and welcome feeling!

However the highlight of the race was not conquering the course or meeting the goal.  It was witnessing a friend face the unknown, overcome many hurdles in her training, doubt herself regularly and still show up no matter what. It was watching her smile and wave at the eighth mile and seeing that same smile at the thirteenth mile. Many times throughout the course I thought of her and hoped that she wasn’t wishing I had not dragged her into this experience! And when she crossed that finish line it was such a huge victory and we savored it with her.

I do not know when I will have another opportunity to experience something like this trip again. But that is not for me to worry about.  I have these sunburned body parts, these wonderful memories, these amazing friends. Mission accomplished.

There’s No Place Like Mom

My milestone birthday girls’ trip I’ve been planning for 6 months complete with grueling half marathon in the steamy Florida heat is here. I can’t remember now – I wanted to celebrate this way why?  Five days without laundry piles, mounds of dishes, poopy diapers, chauffering, pouring rain and chill and early morning wake-up calls.  Ah yes, it’s coming back to me…

However, the prospect of coordinating childcare, grocery shopping and making sure Ice knows what to take to the babysitters’ house is slightly daunting. Communicating Little Bee’s food preferences and semi-nap schedule (I say semi- because if I told you childcare providers that she doesn’t nap regularly would you still have taken her?) Trying to make time to pack and needlessly putting pressure on myself to find time to “air dry” after I slap orange lotion on my body to make it look like I am tan when clearly I am white as rice and from Wisconsin is ridiculous (I can see that now! Heck, I could see it then but I still wanted to do it anyway)!

But the coup de gras is the anxiety I am harboring that my house could not function without me for 5 days now that we have a baby again. A couple of years ago sure I would miss Techno and Twinkle – a lot. But they can actually wake up and pour their own bowl of cereal and handle the ins and outs of a bathroom quite well. What happens if the drippy nose Little Bee started to get before I left turns into something more serious? What if she finally starts crawling and I miss it? What if she won’t take her bottle? Afterall she’s still a breastfed baby.

And don’t even get me started on how much pressure I put on myself to ensure that when I got on that plane bound for home that I had the “liquid gold” that all nursing Moms protect and defend to the death. It really was remarkable the federal case I made out of this issue. There were friends, family, flight attendants, TSA agents and as Ice likes to joke “the interweb” weighing in on my conundrum of how to transport Bee’s hot commodity on the airplane and intact when I arrived home. I discussed it on the phone, at the babysitter’s, on the treadmill training for the race, in my kitchen over a glass of wine with friends and I’m sure numerous other places I have now forgotten.

In the end, it wasn’t the dry ice that I secured ( a “hazardous material”) that caused the TSA agents at the airport to frown.  It was the bottled water I hadn’t emptied before I went through!  Geesh!

So now is my public THANK YOU to all who endured the repeated and I’m certain dreaded conversations of me brainstorming out loud about it – you know who you are!

And for all the worry?  As Ice reminded me before I left, “Honey, I run a company, I got this!”  And as always, so he did.

The washer and dryer were empty as was the laundry basket on top.  The dishes were done.  And my personal catch-all spot in the kitchen was spotless.  Even my baby who I feared might be getting cranky beyond consoling from missing her Mama took a moment to warm-up to me when she first saw me.  She gave me a look like….”Mmmmm, you look familiar but I can’t quite place you!” Afterall, how far back does a 10 month-old baby’s memory really go?  I can now say it is dangerously close to 5 days!

So once again I learn that all the worry and undue stress is all for naught.  My family gets along fine without me.  I think it is my ego that suffers the most!

To Be Continued…