Holmes Family, McCarthy Family

living the dream

april 2031
previous update
(Holmes Household Profile)
Chris Holmes (43 years), Emma (39 years), Chaz (15 years), Dax (7 years), Evan (7 years)

narrated by: Chaz & Emma

For years, Dad has been promising Mom an escape to Queen Victoria Isle, and I’m not alone in thinking it’d never happen. And I wish I had been right. Dad surprised Mom with the trip one night at bedtime.

Needless to say, she was thrilled. We could all hear her through the walls squealing and screaming. It wasn’t pleasant. She’s put up with Dad’s camping year after year, and it almost always rains, all because he’s promised to take her, and he’s finally paying out.

It sounded great! But the next evening, I come home from kissing my girlfriend, Cicely in the park, only to find Dad booking flights for two, and Mom begging Grandma to take us!

What a scam! Evan threw a tantrum as soon as I filled her in, and together we tried to talk Dad down. He wouldn’t hear of it though! He insisted it was an adult only trip, and we’d better behave for our grandparents.

I tried asking more politely if we could stay somewhere in South Port instead, like Great Aunt Hazel’s house. (She lives right across the park from Cicely). But Dad wouldn’t even ask her.

They left two days later while we were at school. We were told we absolutely must get off the bus at our grandparents farm, and if we misbehaved in the least, all of our electronics would be sold.

Evan instantly buoyed after school, because they have dogs. She fell in love with Mulligan, I guess she likes the little dogs best which surprised me. The dog has got to be older than me, but he was still playing and having a good time with Evan.

Dax would try to tempt her to catch bugs for his collection, he has a dream of them having a shared bug collection, but Evan has zero interest in it. I would agree with her. However, Grandma and Grandpa don’t have any sort of console games, so there isn’t much better to do than look for bugs.

I don’t really get the opportunity, they believe teens need to be put to work, so I helped Uncle Elias out in the field. It wasn’t the worst way to spend an afternoon, but I’m not signing up for this life anytime in the future.

When I wasn’t put to work, I would push Evan on the swingset until she got the concept. I guess we look like city kids when my kid sister can’t pump her legs on the swings.

It was impossible to sneak time to see Cicely when I lived so far away, and we were starting spring break, so there was no school. It was actually nice hanging out with my siblings though which surprised me.

Each night we had an actual homemade dinner. Grandma would cook these huge feasts and Julia would help, but her cooking was nowhere near as good as Grandma’s. I could handle having nice food like this back at home. We all ate together too, the guys got cleaned up from the field, and then we’d all talk about our day.

Evan was always pulling odd conversations out to make Grandpa confused. I think Evan liked to surprise him with her outlandish stories.

Julia is alright. I liked Uncle Elias better when he wasn’t infatuated with a girl. Evan thinks she’s pretty and wants to be just like her when she grows up, which will never happen without new genetics and a ton of bleach. It’s ridiculous for our uncles to start having kids now when I’m fifteen. I wanted these cousins when I was younger so I could play with them and I only ever got my Andersen cousins, all girls!

Uncle Elias is still cool though, he didn’t exactly lose his status. I just enjoy our time together on the field, and when we get back in, he’s all about Julia. I don’t think I’ll ever like girls the way him and Logan do. Mom says she took a long time to find Dad and even longer to fall in love with him, I think it will be me. Even though Evan would say I’m already this way with Cicely, so maybe love really is blind.

When I think it’d be nice to have dinners like this in our family, that’s the time Evan decides to throw food at Dax. I can see why Mom and Dad don’t bother with these traditions, although I wonder if Mom enjoyed these moments when she was a kid. I’d have to think she’d didn’t.

Grandpa didn’t even care, he has a good sense of humor. He just made them clean up after dinner, which they would have done anyway, except I didn’t have to help.

Dax and I share our Aunt Lily-Mae’s bed. She’s off at EU, and I guess her coming back or not is causing all sorts of problems for the new baby and nursery. I vote they give Lily-Mae her bedroom back, because I’d hate to lose mine while I was at uni, and to let Grandma keep her sewing room. I don’t see why everyone should give up their spaces just because they weren’t smart enough to prevent a pregnancy.

Evan sometimes sleeps on our floor in a sleeping bag, but she’s taken to sleeping on the sofa more. She doesn’t like the bottom of the bed by her face, it creeps her out. I’d be more scared of the front door if I were her, but I don’t say anything.

Mom and Dad call, and they seem to be having a great time.


We try to call the kids every day, but sometimes the day gets away from us. We are three hours ahead of them, so we have to be on top of it, or my parents get irritated with an extremely early phone call.

They always ask what we’ve been doing, and they really don’t want to know the answer to that.

They’d probably be livid if they realized our bedroom fits four people, not just two. Perhaps we could have brought our favorite kids, but I believe our favorite activities would be traumatizing to them.

We never had a honeymoon, or even a romantic proposal. Chris belched it out while we were both drunk, and he didn’t even remember in the morning. Then we eloped while my sister watched Chaz, and while Chris had been pretty romantic, my heart wasn’t entirely in it. I have zero regrets, we are perfectly matched, but I was like sludge in our beginning, so this time away from kids is really rewarding.

After four days of not leaving our hotel property, we decided to branch out so we’d have stories to share with the kids once we got home.

We asked the tour guide for site recommendations, and we even had our photo taken to frame when we get back home. Or if I were honest, placed in a box in the closet and totally forgotten about forever. My sister, Grace is the one who hangs pictures on her walls, and I admire it, but I don’t have the ambition.

We really embraced the local scene, we both took fire dancing classes on the beach. It was much too hot to be this close to fire, but we persevered.

We took photos to upload to our social media and text to the kids. They whined about how it was unfair, and the next time we go, they demand to go too. I waited fifteen plus years for this trip, I don’t think we will come back anytime soon.

Though I missed the kids the most when we explored the pirate ship. This was something the kids would love to play pretend on and tear through the cabins. Chris was wary of the plank, but he had no qualms about the crows nest.

I wasn’t exactly willing to fall overboard, but I did find the height interesting.

Chris missed the kids too when he was sword fighting, all three kids would love it.

Chris wanted to come back with a tan, which I was wary he’d burn. Thankfully he didn’t.

He found postcards to send back to the kids, and insisted we mail them from the island so it had the special island stamps. We will be home before they arrive in the mail.

Our last night was spent on the boardwalk, listening to the live music, and watching locals try to hustle their wares. Chris insists we will come back before another fifteen years has passed, but maybe after the kids are grown. It’s a bit pricey to take all five of us anywhere.

However, he’s already planning our next trip up to the Cascade mountains for next summer. I suppose I’ll survive.

Notes: Looking for Chris’ drunken proposal, I noticed it was the same update Avery got pregnant with Eden, Colin’s eldest child, although he didn’t know for many years. It’s also the same update Luca broke up with Meme. That hit both of them hard at the time.

Emma was thrilled to be on an island vacation, she’s had that want locked for years. Chris and Emma both got some fun wardrobe changes, I felt they’d be ones to embrace the voyage and get some island attire. My husband is a bit like Chris irl, and he always goes wacky for our tropical locations with pineapple and flamingo shirts. It humors me endlessly.

Chaz’s relationship panel started out low with Julia, but she started to grow on him afterward. It is funny how there is a whole new generation of grandchildren. Only Emma and Grace had theirs close in age. Oliver is just a few years younger than them, but he’s having his kids now with his younger siblings.

Thanks for reading!

8 thoughts on “living the dream”

    1. The kids ended up having a great time, but they were reluctant to be out of their normal routine at first. I really enjoy playing the farm, I’m glad you enjoyed the pictures. Thank you for commenting CT!

  1. Emma and Chris are another of my favorites and it was really fun to see them take a beach vacation. I totally agree that a grown-ups only vacation was appropriate for them and so funny about them deciding after a few days to do something they could tell the kids about, lol. Also about your rl husband’s penchant for tropical shirts šŸ™‚

    It was also cool to see the kids at their grandparents’. I don’t remember seeing them visit there before. It was interesting to hear Chaz’ perspective on his grandparents, and thinking about how it was for his mom growing up in a family with some different traditions than his. He had a great attitude about helping Uncle Elias with the crops! Also, I’m glad he warmed up to Julia some. It would be nice to see her become a true part of the family rather than be seen as an interloper. I remember thinking the same thing about cousins, though – two of my three uncles had their kids when I was already in high school, and although it was fun to see babies, I always wished we’d had more cousins to play with when we were little.

    1. The grandkids have visited the grandparents a few times. I know for a fact, because I have a photo of all the older grandkids on the farm that hangs in the house, lol. They don’t visit often though, Emma used to avoid her parents, and they live in the city with long-shifts, so it isn’t always easy ether. I think in recent years, Emma is learning to let go of her childhood resentment which is helping the kids get more time with their grandparents.

      It was funny, I didn’t expect Chaz to enjoy the crops, but he rolled a few wants in there, so I knew he was enjoying himself. I think in time, Julia will find her place in the family. It’s been very sudden, and I think it will take time for everyone to full warm up to one another. It’s going better on the McCarthy side than the Millett though. I had cousins my age on one side of my family, but on my Mom’s (who I saw most), I was closer in age to my Mom’s cousins than my own. There’s only two that are near my age, like 3 and 5 years younger, which is a good chunk when you are 8 years old.

      This family will have a second batch of grandkids, which I think will be fun. I’m glad Emma and Grace had theirs close in age, now Oliver and Elias will be in the next group. Zilla will likely join them as she’s engaged now. Not sure about Julius, his lot isn’t loading for me currently, so it’s not looking good! šŸ˜€

      Thanks for commenting Shannon!

  2. Coming from a family where vacations were rare treats because of price, it made perfect sense to me that this one, so long anticipated, would be for the parents only. At first I was surprised the kids complained that much, but they gave it up pretty quickly. What a good thing Mulligan was there! Learning how to pass the time on a farm no familiar entertainment was kind of a challenge too.

    Julia and the baby and the house – is Chaz’s reaction resentment? Maybe just general disapproval as it seems to him that she’s unfairly displacing people? I was surprised that he believes that the pregnancy was accidental, not that he’s wrong. Have they been open about it being a surprise?

    That vacation looks absolutely wonderful. The romance, the silly shirts (which I really like BTW!), Emma’s lovely dresses, it sounds like a dream. It really does. Let me have one like that!

    I love the pics of the farm, the swings, just all of it. That vacation…every shot is wonderful.

    1. Yeah, I think the kids would be a bit fussy, wanting to go, but they’d realize pretty quick that their Dad meant business. No one really smack talks Chris or Emma, although there have been a few tantrums in their household. I felt for the kids on the farm, my parents live on one, and at first it is foreign, but the kids always end up having a blast playing in the barn, with the kittens/cats, and horses.

      With Chaz, him and Julia got off on a wrong foot, it dipped negative, and I think it was more of a displacement of people. He’s a teenager, and he wouldn’t want to lose his bedroom to anybody. Which it’s possible he will when/if he goes to college, because the twins will eventually be teens and probably not want to share as boy/girl twins. I imagine all the adults would discuss quietly (but not really secretly) about the pregnancy being an accident. Adults tend to overlook children, thinking they aren’t soaking it all up.

      Thank you for commenting!! I’m glad you enjoyed the vacation and farm shots, they were fun to take!

  3. Wow, Chris really laying down the law there! No electronics must be every teen’s worst nightmare these days but I’m glad Chaz could relax and enjoy some time on the farm after all.

    Probably a good thing Chaz can’t see himself being wrapped up enough in someone to get married just yet! At 15, you probably shouldn’t be.

    Glad Emma got her holiday, after all these years! I can’t say I blame them for not wanting to bring three kids along with them, especially if they would have had to share a room together! And I loved Chris’s shirt, lol! I can see him as the kind of guy to want to do that on vacation.

    1. It’s pretty easy to say no electronics out at the farm, Nicole and Finn only have an outdated laptop, and the kids weren’t drawn to it at all. In my head, it has a slow processor. Yeah, Chaz is a big young to be thinking of marriage, even with his girlfriend. They do get along well, but I wouldn’t say he’s quite infatuated to the extent as Elias and Julia, thank goodness!

      It’s pricey to travel with kids, and Emma definitely deserved this time away. As soon as they got back home, they were rolling wants to go again, so I think she’ll keep up the wager of camping then beach every few years. With their kids getting older, it’ll be easier to get away too. I loved putting the shirts on Chris and the long dresses on Emma, which I tend to favor on beach vacations. It was fun, and now I have way too many tropical shirts!

      Thanks for commenting Carla!

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