It hasn't been super clear from my writing, but I am actually back from our trip, home with the kids and writing all the entries from memory at night while they are sleeping.
While we were gone, our families took turns watching the kids and I can't even begin to express how thankful I am for everyone pitching in to keep them happy and entertained. The kids had such a wonderful time, and were spoiled rotten - trips to children's museums, parks, McDonalds, golfing, hiking.... I don't think they missed us at all, although Saben says he did.
It was such a gift to be able to go on this trip with Kyle. The longest we'd been alone together since Saben was born 3 1/2 years ago was about 48 hours. 11 days was unimaginable. After just three years, I have to admit that it was starting to feel really strange spending so much time alone together. But after a couple days it became normal again and by the end I felt so much more connected to my wonderful husband than I had in a long time.
When kids are around, we spend our whole time watching them, talking about them, talking to them and then trying to relax once they are in bed. It took a while to learn to be entertained by my spouse again, to make conversation over endless dinners and enjoy just being together. I think it was so great for our marriage and it will always be a memory in our relationship that I really treasure.
I don't regret leaving the kids for one second. I am so happy and excited that they got the chance to get to know their aunts, uncles, grandparents & great grandma better. I didn't worry AT ALL which really suprised me, because I knew they were in good hands and I knew that everyone would be showering them with love in my absence.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who helped watch the kids. It was a huge gift and I can't wait to return the favor for my nieces & nephews someday.