Photo: "I smell home!"  Maya enjoyed her vacation...

That’s my boxer, Maya, as we rounded the corner on the way home from a week-long family vacation. I think my face held the same happily exhausted expression. I love vacations and I tend to be the crazy over-scheduler when planning all of my family’s trips. But this year we joined my extended family and had fun visiting and exploring the lakes and foothills outside of Leavenworth, WA. I relaxed and went with the flow, and the only plans I made were to fly low under the radar.

As with most family functions, there was a little drama. But, I’m not dwelling on that. Nope, not me. I went in to the situation with low expectations and I’m surprised to say it wasn’t until day 6 when my cover was blown and it was apparently my turn to be picked on. I won’t go in to details other than I was accused of being like my mother *cringe* which is completely NOT TRUE. And when I asked in what way I was like my mother, I was told I was “moody”.  I asked for an example and was told I don’t like to talk on the phone.

HA! Joke’s on them! My gossip-driven mother holds the record for the longest phone conversations from 1979 to the present. And ANYONE who knows me knows I do not like to talk on the phone because I worked as a claims adjuster for many years, often spending 8 hours a day on the phone with unhappy customers. I’m an email/text girl. Keep it short, sweet and professional and everything will be just fine. And if I do come across as “moody” sometimes, well, that’s just because I’m…oh, what’s the word? Human!

But my poor brain had to go through the gymnastics of re-hashing old issues I dealt with long ago. Why do some friends and family push our buttons? Now, I know some just don’t have that “off switch” that makes most of us shut up before we inflict harm on others. Some seem to think that constructive (but who am I kidding? it’s almost always unconstructive) criticism is what most people yearn for. Well, unless it’s regarding my writing, I for one am happy living in my own little world and if someone has “constructive criticism” for me then they can just go jump in a lake. And, of course, I am the type who avoids confrontation and I become uncomfortable when thrown in to an argument (my come-backs suck and I usually resort to I know you are but what am I? tactics). Needless to say, when I was told I was moody, I had to do my damnedest not to get mad lest I prove that person’s point. It was a lose-lose situation folks.

Moral of the story: hug and kiss your children, it’s a lot more fun than poking them.

Anyway, it was a successful family vacation. No one got seriously hurt, maimed or murdered. We are even preparing details to go forward with 2013’s trip. Only next time I’m bringing earplugs, lots more wine, and if anyone says anything negative to me, I’m going to smile and nod and resume playing badminton with my sweet children.