Did I find the perfect place to stay with kids? It sure looked like it... till the kids fell asleep and I was spooked by where we were staying. This old hacienda is awesome in so many ways, but it is also big and we were away from any other guests. I actually got out my little pocket knife and had it by my bed.
We moved next door to the Rancho Carolina, today which is considerably cheaper and is more homey. Since there are few if any other travelers right now, staying at these places is lonely. Void of life, I would say, till our party shows up! I hope we can stay here for two nights though. It seems the hacienda is owned by a family with a young son.
Traveling with kids is so busy and exhausting and outward-focused. Once night falls you would think that I would feel relieved, but instead I feel only tired and heavy. I wonder when I'll get to feel free.
I think if I look at this trip as being about me, I will come back loaded with regrets. Right now, it's about me being able to rest with the memories that the kids are making (and hope that whatever I am witnessing in them will help me learn about my experience as mom and MK). If I can claim one thing a day as mine, I need to do that and be content with it. Otherwise, I am a bitch because I am so disappointed that things aren't going "my" way.
Photot two: Marshall rides a horse. I remember riding horses in an around Quito. My friends and I would go to the place where horses go to retire (or other) and we would rent a couple of horses to ride up to the hills on. I'm glad Marshall got to ride.
Photo seven: This is a cock-fighting ring that used to be a huge part of Ecuadorian rural culture (it is part of the hacienda). It is about to be outlawed. They still have places where you can go to see it although I have no interest. I didn't even mention that it was a possibilty to the boys. I would go if they were a bit older and they really wanted to.