Last month, we blogged about how you can enjoy your vacation even if you are a small business owner.  This summer, we were able to take our own advice to ‘Have Fun!’  Our son Matthew announced some happy news that was a wonderful way to begin our vacation.

Each summer, actually since I was a child, I took vacations to the Jersey Shore.  After Joe and I married, I encouraged the tradition with him and our family.  So, every year, we went to the Jersey Shore for two weeks and it has become a special place for all of us.  A couple of years ago, we finally purchased a condo on the beach for all of us to enjoy.  When we are not using it for our two weeks we rent it out to others, which can be another story about running that small business!

This year, our time together at the shore was fabulous!  We knew in advance that two days before we left for vacation, our son, Matthew, was going to propose marriage to his long-time girlfriend, Erika.  She accepted and that began a sweeping wave of happiness for all of us.

Originally, Joe and I planned to spend the first week by ourselves and our good friends always join us on the second week.  It is customary for our daughter to be with us on vacation and for the three boys to join us on the ‘middle weekend’, when they can.  This year, Julia was volunteering at two different jobs and wasn’t sure she could make it all.    Michael lives in San Francisco, so he wasn’t planning to be there either and Joseph decided to go to Washington, DC for that weekend.  Matthew ended up having a week off between jobs, so he and Erika wanted to come down for the “middle weekend” and stay a few extra days.

Since we knew about the proposal plan and the date in advance, we started talking to Michael, Joseph and Julia about their plans and the possibility of everyone converging to the shore to celebrate the engagement together.  Michael was able to plan a work trip to NYC so he worked around it to be able to join us.  Joseph cancelled his trip to DC and Julia was so excited that she rearranged her schedule to be there.

These days, it is unusual for all six of us to be in the same place at the same time, but this time it all fell into place.  Not only were all of us there, but my nephew from Florida who is close to Matthew, drove up to NJ with his girlfriend, a niece also visited with us for a couple of days and of course our friends joined us too.  By the “middle weekend” there were 14 of us in the condo and it was one of the most exciting and happiest times we’ve all had together lately!

Business, what business?  Oh yeah, after our fabulous weekend, even though we were still on vacation, it was back to reality!

In the meantime, we recently met Erika’s parents for the first time. All of us are already having great fun enjoying the engagement and making plans for the wedding which will be in March 2011. I’ll keep you posted on the developing plans.