The banners line the historic island streets. “Another day in Paradise.” It is hard to argue. At 62 it is one of their coldest days of the year and although the breeze might better be described as a gust we are outside, climbing sand hills, swinging, eating lunch at an outdoor cafe. We will not swim. But we will not wear coats. And for now this fact alone makes it feel like paradise.

We have been at the gulf front condo for less than 24 hours and one of my main vacation questions has arisen. Why is housework so easy on vacation?

Is it because we have a smaller space and fewer things to take care of, so a quick broom, tug at a blanket or scrub of a dish puts everything in its place?

Or because we are away from home and other distractions, so cleaning is easier?

Or because we simply have more time on vacation to clean up?

Perhaps a combination of the above.

It does make me believe in the general laws of conservation, because although I am much tidier than normal the boys are the opposite. Despite a complete lack of swimming or showering they have unrolled the beach towels from their inviting basket on the way out the slider and scattered them throughout the living room.

Sandwich crusts, chips, popcorn, goldfish, and yogurt containers stretch to each corner of the condo, on windowsills, bathroom counters, the couch, everywhere but the kitchen. They are like puppies marking their territory. Everything has to be sniffed, and peed on.

That is another thing though about paradise. So far all of the pee has been in the toilet.

It really is magical here.

This isn't even the gulf side of the island!

This isn’t even the gulf side of the island!

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Anna Rosenblum Palmer is a freelance writer based in Denver, CO. She writes about sex, parenting, cat pee, bi-polar disorder and the NFL; all things inextricably intertwined with her mental health. In her free time she teaches her boys creative swear words, seeks the last missing puzzle piece and thinks deeply about how she is not exercising. Her writing can be found on Babble,, Great Moments in Parenting, Ravishly, Good Men Project, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Playpen, Crazy Good Parent, and YourTango. She also does a fair amount of navel gazing on her own blog at

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