My kids left today for a two week vacation. They went with their father to this somewhat mythical place called Buck Hill Falls. A place where their father spent his idyllic childhood summers. And where his family still has the same home they’ve had for many years.

When we were married, we would go there a lot, especially in the summers because we lived less than two hours away. And I came to agree with its mythical status. It is a very special place. Unique. With a huge outdoor pool, golf, tennis and lots of kids and, most importantly, families who have been going there as long as my kids’ father has been. The people who he grew up with and who now have their own families.

As the kids have grown up, they have spent a few weeks there each summer as well as time over Thanksgiving and during their winter breaks. They absolutely love it. They are very connected to it. Their paternal grandparents and great-grandmother, who is 96, are there and they absolutely love having the kids around. It is an almost heavenly place.

So, I’m happy for them. And as a testament to how well my ex-husband and I get along, I woke up at 4:30 this morning to take the three of them to an airport over an hour away, each way. And I was happy to do it. Tired but happy.

And I was sad to say goodbye at the airport. My daughter’s hugs were extra long and somewhat plaintive. My son put his arms around me and said thanks Mom, with an extra little squeeze. They’ll have their moments of missing me but they’ll be more than okay, surrounded by their very large extended family. (My ex is one of 9 children).

And I’ll be okay. I’ve spent this much time away from them before. It comes with the territory of being divorced. I’ll have moments of missing them and being lonely without them being in the house. But this does leave me and my husband alone, for 2 weeks, with no children. When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, and then add vodka. You make the most of your opportunities. So, we’ve planned two trips to take up the time that we will be without kids. Two trips to be taken on opposite sides of the country.

We leave for Saratoga Springs in a few days for the opening of the thoroughbred racing meet there. We’ve rented a really pretty house, with a big porch and within walking distance to the track and the cute little downtown. We’ll be joined by some really fun, close friends. I went for the first time last year and enjoyed it. This year, I even went out and bought a new dress for opening day. We’ll be sitting in a box right on the finish line.

We come home for two days and then take off for Vegas. Another annual trip, one I am not sick of yet. People don’t get our version of Las Vegas. It entails a stay at one of the nicest hotels on the strip (the Wynn) and days spent in the gym, at the spa (sake and rice body massage) and evenings spent dining in some really amazing restaurants. In between, there are walks on the Strip, reading in bed and in-room porn. Heavenly.

So, today was bittersweet for me. I’m going to miss my kids but I am more than excited by what the next two weeks hold. It’s a once a year opportunity for my husband and I to have an extended period of alone time. An important thing when you are in a second marriage and spend a lot of time with each other’s children. Especially him with mine.

So, in preparation for this time, I got a bikini and eyebrow wax after I returned home from my airport run. Then I got a pedicure. And my husband came home from work and we got our vacation started. We don’t have in-room porn at our house. But we make it work anyway.