Great Wolf Lodge, Pocono Mountains, PA

Great Wolf Lodge, Pocono Mountains, PA“I didn’t pack pants.” I. didn’t. pack. pants.

I packed twelve changes of clothing, slippers, bathrobes, and a variety of car toys for the girls. But I did not pack myself pants.

Yes, I had a pair of sweatpants that were not meant to be seen by anyone who had no choice but to be stuck with me and a pair of leggings so worn that my ass was one rogue thread away from a nice summer breeze. But I had no actual pants to wear as I walked the halls of Great Wolf Lodge.

My husband looked at me with an eyebrow raised and I kind of wanted to pluck it off of his face. “How do you not remember pants?” asks he who only worried about packing for one human—and a human who wouldn’t have a total meltdown if he forgot something “essential” like the correct pair of patterned socks.

I pulled on my sweatpants—which didn’t pose a threat in the wardrobe malfunction department—and it was immediately decided that this was a vacation in which I would not give one shit. I didn’t bother to dip into my makeup bag. I threw my hair into a ponytail, pinned back my bangs and slipped into my worn flip flops (did I mention they were the only shoes I remembered to bring?). It immediately put me into a why not? mood.

It was the best accidental decision I could have made.

Great Wolf Lodge waterpark

We spent the next two(ish) days going with the flow. We wandered the water park for hours each day. Samantha bossed Tim up and down water slides while Ellie bossed me around the lazy river. We went glow-in-the-dark mini golfing. We hung out in the arcade. We ate ice cream. We let the girls roam the halls of the resort in their slippers (and Ellie in her bathrobe). Sam and Tim played tons of MagiQuest while Ellie and I camped out on the floor in the lobby for story time. We let the girls stay up too late binge watching Myth Busters. We just generally enjoyed every single second.

Great Wolf Lodge arcade

happy cubs at Great Wolf Lodge

at home at Great Wolf Lodge

We had so much fun, we’ve already booked our next trip there this spring—and I think we’ll take the same laid back approach. Except for pants. I’m pretty sure I’ll pack pants next time.

This post is part of my 52 Essays project. This year I have set a goal for myself to write one finished piece every week(ish). I’m not sure what you can expect from them because I’m sort of winging it. Some will be good. Some will be less good. Hopefully you’ll love them. Maybe you’ll hate them. We’ll just have to wait and see. 😉 13/52

Written by Jennifer Garry
Jen is a freelance writer and girl mom from New York. When she's not knee-deep in glittery crafts and girl talk, you can probably find her sprawled across her couch in the middle of a Netflix marathon with dark chocolate smeared on her face. The struggle is real.