We are your typical middle class family. We have bills up the yin yang in this economy and vacation time to us is precious. Contrary to popular belief, I do not get to take my family away for free because I am a travel agent. That might have been the case years ago, but no way has anyone offered to take this family of 5 anywhere for free. This year we are lucky. We got a great deal on a cruise in Feb. We went on a 5 day cruise. I waited and got a great price and we even got a good deal on on-board credits. We drove down to save money, since airfare was then a joke. This August (yes, we will swelter) we are spending 11 days at Disney World. Four of those days we are using my friends DVC points, and then the rest we are using the teacher rate at the Walt Disney World Dolphin. These vacations we have been doing for years. For us they are easy to plan...and each one elicits different memories of my kids.
Stuck in the back of my head is a vacation I mapped out over 15 years ago. I want to take a Southwest Camper vacation of the National Parks and the Southwest territory. I would fly into Phoenix, Arizona and head North to Sedona. I would stay at a great spa hotel there, then venture out towards the Grand Canyon. I have always wanted to take the donkey ride, like the Brady Bunch did to the Canyon floor. I want to rent a house boat for a week on Lake Powell. Take the foolish picture with my arms and legs in a different states at Four Corners. Oh, and take a ride on rte 66. I want to build a book load of memories seeing America and all its beauty with my family, and end the vacation at the Happiest place in the world Disneyland. Not sure this vacation will ever happen, but it is planned out in case I win the lottery ;)
Maybe I am lucky, but even when we have had vacation mishaps, it has always been better than being at work. We always look back and laugh at some of the things that happen. There was the time we drove to New York for my brother in laws wedding and a couple of days R & R. Our oldest was 5 and my husband had just finished talking about how we had to buy a tire. Did I mention I was 6.5 months pregnant with our twins? Just as he literally finishes talking about the tire, the darn thing blows out. Then someone stops to help us and the guy is so drunk he can't walk straight. Luckily my parents had gone to the wedding too and saw us on the side of the road. Three hours later, we are driving home at 50 mph on a tiny little tempa spare. We have had many car mishaps, but they added to the adventure, even when it was two blown tires (yes, happens to us a lot) and one water pump in the same trip.
Vacation memory triggers bring you back to a moment in time. We all have them. Who doesn't here music with steel drum or the song "HOT HOT HOT" and think of a Caribbean cruise or island vacation. Or who doesn't remember the look of awe when a child enters their first Disney park, and meets their favorite character. We all have hundreds (and maybe thousands, if you are me) of pictures to remember those memories., and that's why vacations are so precious to us. It is a time to reconnect and leave all of our everyday worries behind. It is time to focus on our loved ones and send time doing stuff together. It doesn't matter if the vacation is to a faraway place, or camping just a few miles from home. That's why our motto is "Today's vacations are tomorrow's memories", because vacation should be all about enjoying the moment now, and reliving it over and over later for years to come, especially if they embarrass your children :)
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