Have you gotten the spam call where the person will tell you that you purchased a vacation back in 2013? They are calling you today to book that vacation for you before it expires. How nice? How helpful? No way? Really? I laugh every time we receive one of those calls because I know for a fact if we had purchased a vacation in 2013 we would have taken the vacation in 2013. Who’s with me on that one?
In my last post, I wrote about us taking our show on the road to the Florida gulf coast for the annual family vacation. As a family, we make the vacation a priority. It is essential for us to travel together and to see places we haven’t visited. Now that could mean a day trip, a long weekend, or a week getaway. You have to do what works for you and your family. A vacation can provide so many lessons and memories that I have compiled my top four reasons on why to take the family vacation.
1. A family vacation can relieve stress. It is so easy to get bogged down with the day to day routine of work, kids, chores, bills, and the list goes on and on. It is no wonder the stress level is palpable. You prepared for vacation by taking care of things at work and letting co-workers know you will be gone. And you prepared for the vacation by researching the area and planning activities. So now, it is time to kick back relax and unwind with your family. The time on vacation is meant to break out of the usual routine or the day-to-day grind. Alarms don’t have to be set. Coffee can be enjoyed watching the sunrise or at ten o’clock in the morning.
2. A family vacation provides an opportunity for family uninterrupted family time. Look around at the people you are sharing this vacation with. It can be a time to be silly. It can be a time to laugh until tears roll down your cheeks. You are exploring and experiencing something together. You can see the ocean through your children’s eyes. Or you can see the thrill of a wild roller coaster through your partner’s eyes. This is a time to take the pictures. Capture the moment. You are creating life-long memories for your entire family. Long after the clunky souvenirs have been discarded and the vacation t-shirts have faded the memories of the vacation will last a lifetime.
3. Teach your children well. Family vacations are not what they used to be when everyone piled into the family car and drove for hours into days to see America. There are numerous choices for family vacations. Everything from the traditional good ol’ American road trip. To vacations of organized activities that your family would like to partake in everyone from sports, arts, leisure, beach, etc. Travel is an excellent learning opportunity for kids. They can have the chance to learn about things first hand they may have learned in school, read about or saw on TV. Any destination can offer this learning experience whether you are exploring your city and state or you are cruising the Caribbean. Family vacations will teach children about different cultures, food, geography, environment and so much more. The best part is that it’s way more fun for them then learning it through homework!
4. Model behavior. We all say that we want our kids to be able to try new things. Sometimes, it takes parents to do something first. Maybe touching the iguana or saying sure let’s take the canoe out on the water. As parents, our enthusiasm level rubs off onto our kids. If we are hesitant or resistant, then our kids will do the same thing. Remember it’s vacation! As we know, even the best-laid plans sometimes still don’t work out like we thought. A flat tire, delayed airplane, lost reservations, or directions took you twenty miles out of your way can make tempers flare or words to be said. This is a time to model behavior with patience, empathy, or possibly some humor. We want our kids to think, “Wow, mom and dad made that look like a breeze!” It is not easy, but it can be done with a dose of patience and problem-solving. The tiny blip of wrong directions or delayed airplane hopefully won’t be the lasting memory of the time away.
Now is the time to travel and create those memories with your families. The kids won’t always be kids. In the words of my grandma, “Take the trip, you won’t regret it.” Is there anything else you would add to this list?
All my best to you,