May 25, 2013

Vacation Ideas?

My family doesn't have any big vacation plans this summer.  We are still adjusting to the financial impact of having one kid in college, two kids driving, and the acquisition of one preemptive-strike-at-the-impending-midlife-crisis Harley Davidson motorcycle.  And, while we really do have money squirreled away for a reasonable vacation, the planning part presents a time challenge that I haven't yet overcome.

Some of the family wishlist trips need to be planned months, if not a year in advance - and these aren't even of the once-in-a-lifetime sort - we would like to go to Yellowstone and stay a few nights at one of the historic park lodges, a reservation that is hard to come by.  We would like to go to NYC, but should have been shopping for flights months ago.  I want to take my kids to DC for the Smithsonian and monuments, but would rather wait for someone else to occupy that house on Pennsylvania, assuming they would reopen for tours.  Bang is headed to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico, so he isn't keen on another long car trip to any points that direction (Grand Canyon or Zion were considerations).

We want to visit Mackinac Island, but, in addition to the length of the drive, the route we would take includes more mandatory stops to visit family than we have the time (or patience) for this year.

With the range of ages, it is always a challenge to find someplace that will appeal to all.  Everyone is supportive of Orlando, it is the happiest place on earth, after all.  It is also one of the most ridiculously expensive for no good reason places on earth.  It is insane, the trance that sweeps over you.  'For the children' must be the most frequently repeated phrase.  $500 a night room with Magic Kingdom view for the nightly fireworks?  Sure, it's for the children.  Children that ended up terrified of the fireworks and would hide in the bathroom crying every night. 

Currently our best idea is to head east, to Tennessee.  Memphis is an easy drive, but I am left to wonder how much of Beale Street the grown-ups can take in, without the little ones clamoring to do something else.  You can bring a child to the blues, but you can't make them love it.

Whenever we talk about Memphis, the conversation starts to creep further east.  Nashville, Knoxville, Gatlinburg - the beautiful Smoky Mountains that I remember from my trip to the 1982 World's Fair.  But, sheesh, that is a lot of time in the car with a 6-year old.  And a lot of planning we haven't done.

I guess I better get busy, because that whole stay-cation thing isn't going to fly this summer.


InsomniacSeeker said...

I would do the Tennessee trip. Isn't Dollywood there?

graphene supercapacitor said...

we should try these ideas..........
summer vacation ideas

Mike Loshe said...

How about a heading to the Great Wolf Lodge? My family and I were in a similar situation (just two kids in private school) so we decided to just get away from it all and go on a mini vacation. The kids had a great tip hanging out and doing the whole water park thing and my wife and I got to kick back and relax.