Shane and I took our honeymoon as a Holland America cruise to points in Alaska. It was awesome. The food, the hospitality, the views, the relaxation — all of it was fantastic. Unfortunately, it was before I was enlightened about money, and we (stupidly! recklessly!) opened a new 0% interest credit card to pay for it.
I wrote more about the stupidity of that here.
This post isn’t about financials. It’s about enjoying life, and about memories that last a lifetime.
Our cruise was a 7-day deal. We had a day or so on each side of the trip in Seattle, too. The cruise came at the end of four years of college, right after our wedding, and right before we left Indiana for Pittsburgh.
I made a photo book from some of the photos we took, and some of the scenery photos will hang as artwork in our home (as soon as I select frames).
When I was doing Hypnobabies to prepare for the birth of my daughter, my “special place” in my mind was aboard that cruise ship. More specifically, it was me in the “mineral tub” that overlooked a giant deck with spectacular Alaska shoreline passing by. Whenever Shane and I are stressed, we think “ahhhhhh, Alaska!” and smile.
That trip was probably the best 7-day chunk of our lives that we can remember. The memories of the trip still affect us more than four years later, and I know they’ll always have a special place in our hearts.
We have taken a few smaller trips since then, but not nearly on the same scale. I don’t know when we’ll go on another cruise, but we intend to do a vacation of some sort in the coming year. We need it. Not long ago, Shane was telling me how he just wanted to have a few days that he could do whatever he wanted — not having to deal with work, or anything on his to-do list. Just…be.
“They call that a ‘VACATION’!” I told him. He laughed when he realized those do exist. He had just forgotten about them. Poor Shane.
Vacationing with kids doesn’t sound so restful, though I think it could still be fun. I think we’ll aim for a trip with the kids at some point this summer or early fall, and keep it low-key. But I also think Shane and I will try to do a one or two-night trip with just ourselves later next year. Probably after Vivienne is saying a few words, is sleeping more reliably, and is weaned. Her first birthday is tomorrow (!) and a lot still happens developmentally in 6-9 months, so I think she’ll be able to handle it better later on in the year.
We’ll actually make a budget this time and pay for our expenditures outright, rather than charge it and carry a balance.
And hopefully, we’ll rest up and recharge enough to last us awhile.
Life is hectic. It’s important to take a break, relax and enjoy life a bit instead of workworkwork, savesavesave all the time. Why work yourself to the bone and never make time or money available to enjoy yourself?
As such, we’ll include “vacation” as a line item in our budget for 2012 (and hopefully every year after). If money is super-tight for your family, I’d still encourage you to figure out a low-budget vacation. Maybe go visit some friends a few hours away and stay at their house, or switch houses with another family looking for a similar vacation (hey, sometimes a change of scenery is fun!). Or go camping (lol, I am not a big camper at all but I still want to do it again). Or come up with some stay-cation ideas for your own area.
Remember, whatever the financial cost, it will live on in photos and memories for a long time after!
Meet me in the comments to talk about vacation stuff. Tell me about your favorite vacation or one you’re planning soon. Share ideas for vacationing with little kids!