Saturday, July 24, 2010
Vacation recap - Money well wasted and things I learned
We just got back from our first family vacation. One thing that Shawn and I decided before we had Fisher is that we will make it a priority every year to take a family vacation. Even if we are short on money we decided that we will go camping or something to mark each summer with an official "Family Vacation." My family didn't go on a vacation every year while we were growing up - but those times that we did pile into the Family Truckster and hit the road were so much fun and memorable. I look forward to the memories we will make over the years with our children.
Our first vacation as a family of three was to Myrtle Beach, SC. I had to give a presentation at a conference for work so we decided to turn it into a work/fun trip. It was great to see the beach through Fisher's eyes. He loved playing in the sand. He would dig holes in the sand and then be amazed when a wave would wash up and the water would linger in his hole like a little pond. He tasted the sand, and the shells, and the salt water. I took him out in the deeper water and we would jump the waves. He loved that and laughed every time I jumped. Fisher really enjoyed the huge beach and the freedom to crawl anywhere he wanted. He also loved catching the eye of the beach walkers and giving them a coy smile. We spent some time in the pool at our resort (which was awesome!). There were lots of kids swimming in the pool and Fisher kept trying to get away from me and swim with the kids. The only problem is - Fisher can't exactly swim just yet.
As any good family vacation - we got caught in a tourist trap. Shawn and I were really excited to eat at a seafood buffet for the first time. However, we ended up paying $60 for the two of us to eat at the Giant Crab which ended up being sub par, fried seafood. I have had better seafood at Shoneys and would have paid a lot less. To add to the tourist trappiness - they took a "souvenir photo" at the Giant Crab, which they would of course sell you for $10. This was our first souvenir picture taken at a family vacation and we just blew $60 on crappy food, so we decided to buy the photo. We have already gotten $10 worth of laughing from it. Oh - and of course, after leaving the Giant Crab - Shawn threw up his $30 worth of crap food and then we ended up getting him something at Hardees later that night.
That souvenir photo to remind us of the gross overpriced food at the Giant Crab might have sparked a family tradition....we bought every souvenir picture we had taken after that, because they really are just funny. We bought the picture at the Aquarium and then at Medieval Nights. So we ended up spending about $40 on souvenir pics. Which is quite ridiculous....but at the same time it is HARD to get a picture of the three of us together, so it is worth it. Plus, again the laugh factor has been worth the money.
Our first cheasy souvenir picture - At the Giant Crab.
The Second Souvenir Picture - at the Aquarium.
What I learned from our first family vacation
1) A large bathroom can double as a bedroom if the pack-n-play will fit in it.
2) Valet parking is amazing with a baby. I always thought valet was for lazy people.
3) The perks of a resort are worth the money. (valet, private beach, beach cabana, towels, chairs, umbrellas set up for you, etc)
4)It isn't a vacation unless you hit up at least one tourist trap
5)Take advantage of all the things that are free for kids under 2, while your kids are under 2.
6) If you wear out the kids under 2, they will sleep late!!
7) When you have a kid - you come back from vacation as tired as you left...but it is worth it.