Our family just got back from our annual family vacation up near Tobermory, Ontario. This is the fourth year we have gone with about 15 families we know, to a campground on Miller Lake where we spend the week in the sun and the sand, swimming, fishing, playing games, fellowshipping and relaxing. It is the highlight of my year and I know that my children absolutely love it, in fact they have started talking about what they want to take next year and what we should do to prepare for Miller Lake 2011!
As family vacations go, our Miller Lake trip is not very flashy or exotic, and it might not rate on everyone’s list as the best way to spend a relaxing week. However, I happen to find the whole experience to be a fantastic way for our family to get away and spend some quality time together…and apart! Why do I love Miller Lake? Let me count the ways….
1. Less hair-brushing and laundry…most of the time I put my kids in clean clothes and brush their hair, but for one week out of the year they get to have messy hair and sand in their clothes and toes!
2. Staying up with other grown ups, my favourite part of the whole week is putting the kids to bed safely and getting to sit around and chat with our friends (old and new), play games and eat snacks that the kids can’t have!
3. Ear phones for the van dvd player, so the kids can watch movies on the way…4 hours of peace and quiet!
4. Other people cooking alongside me in the kitchen. At home it’s usually just me preparing breakfast, lunch and dinner. When we go away I really like that other mom’s and dad’s are getting meals ready for their families too!
5. No plans. I really enjoy the spontaneous nature of the vacation day. It’s great to just get up, eat breakfast and have nothing major on tap for the day.
6. Fun time with my amazing kids! As a SAHM, I usually get to spend lots of time with them, but throughout our week I have laundry and dishes to do, house cleaning, errands to run, the phone rings a couple of times a day, the dog needs walked, dinner gets cooked, there are Soccer or Tae Kwon Do schedules etc…on vacation, I LOVE that I get time to just hang out with them, play in the lake or watch them catch frogs!
7. Sleeping In! It’s nice when there’s nowhere to be and nothing specific on tap for the day, and even more wonderful when the children miraculously allow us to sleep in on our vacation days…love it!
8. The Offspring fight much less than normal. It’s wonderful to have so many other kids around for mine to play with because it means that they are more easily entertained and there is less pressure on them to play together, which means less brother/sister conflict. Not to mention it gives me a sense of what it would be like to have more children and I remember now why I only need two!
9. It’s just like Summer Camp; roasting marshmallows, kayaking, swimming in the cool crisp lake, bunk beds, the dinner bell, capture the flag and pranks. Spending a week with all sorts of different people in a camp atmosphere takes me back to my years spent at Summer camp. (although significantly less heartbreaking, because I have married the love of my life, so there are no summer crushes for this girl!)
10. Coming home to my bed…it’s great to get away, but nothing makes me appreciate my own little house and big bed more, than going away on vacation and then coming home to a good night’s rest in my OWN BED! Wonderful…..