Thursday, May 15, 2014

Thirteen Things I Love About Vacation

So summer is almost here, and school’s almost out. 

School’s almost out.  Can we say a prayer?  Dear Lord, please let me survive the last month of school.  The sheer volume of things going on is making my head spin.  I feel crazy.

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When I’m feeling crazy, I like to think about vacation.  Being away, doing fun stuff, being away, being away, being away.  When you’re a stay-at-home mom, being away becomes the stuff of dreams, the goal of life.  Being at home, especially during the school year, can be stifling.  Homework to check, uniforms to wash, tests to sign, meetings and activities to run to.  Plus all the normal stuff, blah blah blah toilet cleaning blah blah blah.  It never ends.  Are the walls closing in?

Let’s talk about what’s awesome about vacation, shall we?


1. You’re not at home.  My house is a vortex.  It sucks me in.  Leaving can be a struggle – there’s always a coffee cup to put in the sink, a window to close, a jug of milk to put back in the fridge.  On vacation, I don’t even realize that all the lights were left on when I leave for the spa.  My bed is made for me.  I am encouraged to leave my towels on the floor.  And every hotel door locks by itself.

2. Simple choices.  On vacation, the complexities of everyday life are left at home.  Juggling appointments and figuring out tax brackets become “do I have pie or chocolate lava cake for dessert?”

3. You do things you’ve never done before.  Sometimes on vacation you get to do new things.  On vacation you become fearless.  On any given day you are an explorer, discovering new lands and encountering new people.  You might do something scary. Or maybe you’ll just sit around.  Either way, you’re doing something different than the norm, and that makes you awesome and brave.  Maybe you’re not so brave if you’re just sitting around.  Or awesome.  But it feels amazing, doesn’t it?



4. You become rich.  When we’re away, money suddenly is no object.  Twenty-four dollars for a hamburger?  NO PROBLEM.  Yes, we’ll take the souvenir cup – here’s ten bucks.  Who cares that it comes in a container so large that we can’t possibly store it in our kitchen cabinets, and is so awkward that no one will use it, and I’ll throw it in the trash a week after we get home?

5. Caloric intake limits do not exist.  I usually do a little half-hearted dieting attempt before a vacation to appear svelte when I get there.  But that is quickly undone as I become a human food vacuum upon arrival.  Have you ever been on a cruise?  You can eat as much as you want, any time you want.  Okay, the last time I was on a cruise was thirteen years ago, so the rules may have changed since then.  But then I was five months pregnant, and one night I ate two dinners and all the desserts, and that was probably the best night of my entire life.

6. No chores.  If you rent a house on vacation, you may have to do laundry once or twice, or go to the grocery store.  Even so, chores are a novelty, not a necessity.  If you’re lucky enough to stay in a hotel, there are no chores at all.  Wipe up the sink after your brush your teeth?  Big deal.  An infinite chore loop does not exist on vacation.

7. Everything is more fun. We go on a beach vacation every summer.  We play mini golf, go on boat rides, swim and lie in the sun.  These things are available to do at home.  They become other-worldly events when we think about doing them on vacation, and we count down the days until we get there to do them.


8. No schedules to keep.  At home (waking up): OMG I SLEPT IN FIFTEEN MINUTES THIS DAY SUCKS.  On vacation (waking up): Wow, I slept in.  I should call room service and have them bring me breakfast.  And lunch.

9. No need to keep up appearances.  When I’m on vacation, makeup doesn’t exist, and my hair’s a mess.  And I wear the same clothes for a week.  There is no pressure to look put together, which for me is a huge ordeal usually.

10. Rejuvenation, renewal, refreshment.  Everyone says that certain kinds of vacations are more work than being at home.  I’ve been on trips like this.  But the break from the crushing tedium of regular life is always welcome.  And darn it if I don’t feel like a million bucks when I get home, ready to take on the world.  Or at least not want to stick my head in the oven.


11. You can be anyone you want on vacation.  Because no one knows you on vacation, there’s no one to say Hey! You’re not an astronaut – you work at Old Navy!  Or – You went to a state school, not Oxford!  Or – you don’t have a British accent!  On vacation, you can be anything.  A club-goer.  A bikini-wearer.  A smoker and a drunk.  Or my favorite: a dirty hippie who wears the same clothes for a week.  The possibilities are endless.

12. You have something to talk about when you get home.  Face it.  Your life is so tedious and boring that everything you talk about is a snoozefest.  Vacations fill in the gaps of your poor conversational skills and make you infinitely more interesting than you really are.  Vacations allow us to bond with others as we discuss our favorite ride at Disney World (Space Mountain), the view from the top of the Eiffel Tower (breathtaking, but not when it’s foggy), and how scary it is to snorkel over a manta ray (SO SCARY).

13.  The memories.  Oh, the memories.


******* 

This post inspired by:

Mama’s Losin’ It

Prompt #2: List 13 things you love about vacation.


28 comments:

  1. Um, yeah, all of the above!
    Though I never sleep in on vacation, because, so much to do and see! (OK it's because my kids still wake up at the crack of dawn regardless of which time zone we end up in)

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    1. This is why you need to take more adults-only vacations. :)

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  2. Love your list .. especially about how calories are non existance on a holiday. Visiting from Mama Kat's

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    1. Thank you! I know calories don't exist on vacation because there's no way I would consider eating ice cream every night at home, and yet on vacation it's almost a requirement.

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  3. I want to leave for vacation right now after reading this. I was going to do this prompt, but all 13 of my things came back to food somehow.

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    1. I had a really hard time coming up with thirteen things, too. All of mine tended to deal with not being home.

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  4. Totally. When we went to Six Flags last summer, the first thing Christian did was get the kids all gigantic slurpees in a souvenir cup that could be refilled for $.99 a pop. We never refilled them, and they are cluttering up my cabinets. Then that evening we ended up spending $27 on what was basically a frozen pizza.

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    1. Amusement park pizza is the worst. I should know - I've eaten a ton of it. There goes my kids' college fund.

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  5. You look so chic in France. You belong in France.

    And now after reading your post I want to go on vacation stat. School doesn't let out here til July 5.

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    1. I DO belong in France. I've been saying it for years.

      July 5! Sigh. Although you are only two weeks ahead of us. Ours get out the middle of June. Snow days, you know.

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  6. Yes, yes...and more yeses for me! Your post has definitely put all things vacation into perspective. I need to take another one....and soon. Love the photo on the Eiffel Tower! As soon as I saw the cages/fences (?) I knew that was that even before I read the caption.

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    1. I'm so glad you can relate! And I'm impressed that you knew where we were in that picture just from seeing those cages, er, protective fencing.

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  7. Yep - vacations totally rock!!! I need to plan one at some point just to have it to look forward to.

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    1. That is definitely another reason to love vacation - to have something to distract us from the tedium of every day life. ;)

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  8. Yay, vacations! Looking forward to them is almost better than the trips themselves. #5 is my favorite...eat as much as you want, of whatever you want. Calories don't count on vacations! Also, 13 is my favorite number and my own lists often have 13 points, so good job there too.

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    1. Calories totally don't count on vacation. On vacation, it's ice cream today, ice cream tonight, ice cream tomorrow. Maybe throw a funnel cake in there for good measure, too. At home it's a different story. I don't even know how to make funnel cake.

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  9. Love my vacations - alone, with the hubby and family. We are leaving on a 30 day road trip on two weeks and I can't wait! I love your number 9 & 11, and my 13 look a lot like some of your. I must say, I am very impressed that you took your kids to Paris. We did Montreal one year and I felt very nervous with the kids. Just the whole language/metric system/money conversion thing made me nervous. I think I would have felt better if my husband had been along, too.

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    1. A 30-day road trip sounds wonderful. My husband would not agree. The trip to Paris was to join my husband who was working in France, so the kids and I had a few days to ourselves before we met up with him. I had been there enough times to know what I was doing, so it wasn't hard for me, but I didn't expect having to familiarize the kids, too - that was more difficult.

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  10. I love the freedom to be whomever you want to be that comes with vacation. It can be hard not to bring the boring parts of you with you (the ones that obsessively check email, that remember how calorie counting works, the ones that forget to say yes to every new opportunity), but it is so rewarding when you succeed.

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    1. Yes! You said it all here. The freedom from the norm is what I love most about vacation.

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  11. #4 SO MUCH! My dad used to take us on long vacations to the beach and say, "You're on vacation! Let's not worry about money."
    And we didn't. Holy cow. We did the rest of the year, though.

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    1. That's how I was raised, too. It's a nice feeling to not have to worry about some things, at least for a little while. Even when you're a kid.

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  12. Ah, Vacation. "All I ever wanted?" ;)

    yes to all of it, I miss adult vacations. In Aruba. For a week.

    and I read #allthebooks, had #alltheconversations and felt like a different person when I came home. Geez, I need a vacation.

    You looked wonderful in every picture, happy, relaxed, at least 100%.

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    1. Thanks Kir!

      Adult-only vacations are a must. They are fun with kids too, but it's nice not to take care of anything but yourself from time to time.

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  13. Answer: Chocolate lava cake for dessert. And pie for dinner. Obviously.
    Because you need a good sugar rush for all the ass-kicking.

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    1. I like your style with desserts, Julie.

      Really, why does there have to be a choice on vacation?

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  14. I bought a swimsuit to wear on vacation this summer even though I refuse to wear a swimsuit EVER. Nobody will know I dread the swimsuit...I'll play it off like this is perfectly normal, CONFIDENT behavior. I'm perfectly confident!!

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    1. A few years ago I realized that no one looked at me quite as much as I look at myself. And I noticed that all those people who look less-than-perfect in their bathing suits? They don't bother me one bit. Even the old men in Speedos. Bring 'em on is what I say.

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