I’ve been blessed to have a lot of great vacations in my life, and a few bad ones- see the 1996 birthday trip to Disney, the ’91 trip to Minnesota when I ate a fishhook, or the ’98 trip to Myrtle Beach when I was eleven and playing in the ocean when a surprise wave slammed me to the ground super hard causing the most painful third degree burn on my … crotchal bone… for lack of a better word. I cringe still thinking about the pain of that. But let’s not go there right now.
A few of my favorites involve trips to Cabo, Tuscany, Napa and Barcelona, but I’m not going to bore you with any of those trips. Instead I want to talk about a seriously amazing trip back in 1997 when we went to the wonderful land of Missouri. Tan Tara at the Lake of the Ozarks to be exact.
This photo is blurry and bad, but there’s just too much goodness going on here to ignore it. Like how about the fact I’m wearing a tie-dye romper- with a purple turtle neck tank top underneath I might add. I had a strong belief in wearing turtlenecks year round a child. They just added a touch of class to everything I thought. And then there’s my dad’s jorts, my mom’s jean vest, Jade’s teal wind breaker (purchased at a garage sale if memory serves) and my brother’s sassy knee pop in his short short Umbros. Like I said, too much goodness not to post. Family awkward years are the best.
But anyway, back to that fancy trip to the Ozarks.
My dad won a trip with his company; he could either take my mom to Italy, or the entire family to Missouri. I’ll still never understand why he made the choice he did, but good for him.
There are a few things that stand out about this trip in my memory when I think about it. For starters, we got to stay in a two-story condo! On a golf course! Two things made me lose my shit about this- a. staying anywhere with a second floor absolutely blew my mind as a kid (still kind of does to be honest.) And b. staying on a golf course meant every morning my brother and I were able to walk in the wooded backyard area and look for all the lost golf balls our little hearts could find. Finding golf balls as a kid might as well have been finding treasure. I can still remember the sweet sweet joy of bringing back a t-shirt full of dirty balls. And a head full of ticks… Oh to be a kid again.
Another highlight of this trip would be feeding the carp next to the dock. I had a real thing for feeding things when I was a kid. Ducks, seagulls, carp, it didn’t matter; I could be entertained for hours by feeding hoards of animals. I packed an emergency bag of cereal with me at all times, you never knew when an opportunity would present itself and I wanted to be ready.
And did I mention there was an indoor swimming pool where you could swim outside from the inside?! So cool. It just doesn’t get any better.
So for all the parents out there, let’s do a quick recap on how to give your children the best vacation ever:
1. Stay somewhere with a second floor. Kids love stairs.
2. Woods in the backyard where your kids can go look for stuff is always a plus. Doesn’t have to be golf balls either; tennis balls, sticks, or rocks work too.
3. Make sure there are animals to be fed somewhere.
That’s pretty much it. I guess you could also just take your kids to a farm and call it a vacay too.
What was your best or worst vacay? Link up below.
Tomorrow’s prompt: A Letter ToYourself in Ten Years. I’ve started this post twenty times and can’t finish it. I’ve got a lot riding on my future self…