The Best Laid Plans

Jan 9 2011

We’re doing something crazy.

Something unbelievably, undeniably crazy.

Are you ready?

Wait for it.

Wait for it.

……

We’re taking our kids on vacation.

……

Sure, on the face of it that doesn’t seem so crazy.  People go on vacation every day and for lots of reasons.

I mean, where else do you get to tattoo your whole face and pet a goat’s butt?

Ian and his new friend, the goat

Now that’s a vacation!

As fun as that looks, though, we’re on an ongoing mission to raise family vacation drama to a whole new level.  I’m pretty sure we’re going to succeed this time.

Two weeks ago, we weren’t planning a vacation anytime soon.

You know how die-hard shoppers are all, “Look at this shirt!  It’s on sale!” and they convince themselves they’re money ahead by buying it?

Yeah, that’s like me and vacations.  I’m not much of a shopper.  I somehow missed that part of my 2nd X chromosome.  But what I lack in shopping ability, I make up for in spades with vacation planning.  So when we were given an opportunity for some financial savings on a mid-January trip, I thought, what the heck?  Let’s go!

What shocked my socks off was that my fiscally responsible husband Greg endorsed the plan.  Well, that’s a hole in one, I tell you.  A once-per-decade opportunity.  We would be FOOLS to turn this down!

We would also be fools to go, but I’m sure you’re aware that’s never a deterrent for me.

Our vacation dilemmas always start with the Us and Them scenarios.

  • Us:  if Greg and I go on vacation by ourselves — which we’ve done before and we will do again — we get much-needed rest and quality spousal time, but we miss the children terribly.  (It’s sad, but true.)
  • Them:  if we take all the kids, then the family gets to spend time together, but Greg and I run ourselves ragged and need a vacation when we’re done.  Greg likes to call this kind of vacation “herd management.”  Doesn’t that sound relaxing?

When the kids start to pack themselves into suitcases, even I can pick up on their subtle hints.

Cai and Cael

They’d like to come, please.

This time, we’ve come up with a brilliant plan to include them — to even give them focused and quality time and attention — without exhausting ourselves.  Brilliant.

It’s brilliant, I tell you.

I feel completely free to say that because we haven’t gone yet and discovered all the flaws in our plan.

Here’s what we’re doing:

  • Monday through Thursday – take our 3 youngest kids on vacation
  • Friday through Monday – take our 2 oldest kids on vacation

Vacation Location: Um, I can’t say for sure.  Yep, even though by “Monday” I mean this Monday.  The one that starts tomorrow.

Sure, we have an idea of where we’re like to go.  But part of the financial savings plan includes flying stand-by, so at any given moment this trip could be interrupted by the inability to go, oh, anywhere.  Or we could end up somewhere we never intended to go.

Or, worse, we could go somewhere and get stuck.

What’s that?  Flaw #1?

Say it isn’t so!  After all, what’s life without a little risk?

Also, Greg will be working remotely on this trip.  Which means I’m pretty much on my own with the kiddos during the daytimes Monday through Friday, including flying 3 little ones home on Thursday.

Shp.  Don’t say it.  Don’t even think it.  Definitely not Flaw #2.

Doesn’t this trip sound like a blast?

Greg and Ian on vacation

We think so, too!

In fun news, mostly for me, I’ve decided to bring you along on a Virtual Vacation with me.  (Hey, Greg’s working.  I need a grown-up to talk to.)  I’ll be posting on the blog as we go, keeping you up-to-date on our progress.  I figure this serves two purposes.

  1. Chatting with you allows us to keep a precise record of the depth of my insanity which will be of paramount importance to Greg when he seeks to have me committed me to a mental institution post-vacation.
  2. Juxtaposed against our schedule of exhaustion, you’re bound to feel more relaxed and rejuvenated simply by being smart enough not to ever, ever do anything as nutso as this trip.

Win/Win!

Stay tuned for more details like where we end up.  I’m going to need your help on this one!