Thursday, 31 January 2013

Travel bug grounded.

Everyone who knows me knows I have a serious case of the travel bug. It's not all my fault, it runs in my family. I say this as my parents are preparing to head on a two week cruise in the next month or so. It's become pretty standard in our family to go somewhere at least once a year, often even twice.

It wasn't always that way. I didn't know it as a child, but money was pretty tight in our family. My dad was self employed and my mom was at home with us. Somehow they managed to scrape together enough money to send us to a great Christian school, which left little room for other things. Camping! That was our family vacation every year and we loved it! We did manage one or two larger vacations on a serious budget, and they usually involved being gifted someone's timeshare condo or doing a lot of driving.

Later in my teenaged years my dad ended up becoming a supervisor for a large construction company. Things became financially more comfortable and my parents ended up buying into a time share. It's really been a wonderful thing for our family because it provided yearly opportunities to go away on a real holiday as a family. Holidays for us haven't just been about seeing new places and laying on the beach. It meant a full week or more of straight family bonding time and those memories stick out strongly in my brain.

Once I graduated high school and started working most of my money saved went to trips, with or without my family. Mexico, New York, Europe, California, I did whatever I could. Then I enrolled in college, met my fiancée and started flying to Ontario instead of the beach.

My husband was so not use to this travel lifestyle when he married into my family. He grew up in a small town that was a good 6+ hours from a major airport. And he had just finished a good 4 years in University as a poor student when we were wed. Suddenly he was thrust into a family where normal dinner conversation involved sentences like,"So where are we going next?" And "What's the plan for AFTER this next trip?" Sounds crazy I know, but when you are working with time share folks everything has to be booked far out haha.

We've been married for almost 4 years now and in that time we've been blessed to have gone to Hawaii twice (once for our wedding), Disney twice and on two cruises. Yes I realize that's not normal, thats why I said BLESSED! We aren't rolling in dough here, far from it. But we've managed to score some really good deals and as mentioned, the timeshare helps ALOT!y

But this year we aren't going anywhere. At all! Camping won't even be happening because I don't plan to sleep in a tent with a 2 month old. We've really got to buckle down and save now because our family is growing and we just won't have room for us all in a townhouse. We are trying to watch the budget extra closely so that we can achieve a different kind of dream - a detached house with a basement and hopefully a bit of a yard.

So this means the traveling I've become accustomed to will be gone, at least for a while. Yes, next year we plan to go back to Disneyland with the kids, but that'll probably be it for the next 5 years. I whole heartedly admit that that will be very hard for me! It'll be a lifestyle change for sure. I've gotta say though, having young children will definitely help me stay grounded. Hawaii with a toddler is just not as relaxing as Hawaii with all adults haha.

So here I sit, drinking my cup of Kona coffee, dreaming of the beach while a toddler runs around me making car noises, loudly bringing me back to reality. But that's okay, cause he is pretty darn cute and brings me joy in a whole other way that vacations cannot.

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