I thought it was time for something funny for a change. I’m tired of posting sad commentaries. It’s time to get down to some serious humor. This is an old post, but reflects some of the things you may be going through as you do that final family vacation for the summer.
Gone are the days when we’d pack three children, a dog and half our worldly belongings into the car and take off for a family vacation. Oh the joys of the open road – where you can leave all your troubles behind and just enjoy the blessings of God’s creation . . . well almost.
Our Christmases were often spent driving from Minneapolis to Milwaukee during a blizzard and icy road conditions. We’d pack up the playpen, (one of those devices that would now be considered child abuse,) Christmas presents (often homemade) and enough snacks to satisfy everyone for the 5-6 hour trip.
Our first camping excursion taught me how to put up a tent, build a fire, cook over it and wash dishes in the open air. I’d never been camping in my life, but my husband loved it and wanted his children to experience the rich rewards. The tent was set up, car unloaded, we ate under the tall pines and it was lovely – until a tornado came spinning through our campground in the middle of the night.
The children were fast asleep when the tent started to sway in the wind. My husband scurried outside in his underwear to secure our habitat to a tree, as I held it up from within, with water dripping down into my armpits. The kids slept through the entire thing.
There were the really long distant trips which required a certain amount of courage and stamina on the part of all of us. Spending hours in a vehicle with sweaty bodies, cheese curds growing moldy under your feet and tension building to the boiling point, was often more than one person could handle. Still we persevered, through mountains, valleys and long stretches of nothing.
We’d sing old songs until our voices cracked. We played the alphabet game so many times, that we finally started doing it backwards to make it more interesting. My husband, true pioneer that he is, seemed to be driven by some uncontrollable force to pack in as many miles in one day as possible.
One day we spent in a car dealership, waiting for our car to be repaired after someone rear ended us. The relationship of our family to the Griswolds was becoming evident with the dawn of each new day. Luckily, the dog was not tied to the rear bumper and Aunt Agnes was not strapped to the top of the car, but we had our share of similar disasters.
Family time together can make for some wonderful memories. Through those times, we had an opportunity to learn more about each a chance to enjoy each others’ company, but as for me, I much preferred doing it in a Holiday Inn.
Time you spend together is never wasted. BTW, this was before smart phones and other electronics. “Never leave your children to their own devices,” a quote from my husband.