Live, Love, Blend:
With or Without the KIDS?
We don’t vacation much. I could blame it on our busy schedules, or the cost-prohibitive nature of traveling as a party of 7. Both of those are valid excuses, but the truth is, vacationing as a blended family can be so complicated that it’s easier to avoid it all together. Especially when the burden of planning, scheduling, shopping, arranging and otherwise juggling the entire event falls on one person. You moms know exactly what I mean.
For example, my husband would love to go skiing. He has brought it up several times over the years, and he means ALL of us. He starts talking about how fun it would be and my mind immediately starts making a list of all the clothing and supplies seven Texans would need to keep from freezing our thin skins, plus ski/snowboard/boot rentals, lessons for the first-timers, travel and lodging, and do you have any idea how much they eat?! My poor husband’s dream vacation has just snowballed into my panic attack. Ok, perhaps it’s not quite that dramatic, but you get the idea.
My dilemma, however, is more than the effort and expense of the large group. I have to wonder if family vacations wouldn’t be more enjoyable if we left a kid or two at home. In other words, can we take just the 4 boys since they are the ones who live with us full time, and risk leaving out the 10-year-old girl? She travels a lot with her mom’s family so is it fair that she would get multiple vacations if we brought her along? But what would the repercussions be if we didn’t?
Or what about the 21-year-old? Just because he lives at home does that mean we are still obligated to fund his fun? At what point should he be planning his own vacations?
These are the types of questions that go through my mind. I know I should have such an abundance of love and generosity that I ignore questions of cost and convenience, but seriously, why pay to drag teen-aged boys to Walt Disney World just so they can say they’ve been? You know they would complain the entire time. Or why take a young girl on a mountain hiking trip where you fear the boys might leave her behind? Perhaps it’s best to just sneak away without any of them!
This very topic came up last week while my husband and I were vacationing in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. We were there as part of an incentive trip with our network marketing business. We loved having a chance to get away just the two of us (something we’d never done before). However, at least twice a day some sort of comment would be made about how fun it would be to bring the kids next time. To which I’d think, “yes” and “no”.
I’d love to hear your suggestions. Are you a “like it or not, you’ve gotta take them all” person, or a “just stick with couples trips” person, or a “take one or two kids at a time so you can choose destinations that reflect their interests, and yours” person? I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!