I remember summers in my childhood when we didn't take a formal vacation. It usually involved a large house expense, like the need to paint the house, or purchase a new car. A sheer necessity that made traveling somewhere cost prohibitive. But even when we couldn't go back to Serbia for the summer, we still visited local historical sites. And because we lived in Massachusetts (i.e. smaller state with closer borders), we would go an visit other states (like Maine, Rhode Island) or just go to Cape Cod.
But now, there's a term for what my parents (and I am sure countless others) did when household budgets were a little tight. It's called a Staycation.
staycation (stay-cation, or stacation)
A vacation spent close to home. With the price of gas soaring, a staycation is
what most Americans will experience during the summer of 2008.
This summer, the American Automobile Association (AAA) said the average North American vacation will cost $244 per day for two people for lodging and meals. So multiply that by a brood our size and you get a head-shaking "I don't think so." And of course, we have the Year Round School schedule to consider as well.
As this summer comes to an end, our staycation comes to a close as well. Even though we stayed at home, we did enjoy -
- 1,170 minutes of swimming lessons.
- 1,680 minutes of summer camps.
- 630 minutes spent viewing summer blockbuster movies.
- 116 minutes in coffee house queues waiting for Mommy's coffee order so she could be fueled up to deliver the kids to the next event.
- Unaccounted for minutes reading 24 library books as part of our Summer Reading Program.
- Countless hours in the backyard, parks and trails around our house.
All in all, I declare our staycation a success. Perhaps next break, which for us is in October, we'll get a chance to escape Nevada Territory but for now, we're enjoying the heat (101F yesterday) and the sprinklers/misters in our backyard.
Incidentally, the picture "postcard" above was taken from Alex's Room, last night, which has the best view of the setting sun behind the Sierras. If I squint my eyes a little and insert palm trees, I could pretend I am in Hawaii...Maui...Kaanapali Beach...cold, frothy, fruity beverage in my right hand while I sit in one of those wonderful hammocks they have handy for a quick repose.
Back to reality, Alex and I are off to go see "Star Wars: Clone Wars" today. Wishing you a moment where you can escape some of this mid-August heat.