With our impending 10th Wedding Anniversary just around the corner, I’ve been in full travel dreaming-and-planning mode. As part of our celebration, my husband and I plan to take advantage of my parents offer to stay with our two kids, ages 2 and 7, and take our first trip sans-kiddos, since having kids.
Traveling Without Kids – Should You Feel Guilty?
We have friends who have traveled without their kids starting when the children were quite young, who appear to do so regularly, effortlessly, and seemingly without guilt or any second thoughts whatsoever. In the spirit of brutal blogging honesty, I will tell you that I find myself judging them for this, just a bit.
But when I dig a little deeper… I know that it’s primarily stemming from my own jealousy. Partial jealousy of their circumstances which enable them to do so, but also jealousy that they can pull this off emotionally.
Because of my own excessive, typically daily guilt which I feel as a grown mom and wife (I can always find something. Yes I can.), I just plain envy those who don’t feel it. Oh, to head out on that 10 Day Cruise, carefree and not even worrying about missing those good night cuddles and kisses.
Other side of that coin? Parents need some time away, to remember they are actually a couple, who enjoys each others company! And I’m pretty sure my kids will survive.
Traveling Without Kids – How Long Should You Go?
That being established, it’s so hard to know how long of a trip this should feasibly be. Will the littlest one be ok for that long, first time away from both parents? Will the mom be ok for that long, away from both kids?!
Personally, we have decided on a week. And by “we”, I mean me. Sorry, but I think this decision needs to be made by mom. Or at least the parent who will feel the need to return the earliest. Which is probably mom.
Traveling Without Kids – Affecting Your Destination
I’ve blogged about taking a European trip in 2013, for our 10th Anniversary trip. Although my husband speaks German, and in the past lived and went to school in Germany for a couple of years; I’ve never been to Europe.
Being someone who enjoys trip planning almost as much as the actual vacation itself, I have been like a kid in a candy store with my European travel research and castle-inspired day dreaming. Thoroughly enjoying this finally semi-reality based decision making of where we would go, and what we wanted to see.
The bottom line has proven to be: By the time you spend that much money, traveling that far – you can’t just stay for 5 days of touring. You can’t. At least I can’t. The airline tickets are so expensive, and it would cross off at least 2 full days of our travel calendar simply to get there and back.
So between that and the expense, alas! We’re going to have to put my European Dream Trip on hold. Very sad me.
However, I won’t be giving up on this dream entirely. For us, it just makes more sense to wait awhile. I figure once we have a week long vacation away from the kids under all of our belts, and the kids are just a little older – I will still get my chance to tackle Europe someday. I also figure it’s a safe bet that Europe will still be there waiting for me in the future. That’s one of its primary allures for me in the first place.
Our Comprise Trip – Not Too Shabby
So here we go… the compromise trip. I’ve booked us a short, 3 night introductory Royal Caribbean Bahamas cruise for us Cruise Newbies. Leaving from Port Canaveral, Florida in February. (I think anyone who knows me very well can see where I’m going with this…) Hmmm… 2-3 more days left of our trip after the cruise, and we’re an hour from Orlando. What to do? What to do?
HA! Once my daughter gets a wee bit older and possibly starts reading my blog – I won’t be able to divulge these kind of family secrets here. You guessed it: We are going to Disney World for a couple of days, after our cruise! Oh. So. Excited.
We’ll be staying at the Royal Guest Rooms in Port Orleans Riverside Resort, and will probably only have a couple of days at the Parks. But what grand days they shall be! Being a mom of a child currently in the “I don’t do rides or attractions in the dark, 3D, or with even a remote possibility of being scared” zone… I’ve got a long list of Disney childhood favorites I can’t wait to hit. Hello, Space Mountain – we meet again, at last!
Understandably, I just can’t tell my poor daughter (who had greatly hoped to go to Disney this winter herself, which isn’t going to happen) where we are going. And of course, I’m going to feel a little guilty. And of course, she’s going to get Disney presents when I return from the trip – which I can fortunately sneak in under the guise of them being purchased at the Disney Store in the Orlando airport **wink, wink **.
But in the words of my husband (I just love this): “This trip is about us.”
*o* *o* *o*
Because this is an issue I have an inner struggle with – Please pass along any and all advice: Do you travel without your kids?