I just put up our vacation countdown the other day. It’s counting down the number of days until I leave for Florida with two of my kids to attend MVMCP and go on a 3-night cruise. I feel like we are crawling to the finish line, and that vacation countdown is what keeps us going.
Worst October Ever
Truthfully, this has been a very, very bad month. I try not to post things about my family that are too personal, so I’m going to vaguebook why October has been awful.
This past month, we’ve dealt with every family member getting sick. Some have been sick multiple times with different ailments. I’ve had bronchitis and laryngitis the entire month. I had to miss out on a few important events due to sickness.
One kid was in the hospital for two days with two emergency procedures. I was too sick to visit the hospital to be with my kid. One kid had his life threatened by another student. Another kid has been bullied.
My husband had to deal with canceled flights and extended business trips. We’ve had unexpected, expensive car repairs. The final straw happened the other night when one of my kids had to quit an activity that we’ve all spent a lot of time and money on.
I know things could be worse. But at the same time, we are all just so done with the month of October.
How a Vacation Is the Answer (Sort-of)
When I planned this short November getaway, I had no idea just how badly we would need it. I can’t wait to leave town and get a change of scenery and a break from our bad luck. This trip is giving my kids something to look forward to.
I realize that a vacation can’t fix everything. The problems we have at home don’t disappear. I discovered that last summer when I spent three weeks at the beach and expected to run away from all stress (didn’t happen!) But, taking a break and getting a fresh perspective sure can help. Plus, when we get back the kids still have a whole week off school for Thanksgiving.
How Miles and Points Help
We didn’t pay for this entire upcoming trip on miles and points. With the exception of about $200 in Disney Rewards points, I used cash to pay for the cruise and MVMCP tickets. However, I did use miles and points for flights and one hotel night.
But, by using miles and points to cover the majority of our trips earlier in the year (including Spring Break in Phoenix, NYC and Australia/New Zealand), we had cash available to pay for this cruise. Had we not used miles and points for those earlier trips, there’s no way we would be able to travel this fall.
Thinking Ahead to Next Fall
Seeing how badly we need this fall vacation, I’ve decided to plan one for next year as well. My kids will likely have a 4-day weekend in October, so my goal is to fit a short trip within that time frame.
My husband and I should be rid of Chase 5/24 restraints next year. One or both of us will likely get Southwest cards again so that we can get free flights for this fall trip. I’ve already got some ideas churning.
Have you ever been barely surviving the days leading up to a planned vacation? Does your vacation countdown help you get through some rough patches?
Nancy lives near Dallas, Texas, with her husband and three kids. Her favorite vacations include the beach, cruising and everything Disney.