Monday, May 7, 2012

the american vacation

This weekend, we took an overnight trip to Holland, Michigan. Holland is historically a Dutch town. They have all sorts of Dutch attractions and, the first weekend in May, a tulip festival. We felt like this short trip was a sort of "test drive" for longer family vacations in the future.

Overall, we did fairly well. In fact, we managed to nail quite a few elements of the quintessential family vacation:

- Stressed mother yelling at everybody while trying to pack up and get out the door
- Father frantically finishing a few last-minute work items before heading out
- Savored moments of quiet in the car
- Child being most excited about staying in a hotel
- Poor night's sleep for parents in crowded quarters
- "Make your own waffle" station at the continental breakfast
- Three trips to the car to bring out all the luggage needed for 1 night's stay
- A slate of outdoors activities and ... cold and rainy all day long
- Emergency trip to a local mall for forgotten supplies
- Watching demonstrations at a historic village (you know, cheese-making, candle-making, clog-making)
- Lunch that includes greasy fries
- Losing the security blanket at the historic village
- Spending more money than we budgeted
- Temper tantrum in the family restroom during a diaper change
- Desperate search for a delicious, unique, reasonably-priced and family-friendly place for dinner in an unknown city
- Child insisting on singing songs all the car ride home
- Zonked out children content to sleep in the morning after we get home, but must be woken up to make it on time for 9am church

Some other quintessential family vacation elements we (thankfully) missed out on:
- Overzealous parent insisting on stopping at every historic monument on the way
- Someone throwing up
- Leaving a child behind
- Endless family photos with multiple cameras
- Car trouble
- Getting lost

Now for a few of the photos we managed to snap.
Dutch dancers at the Nelis Dutch Village.

Can you find the white people in the audience?

At the Grand Rapids Children's Museum. Genghis tucked himself away in the play animal shelter.

Giant light bright!


More bubbles.

Too many bubbles?

Xena preferred to see the city at a 90 degree head angle.


Sherry said...

My mom was the "stop at every historic monument" parent. I do not know how my dad managed not to drive the car off a cliff or something. (He grew up traveling from California to Florida twice a year, so his idea of a road trip is to get in the car and never stop for anything except gas. Seriously. That is probably why we had so few family road trips.)

Will Genghis recover from his lost security blanket?

Rita said...

Whose family are you referring to for your list? Especially the stressed yelling mother? And why do you suppose you now work at or with museums? Road trips determine careers!