I am writing this post while on vacation in Colorado. Karen and I are enjoying the cool weather, majestic scenery and getting our share of fly fishing therapy.
One purpose of this post is to serve as a reminder – a reminder for me when we are planning our summer next year. You see, we often hesitate and go back and forth over whether to vacation and if so, for how long. Note to self: Go on vacation! It is well worth the time and money.
The time away from home has been extraordinary. Karen and I have grown closer and enjoyed the extended time together. It seems like the hectic pace of everyday life saps our energy and sometimes our zeal for one another. Pulling away for a vacation allows us to reconnect and rekindle our relationship.
Another benefit of vacation is how I get to thinking bigger. The down-time seems to stoke my future-casting. I start to ask myself deeper questions: What do I want in life? Why am I here?
I start to dream about “what if” scenarios instead of the more limiting “Oh well” type of thinking. Rather than thinking about today, my thoughts drift to five, ten and twenty years in the future.
Vacationing is an excellent time to make memories. Memories from past vacations are one of the strongest bonds that help define our family. We still laugh about the time several years ago that our older three kids got into some hot sauce named “Toxic Waste” at a burrito place in Crested Butte.
After a short while, they all three wound up crying in unison – Ben and Zach with burning mouths and Emma somehow getting it in her eyes. As we consoled the suffering, all Karen and I could do was laugh! A trip to the ice cream store across the street helped to quench the fire.
(The photo below is one that I took this week of the “Wall of Fire” when we strolled into the same burrito place for old times sake.)
Even today, we made a memory that will last a lifetime. Karen and I were fly fishing and all of a sudden I heard her yelp. I looked up and she had a dry fly stuck into her lip! She was saying, “elp me, elp me” with a little bit of a lisp.
Even though in pain, she had the presence of mind to say “take a picture!” before we proceeded to extract the hook from her lip. The hook didn’t go deep, and we had a great laugh together after the fly was out of her mouth – and we captured the image to share with the rest of our family (see picture below). By the way, she proceeded to out-fish me and caught a really nice 15 inch brown trout on a dry fly!
I guess what I’m saying is “Vacations are good” – and not just because of fun times and new places. Vacations strengthen our family relationships, expand the horizons of our thinking and create defining memories for years to come.