Vacation Processes—Getting Ready

Growing up:

My family regularly took a ski vacation in the Winter to the Adirondacks of New York. To balance the budget, we drove slightly shorter to the Berkshires of New York and camped at Taconic State Park right next to the small town of Copake Falls. When taking any extended trip my father had a checklist regarding shutting down parts of the house. Things like “empty and shut down the freezer”, and “turning off water.” Departing in the car, my mother prepared for the three times circling around the block and then going back in to check for the third time. Checking twice is never enough that third time does the trick.


Now that my siblings and Dad live in separate households the getting ready for vacation processes differ. Though they do echo our planning and responsibility ethos. As noted previously we no longer gather at Christmas time in Maryland we target summer. We rotate who is in charge of where we vacation. Typically, the where remains close to where that person lives with the caveat that the final destination be no more than three hours from a major airport though two is preferred. Then there is the jockeying for the window of when. For many years we quickly narrowed to July because the Arizona family starts school in early August and the East Coast families don’t get out of school until nearly the end of June. The summer camp weeks and the possible professional conference obligation narrows it further.

With a couple of weeks designated the organizing sibling then scours the internet for vacation house rentals that can accommodate our large size- 7 adults and 5 children, though the children are growing up so more adults can now be counted. Dog friendly houses are appreciated; however, they are not always chosen. A couple of choices are offered, one is chosen, money secures the rental.

Then every family’s takes responsibility to arrange their travel which we now share over a google drive folder.  Tracking down emails had become tiresome. The grocery shopping list resides on the shared drive.  T-minus two or three weeks the next phase of Meixner vacation processes happens.

This year, 2018, the chosen place is Park City, Utah to which my sister Joan’s family recently moved. Still mulling over my travel options:  flying or drive.  Plenty of time to determine.

Have a Productive Day,

Anne Meixner

Dear Reader, please share your comments and stories that are sparked by this piece. Do you gather with your siblings on an annual basis?  Does your family have certain must do’s before planning a vacation? See Contribute for how you can share a story at The Engineers’ Daughter.

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