Let this be a lesson for those of you without children (yet). Just stop now. Don't list off those things you won't ever do when you have kids. Don't even think about it. Because it will bite you in the butt.
I am quite positive that years ago before I had children I espoused something about what my husband and I intended to do for vacations with our kids. It went something like this... camping, National Parks, camping, culture of the big cities, National Parks. And there may have been statements that put the words "never" and "Disney" in the same sentence.
My grandmother took my sister and me to Disneyland when I was an awkward 13 year old and my sister was almost 10. Not exactly the ages to haul kids to Disneyland... but it was a memorable trip. We walked around Disneyland for a day or two riding rides. I have never been a rides person - even at 13. I did enjoy Space Mountain, but "It's a Small World" was probably more my speed.
I had saved my money for months so that I could buy an actual Swatch since the real ones weren't available in Casper, Wyoming. But then I couldn't stomach the notion of spending that much money on something to put on my wrist and I instead spent my money on random little trinkets.
I remember fighting with my grandmother a lot. Her telling us how ungrateful we were. And we probably were. But wow, it wasn't the ideal trip to Disney.
I didn't have a trip to Disneyland until I was a preteen. AB didn't go until he was an older teenager. Our kids certainly don't need Disney to lead a well rounded life.
When a coworker of mine (before I had kids) made a trip to Disney, squeezing it in before her son started kindergarten with the express purpose of "I don't want him to go to kindergarten without having been to Disneyland" I nearly puked.
So all that said...
Guess where we are going in November?
You will never guess.
I will give you three guesses and the first two don't count.
And you know what? I am actually really excited to haul my 6 and 3.5 year old to the Magic Kingdom!
I happened to get an invitation to submit an abstract to one of the leading conferences in my field... in Orlando. I wanted to go last year but had commited to going to DC to meet with two clients instead. So I couldn't go. This year, no such commitment and when I read the word "Orlando", I knew I had to submit.
Then a week or so ago my acceptance came and I decided to get serious about planning.
And wow things can erupt quickly!
Initially I just planned to keep whatever hotel I ended up with through work and the rental car and we would go hang out wherever our whims took us.
Well things have kind of evolved over the last week and suddenly we are talking Disney hotel package and all.
Yes, I admit I balked at these fabricated destination vacations in favor of camping and national parks. But we have tent camped exactly three times since Leif was born. I am 38 years old and have slept on the ground in a sleeping bag way way way too much. A tent with my husband, two children and two dogs holds very nearly no appeal.
I am not dissing the natural vacations actually. I still love them and since we do hope to get back to these types of trips once we get a travel trailer later this fall or so.
But here is where I am kicking my pre-kids self... easy vacations with the goal of strictly entertainment for the kids?
Sign me up.