It’s that magical, very cold time of year when everyone wants to hibernate inside and watch TV and read books and drink cocoa and plan trips! Especially plan trips. And so, as a companion piece to my last post looking back at 2017’s travel, here’s the post about what we have planned so far for 2018.
2017 was our second full year of RVing, so I don’t consider us newbies exactly anymore, but we’re still always learning new things about our traveling style. One thing we’ve discovered over these past few months of trying to squeeze in weekend trips whenever we could…is that we really don’t so much like squeezed in weekend trips as a general rule. We’ve all agreed that we’d rather do a long weekend once a month or so than try to do more 2 night trips. That way we feel less rushed on the actual trips, since we have two full days to stay put, we feel like we can go a little farther and not just stick to a 2 hour or do radius from home, AND we feel less rushed at home trying to get everything done with only a couple of weekends a month with no trip planned.
And I’ve mentioned this before, but the kids especially have made it clear that they want a slightly slower pace on this summer’s big trip, with more time in the evenings to relax and do campfires and board games and all that. I think this summer’s destinations will (mostly) lend themselves to a slower touring pace than last summer’s did. Dave has a really hard time with this, because he wants to see All the Things, so the kids and I are working hard on convincing him that we’ll never see all the things and that that’s OKAY. We’ll still see a lot of things.
Less busy, more this:
Jekyll Island: We’re planning on finally making it to Jekyll Island for spring break this year! This might not sound like that amazing of an accomplishment, but we’ve tried to book a site at Jekyll Island Campground at least 2 other times and found it full (I don’t know that it’s really that hard to get into so much as we kept trying to get very popular holiday weeks). Dave’s sister and her family should be joining us, so we’re looking forward to lots of cousin bonding. Also sea turtles and alligators and whatnot.
Assorted weekends: in the aforementioned long weekend category, we have the Traveler’s Rest KOA booked for President’s Day weekend (we were supposed to go there over New Year’s, but we rescheduled because it was going to be so very cold/possibly snowy). The only potential snag here is that this was one of the kids’ Christmas presents:
We have four itty bitty baby chicks right now, currently living in a plastic bin in our bedroom. Normally they’d be plenty big to live outside by the end of February (in which case we can just have someone come by to feed them and check on them same as we do the cats for weekend trips), but we’ll have to see if the winter continues to be unusually cold or not. There’s also a chance we’ll decide that I stay home and chick-sit and Dave does his first trip solo with the kids. Which would make me both happy and sad. On one hand, I haven’t had three whole nights to myself since before Abe was born; on the other hand, I’m an Aries who hates to be left out of things, especially fun things like trips.
That’s all we have booked right now, but we’ll probably also do a long weekend somewhere in March and again in May–we talked a little with my brother and sister-in-law about going to Asheville with them in May, so that’s one possibility; they have a VW bus, but we’ve yet to camp with them.
Last year’s 8 week summer trip was so fabulous that we’re doing another one! This time we’re headed up the east coast of the US and then to Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and New Brunswick (briefly) in Canada. I’m ridiculously excited about it. We have most of the campgrounds booked already (a lot of the Canadian ones aren’t taking summer reservations yet) and are deep into the day by day itinerary planning phase. Here’s a list of the stops we have planned:
*New York, NY
*Cape Cod, MA
*Acadia National Park, ME
*Grand Pre National Historic Site
*Annapolis Royal, NS
*Baddeck/Cape Breton, NS
*Fundy National Park
*Old Orchard Beach, ME
*Mill Run, PA
*Fancy Gap KOA on the Blue Ridge Parkway
Last year when I wrote this post, I talked about how we were going to finish out the year with a trip to Disney World. And we had a trip all booked in December, when we realized it was for the same week Ari and Gus’s acting class was doing its end of the semester performances. Oops. Planning school year trips with school aged kids is hard, it turns out.
But! We have a new trip booked for October! I’m terrified something is going to come along and force us to cancel again, but, if not, it’s going to be really awesome. BETTER than our December trip that we canceled would have been, even, because the new Toy Story stuff should be open AND because I’m planning to go down early with the kids and stay in a cabin at a KOA and then Dave will drive down and meet us at Fort Wilderness with the trailer mid-week (since he can’t take an entire week off school). So everyone except Dave gets a whole week at Disney, which is really how I like to do things. And adding extra days to the tickets after the first 3 or 4 is so cheap it seems silly NOT to stay for a week. Anyway, that’s what I told myself while I was booking the cabin. So ALSO very excited about this trip. For awhile we did Disney trips every year, but it kept getting more and more expensive (some of this is because our kids got bigger/more, but mostly it’s because Disney raises prices at an astounding pace) and we also wanted to have the time and money to see other places….so we haven’t been back since Abe was about four months old.
I’m sure we’ll also fit in a weekend trip or two….Dave will be using all his personal days for the Disney trip, so if we want long weekends we’ll be limited to the ones that are already built into the calendar. But the fall travel budget will be pretty much zapped by Disney anyway, so it’s probably just as well.
And, finally, I’m hoping we can close out the year with a week in St. Augustine between Christmas and New Year’s. We had actually planned on doing that this past year, but then we decided not to book it because we were going to Disney World earlier in December. But then THAT didn’t happen, but by the time we realized it wasn’t happening the entire state of Florida had already been booked solid, and everywhere else we thought about going was going to be approximately a zillion degrees below zero, so we ended up with a couple of nights in a hotel in Birmingham. Which was fun, but not the same as a year end week of camping (but just as expensive, even with hotel points. This is why we have a trailer). Lesson learned: book Florida trip as early as possible.
And with that, I need to get back to my day by day itinerary planning, if you’ll excuse me. Who else is hibernating and making travel plans right now? Where ya headed?