My husband and daughters convinced me to go on a mini staycation this past weekend. We live within driving distance of Banff and Lake Louise. It is currently SnowDays at Banff and the Magic Ice Festival at Lake Louise. We have lived in Alberta, Canada for nearly 12 years now, but have never gone to visit Lake Louise with our daughters even though it is only a 2-hour drive for us. For some reason, whenever it’s suggested to go do something near us with the kids that will have some cost to it, I get plagued by ‘there’s always next year-itis!’
You see, I love going on vacation and get excited to take in as many sights as we can when far away from home. Spend family holiday money checking out sights close to home, though? Well, then I become less enthused. For some reason, I take it for granted that we will always have another opportunity to experience the sights and sounds of home “another time.” However, I met another mom and her kids this weekend that has left me believing it may be time to count my staycation blessings.
The Conversation that Left Me Reflecting
I was at the bottom of the sledding hill at Lake Louise making sure my daughters would stop on their sleds before flying onto the walking path. This other mom’s daughter joined my
“Wow!” I respond, somewhat amazed that her son would ask for snow for Christmas.
We continue to chat and I discover that they live only minutes away from Disneyland and are very close to a nice beach as well.
“That must be awesome! We’ve never been to Disneyland,” I sheepishly admit. “We plan to one day, but just haven’t made it happen yet.”
“Well, this is Disneyland to my kids! You are truly blessed to have all of this so close to you!” she exclaims. “We are loving taking it all in! My kids have tried skating, snowboarding, and sledding. We are off dogsledding this afternoon! It has been an awesome vacation! My kids are begging me to come back every year!”
I find myself thinking about how much my children love experiencing winter activities as she shares how much her own children are absolutely loving their winter holiday.
My husband, daughters, and I thoroughly enjoyed taking in SnowDays and the Ice Magic Festival this weekend. I am pleased that we didn’t hold off until yet another year. I guess we always thought it is so close that we can just go ‘anytime.’ The problem with that was that we still had yet to make it happen until now!
Another year seems to come and go. Finally, we make it a priority and end up loving it! I question why we don’t take the time to experience some of these relatively local attractions more often. It seems any vacation we take, we do our best to see and experience all that we can in the short time we are there. I never know when or if we will be back, so we decide to make the most of it.
Yet why do I too often take for granted that there will always be a better day or time to check out amazing attractions close to home? This other mom has me realizing that we have our own version of Disneyland right out our back door and it is a blessing any time we choose to experience it! We likely all have some staycation blessings to count when we make the choice to count them. Even snow can be one of them!
How about you?
Do you make the most of your local area and take the time to experience all that you can near you? Or do you tend to be more like I’ve been and take local opportunities for granted, finding yourself waiting for a better day or year? Do you ever count your staycation blessings? Let me know in the comments below.