We plan a vacation every July. The timing is picked for us as our vacation coincides with the week that the teachers at Junior’s preschool have determined is the week that they will have had enough of other people’s children. We either give the teachers a break or face up to the very real possibility of a horrible incident involving Play-Doh, popscicle sticks and face paint….
This year we had grand plans of touring New England with MaryBeth’s folks. Then reality set in. We set our fare-watchers on Orbitz and Kayak and waited for emails telling us that airfares had come back down to earth. Not a single email came our way. When fares finally hit $650 and gave no indication of dropping, we joined the staycation bandwagon.
It’s fun and odd to be a tourist in your own town. It turns out that there is a LOT to do in and around Boulder. Maybe that’s why there so many tourists here all summer. We kept the schedule somewhat fluid – we aren’t “going home” at the end of week, after all. That also helped us to avoid the vacation death-march that is all too common. Like trying to see everything at the Smithsonian in a morning – sprinting past/through what you came to see or do rather defeats the point of being there.
We also tried to avoid the trite touristy (and expensive) options and focus on everyday family-oriented activities that normal dual-income parents would be lucky to partake in once a month and that stay-at-home parents do more frequently for the sake of their sanity.
The week in review:
Monday: Since time is in abundance on staycation, the day starts with a super-special bus ride to gymnastics class, followed by a lazy afternoon on the trampoline and an evening of baking Congo Bars.
Tuesday: A bike ride to the local playground for a morning of crawdad “fishing”, baseball, and bike riding. (A prize to anyone who can identify the bug in this picture!) The afternoon was geared to the whole family with a tour at Haystack Mountain Goat Farm followed by a deep tasting of their great cheeses. Junior (and his folks!) loves cheese. Since Dad “had” to work in the morning, Mom took the evening off to accompany a friend to an Abbondanza-sponsored workshop on Ayurvedic cuisine.
Wednesday: An early morning trip to the Denver Zoo, followed by a nice rest in the cool basement. Despite having broken the local record for consecutive days above 90 degrees, we also biked down to the Farmers’ Market and Boulder’s own Band on the Bricks.
Thursday: Another trip to the local park for Junior and Dad, followed by yet another time-honored way to beat the heat – a movie! Wall-e was the movie of choice, and was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
Friday: It’s not a summer vacation unless you’ve gone swimming! Choices abound here in Boulder, including the cool pools and slides at the Boudler Recreation centers, the public pools at Spruce St. and Scott Carpenter Park, and the ever-popular-slice-of-1950 Eldorado Pool (OK, that one is touristy but the setting is too amazing to pass up) Junior chose Eldo, where we ran into a few of his schoolmates.
Friday night was a special treat and, at the suggestion of Dave and Megan, we found ourselves at the County Fair. More specifically, we found ourselves at the Demolition Derby. Needless to say, that was a HUGE hit with everyone. Combined with the fair rides after the Derby, and it is fair to say that there were at least two little boys who were in heaven that night.
Saturday & Sunday: A little break from the vacation, with lots of ordinary stay-at-home stuff…a fine end to the perfect staycation.