Well we head back home tomorrow! We are picking up one of our sons in Atlanta then Texas here we come. This vacation has been very relaxing and I did get a lot accomplished kind of. I have been watching YouTube all week for hours on hours. My goal was to learn how to help other parents and friends of children and adults with special needs. I also got to see my cousin for the first time in probably 30 years. It felt like one days. We did a lot of catching up.
On this trip we have been in Texas(like duh), Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee. We have driven through at least 2-3 national parks, visited a distillery, picked up new magnets for the fridge and a shot glass for dad and have done lots and lots of porch sitting.
So the question is how did we survive two 17 year old boys who act like they are 6-7 years old? Did I mention the whining? 1. I got noise canceling earbuds. I know it sounds funny, but they do help. 2. I reserved this location a year in advance. 3. I packed food and snacks that I knew they would like. Please just make sure they can’t reach them!! I missed that part. 4. Try to follow your regular schedule. For meals, bedtime, bathing, etc. Most of our kids find comfort in normal. 5. Don’t forget that there are “stupid” people out there. Most just smile as they move out of the way or say something like “Are they twins?” I’m still working on that one. Finally how to pick where to stay?!?!
For our family travel has evolved over time. When the boys were little we needed to stay near Children’s Hospital in Dallas. Later our trips were primarily to visit family. However, in 2002 we did go to Florida with the help of Make-A-Wish and stayed at Give Kids the world. It was the first time in years our family felt normal!! Which is great and scary at the same time. But you might ask how do you do it now? So once again I will explain how it works for Our Family. 1. I bought a time share condo off of a popular auction site for around $250. Before the purchase I looked at their maintenance fees and what the trading power would be. 2. I started a savings account that I put $100 into a month. With that money I could pay they annual fee and I could then use a Listing company to switch it for something else and pay that fee. So here are the locations we have been to with the boys. Pigeon Forge, TN; Ruidoso, NM; Orlando, FL; Dillard, GA; Next year we go to Gautier, MS.
So yes it can be done and on a budget. Tomorrow I will give you more details on how to eat well, have fun and enjoy yourself.