What, you may ask, would vacation plans have to do with homeschooling? Quite a bit, actually. For one thing, like many homeschoolers, we take advantage of the flexibility of our schedule in order to plan vacations when it works for us. We rarely need to plan around a school calendar. Also, a lot of our vacations do include stops at national parks or museums or something that will be counted as a field trip at some point. But more specifically, this will be a year when our graduating student gets a big say in where we'll go and what we'll do.
This will be the Summer of Landon!
Back in 2010, when our oldest son was about to graduate, the hubster and I realized that the summer vacation that year would likely be the last time we could count on Harrison being part of the family vacation. He would be in broadcast school come September, and after that, he might wind up moving away to take a job. Even if he lived at home and worked after finishing broadcast school (which is what wound up happening), he would likely not have the freedom - or desire - to go on vacations with us regularly. So we sat down with him and asked him what he would like to do during the Summer of Harrison. There were some limits, of course, because we did have to stay within budget, and we had to be able to do the trip during certain weeks when we were all available. The Summer of Harrison took us to the Cleveland area, because he wanted to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Football Hall of Fame, and Cedar Point. And see a Great Lakes lighthouse, if possible, which we made happen at Marblehead Lighthouse State Park and at the East Harbor State Park beach.
Spencer graduated in 2013, and it was a lot harder to get out of him what he would like to do for the Summer of Spencer. Although he likes roller coasters and thrill rides, he definitely dislikes the crowds at theme parks and he really isn't comfortable staying at hotels, so he had trouble coming up with a destination where the pros heavily outweighed the cons for him. Eventually, he told us that he really would like to return to Alberta to visit my family, which worked out ever so nicely, because my parents were celebrating their 50th anniversary that year. In the end, it wound up as the Autumn of Spencer instead, but it was an epic trip. We flew to Spokane, then spent a couple of days at Glacier National Park before driving to Calgary. Our time in the Calgary area included a day in Banff National Park and lots of time to visit with family and some old friends. On the way back to Spokane for our return flight, we went by way of Kimberley, BC, which was an inspiration for my name!
So now we are wondering what the Summer of Landon will hold. Honestly, we haven't made any decisions yet, and are still very much at the idea-gathering stage. Landon has expressed interest in a barbecue road trip, so we may wind up on a circle route that allows us to try out some barbecue in some combination of the Carolinas, Georgia, Memphis, St Louis, or Kansas City. Don't think we'll make it to Texas, much as we'd like to! Or maybe we'll come up with a road trip plan that includes Columbus and a visit to Harrison. Maybe beaches, or mountains, or adventures. Or . . . who knows?!
How do you decide your vacation destinations? Leave a comment and let me know!
This post is linked at Blogging Through the Alphabet, hosted by Cristi at Through the Calm and Through the Storm and Meg at Adventures with Jude. We're back after a week long break, and we're all featuring the letter V this week.
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