I love my family to pieces, and I’ve always been one of those people who will choose a night in with Mom & Pops over… well, most things.
So… when my mom invited me on a Mom-and-Kris-only vacation, you better believe I was totally on board. My mom & I differ slightly in our ideal vacations – while I daydream about meeting locals and hiking Machu Picchu, Mom leans more towards reading a good novel poolside. In this mid-March cold, I was down for anything. So, a cruise. A cruise! Yes, a cruise.
Slightly weary (allow me to repeat: a cruise), I stepped on board (David Foster Wallace’s “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again” in hand, for the much-needed irony) and quickly realized this was going to be a really good time. And honestly? It truly was.
We had adventure (cave diving in Cozumel, kayaking in Roatán), relaxation (I zipped through Fitzgerald’s “The Beautiful and Damned” during the hours spent at the beach and by the pool) and bonding (long, leisurely meals; shopping in Miami; wine…). Frankly, it was a blast.
That said, I have a few tips for traveling with family on vacations they’ve planned…
- Make Time For Yourself: This is especially important if there are only a couple of you traveling together. Each night I’d go dancing while Mom wound down at the lounge… it was necessary not only for new conversation fodder, but also as a way to recharge from the day and take a break from constant companionship.
- Vacation “Your” Way: Even if you’re cruising the touristy spots when you’d rather be more “behind the scenes,” you can still find ways to vacation “your” way. For me, it meant finding a small restaurant tucked into a hidden corner of Roatán, where I chatted with locals and enjoyed some an amazing lunch.
- Keep Busy: Hours of R&R may be fun (understatement of the century), but the stories we’ll share for years to come are of our adventures. The monkey we saw roaming free in a shop, the lioncub on a leash, the tour through the forest off the beach in Honduras. Even on the ship, we went to some of the cheesy shows and presentations, and a lot of them entertained us in ways we never would’ve imagined.
- Wine!: I’m kidding here… kind of. But do find a way to have fun in a way you both can enjoy. Mom and I? We enjoy our wine… even if after a few too many glasses I might get on my “FEMINISM! WOMEN’S EQUALITY!” pedestal.
Most importantly? Have fun. Duh 😀