Summer is definitely here in Alaska. Today the sun has been shining and the temperatures have entered the 60’s. (Considering our average summer temp last year was in the 50’s, it is warm!) The local school district is out for the summer and we are on a lighter workload in our homeschooling.
Naturally, we are thinking about summertime activities now!
Curious as to what ‘getaways’ I’d consider the top five for any childhood to be ‘complete’?
(1) Make a long distance drive to visit family. We did this for years when I was growing up and until our move to Alaska, I continued the tradition with my boys. While the Alcan highway is supposed to be an incredible drive, I do not relish the thought of over a week each way to reach family. My older boys can mark this one off their list, but not J! The longer the drive, the longer we planned to visit at our destination. Spending time with family members and hearing their stories might seem ‘boring’ at times to a child. But as an adult, I can say that I now cherish all the times we spent a week or two with family during the summer.
(2) During your long distance drive, plan to make a few stops along the way. Dad did this for us which afforded us the chance to see historic places like Williamsburg and Gettysburg over our multi-day drive from Louisiana to Rhode Island. When I was going from Ohio to Louisiana with the boys, I often combined it with a family reunion meeting mid-way or even a few museums in towns on our route. The science museum in Birmingham, Alabama was a favorite with my boys. Knowing you had something fun to do and a way to stretch your legs helped make the longer trip more bearable. If you aren’t making a long distance trip, hit some spots in your community.
(3) Visit an amusement park. To Mr. O there is little difference between big theme parks like Disney World and those under the Six Flags name. They all have rides, long lines, and tons of people. While it is not his cup of tea, I think every child should experience it once in their life for that point of reference. My older boys had the Six Flags experience. Honestly, I am a big fan of Disney and dream of taking them to Orlando, Florida. Disney in California is okay, but just not the same!
(4) Spend a day by the water. Okay, I’ll be honest and say that this will look different for us in Alaska. The thought of jumping into cold water is just not bringing warm, fuzzy feelings to mind. But, there is something therapeutic being in proximity of water. A day by the swimming pool could count, but has less likelihood for forging life long memories compared to a day at the beach.
(5) Sleep outdoors. In a tent or camper would be my personal preference for this one. Where is not as important as just doing it. Set up camp in your backyard or find somewhere close by to pitch your tent. Or, enjoy sleeping under the stars. Mr. O, P and R just got back from a short hunting trip along Prince William Sound where they camped. Of course, camping up here brings with it the need to think ahead about the bears! We are planning to camp as a family sometime this summer. I just haven’t decided if a camper rental needs to happen for me to have peace of mind.
There you have it… Laura O in AK’s top 5 summer ‘getaways’ for children to do while they are still a child
So, do you have any to add to the list?
Disclaimer ~ I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Alamo blogging program, for a gift card worth $25. For more information on how you can participate, click here.