Thursday, October 31, 2013

Family Road Trips - Nostalgia Waiting to Happen

I used to believe that road trips were just some way our parents tortured my siblings and I.  Why torture? Well, by having to sit together for hours at a time, being dragged out of bed at 5 am, gearing up the car and being told "Pack a bag". I remember thinking, who does this? Who wakes a kid up at 5 am on a Saturday no less, during the first weekend of summer/spring/winter break?

Those days are now gone, and I find that it's my husband and I planning impromptu "family stay-cations" Friday evening, then waking up our own children and having their bags packed ready to go.  I miss those days, I remember my dad working so much that we hardly ever saw him, but you know what I do remember? Our family road trips.

Being the youngest sibling, I distinctly remember being a royal pest.  Begging my sister to sing made up songs, and scolding her if she didn't do them right.  I remember my dad being "lost" and then winding up in these quaint tourist towns and getting out of the car like he had planned it this way all along.

We loved our family vacations so much, that even at 18 (yes, that's me in the 1990's black top) I would go with my parents.  Pictured from L -R Myself, my mom and my nephew, who is now 18, the age I was in this picture.
Taken at Sonoma Train Station - A place we ended up where my dad was not "lost" mmm, hmmm. 
Picture taken in 1997.

This is my husband and my three boys. I took them to that very same area in Sonoma, and they got to ride a miniature train.  I hope they can look back on these memories just as fondly as I will and do.
Picture taken in 2011.

I remember begging my dad to take me to the Hollywood Wax Museum, he woke me up one morning and said, "Get ready, let's go." And he and I spent the afternoon walking around Hollywood waiting for the Wax Museum to open. The anticipation was too much for a 9 year old to handle, I remember trying to figure out how they made the wax figures and clutching my hands so tight around his that my knuckles turned white as we walked through the HORROR Chambers!!! *shudder*

For me, family vacations are not just memories on a photograph, a still of just ONE moment.  No, for me it's a joyous sense of nostalgia, that years later, builds up inside and the joy it brings, as if it just happened the day before. While my siblings, cousins and I tease each other about being pests, or getting bored, we can all agree that those were some of the best times we ever had.