Why Take a Family Vacation?

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As the warm breezes blow through my hair, I’m transported back to days of yore.

Children splashing at the shore, sand seeping through toes and bathing suits.

Why Take a Family Vacation - Marty's Musings

Waves chasing the wee ones as they squeal in contagious joy. 


That was a terrific walk down the family vacation memory lane, but it’s not my life anymore.

My children are no longer young. At age 15 and 16 my youngest two are on the verge of all things adult.

Why Should You Take a Family Vacation? from Marty's Musings

As they make their way in an often cruel world I pray the foundation we have tried to provide in spite of their painful beginnings will be built on on solid rock.

Why Should You Take a Family Vacation? from Marty's Musings 

As a newlywed husband, my oldest son is living full thrust in the adult world, making his way on his own.

A man and a woman wearing glasses and smiling at the camera

As the soon to be mama of baby Aiden, my oldest daughter will be juggling the demands of work and motherhood.

A person sitting at a beach

I hope so desperately that I have modeled sacrificial motherhood, but in all honesty I fear I have failed. Oh how hard it is to put feet to words when life is chaotic and the everyday world of mothering is exhausting.

Maybe I modeled brokenness in a way that my children will need one day.

Maybe I taught them dependence on God the Father when there was no light in a very dark tunnel.

Maybe they will remember the times tears turned to laughter when there was no other way to survive. 

Maybe survival was the greatest gift I could give them with the reminder that “nothing can separate us from the love of Christ.”

As we enjoyed a week of beach vacation with our younger two children and half a week with our adult ones I was painfully aware of the passage of time.

Walden Family Vacation 2014 - Marty's Musings

The best part of the week? Listening to my children tell story after story of our lives together.

Hearty laughter shared around a table with memories of game nights, homeschooling, car troubles and years spent living the story God was writing.

A group of people posing for the camera

Even painful stories became a part of the fabric of our lives and now create a bond that is ours alone. 

The one constant in our lives each year was the time set aside for vacation. It was always a stretch financially but Tim especially believed it was a necessity for not only relaxation but bonding as well.

On a couple of occasions we were chased away by a hurricane since we try to vacation in September when the rates are lower (a definite perk of homeschooling.)

Our tradition of yearly family pictures evokes the memories of past years (and even past fights!) in a way that we will treasure.

Years were spent perfecting the family goofy picture. 

A group of people posing for a photo

Obviously, we practiced a lot ~smile~

Only the years will tell what my children will become and the paths they will walk.

I pray that those defining years walking through adoption and heartache can be viewed through the lens of God’s will and His great faithfulness

31 Days to a Beautiful Home - Marty's Musings

My hope is that my 31 Days to a Beautiful Home series will motivate and inspire you to spend just a bit of time creating a home you will love and embracing the life you have been given! Just click here to view all the posts. 

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  1. I just happened to “stumble” upon your site, and I thank God that He orchestrated it. It started out as a “I really like how she organized her craft room”, and turned into an hour of reading your open and heart-felt stories. Thank you so much for blessing us in so many different ways…from practical organizational tips to encouraging ways of making our lives more of what God would want. I really, really appreciate it!

    1. Hi, Mary! What a precious encouragement you’ve sent me. My blog is a little different because I definitely write about a lot of the hard stuff in life. My prayer is that it always points back to God in the midst of my inadequate ramblings! I would love if you’d subscribe (you can do that in a box next to the header) and get the blog in your email so you don’t miss anything! Have a wonderful week!

  2. Absolutely, vacations are the best with a growing family.
    I am the mothering of five adult children, so thankful for the memories we have as a family, especially now that my husband passed on. Many times at family functions someone will bring up “remember the time” and it will often include time at the cottage or our memorable car trips to Florida from Canada.

    1. I’m so sorry that you’ve lost your husband, Sally. Those memories will be with you forever and comfort you I know. I found vacations do be a ton of work but they are still some of our best memories. Bless you!

  3. You have a beautiful family and should be so proud of your gorgeous children (which I think you are :)). I agree that sometimes we don’t take the time to vacation and really get to know each other due to everything else being so hectic. I love that you made it a priority to have family vacations and that is something we are trying to do as a family as well. Congrats on your upcoming addition to the family!

    1. Thanks so much, Dana! It’s so much harder as the kids become adults to have those specific family times, but we try to schedule things as best we can. Life certainly does change, but then there are new blessings as well!

  4. Beautiful growing family! I love the beach pictures. There is just something amazing about that light. . .
    We vacay at the beach in September as well. Missed it this year because unemployment finally caught up with us. On the flip side, Daddy has been home with us a whole lot more!
    We have a senior homeschooler for the first time this year. I am not dealing well with the transition. It encourages me to rejoice when I see families that have made it through. Bless you and yours; congratulations on the upcoming grandson! 🙂

    1. So sorry you missed your vacation this year, April, but we’ve been there and done that!

      Senior year for both of my oldest children was difficult, but my daughter did not move out until she got married. My son went off to college and that was just the hardest transition. Things WILL change but they will just be different, not bad. Bless you!

  5. Thank you for sharing your family’s vacations! It IS important to do this as often as you can. Now that I am retired – and not really able to TRAVEL like I had wished to do in retirement – I find the little times; mini-vacations that I can easily do…like tagging along with my oldest daughter and her family for a 3-day-weekend to Atlanta; a 4-day weekend to Daytona Beach (for a scrapbooking retreat; but also enjoyed time with friends as we explored the lighthouse, the beach, and a cool local stamping/scrapbooking store; AND the FUN and memories WE shared). I have subscribed to your blog as I want to read MORE of your musings!!!

    1. Hi, Barbara. I’m so glad you’ve had some wonderful short vacations. I love scrapbooking but don’t have as much time for it now that I’m blogging full time, but I still preserver our family memories through Project Life. Thanks for subscribing!

  6. I love this! Such a great reminder to make family vacations a priority. My oldest is 19 and youngest is 2, it’s so fun to imagine the next season of newlyweds and grandbabies?!

    1. Hi, Kali. Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment. You are definitely in the stage where you can see the future just up ahead! Enjoy these days!