I’m finally back. I…
I’m finally back. I didn’t go far during my Christmas break, and I was at home for much of that time, but I just didn’t want to take away from family time. If blogging was even a remote possibility, the temptation to be watching the news or reading the blogs too much would always be there, so I just took that off the table completely. (However, I did spend a little time doing some PR work for Homespun Bloggers Radio. Take a listen. Programs #1 and #2 are in the loop and program #3 is in the works.)

Last week, it was my turn to pose the Homespun Bloggers weekly Symposium question. I’d been considering this for a while, and I didn’t want mine to be a typical question, at least given the ones asked so far. I think we’ve had some great questions and equally good answers thus far, but I wanted to be a little different from the standard political ones. Besides, we’d be just coming off vacations and we’d probably not be ready to be incredibly deep right from the start (at least I wouldn’t be). So this one’s a little more on the light side. My symposium question is:

What was your favorite family vacation (when you were a kid), and why? If you have children, have you taken your kids on that same vacation? If so, what did they think of it?

I actually have a few favorite family vacations from when I was a kid, and some of them I’ve taken my kids to see.

  • Disney World, Orlando, Florida – Yup, one of the big standard vacations on the East coast. We kept a diary (I was the official scribe) so a lot of our memories stuck with us because of that diary. I highly recommend doing this for big vacations. When I went as a kid, it was just the Magic Kingdom. Nowadays, there’s Epcot, Disney/MGM, the Animal Kingdom, water parks and on and on, so when we took the kids to see Disney, there was a lot more to do, and it’s all really well done. We didn’t think the Animal Kingdom was going to be all that interesting (“a big zoo” we thought), but were we ever wrong. When we go again (have a couple of days left on our passes), we’ll spend more time there. But roaming around the Magic Kingdom, showing the kids some funny things about the Haunted Mansion that you’d miss on your first time in, and finally riding Space Mountain (I don’t do roller coasters, but decided that if I was ever going to do one, the first one I officially chickened out on should be it) brought back a lot of great memories.
  • Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia – One of the vacations we took when I was a kid was what we’ve since referred to as the “History Vacation”. The folks wanted to have an educational vacation so we visited Washington, DC and Colonial Williamsburg, VA. To be honest, I don’t remember much about the DC leg of that trip, although we do have pictures to prove we were there. However, I loved Colonial Williamsburg and couldn’t wait to bring my own kids there. The big thing I’d recalled was the maze built in hedges behind the governor’s mansion (although it was smaller than I remember–probably because I was taller). But walking down the streets where some of the founding fathers walked and being in the same rooms they were was something I enjoyed. (I’ve always had a sense of the historical significance of particular current events, and perhaps this is where it started.) My kids had been studying colonial America that school year (nice thing about homeschooling; you can tailor the curriculum & vacations to work together), and on the drive on the way up we read an historical fiction book about a couple of children in colonial Williamsburg (thus we were on the lookout for places mentioned in the story, most notably the Magazine), and so my kids enjoyed this trip as well.
  • Ontario Science Centre, Toronto, Ontario – In addition to visiting some family in New York and Ontario, a couple of our vacations had this on the docket, and we as kids just loved it. (So much so that we went back there some years later.) At the time, it was one of the largest science museums around (may still be), and you can spend days in there. Even back then, I was a budding computer geek and most of my memories of there are of the computer-related exhibits (1970s vintage). My kids really get into science museums as well, so someday this may be a destination for us as well.

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