When my husband and I were newlyweds, we decided to make a vacation coin jar, in which, anytime we had some loose change, we would put it in this large jar to save towards going to Europe--our dream vacation. Little by little we saved. We figured we wouldn't be able to make the trip until our 10th wedding anniversary (however, we were able to go last year, which I will write about in a separate post).
Well, our 5th wedding anniversary was approaching and we decided on a different trip. Something a little more affordable so that we could make a trip sooner. So instead, we went on a cruise to the Bahamas! We spent a day in Coco Cay, a day in Nassau, and a day in Miami, where the port was.
It was especially exciting and rewarding because we had waited and saved for so long, and it was our 5th anniversary. But also because we were unable to make a honeymoon trip, as my husband had to return to some military training right after our wedding. So this was our first big vacation. And my first cruise. It was also the longest we had ever been apart from our two young children (I think we were gone for about 6 days). We had an amazing time!
Here are the pages from a photo book I made. Lots of good memories!
We went parasailing on the day of our anniversary! At over 400 feet above the water, the views were breathtaking!
Finances allowing, occasionally going on a vacation as a couple or as a family is a great form of self-care. It's a break from the real world of work and responsibility, which is healthy and rewarding. And it doesn't have to be an expensive, grandiose trip. But by having some time to relax and spend quality time with your loved ones, you can find harmony--which of course, you can do in the smallest of ways. But I feel like this trip strengthened my marriage (especially when it's a break from the kids, and the focus is on our time as a couple). I highly recommend it.
And I know what you're thinking....'that sounds nice and all, but I don't have that kind of money.' In many instances, this may be true. But, just like how we say 'oh I don't have time for that'--we can make time. We may just need to reorder our priorities. Likewise, we can reassess our budgets. Of course, bills, paying off debt, and other important expenses come first. But there are also a lot of little things we think we "need," when we could do without. It's just a matter of determining what matters most to you. So if you really wanted to go on a vacation, you could probably cut back in some areas of your budget, and make some sacrifices. It may take a long time, but you may find that it's worth it.
In general, the longer the amount of time passed, the greater the sacrifice, the more work you put into something, the more difficult a task or trial is.....the greater the satisfaction and more meaningful the reward in the end. Opposition gives us perspective and helps us to be more grateful. Achieving your dreams, no matter what it may be, starts with setting a goal--like my husband and I did with saving for this vacation. Patience pays off.
Have an action plan with smaller goals to help you reach the bigger goal. There is a popular acronym used to guide you for setting goals.
Having someone know about your goal, to keep you accountable, can also help you to follow through and be successful.
If you can, travel! There is so much to see and do in this beautiful world. So much to learn. The diverse experiences you can have are priceless. So go make some memories. Adventure awaits!