What do Flat Stanley, a QT Tan and Happy Hour have in Common?

SPRING BREAK of course.  

Spring Break is upon us.  Aaaaah yes, I remember road trips to Florida...  Sleeping ten to a room...  Happy Hour... otherwise known as Spring Break dinner...  Sneaking into resort pools...  Horrible sunburns...  (BTW we knew about sunblock we just didn’t use it).  OR how about the QT Tan?  That indescribable shade of orange.  With my feathered hair, fake tan and O.P. shorts, I was Spring Break ready. 

And those were just my family vacations.   

Today we, daughter and self, retreat to invigorate body and mind (don’t get me wrong my Spring Breaks were invigorating back then as well.)  My aim is to create those memorable moments with my daughter, as it has become more and more apparent I am down to maybe three more Spring Breaks where she pretty much has to hang out with me or at least travel with me.  Each year I make a promise to myself and my daughter to get out from behind my computer.  HA!  My laptop has yet to miss a Spring Break.  I  don’t know about you, but I work from vacations these days.  It helps my guilty self justify my vacation.  Even my kid is often saddled with projects and homework that she must haul to whatever adventure her parent/s are forcing her to endure.

Not fun projects like the Flat Stanley Adventure.  

Remember the Flat Stanley project?  A few years back we took pictures of Flat Stanley in all the different locations we traveled to that Spring Break.  A road trip with the final destination... a Dude Ranch in Arizona.  We had a blast convincing people we did not know to take pictures with Flat Stanley.  One better, we sent a duplicate of Flat Stanley to my parents in Hawaii and they really went for it.  Sending back images of Flat Stanley all throughout Hawaii, including a “Stanley selfie” with newlyweds. 

(Check out Stanley's 30 Second Adventures: FLAT STANLEY ADVENTURES)

What I find funny when looking back at the Flat Stanley pictures is how ENGAGED we became with others and our surroundings.  All due to a drawn cut out character.

Each year I have tried to trek my daughter away in order to create these moments...

...But this year is going to be different.  Due to mixed up schedules, overlapping commitments and tight purse strings we are going to 'Spring Break' in and around Los Angeles.  People mecca to Los Angeles and Southern California for Spring Break - right?  Japan, Africa, Switzerland…. who needs long plane rides, wild animals, and the Matterhorn?  We have El Segundo?  (We actually have a Matterhorn as well.) 

ENGAGE.  We are going to ENGAGE our city.   We are going to rediscover what it means to be California Girls.  We are not only going to explore our hometown we are going to give some needed time back to our hometown.  We are going to discover a few local adventures, as well as beach cleanups and offering our time at a family shelter.  Most important, we are going to spend time together (until she just can’t stand me any longer and then I am going to add one additional hour just to make certain I have burned these memorable moments into her teenage brain.  HA!)    

When I was a kid, my family vacations often consisted of tents and hiking.  Sometimes right in our backyard.  My parents had a knack for slipping into hotel pools that we were not guests of, and yes, they did, in fact, teach me the art of the Happy Hour dinner.  (And you thought I was kidding.)  But what they really instilled in me:  ADVENTURE is all around you.

So, here's to Southern California, discovering home, maybe bending a rule or two, my girl and the spirit of adventure. 


Our List of Adventures (thus far):

  • Sunny Jim’s Cave
  • Hike to Potato Chip Rock
  • Salvation Mountain
  • Mud Pools
  • Southern California Redwoods
  • Victoria Beach
  • Malibu Wine Safari 
  • Shipwreck Hike
  • Hike to the Bridge to Nowhere (we will not be bungee jumping)
  • LA Waterfront Harbor Tour
  • Elmers Bottletree Ranch (Route 66)
  • Randsburg General Store
  • Gaviota Wind Caves
  • One Thousand Steps Beach
  • Sunken City of San Pedro

….and YES we will be coated in sunblock.   

BTW I can’t wait to hear about your trips to Africa, Japan, Switzerland or wherever you end up.  It’s all an adventure!!!!