This post is about enjoying life. That’s what Simply Fun. posts are all about. No careful writing. No great biblical insight. Just sharing the fun things in life.
“So I commend the enjoyment of life, because nothing is better for a man under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun.” – Ecclesiastes 8:15
I love being home. It’s my comfort zone. But sometimes I just have a hankering to get away…to see new sights and explore new surroundings. To take a break from the never-ending tasks of everyday life.
I mean, sometimes we just want a day without having all our unfinished projects and to-do lists staring us in the face, right? Wouldn’t it be great to spend some time with our sweethearts in an environment that isn’t constantly yelling at us to get busy taking care of things?
I guess that’s what vacations are all about–getting away from the daily grind and stresses of life. Taking time to relax and unwind and have a little fun. But not all of us are able to take several days or weeks off at a time. And let’s face it–money is always an issue.
But there’s no need to let those limitations stop you from getting away, at least for a short while. Because when time and money are tight, there’s nothing better than “daytrippin’.”
The beauty of daytrippin’ (Texan for daytripping) is it doesn’t require as much planning and preparation ahead of time or unpacking after. The very definition of a day trip is to travel to a destination close enough where you don’t have to spend the night away from home. In other words, you can go and get back home in one day. No need to pack a suitcase. (I love that!)
Our Recent Trip
David and I just got back from one such trip last week. We decided to celebrate our anniversary with a day trip to Waco, Texas. It’s just 90 minutes away from home–an easy drive down the interstate. This is a town we’ve driven through on the way to many other places. But we had never really taken the time to see what the city had to offer.
Why did we choose Waco? Well, television played a big role in that decision–oddly enough, in three different ways. We’ve been watching a couple of local shows about seeing the sites in Texas, and Waco was featured a couple of times. When they mentioned the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame, we thought it would be an interesting place to visit. We love history, and since we’ve been watching Walker, Texas Ranger during lunch for awhile now, it just seemed to fit. (Yes, I know one is real…the other isn’t.)
Also, one of my favorite TV shows is Fixer Upper on HGTV. The show is filmed in Waco, and the hosts, Chip and Joanna Gaines, have a retail store for home decor. They are also renovating a large project called Magnolia Silos near downtown Waco. And I was excited to see it in person. (If you’ve never seen the show, I highly recommend it. These two always make me smile.)
I won’t take your time to give you a play-by-play of our day away. But I did want to share some photos and a few tips if you’d like to take your own day trip. This wasn’t our first rodeo, as they say, and we’ve learned a thing or two that might help make your own little adventure more enjoyable.
Three Styles of Daytrippin’
There are all kinds of ways to approach day trips. But here are three different styles I’ve come up with to fit whatever suits your mood and goal for the day.
Planned & Prepared
For the uber organized.
This is the trip that is well-planned for the whole day—where you’re going, how you’ll get there, what to see, where to eat. This trip has a schedule to follow, and for every site or activity planned, you’ll have all the pertinent information at hand (directions, hours, price, discounts, contact info…).
When you have a lot you want to get done, this might be the best option. (This is what we did in Waco.)
Laid Back & Relaxed
For those who just want to de-stress.
This style takes less planning and is much more relaxing than the one above. When you know where you’re headed, but you don’t want to take the time to plan ahead, this might be a good fit. You just get to your destination and take what the day brings.
A good idea might be to stop in at the local Visitor’s Center when you get into town and see what is going on that day. Ask the locals for their recommendations on things to see and places to eat. (Sometimes the most wonderful surprises can be found this way.)
This is a trip designed to just get away and enjoy the day.
Adventurous & Daring
For the spontaneous risk-takers.
This style is best when you don’t care where you go, and you are ready for an adventure.
One idea is to get out a paper map and draw a radius around where you live—as far out as you’re willing to travel for the day. Set it on a table, and with eyes closed—pen in hand—make a dot somewhere on the map. Make this dot your destination. (Our daughter did that one time and wrote about it on her blog. Her results show one possible downside of this option.)
With this kind of trip, you never know what you’ll find. It could be an exciting destination or a real dud. But whichever, you’ll share in the experience and make some memories.
No matter which style of daytrippin’ you choose, you’ll want to consider these tips…
◊ Take a fully-charged phone (or bring your car charger).
◊ Be sure to have a camera along.
◊ Have a detailed map or GPS handy.
◊ Take cash. You never know when you’ll need it.
◊ Stay flexible. Don’t get upset if things don’t go as you hoped.
◊ Have fun. Find the humor wherever you can.
◊ Remember, it’s about being together, not what you’re doing.
◊ Ask someone to take a picture of the two of you (or the group, if you brought along family or friends). (This is something I always forget to do.)
If nothing else, getting away for the day will make coming home that much sweeter. Back to the comfort zone…ready to tackle whatever life brings…together.
Grace and peace,
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.