Tag Archives: summer vacation

How to Make Your Vacation Last Longer

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With spring break recently past for many of us, it is easy to experience the post vacation blues. We may stop and think, “I wish I could go back” or “why can’t vacation last longer?” During my spring break, I spent a week visiting family in Detroit and Northern Michigan and concluded the break with a trip to Savannah with my boyfriend. It was the perfect combination of a family vacation and romantic getaway. 12 days later, and it felt like the trips were like a blink of an eye. Back to reality, back to school, and no more trips until graduation. Fortunately, though, a walking tour of Savannah inspired me to make my vacation continue. While outside the Mercer House, I learned about the book, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, which made Savannah famous. I decided I would purchase the book when I returned home to see how Savannah became a popular tourist destination.

Flash forward and I am now a quarter of the way through the book. I am so glad that I purchased it, not only because it has an interesting story line, but also because it helps me relive the memories from my trip to Savannah. I realized that it is possible to make our vacations last longer! Below are a few tips I have to make you feel like you are still on vacation:

  • Buy books, both fiction and non-fiction, about your travel destination! As I mentioned with Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, it is so fun to relive the memories of your vacation through books. After visiting a place, you feel much more engaged by reading a book about it because you have more context about the story setting. You can easily imagine where the plot is taking place and perhaps learn more about the destination’s history and charm.
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Source: Pixabay

  • Give yourself time to reflect. Don’t over-plan your schedule when you return from vacation. You will need time to readjust to working again and to living your daily routine. With more free time when you return, you will be able to process your travel experiences and help them be properly minted in your memory. You may choose to write a travel diary or blog, to call friends to share your travel stories, or to create digital photo albums. I often jump to my next task when I return from vacation, which delays my personal reflection process. I have been actively working to not over-plan so that I can spend more time reflecting and reliving the exciting travel memories.
  • Contribute to travel forums such as Trip Advisor or Yelp, giving feedback based on your experience at hotels, restaurants, and on excursions. You will engage in dialogue about your travel destination and will be able to share your favorite stories. You may notice comments and questions long after you make your original post, which helps you relive your vacation each time. I have had this experience based on my Trip Advisor review of a Costa Rica horseback riding adventure. Three years later, I am still receiving messages about the number of “likes” or “comments” on my post. It is so fun to be able to talk about Costa Rica again and again!

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  • Make a photo book through Shutterfly or Apple. It is easy to post photos on social media, but there’s nothing like a photo book that combines digital convenience with old fashioned memories in an actual book. A photo book provides a tangible memory of your vacation and you can easily place it on your coffee table for guests to read. Every time you have guests over, they can look through the photo book with you, and you will be reminded of your trip and feel like you are on vacation again.

What other tips do you have that help you make your vacation last longer? As we all return from spring break vacations and are going on the home stretch of spring before the start of summer vacations, may we relive the memories of our great vacations past. And make yourself a promise…. 😉

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Source: Rachel Wilkerson

Summer Vacation: A Time to Reflect

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With exactly one year since I traveled to Hawaii, I can’t help but reflect on how that vacation has impacted me over the past year. Relaxing on the beautiful Big Island was one of my favorite summer vacations, as it gave me time to reflect on my future. While laying on a hammock, sipping a fresh coconut, I thought about how exciting it was that I would be moving into my first apartment by myself for a year of self-discovery in Cleveland. I was ready to create my vision for the future, including role models who would help guide me in my intended path. I was eager to experience my first long distance relationship. And believe it or not, with a little notebook I brought with me, I first started brainstorming ideas for this blog. I decided to create inspirNational to help others find international inspiration in their everyday lives. Looking back, it is amazing to think how a small break from my daily life (surrounded by volcanoes and the ocean breeze in Hawaii) prepared me for one of the most transformative years of my life.

At the Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park with my mom!

At the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park with my mom!

Flash forward to now, I completed my first year living by myself, with milestones including writing this blog with features on Pink Pangea and One World 365, establishing my vision for the future, learning how to cook, advancing my yoga practice with crow pose and headstands, applying to and starting the top international business graduate program, and moving to a new part of the United States!

I am reminded of the importance of summer vacations and taking time to reflect, whether that means camping in our own backyard, traveling to a nearby city, or flying overseas. What makes a difference for me on vacations is to truly disconnect from everything I know, meaning no internet access, no phone calls, and no work. With a clear mind, we are able to listen to both our minds and our hearts. We can quickly do a “pulse check,” making sure that we are content with our status in life and improving different areas as we see fit. With this true disconnect, we can reconnect with the world after our vacation with a refreshed attitude and positive perspective to keep growing as individuals.

I hope that we all have had (or will have) time this summer to go on vacation. We all need and deserve time to be inspirNational and relax. Happy reflecting on your next vacation!