A Family Affair
A few months after my husband and I started dating, he invited me to meet his family. Big step, right?
This included his parents, older sister, brother-in-law, and niece. Fortunately, we hit it off and spent an evening sharing stories over dinner. Among them were several that centered around the experiences they had travelling in their Minnie Winnie – a cross country-road trip to Toronto, weekend getaways to the Oakwood Lake waterslides in Manteca (may they rest in peace), or exploring the Oregon Coast. Whether it was something funny their mom did, the music that played on repeat throughout their adventures, or the joy his dad got being in the driver’s seat, the memories were all filled with joy and fondness.
These stories rang familiar to me as I had similar experiences RVing as a kid with my twin brother and our grandparents in their own Winnebago. There was a common theme between the experiences I heard recounted that night and those from my youth. There was happiness. There was adventure. There were memories created that will last a lifetime.
Fast forward to 12 years later and here we are, now married with two kids of our own – a five-year-old daughter and a three-year-old son. We live and work in Silicon Valley, and find ourselves living a pretty busy existence. We always knew we would get an RV at some point, but figured it would be a few years down the road when the kids got a little older.
Then one day last year, a friend shared something on Facebook that struck us both. It was something about there being only 940 Saturdays between a child’s birth and their leaving for college. Hearing it stated like this, we became acutely aware of how limited our weekends with our munchkins were. Our weekends were ticking away and often times all we had to show at the end of them were another series of mundane errands completed or another birthday party attended. The experiences that we remembered so fondly from our childhood road trip adventures were few and far between.
We also started thinking about the time our kids had with their grandparents. You see, I lost my mom seven years ago and sadly, she never got to meet her grandkids. We are, however, incredibly lucky that my husband’s parents are a big part of our kids’ lives. They still actively RV and we had this wonderful opportunity to embark on some adventures with them while they were still enjoying their RV pastime.
The Road Ahead
And so, last year we decided it was time. We moved up our plans and became the proud owners of a Winnebago Vista. More on why we chose the Vista in a later post, but we were eager to get our adventures started. Now a year into our journey as an RVing family, we often take family trips with the grandparents. We are grateful to be creating so many special memories with our kids, and that we all get to share so many treasured moments – laughing around the campfire, sharing old family stories – that we wouldn’t have otherwise if we had waited to invest in an RV.
While we are not in a position to be full-time RVers, we do enjoy getaways at least once or twice a month. And with approximately 636 Saturdays left until our oldest heads off to college, we are thrilled that so many of them will now be spent exploring the open road with our favorite people.