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What are your summer plans this year?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Our summer is wide open and I want to do something with the kids that will give them a new experience. Maybe living on a farm and taking part in all the chores - that sort of thing/ Anyone have any suggestions?  orngbiggrin.gif

post #2 of 6

Farm Stay - that's cool. As a city-dweller from a former farming family, a Farm Stay has always been appealing to me, We've never managed it and my kids are grown so, sadly, it won't happen. 

 

Other ideas we've had but haven't done - 

 

- Archeological dig (I've seen a couple where families help) 

- Eco tourism - helping with turtle migrations, bird colony surveys, re-forestation and so on. There are a few very interesting opportunities if you look for them. 

- Literature tours - DH and I did something like this one summer in Britain. We visited sites associated with some of favourite authors eg. the pub where Dickens drank, Jane Austen's Bath, Beatrix Potter's Hill Top Farm, Arthur Ransome's Lake District and so on. I always wanted to do something similar with the kids, revisiting Nob Hill Farm and the Lake District, as well as others from classic Brit kiddie lit

 

As for us, it will be an odd summer possibly without a family vacation for the first time ever. DS is 20 and planning on touring part of northeastern U.S. with a band (YIKES!!). DD is 17 and will spend most of the summer on an international study/volunteer trip in Africa. DH and I will be empty nesters for a lot of the summer. Even though it seems like the perfect time for our own extended getaway, he is launching a huge project at work and probably won't have much time  greensad.gif.   

 

We may have to be satisfied with a short trip or two to our family cottage and some lazy time together on the dock and canoeing on the lake. 

post #3 of 6

WWOOF USA is a good start to try to find an organic farm to work on. Either in the US or abroad.

http://www.wwoofusa.org/

 

A project I would love to do with my DD when she is a bit older is take part in local nature surveys.

There are projects here when community members can take part hiking and looking for and counting frogs or other wildlife to survey them and help determine whether specific environmental policies are benefiting local wildlife.

 

There is also a great park here that has nature walks and talks for kids. You can go out with a guided walk at night and look for nocturnal forest animals and birds etc.

 

 

This summer we are going to do a lot of playing in local parks. Maybe one short weekend camping trip. And a longer trip across the country to the west coast to visit family.

post #4 of 6

One more idea occurred to me: 

 

- historical re-enactments.  We've done a few day trips to "living history museum" types of re-built villages. Think Colonial Williamsburg - although we've never been to that one. The kids participated in activities like panning for gold, pioneer crafts, watched demonstrations of grain being milled (and then baked into bread) and blacksmithing and so on, watched civic rebellion re-enactments..... 

 

Some living history museums, including Williamsburg, have accommodations for overnight and longer stays but we've never done that. "Authenticity" of the experience varies. I think all of the Williamsburg houses have mod cons but  other places are very rustic.

post #5 of 6

Camp.

 

Seriously.  Pick a part of the world you want to explore and go camp.  Move to a new location every 5 or 7 days and explore that area in depth.  Depending on where you travel camping can be really cheap (like $5 a night for a whole family).  Think about weather (rain stinks when packing up and resetting up camp) and what you like to do and language barriers.  It can get $$- flights, rental cars, etc but if you are thoughtful it can be done.

 

We do this for 4-8 weeks in the summer . Northern California was our best trip yet- never rained.  Some cold locations, some hot.  Lots of ocean, lots of streams, yosemite was thrown in there, lake tahoe, lasen volcanic park  (snow in july was awesome), etc.   Some locations have been not so great- Puerto Rico's theft problem really hit us hard.  This summer we are doing Hawaii for 7 weeks.

post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumm View Post

Camp.

 

Seriously.  Pick a part of the world you want to explore and go camp.  Move to a new location every 5 or 7 days and explore that area in depth.  Depending on where you travel camping can be really cheap (like $5 a night for a whole family).  Think about weather (rain stinks when packing up and resetting up camp) and what you like to do and language barriers.  It can get $$- flights, rental cars, etc but if you are thoughtful it can be done.

 

We do this for 4-8 weeks in the summer . Northern California was our best trip yet- never rained.  Some cold locations, some hot.  Lots of ocean, lots of streams, yosemite was thrown in there, lake tahoe, lasen volcanic park  (snow in july was awesome), etc.   Some locations have been not so great- Puerto Rico's theft problem really hit us hard.  This summer we are doing Hawaii for 7 weeks.

 

We've done longer camping trips while traveling the country (6 weeks or so) and it's been awesome. 

 

For us, a sanity saver was budgeting and planning for a hotel/motel stay about once a week or so.  

 

It meant getting hot showers, catching up on laundry, sleeping in comfort, avoiding wet weather, swimming in a heated pool, chilling in front of a t.v. for an evening, and having someone else (yay, hotel breakfast buffet!!) up early to make breakfast and have hot coffee ready. 

 

I don't find it necessary if we are camping for 2 or 3 weeks, but longer than that and I like a few home comforts, at least for a night. YMMV. 

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