|Looking for a new family (the pop up, not me)|
Priorities change, though.
Priorities don't really change
Correction: Our family's core priorities don't change, how we turn our priorities into reality does.
For a time, our camper did help us with excellent life experiences and loving relationships.
Six years ago we started with a tent at our favorite state parks. The experience was good. My career change allowed us full weekends for the first time and we took advantage of the new opportunity. The tent lasted two years until one night Darling Bride's and my inflatable mattress got a fatal hole and as out mattress sank, we got the "sinking feeling" we'd rather not sleep on the ground. Next spring we got our 2009 Coleman Sun Valley, sleeps 5 comfortably and a sixth if a child, and the quality / quantity of our camping trips went up a lot. At our peak, we were up to at about 8 trips a year. Clifty Falls, Brown County, and Spring Mill State Parks were waiting for us to re-discover them. Above them all, Indiana Dunes State Park, nearby my home town. My mom still lives just minutes from the park so a dunes trip is like a double prize - a favorite place with favorite family. And with no TV or internet, we did what families should be doing - things together! Hiking, board games, smores, seeing the sights...
Meanwhile, in real life, our family continued to grow and change. A new home. Sunday church commitments. #1 son discovers high school band. Local bicycle trails. As other important items came up, camper use went down. Why leave just to leave? Earlier this year we were at Prophetstown State Park and Darling Bride's parents visited us for the day and we bicycled and grilled lunch. After they left, we sat at the campsite as if to say, "now what?" So we packed up and left for home early.
With more demands on our time, we cannot get away for the weekend on a whim anymore. When we do, we would rather go to to the Dunes and visit my family. Unfortunately, the park one of the most popular in the state and the weekend campsites fill up quickly. Some weekends really do need reservations six months (the longest allowed) in advance. Who knows what the weather is going to be like that far ahead? While a pop up does help neutralize the weather some, cold nights are still cold and hot nights are still hot.
With our desire to use our limited weekend get away time to visit my mom, and difficulty in getting a campsite we want, we started using hotels. Then we found a private campground that has cabins with heat, air conditioning, and indoor plumbing. The pool is nice too. Aha! These can be reserved ahead of time and availability is not so much an issue. We were at the cabin this past July and had a great time! Swimming, dinner with mom and our friend Joey, some quiet time, the dunes, it was all there. Looking forward to the next trip.
We still get our adventure experience, we visit family, and don't worry about freezing or baking at night. Which brings us to the point of either selling or donating our camper without regret. We don't need it to accomplish what we really want.
Is there any activity in your lifestyle that is too much activity and too little result? How can you tweak your lifestyle to achieve what you really want?
Want to buy a pop up camper?