Spring has finally Sprung on the Main Line! The days are now lighter longer and filled with warmer weather and they have me thinking non-stop about a much-needed Spring Break vacation.
Spring Break was never a big thing for me growing up. I lived in a neighborhood where everyone went to a small catholic elementary school from K-8, so for us Holy Week was our Spring Break, and that did not include travelling! The same was true for High School, same number of days off, but usually with a ton of homework!
It wasn’t until I was married with almost three children (ages 7, 5, and one still baking) did I go away for my first ever Spring Break trip! We packed up the car with snacks and stuffed animals and headed south to Washington, DC for a few days to visit as many tourist spots as we could! The next year, after our third child was born, we ventured further south to Myrtle Beach. Two years later, in search of warmer weather, we went to Hilton Head and that became our spring break destination for six years! Each year we would pack up the car with snacks, stuffed animals, wawa hoagies, and get on the road at 3:00 am to beat the DC area traffic. Every year was better than the one before and we always looked forward to March or April for Spring Break, that is until we hit the Spring Break Dead Zone. Our southern trips ended once we had high school rowers who had mandatory practices over spring break. No matter the air or water temperature, our older kids spent their spring break on the Schuylkill River, while my youngest and I schlepped them back and forth to the river☹.
In the blink of an eye, our fun family spring break trips turned into spring-break staycations. At first, my youngest was not thrilled with the staycation idea because it’s “boring where we live”. As soon as the word boring was invoked, I knew for both our sakes that I had to come up with as many fun-filled day trips and adventures as possible. Even though that first day trip adventure happened quite a few breaks ago, we still talk about how that year we went on a self-guided tour of South Philly. The tour started at Geno’s Steaks, followed by Termini Brother’s, the 9TH St. Italian Market, and ended at The Reading Terminal Market. Walking, eating, shopping and vacation treats, were definitely NOT boring, that’s for sure!
Each year I tried to make our staycation day trips bigger and better. Until the Spring Break of 2020. Even a super planner like myself could not come up with ideas for a “6-month Spring Break adventure”. Like everyone else, we cooked and baked a lot, ordered take out, tried pickle ball, had game nights (in and outdoors), fires around the firepit, and endless walks to nowhere. All we could do was hope that in a year’s time we would be back to day tripping! Unfortunately, the only thing that spring sprung on us in 2021 was the uneventful and rather boring anniversary of Covid. With nothing to celebrate and nowhere to go, we made a list of places we wanted to see and things we wanted to do once things got better. Given our two-year hiatus, it seemed as though staycations had become highly overrated and I was pretty sure that the day-tripping days with my teenager were gone – just like our family trips!
Well Neighbor, we are just about ten days away from Spring Break, and I’m extremely happy to admit just how wrong I was about the demise of our day trips! Last week, I shared my list of adventures for this year’s break and I was very excited that my youngest was not only happily on board with some of them, but he genuinely seems interested in many of my ideas…as long as we can throw a few college visits onto the list…preferably down south, because as he reminded me, it’s always fun when we head South – especially South of the Border 🌞.
Making memories one road trip at a time,
PS – Staying home for spring break? Here are a few of my favorite daytrips that aren’t too far from the Mainline:
Bunnyland at Linvilla Orchards
Asher’s Chocolates Factory
Havre De Grace, MD
Atlantic City Boardwalk & Casinos
Washington Crossing Historic Park
Cape May, NJ
Baltimore Inner Harbor