Tuesday, January 25, is National Plan for Vacation Day. According to USTravel.org, it’s celebrated the last Tuesday of January to encourager Americans to plan their vacation days for the whole year and to inspire them to travel within the U.S.
I’m certainly not going to discourage you from traveling abroad. If you can, go. If not, there’s no shortage of destinations right here in the ol’ U.S. of A. Many are right in your backyard. USTravel.org reports that more than two-thirds of American workers feel at least moderately burned out after the last two years, and almost three-fourths are prioritizing a change of scenery in 2022.
Count me in. Planning a vacation is one of my favorite ways to deal with stress, which all retailers experience during the holidays. It’s what gets me through to January when liquor store traffic slows way, way down. You know, when everyone has resolutions that last anywhere from a day to a lifetime. I think most are closer to the former than the latter, but there are always exceptions.
It sometimes feels like the last two years have sucked the life out of me, so my resolution is to do more things that make me happy. It could be more cat videos, more funny movies, more massages. In fact, I’m sure it will involve all of those things, but it absolutely means more travel. And tap dancing. That’s right, I’m taking tap dancing lessons for the first time since 1979. Shuffle ball change, f-lap step.
Back to travel, I’ve vowed to go somewhere every month, and we’re already ahead of schedule. (Cheers from the crowd!)
First was a staycation to Palisade and Grand Junction, which are 45 minutes and one hour from our house, respectively. If you haven’t been to Colorado Wine Country, you should #planyourvacation to Palisade pronto. There will be a longer post on this mini staycation soon, but long story short, we had lunch at Palisade Brewing, home of the Dirty Hippie wheat beer and incredible smoked meats, did a wine tasting at Maison La Belle Vie Winery in Palisade.
Then we headed to Grand Junction, just 12 miles west on the back roads. There we visited another tasting room, a brewpub, an antique store, had an incredible dinner at The Winery, and spent the night before heading home the next day. After I bought tap shoes. It’s amazing how refreshing just 24 hours away can be.
The very next weekend, we headed to Denver for the RV Show. We aren’t shopping for a different one at the moment, but planning (there’s that P word again) for when we spend more time on the road. From there, it was on to Colorado Springs to visit our best friends. The four of us have been friends since 1990, so we’ve been through a lot of good times and hard times together. They moved from Kansas City to Colorado a year after we did, so getting together to watch the Kansas City Chiefs in the playoffs is a treat.
While there, we planned a trip to visit them on Anna Maria Island in March. That trip includes a stop in Arkansas to attend a niece’s wedding. We’ve been to the island before on their recommendation—just days before COVID stopped travel in 2020—and can’t wait to return.
This is what my 2022 travel plan looks like right now.
January: Palisade/Grand Junction and Denver/Colorado Springs CHECK!
February: Staycation in Glenwood Springs, which is just about 20 minutes east of where we live. Staycations are the bomb, especially when you live where people love to vacation.
March: Anna Maria Island, Florida, via Fayetteville, Arkansas
April: Camping in Utah. It’s warm enough there to break out the camper and RZR.
May: Albuquerque. We’ve never spent any time in New Mexico, so it’s time to change that.
June: Kansas City. Almost all of our family still lives there.
July: Gunnison County, Colorado, for our annual camping trip near Almont.
August: Camping, but where? I want to visit my uncle who spends summers in Montana and the rest of the year in Oregon. NOTE: My uncle passed away the night I published this post. Please, please, please visit the ones you love while you still can. xo
September: Bryce Canyon, Utah. We’re meeting some camping buddies from Las Vegas there to ride our RZRs.
October: Ouray, Colorado. This could be late September or early October, but it’s become a tradition to go Jeeping there in the fall.
November: No clue.
December: Also no clue, but most likely a mini staycation before holiday sales kick in.
This is the minimum number of trips I PLAN to take this year. Summer weekend camping trips are easy since we can get worlds away from civilization within an hour of our house. It’s non-camping months that take some preparation. Our daughter and son-in-law live near Denver, so I’m sure we’ll get there a couple of times.
So this National Plan for Vacation Day thing works. I’m already excited for the year ahead, and that will help me get through any bumps in the road. Now it’s your turn. Let me know what your vacation plans are for 2022!
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