I’m talking about a real, get-in-the-car, bike, or hike kind of day trip, by the way.  As you may already know, I write nine things so you can fill in the tenth.

  1. Get you and your family out of the house.  I love my home and have been working on making it a comfortable place with some private space too.  When I get out into the world, though, I feel liberated, armed with the sense of freedom that comes with something new and fresh.  Sometimes families need this infusion.
  2. Relax into the chance to catch up with family and friends.
  3. Take the opportunity to listen to a book on CD, your favorite music, NPR or any other educational/stimulating/relaxing audio (of course this is mostly if you’re in the car)
  4. Experience something new or different that will challenge you, stretch your imagination, tickle your brain cells,  and alert you to the wonder that exists in this world.
  5. You can keep the cost relatively low.  I recently went on a day trip with the high school exchange students I supervise.  We drove to Colorado Springs (2 plus hours) and back, saw the Air Force Academy and Garden of the Gods, and the whole trip cost me $6 (dinner) plus gas.  Hikes or bike rides could cost even less, especially when you pack your snacks and drinks.
  6. A day trip is easier to plan and schedule than an overnight.  Families often can’t get away together for more than a day.  You can often research the trip on the web in the morning and then take off for the rest of the day.  Even a partial day trip can refresh.
  7. You can give the gift of travel or adventure to someone who can’t get themselves there.  My mom no longer drives, and she so loves the opportunity to get out for the day.
  8. Take the break from work you didn’t even know you needed.  It’s easy to get caught in the trap of “too much to do to take time off,” and yet I firmly believe we are more productive overall when we give ourselves breaks.
  9. Incorporate some form of exercise into your day trip to feel a sense of accomplishment and well-being.  Even if you are driving, work a walk or hike into the schedule.  When you are driving with a partner who also drives, take a beneficial rest.
  10. What do you like about day trips?

Mama J is a writer, parent, and stepparent located in Northern Colorado.  She appreciates breaks and new perspectives.  Look up her book, Stepparenting the Grieving Child, at www.dianefromme.com.

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