How in the world is it my last week of summer vacation!?!? One week from today, I will be back at work. It feels like school just ended, and we are already gearing up to start a new year.
My husband and I were determined that this summer was not going to be a summer of sitting around. Our daughter is three, which is the PERFECT age in my opinion. She is able to go with us and do more things and actually enjoy herself, letting all of us have a more fun experience.
I'm sure many of you have heard of the term FOMO: fear of missing out. It became so widespread that it can now be found in the dictionary as a real word! FOMO is usually brought about by seeing or hearing about all the fun stuff other people are doing through social media. Now, our family had not been on a vacation since 2013! We went to Florida and stayed with family when our Sweet P was around three months old. There wasn't a whole lot we could do with an infant. Talk about some serious FOMO. This summer, however, was to be our summer of GOMO: going out more often. And boy, did we! Well, I actually kicked things off by myself...
The day school let out, I got in my car and drove the two hours to my best friend and former college roommate's apartment. We try to have a girls' weekend once a year with just us. No hubby or baby allowed! We got dressed up and went out on the town. We checked out new restaurants, new food, and new local musicians. We wasted enough time in college being lazy (and broke) and hanging out around the dorm. GOMO with this girl allows us to catch up and try new experiences... And take fun pictures so we can look back when we are old and wrinkly and remember how gorgeous we used to be ;)
In June, it was time for GOMO with my family. My husband is a band director, so his summer is always cut short by band camps. June is really our time to be together as a family. Like I said before, our daughter is three-years-old now. She is spunky and energetic... I couldn't bare to keep her stuck in the house. We finally booked our first REAL vacation as a family and set off for the BEACH!
I promise she was more excited than she looks! The whole week leading up to the trip, she kept asking about going to the beach. And do you know what she was most excited to do? Play in the sand. Go swimming in the "big pool." Hunt for hermit crabs. All EXPERIENCES. So often, we get caught up in material things. We are constantly bombarded with commercials advertising the next "can't-live-without" item. But really, what I can't imagine living without is the memory of seeing my daughter's face the first time she saw the beach. I can't imagine living without stories to tell of our experiences. I can't imagine living without GOMO!
That break was just what we needed to reconnect as a family and unplug from media and technology. We focused on spending real, quality time together... Not just in the same room watching Netflix or something. We went out! We experienced life together. And it was the best money I've ever spent.
In July, we knew we wanted to go somewhere to watch fireworks. Last year, we went to a local church's fireworks show, and it was nice, but this summer is about GOMO! So, oh, did we go! We googled the best fireworks show in the area, which is of course Thunder on the Mountain at Vulcan Park.
There are websites you can use to find events near you, too, like Eventbrite. Going to their website, you can see popular featured events in your area, and even create your own event as well. You can also type in the kind of event you are looking for, add in your location, and you'll get a list of everything that's happening. For example, I just looked up "music" in my town and found out that there is a free night of the best gospel music Birmingham has to offer coming up in just a couple weeks! I can even reserve my ticket right from the Eventbrite website! No more FOMO for me, thank you very much!
So even though summer is ending, and I am dreading the early mornings and long days that are fast approaching, I am looking back on this summer without feeling like I wasted my days and let summer pass us by. It was our summer of GOMO, and I loved every second of it!