I wrote my last post, pretty down in the dumps, wishing the Christmas fairies would sprinkle their dust on me. I was being a bah hum bug, and truly was getting on my own nerves. But last month, after some shifting of funds, saving money, and using the hubbies travel points we were able to schedule our 3rd annual family trip to Chicago during the Christmas season. The kids had no clue…they kept asking, “Aren’t we going to Chicago this year for Christmas?” to which we would just smile, and say, “Maybe not this year…”
For the last couple years we haven’t traveled past a state or two, having gone to Michigan last summer for 4 days, and Chicago a handful of times. We don’t spend money on fancy hair cuts, and have cut out all luxuries to include massages, nails, cable, and eating out at “regular” restaurants for the most part. I cook at home more times than not. We are truly frugal, shopping consignment for clothes, and EBay for many gifts. BUT…we don’t cut out good food, or nice places to stay when it comes to our family. We simply believe it’s important to teach our kids to be frugal, but also appreciate the good things in life.
So to get a deal of half off at The Drake Hotel, and be able to use points was a win/win for our family. Our kids have always begged to stay there, but as most know, a one night stay can cost a pretty penny. Saturday night we advised the girls to get to bed early, and pack an overnight bag. They were GIDDY. “Where are we going?” We just smiled. Pulling up to the Drake was priceless, as the girls just were beside themselves with joy. And THERE…was my Christmas spirit. I finally found it…in my children’s laughter. YAY.
So here are some pics from our 24 hour trip to the city we’ve grown to love. Chicago. Despite the gray, overcast, and dreary weather, I found myself coming alive this weekend. And all due to my family’s joy of being there, with, me. We enjoyed good food, shopping, and some much needed down time. Oh…and we walked 5.1 miles just on Sunday! Win again!
Sooooo…at the end of the day, besides being tired, I find myself full of Christmas spirit finally. We were able to spoil our kids at the mall due to being TRULY frugal all year, and seeing their faces made my heart melt.
And yes…there was mad jumping on the huge bed in our hotel room, just to add to the fun. My kids were LAUGHING and my heart sang.
There it is… my Christmas spirit. I am so glad I found it. Family…food…feel good stuffs. YAY.
Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays everyone!