As you know, my parents have a house in Pensacola, Florida. Since they purchased it a few years ago, the little kids and I have been able to go there for 7 to 10 days a couple of times a year. It always astonishes me how at peace I feel when I am in Florida. I'm just in a completely different place emotionally when I am there.
Thankfully my kids are homebodies and not real interested in running around all the time. We have a few places we like to visit, and we love to go to the beach a couple of days. But we are usually all tuckered out by early afternoon and ready to head back home for some dinner and showers.
Our routine is to sleep until 9 or so in the morning. The kids play while my mom and I take a long walk. If we are going out for the day, we try to get moving around late morning or just after lunch. We head out to our destination for a few hours or to the beach. We try to get home by about 4:30 in the afternoon. We fix an easy dinner, sometimes go for another walk, and the kids take their showers. We are all pj'd and ready for bed by about 6:00 p.m. Then the kids head to their bedroom to play and my mom and I settle into the living room for some t.v. time and reading. We sip hot tea and relax until bedtime, which is usually fairly early. And then the next day we do it again.
Since the house is clean when we arrive, the only cleaning we need to do during the week is as we make messes. We sweep here, vacuum there, or throw in a load of laundry.
While in Florida for a week I typically read about three novels. I try to do that at home but other things always seem to win my attention. If I get through one book in a month at home, I am doing good.
Every time we come back from Florida I swear I am going to keep my Florida State of Mind. I determine to simplify our home and belongings and activities. I try to get us home and settled for the evening by 6:00 p.m. and head to the couch for t.v. and reading time. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. It's just not possible all the time.
Before long I find myself back into the rush of regular living and longing for another trip to Florida. There is just nothing like it.