I just returned from that annual mass exodus from the state of Michigan know as spring break.  In Michigan spring break is a big deal.  By the time April rolls around nearly everyone is tired of winter and it seems that most of the state heads south (or wishes they could).  As for the Moran’s, we set our sights on Orlando this year as we usually do.  I’ve found that these spring vacations are great opportunities to create memories that become a permanent part of our family story.

One of my goals with my two girls is to be the biggest influence in their lives.  I want to be the one who shapes their values and their character, not their friends, not Instagram, and certainly not MTV (which for the record, they’ve never seen).   I’ve shared this intention with a few people over the years and some of them scoffed at the idea.  Interestingly, these tend to be the same people whose kids have run amuck.  Either way, I’m undeterred.

In order to have influence I believe you need to spend time together – and not just “quality time,” but quantity time.   I think the whole notion of quality time is something that was cooked up by parents who don’t spend much time with their kids and wanted to feel less guilty about it.   I think it’s bulls*#t.  It’s nothing more than a rationalization so that parents can feel better about spending only a few minutes each day with their children.   If you want to impact your kids and shape who they become, you need face time.  Vacations are custom made for hours and hours of face time.

We’ve been back only a few weeks from our recent Florida trip and have already relived the vacation though the retelling of situations and experiences from checking into the hotel at 3:00 am, to me yelling “shark” in the middle of dinner at our favorite restaurant.  I know that doesn’t make any sense to you, but it does to us, and that’s the point.  It’s an inside family joke that we all think is hilarious, and it bonds us together.

I think vacations are important on many levels.  Make a point of taking vacations – yes that’s plural, vacations.  The 12 Week Year sets up nicely for a vacation every thirteen weeks.  They don’t all have to be big, expensive trips.  The key to a great vacation is time together.

Be encouraged!