As a Midwesterner, I like to say that I'm a fan of the seasons, but I'm lying. I pretty much despise Winter. Sure, I'll admire the beauty of the first snowfall and revel in the guilt-free nature of Netflix binges in front of a fire (it's too cold to do anything else), but really, my favorite part of Winter is escaping it. And my favorite excursion, undoubtedly, is the annual trip my mom, my daughter, and I take for a long weekend in February.
I love the men in our lives, but there's something about a girls-only getaway that's so extraordinary.
Our destination is a resort where drinks are served on the beach and by the adjacent pool and the preferred mode of transportation is a golf cart. And while that's all part of the allure, it's really the company that makes this particular trip one that I know all three of us will cherish for the rest of our lives.
Don't get me wrong: I love the men in our lives — grandpas, dads, uncles, and brothers — but there's something about a girls-only getaway that's so different and extraordinary. As wonderful as those boys and men of ours may be, their agendas and ideas of what constitutes fun are often much different than our own. But when it's just the ladies, we can fully relax and bond while doing the things we love, which, yes, includes shopping, spa-going, and sunning.
Some of my own favorite childhood memories involve taking big-city trips with my grandma, aunt, and mom, where we would spend hours wandering the stores on Chicago's Michigan Avenue, then retire to our hotel room to chat about everything under the sun and order room service. I remember listening to them call their husbands to check in, but, truthfully, we didn't miss them a bit. We were loving every minute of glorious girl time.
Our annual beach vacation gives my 7-year-old daughter this same wonderful experience with the added benefits of a few extra days and escaping the cold, and I know she appreciates both as much as I do. Away from school schedules and family routines, we're able to just enjoy each other, and any time her moodiness or my stubbornness threatens that enjoyment, Grandma is there to quell the storm and remind us how lucky we are to have each other. And we are so lucky.
This trip, like my childhood girls' trips, won't last forever. One day, my daughter won't think sharing a room with her mom and grandma sounds like a dream, and one day, my mom won't be around for us both to love on. But this year, and hopefully next year and the year after that, we're all on the same page, thrilled to have quality time together. And I plan to soak up every minute of it.