A quick whine.....it is amazing how one bill can "undo" all your efforts. Our dental bill went UP due to my crown, thus negating the $380 payment on the retirement loan, $230 to the car, $250 to student loans....GRRR. G-man has to have a filling replaced and just had a cleaning, so the bill will go up again. GRRRR.
OK, whine over.
So I already know that this post will cause all sorts of "drama." I already know who will say Go For It, and who will say "Are you out of your mind?" So let the chips fall where they may.
I have mentioned that I have a tumultuous relationship with my parents. None the less, they are still my parents, and my kids' grandparents. I also know that their health isn't great, and realistically, I am doubtful that they will live a "long" life. And while I am making strides to remove myself from their DRAMA, in the end....they are my parents.
Their 40th wedding anniversary is in November. And we are considering flying there to celebrate. Due to Election Day and Veterans Day, we will take the kids out of school for 3 days, and be able to be there for 4 full days, and 2 "half" days (and have a day to re-coop). My brother and his girlfriend are also trying to come for the weekend, so for my parents...it would be a rare treat to have their entire family in one place.
Flying vs driving. Driving takes a minimum of 15 hrs. MINIMUM. It is at least 5-6 tanks of gas round trip (using $3.50 as a median number between cost here and cost there....that is between $350 and $420 just for gas). Plus wear and tear on the car, and the body. And the mind, as you are listening to 2 kids for 15 hrs....
Flying...we have never flown as a family. Actually, the kids have never been on a plane! This would be a first for them (and us as a family). Including layovers, extra time at the airport, etc....it would be about 6 hrs EACH way. Round trip is less time than driving one way! I found flights that have great times, and round trip would be about $1000 for all of us. I know that taking Bossy on a plane is going to be way stressful, but hopefully once he has the experience, it will open the door to future flights.
Food. While our food cost while we are there will be minimal...we would of course take my parents out for a nice dinner for their anniversary. If my brother goes, we will split it....if he doesn't come, then we will take care of the bill. I am not planning a $$$$ meal...but we aren't going to go to some casual dining, chain place either.
Stress. That's a given.
So, there it is....we will probably spend $1000 in the next several days to book a flight. While it would have been better to have thought of this awhile ago....I didn't. I think also, I assumed that my parents would have come to visit at some point in the past 3 years....but other than Mom coming about 6 months ago for a long weekend....yeah, not so much. Between overtime, Christmas bonus, and whatever else we can scrape together....I am pretty sure we will have that paid off before the end of the year.
Since we don't really vacation, I guess this would count. Not MY idea of a vacation, but the money certainly says it is!