It all started back in March. The hubby asked me what I wanted for my birthday. I said I wanted to go on vacation to Northern California where a lot of my mom's family resides. We haven't been there in 13 years and I wanted to see them and have my kids experience the County Fair. He looked at me and said, "Let's go!"
We discussed the specifics, where we would stay, how we would get there, how do we pay for this. I had been researching for a few weeks and starting to put away some money in hopes that he would agree.
Firstly I thought that the hotel in the small town that my uncle lives in is a great hotel, we'd stayed there last time we were in town. But with two nearly grown boys with us this time it would be VERY cramped and we all like our own space, well except for the youngest he wants to be around someone all the time. I looked at VRBO and asked on facebook if others had used them. I found several and one house in particular that would be the same price as one hotel room. I asked a couple of questions, received an answer and after a few days the owner offered a discount. The hubby said pay for it now.
Secondly I looked into renting a vehicle because our youngest vehicle is 18 years old. We like to use Avis and my sister in law suggested we go through Costco to save. Costco saved us $60. Hey, that is a meal out. I reserved a full size car hoping that they would automatically upgrade us to something a little bigger.
Thirdly, I saved and saved. When asked what I wanted for my birthday from our relatives, I said money or gift cards. I used that to pay cash for our expenses while we were there.
We were so excited. We didn't tell our children until a few weeks before we left. We wanted school to be over and Vacation Bible School to be completed.