A Working Vacation

by Abby on June 17, 2011

Right now I’m in the bedroom of a rented beach house on Cape Cod, writing brochure copy and sending out e-mails. And I don’t mind a bit. Some people might think, “Oh, that’s so sad, working during a family vacation.” Not me. Here’s why:

I’m self-employed. I don’t get paid vacations, nor do I have a boss doling out assignments on a regular basis. It’s feast or famine when you’re a freelancer, and it usually works out that the feasts come during vacations, holidays, or when your kids are home sick and your spouse is traveling. It just goes with the territory.

The boys on Cape CodI get regular “vacation days” anyway. I was at the pool with the kids on a beautiful sunny day the other week. Another mom smiled and said, “On days like this, it’s great to be a stay-at-home mom.” She’s right. And that also makes it easier to give up a vacation day or two to do some work.

I’m on vacation with my family. Meaning: with 2 small kids, it’s ALREADY a working vacation! They’re up at 5:30am, fighting over Matchbox cars by 6:45, begging to go outside at 8:15, and done with the beach by 11. Stealing away to work for a couple hours by myself is actually a welcome break!

There ARE enough hours in the day. As I mentioned, a benefit of having small children is that you don’t fritter away your precious vacation sleeping in or lingering over leisurely brunches. I can go to the beach, for a bike ride, and out to lunch and STILL have some time to work during naps or after bedtime.

I like what I do. When I worked for someone else, I would feel disgruntled if work interfered with my vacation. But now, it’s my choice. And I like my clients and my work. I’m grateful that I can do it from anywhere, even the beach. I would actually rather spend time on a creative writing project than reading a forgettable novel. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that I get paid well for it. Beach vacations don’t pay for themselves, you know!

LAUGH O’ THE DAY: This morning we got up, went out to breakfast, and were at the playground by 8am. We bonded with the only other people there – another family with small kids. “So, have yours been up since 5:30am, too?” asked the other mom wearily. You know it, sister.

READ O’ THE DAY: Good article in the Boston Globe by Beth Teitell on how iPhones and laptops are the new vacation necessities.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

neena June 17, 2011 at 12:00 pm

sounds like you know exactly how to make the most of your time!


Lou Mello June 17, 2011 at 4:06 pm

I really have to retire soon so I can get all my joyful stuff done and not be disgruntled with office work interfering with my Happy stuff.

You have it well under control and thanks for sharing all the good parts.

By the way, when my daughter was little, she always slept in as long as we let her, very nice. Then again, boys are always anxious to go.. go.. go; surprising they ever sleep. 🙂


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