Glawe's Outlook

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

A 'round' of quality time

For some families, a yearly vacation is automatically worked in to their finances and schedules. Our family is not so fortunate. Our last vacation, we took along not only four young kids but "blankies" and a diaper bag. We went to celebrate the 10th anniversary of our marriage at Disney World, where we had celebrated our honeymoon. Funny how priorities changed between those two occasions! The first time a quick picture with the famed mouse was good enough for me but the second time, my goal was to get a picture of the kids with every Disney character roaming around. (I may have accomplished that, too!)

Our kids are all grown up now and the time for a family getaway has seemed, well, faraway.

Last week, my husband and I took a day off from work - not a full week like some people can do - to spend with the kids. It was a great eye-opener. My gosh - how they have grown! Where did the time go? Weren't they still supposed to be toddling around? And why did I wait so long?

It makes me sad that so much time has lapsed between these family bonding times; soon they will all move away and that togetherness, which we should have had, will also be gone.

As lame as it may sound to some, we decided to go to the Lakes and play mini golf, something we enjoy and something that doesn't cost a lot.

We discovered a course at the Stables. When we all rushed inside to pay - and take a look around at all the souvenirs we knew we couldn't afford - I also locked the keys in the van.

Oh, oh. "That will eat up the remainder of our funds," was all I could think of.

Okoboji is not like the ever friendly Storm Lake that provides police officers to come out whenever, wherever (believe me, I know) to get the keys out of a locked vehicle. The owners were nice to recommend a locksmith that was less expensive than the other locksmith; $65 was his normal rate. Great!

When I saw the truck pull up next to my van, I set my golf club down and prepared to give the wad of bills, mostly ones, in my pocket, to pay for my dumb mistake. The process took a minute to retrieve my keys. He told me if I could pay him $5 to buy him a pop, that would work for him.

How awesome of a deal was that! I thanked him at least three times before he drove away.

Pictures of the four kids was again my priority of the day - now I have five to pick from for my Christmas card, which really will get sent out this year!

After some pretty awful scores in our two rounds of golf, I can guarantee you won't be seeing the Glawe family on any mini-golf tours. We moved on to the lake and to let the kids drive the go-carts at Arnold's Park. We finished the day with a nice meal and great conversation.

And though it may not have been an exciting day for some, it was an awesome bonding day for us with lots of laughs. And I hope that those kids don't get away from me before I can pull myself away from work again to spend some more quality time with them.

* Reach reporter Lorri Glawe at lglawe@stormlakepilottribune.com