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Young couples with small children do not have a lot of extra money for vacations so day trips or overnight trips make good choices. Everyone has experienced tight budgets and still wanted to do something fun.

Creativity is the key we learned in planning our vacations. 

Day trips to a planned location were our favorite.

A picnic basket and lots of snacks were usually taken to help cut cost also. 

I would like to share some of our  adventures.

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We love going to the beach and walking in the surf. Finding a quiet motel on the beach was perfect for us. The long pier was ideal for my husband to try out his casting net and wet a hook or two. The tiny ghost crabs running around everywhere kept me and our daughter entertained for hours. Sitting on the patio and watching the sun go down on the water was a memorable experience as was finding a scorpion in the bathroom. Our hearts were broken when a hurricane blew away the motel and it was not rebuilt.

State Parks, public access rivers and lakes are good places to go. The challenge of catching the most or the biggest fish kept the trip stimulating. Some places had overnight camping, picnic areas, nature trails, swimming areas, and playgrounds for added activities.    

Trips to zoos and animal parks are educational and fun. We have been to several such attractions over the years. We have heard the scream of a black panther from 10 feet away. Seen snakes big enough to swallow a man. Stood next to a STUFFED alligator that was as long as a bus. Covered our heads when the peacocks decided to fly over our heads. Walked on suspension bridges that scared us silly. Could have reached out and touched a black bear but decided we wanted our hands intact.

One  vacation trip took us to a lighthouse. We were allowed to climb to the top of the lighthouse and walk around the outside at the top. Many years later we heard that the lighthouse we had toured was haunted. It's fun to be able to pull out pictures and say we have been there.

Our love of simpler days has taken us on tours where we got a glimpse of life in pioneer days. Watching barrels being made, grits being ground, and sampling cooking straight from the fireplace was possible. Such events give an appreciation for the modern conveniences that we enjoy today. Automatic washing machines, electric stoves, microwave ovens and air conditioning come to my mind along with power tools and lawn mowers.

Science museums are places you can dig for fossils, watch honey bees at work, learn about planets and stars and so much more. We have also visited airplane museums and forts where battles were fought.

Aquariums are a passion for me. I can stand for hours watching the animals and never notice the time.

Historical tours are educational but should to be chosen with regards to everyone's interest in mind.

Amusement and Theme parks create an opportunity to face your fears or make new ones. Riding roller coasters, tilt a whirls and ferris wheels can be thrilling or chilling. I discovered a few new fears over the years.

Whether you like snorkeling, scuba diving, group tours, or a quiet get away, a little time for research and planning can result in many memories and happy vacations for the whole family. 

Day trips allow for family time together without placing a huge strain on the budget.