Here is a look at the Griswold Family Vacation we are planning.

 

1013721_10152121616696774_756996019_nOur daughter Taylor and her husband Rik are four months into their marriage.

 

Tucker is graduating from college May 11th.

 

Our kids are at a place with their jobs—and no kids—that we can take a family vacation together.

 

We’ve got something big to celebrate. Our kids graduating from college. Paid off! Loan free!

 

We didn’t think this trip was going to happen, due to expenses and life, but we planned, and searched for great airfares, and in spite of some debt, I think it’s going to fall into place.

 

We won’t leave until May, but we’re already planning our itinerary.

 

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3 nights in Amsterdam, The Netherlands –

Possible adventures include canal rides, Van Gogh Museum, Rijksmuseum, Keukenhof Gardens (Disneyland for tulips), Anne Frank House, beer, Gouda cheese, Vondelpark, and yes we’ll probably wander by a coffeehouse and The Red Light District.

CheeseWant to see more of Amsterdam? See the movie Oceans 11: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_bzUIbE5jo

 

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Keukenhof Tulip Gardens: http://www.keukenhof.nl

 

Anne Frank House: http://www.annefrank.org/en/Museum/

 

Here’s our B & B  on the quiet end of Vondelpark. John and I stayed her several years ago. I love the red and white linens.

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g188590-d567968-Reviews-Bed_and_Breakfast_Amsterdam-Amsterdam_North_Holland_Province.html

 

 

Delft

 

1 night in Delft –

We’ll go see The Hague (the seat of government in the Netherlands, and the capital city of the province of South Holland). We’ll go to the porcelain factory where Delft china is made, and wander along the canals.

Check out our hipster, very cool, crazy B & B: http://www.soul-inn.nl/?id=28

 

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3 nights in Maastricht, The Netherlands –

This is the town where Taylor spent a semester studying abroad when she was at Baylor University.  It’s a high-class town but it’s off the beaten path for most Americans. People are highly educated: Think European Union; think Renaissance Art auctions; think old-world class.

 

We’ll sit in the Vrijthof city square, see the famous bookstore built inside an old church. We’ll stroll the long arching bridges, we’ll eat vlaai (cherry pie), and we’ll go see Taylor’s dormitory and Maastricht University. Perhaps we’ll see an all girl brass band like we did last time. We’ll probably go to Valkenburg to a spa. Waterworld for adults. Some of the activities, like the honey sauna, are clothing optional. When Taylor and I went, we kept our towels tightly clutched around ourselves.

 

Our hotel: http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g188575-d983362-Reviews-Hotel_Mabi-Maastricht_Limburg_Province.html

 

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Famous Bookstore (scroll down to see pics): http://www.bookstoreguide.org/2007/11/selexyz-dominicanen-maastricht.html

 

Want to see someone get a chocolate massage? Thermae 2000 spa: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUenJZDFrMk

 

 

 

Buildings On Canal In Brugges, Belgium2 nights in Bruges, Belgium – 

Now this city has what I love: beer and chocolate! Oh and waffles covered in chocolate syrup and whipped cream.

 

good beer brewed with love in belgiumBruges (pronounced Broozsh) has a giant city square, Clydesdale horses clomping around, canals, old three story homes with the peg at the top for hoisting furniture, old churches with Michelangelo’s art, and church bell that resonates throughout the city. The fascinating thing about this place is that it was a huge shipping port hundreds of years ago, but the silt built up and another port replaced it. Somehow Bruges got frozen in time. Think Venice.

 

If you want to watch a cute movie see, In Bruges:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoE9edjEDCI

 

We got the cinnamon suite and vanilla suite here:

http://www.bed-and-breakfastbruges.com/index.html

 

iStock_000007481988XSmallMadame Dumon Chocolate:

http://www.neverstoptraveling.com/in-search-of-the-best-chocolate-in-bruges-belgium?doing_wp_cron=1389396557.9608709812164306640625

 

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1 night in Cologne, Germany – 

We’ll see the famous cathedral, a chocolate museum, and absorb the German urban vibe. We are talking to my cousin who lives in Germany to see which hotel he recommends.

 

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2 nights in Mannheim/Heidelberg/Frankfurt, Germany –

We’ll meet up with my cousin, his wife, and her German family. We’ll see the castle and beer halls. Then we’ll fly home from Frankfurt.

 

 

Now that’s what I call self care!


Lucille Zimmerman is a Licensed Professional Counselor with a private practice in Littleton, CO and an affiliate faculty teacher at Colorado Christian University.

She is also the author of Renewed: Finding Your Inner Happy in an Overwhelmed World. Through practical ideas and relatable anecdotes, readers can better understand their strengths and their passions—and address some of the underlying struggles or hurts that make them want to keep busy or minister to others to the detriment of themselves. Renewed can help nurture those areas of women’s lives to use them better for work, family, and service. It gives readers permission to examine where they spend their energy and time, and learn to set limits and listen to “that inner voice."