I’m popping in to let you know that we’re back from our five day trip to Colonial Williamsburg! We arrived at 1:30 today, pulled some food out of the freezer for Shabbos, and got busy cooking more while unpacking from the trip.
It was an amazing, fantastic, wonderful time had by all of us in every way! I haven’t even finished telling you about my Israel trip and here I’m returning from VA! So I’m going to quickly sum up; I’d love to share about it in detail but my upcoming week is so busy I won’t have much time to blog (yes, it’s become my perpetual reality :)).
We arrived on Sunday morning in VA, and spent a few hours in Colonial Williamsburg before checking into our unit(s) at the vacation resort. As soon as we opened the door and walked into our units, the kids got excited. It was so beautiful – we had two huge apartments, each with two bedrooms, a kitchen, washer/dryer, master bath with a jacuzzi and steam room shower, living room, and porch – 2400 square foot total. It felt very luxurious!
We spent our mornings in Colonial Williamsburg, learning about lots of interesting stuff and seeing interesting people and scenes, and then returned in the afternoons to the resort. There we had miniature golf, indoor swimming, tennis courts, playgrounds, board games that we could borrow – so much to do! We didn’t manage to take the kids swimming until Weds, when we realized we had to go earlier in the day before people were around, and at that point. Before that, when we went to the pool, other people were there, but on Weds. and Thurs. the kids had the indoor pool to themselves.
We really could have spent all day, every day, in Colonial Williamsburg, or all day at the resort, but we were happy with the balance of fun and learning. Something I’m really happy we chose to do was buy a five day pass – there’s so much to do there that it would have been overwhelming for just a day or two – it took us that long to figure out what was going on! We participated in a trial (where they announced, “Everyone remove their hats, except for Jews and Quakers” – apparently this was really what was said at that time – we later asked and got a personal explanation of the relaxed religious climate of the time), saw lots of tradespeople plying their trade (eg – basketmaker, shoemaker, blacksmith), toured the palace, learned about colonial food preparation (interesting to see the ham they ate – different than the breeds now, about 25% meat and 75% fat – people valued fat and food that could keep them going since their lives were so energy intensive), watched different reenactors in details portray historical figures (Patrick Henry and George Washington), and in general had a good time learning about the period of time in a relaxed and fun way. At one presentation I took the little kids out, and chatted with a couple of other homeschooling moms, who asked me for suggestions of what to do and see – they felt so pressured, trying to fit everything into a day or two and not having an idea of where to go or what to do first. We limited ourselves to about four activities a day there – it doesn’t sound like a lot, but it was – there’s lots of walking from place to place, and we didn’t want to wear everyone out. This was a nice pace, very full but still left us time to relax afterward.
The units at the resort were so comfortable in every way that everyone would have been happy to stay much longer! I was very fortunate to get an incredible price – the total we paid was just $245 for five nights for both apartments. I got this by arranging my reservation through an owner of a time share there – another mom who I met in Colonial Williamsburg happened to be staying at the same resort, and told me they paid $70 a night for one 2 bedroom unit. Which is still a great price, if you consider how much a hotel would cost, and doesn’t have nearly the facilities. But that would have been a lot more expensive if we had gone that route.
The weather was gorgeous, it only took us 4 hours to drive there and back, and we got home with time to get ready for Shabbos without rushing. As I said, from start to finish it was a fantastic family vacation!