We are not going away for a family vacation this year. My eldest son is sorely disappointed, feeling that it is his birthright to be taken somewhere where he will relax, eat in restaurants, and have overpriced souvenirs bought for him. How this differs from his everyday life I am not certain.
But to make him feel better and assuage my own guilt and perhaps make some money, I am opening my own vacation destination : The Big Yellow House. Why go somewhere when we got it all here. The following is the description I am going to print out.
Tired of the same old vacations, relaxing on the beach, hiking in the mountains, cruising the Caribbean. Been to Europe so many times it has lost it's appeal? I have a unique opportunity for you.
**Ever wonder what it would be like to restore an old home?
**What sort of work is involved in removing old plaster and lathe walls and hanging new sheetrock?
**How to install ceramic tile in a room that is completely out of square and has not one 90 degree angle.
**Want to know how to reglaze old wooden windows?
**Do you wonder if you could rewire a house and NOT burn it down or electrocute yourself in the process?
**Ever wonder how much lead paint dust you can safely inhale or how hard you need to work outdoors in the sweltering heat before you collapse from heat exhaustion?
**Ever wonder if you have the fortitude to restore an old house?
**Or do you just want to use some cool power tools and invent new swear words?
Well, wonder no more. This is the vacation for you.
At The Big Yellow House you will get to participate in the process. No boring lounging around for you!
For seven fun filled days and nights you will get get to work on an *actual old home
* Yes, not an imitation!
You will get to be an important part of rescuing an *actual old home
* from a century of bad taste and disrepair. Not only that you will get to sleep overnight
in this historic work in progress.
While you lay in bed at night you will get to experience the UNIQUE JOY that is original wooden windows. You can have the untold pleasure of trying to find something just the right size to prop the window up with, just like our forefathers did for so many years before this. Or if it is too cold, you can lay in your bed and listen to the windows rattle in their jams as the wind whistles though the cracks. You can use this time to ponder various types of insulation and weigh historic accuracy versus new thermal-vinyl-clad-never-need-painting-or-reglazing-again-windows.
You can have the fun of dropping something on the wood floor and watch it ROLL ACROSS THE ROOM all on it's own due to the house having settled about six inches on one side. It never gets old. Then you can mosey on down to the basement and turn the house jack, and the other one, and the other one. How many times can you turn it before you see a discernible difference in the elevation of the house? That is the question that has plagued old home owners since the beginning of time. Now you too can weigh in with an opinion!
We will also let you start a fire in one of the three fireplaces using dollar bills in an attempt to simulate the hidden costs on things no one will ever see involved in restoring an old home. Once the fire is roaring it will be time to throw in your larger bills, $20, $50, and even $100 would not be out of place as we endeavor to visually portray home heating costs. (note: please bring your own suitcase filled with dollar bills as these will NOT be provided, or several suitcases if you are striving for authenticity)
Where else could your vacation time go towards something so meaningful as bringing back a piece of history.
And remember these are just the highlights, there is much MUCH more.
There is also a companion vacation available for those who are contemplating parenthood. Hang out with seven wonderful young children who will demand your undivided attention.
Highlights of this vacation package include:
**Being woken up several times during the night.
**Walking through a pitch dark room, stepping on mislaid legos and trying not to scream or fall to the ground in pain, while holding a sleeping baby.
**Listening to and PARTAKING IN conversations about the Bionicles and their powers. Don't worry if it feels like your brain explodes and is oozing out of your ears after a few hours, it is normal and does NOT impact your ability to say, "Wow!", "Cool!", "That's interesting!" if you have practiced long enough.
**Grocery shopping with seven kids and two shopping carts. Extra points given for navigating the check out with no tantrums. Extra extra points given if you managed to remember everything and spend under $300.
**When you arrive home from the grocery store you will be instructed to throw away 60% of the food you just bought. This is an attempt to demonstrate the amount of food that will go waste once you have children.
**Reading any number of the Berenstain Bear books until your eyes bleed and/or you have the books memorized.
**Preparing a dinner when you have seemingly nothing to cook despite the trip to the grocery store. Extra points given if no one cries when called to the table and sees their plate of food.
**Learning if french fries with ketchup counts as two vegetables.
In this vacation package you will be encouraged to bring a suitcase full of dollar bills to use in lieu of toilet paper. This is to simulate the cost of diapers which will be cladding your child's ass for years.
By the end of your one week stay, you will either be ready to go forth and procreate or you will be signing up for sterilization. Either way it is a winning situation for you.
Sign up now, space is limited.
People are going to be falling all over each other to vacation here, don't you think?