security for tomorrow creates fun for today
I can’t help but feel like these are the days. My kids are young, but growing so fast and changing every day. I know these are fleeting moments and I’m clinging onto all of them. This year, I can honestly look back and say we made the most of our days together as a family. We traveled, we went off the grid, we spent time with our best friends and we grew even tighter as a family unit. It isn’t over yet, though! December is always a month packed full of bonding opportunities and our 2017 December certainly is just that – packed.
First up on our list was a visit to Knott’s Merry Farm.
Before I jump into our excursion, I want to share a quick secret with you. The key to tuning out the noise, thinking long term and planning for the future is investing with Vanguard. No matter which way you slice it, money is a big part of life. It matters where you invest it and investing it now can give you the peace of mind needed to enjoy your family now. So let me show you how we lived life to the fullest this past week!
Theme parks are always an awesome place to be with your family. The air is electric, buzzing with excitement. You can’t help but feel like a kid again and there is no wiping the smiles off of your kids’ faces. While I love our once or twice a year visit to Disneyland, SoCal locals know that Knott’s is the easier theme park to visit.
We homeschool so we have the luxury of visiting during the week. During the week, there are NO lines for anything and you can ride the whole park twice in one day. It’s thrilling. We tend to start out in Camp Snoopy where my 4 (almost 5) year old can go bonkers, riding everything in sight, and his 10 (almost 11) year old sister can be a little kid again.
I love how a theme park brings siblings together. Savannah is just the best big sister ever.
Eventually, I managed to convince the kiddos to leave the park with me for dinner. We headed to our favorite vegan restaurant in Anaheim with the promise of vegan ice cream to follow.
And then it was back to the Knott’s Hotel for possibly the best part of the whole trip… the Snoopy tuck-in (Camp Snoopy room). Sure, we could’ve driven the 2 hours home that night but I wasn’t ready to let the magic end yet. The kids put on their Christmas PJs, Snoopy themed of course, and then we waited. Oh, the anticipation.
And just like that, Snoopy was in our hotel room giving out hugs, high fives and very thorough tuck-ins. My normally outgoing children went dead silent with goofy grins plastered on their faces. I thought to myself, this is a moment I’ll remember when I’m old.
The next morning, we got up and did it all over again! We agreed to just a couple hours at the park but, well, a couple turned into a few and before I knew it, we were almost late to Savannah’s cheerleading practice that night! Time flies when you’re having fun!
Day #2: Gabriel is huge, always in the 99th percentile for height, so I guess it should’ve come as no surprise that he has already hit the 46″ line. Crazy, I know. He is the height of an average 6 year old!
What this meant was some new opportunities at the park. He could ride certain attractions by himself and he could also ride Bigfoot Rapids for the first time ever. I wasn’t keen on getting wet so early in the day, but I was assured it would only be a sprinkle… next thing I know, I’m trying to dry my pants and shoes out in the bathroom… wet like they had gone through the washing machine!
While I was drying and my husband was taking photos for laughs later, the kids rode back to back sessions of bumper cars. Oh the looks on their faces!
I rode my favorite big girl rides with my favorite big girl. I’m not sure what I would do if she wasn’t a roller coaster junkie like her momma!
I then spotted my opportunity to get dad wet as well, but of course, the log floom keeps you pretty dry. Next time, Neil, next time.
What’s a day in the life of a Vanguard client look like? It begins with an impromptu road trip to a nearby theme park and ends in memories you’ll all remember for a lifetime. Of course, it doesn’t take a theme park or a famous character to make big memories. The magic ingredient is always just time spent together, preferably without distraction.
A big distraction can be focusing on financial uncertainty. According to a recent study**, Vanguard clients spend 6 more hours per week, on average, with their kids compared with clients of other investment firms. And, Vanguard clients are 24% more likely to feel involved with their kids compared with clients of other investment firms. I know it can sound daunting but, investing for the future doesn’t have to be a sacrifice now. You can have it both ways – the security of planning ahead and the gratification of living a fuller life today.
It could be the key to you living today at the fullest and experiencing the things that truly matter, whether it is more time with your kids, more time with your spouse or more time spent alone enjoying your passions and hobbies. The last is a goal for me next year – more me time doing things that make me happy (because there is no happy mom without happy Sarah, ya know?)
Vanguard clients don’t live to invest, they invest to live!
** The Where Investors Belong survey was conducted by market research firm Kelton Global in 2016. It polled 1,000 Vanguard clients and compared them with 1,000 clients of other investment firms. All differences between Vanguard clients and clients of other investment firms are statistically significant at the 95% confidence level. The parental stat refers to clients with children of any age who provided the number of hours per week they typically spend with their children or who, compared to other people they may know, believe to be more involved in their child’s life. . The experiences of these Vanguard clients may not be representative of the experience of other Vanguard clients and aren’t a guarantee of future investment performance or success.