I moved to the Albany area about eighteen months ago after spending most of my life in the Pacific Northwest. When people ask me how I like it, I always respond that there is so much to see and do around here. Around the same time of our move, my husband and I started our family so we now have a little one in tow and another one on the way. We have always enjoyed traveling and we were worried that would come to an end once we had kids. Day trips have proven to be the perfect way to travel because there is no hassle of airplanes, they cost less, and have improved our overall sense of happiness.
What always amazes me, however, is how few people take day trips. I have met people who have never even left the state of New York! Do they realize that the Berkshires are just 40 minutes away? Have they never been tempted to see the fall foliage on a drive to Vermont? This got me thinking about New Year's resolutions. The top resolutions are always the same from year to year. Lose weight. Save money. Reduce stress. Take a vacation. Be happy. I decided this would be the theme of my column. Having a toddler at home, I feel it's important to get him outside to play. Since January 1st, we have been trekking around state parks, tromping in the snow, and just enjoying the area. Kids need to get outside and play, and as my husband and I have been finding out- so do adults! A hike through the snow beats running on a treadmill any day of the week.
I will be highlighting my favorite parks throughout the remainder of winter and encourage you to step outside and check them out. We have the advantage of experiencing all four seasons in the Northeast. The landscape changes dramatically and will provide us with a new experience each time we visit. Think about your workplace, your friends- how many people use the expression, "I need a vacation"? So take one. Take one this Saturday. Go to Thacher Park, it's a 20 minute drive from Albany. You'll burn some calories. Nobody will ask you for your visa card or ask to split the check. And best of all, I guarantee you'll leave with a smile on your face.