This post may contain affiliate links, which means if you click and/or make a purchase, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. Gifted products will be noted as such.
This year my best girlfriend’s from high school and I, decided to plan a fall weekend getaway. We have been on such a beautiful journey of friendship since meeting in kindergarten! 20 years ago! Go us! We grew up together, branched out at college, and then came back together to be even stronger, more encouraging friends. I was just so excited to get away with these loves. Our only requirement was that we wanted to spend time outside in the beautiful fall weather. We shot some location ideas around and landed on Drums, PA….. Where???
Drums is about 2 hours from Suburban Philadelphia, where we live, a little beyond Jim Thorpe, PA. It is country, quiet, and sleepy. This is exactly what we were looking for. We hopped in the car all together on a Saturday morning, belted along with our girl’s roadtrip playlist, and immediately started in on our snapchat game. We drove straight to Glen Onoko State Park, where we embarked on the most beautiful hike up alongside a gorgeous waterfall. It turned out to be about a 4 mile hike, which we had no idea about when we started. It was such a good workout and it ended in a fit of giggles as Jenny became a Scout Master and led about 10 people to safety, since no one we encountered knew where they were going.
Home Sweet Home
We found the most perfect Airbnb for the weekend, which was chosen entirely based on the hilarious sleeping setup, 5 beds all lined up next to each other. This was really important for our late night dance party, which included tango-ing to Despacito across all of the beds. The host couple was so adorable, from Philadelphia, and had the best style. Their adorable white farmhouse was so inspiring and they are building a tiny house to rent on their property in the Spring. They had a ton of dogs (a really cute corgi) running around and a chicken and bunny coup. I highly recommend going for a visit. It was so peaceful and we all agreed that we totally could’ve stayed there for a few days longer.
After a really successful, hilarious, and fun weekend, I wanted to share with you some tips for planning a group trip, no matter who you’re going with. It can be daunting/annoying/frustrating to rangle up everyone with plenty of differing ideas being tossed around. Keep these 8 tips in mind when you are planning and adventuring and it will all be worth it.
Pick a location that works for everyone.
Whether its a bachelorette party or just a fun getaway, be mindful of location and travel time. For this trip we happened to all be starting in the same town, but that’s not always how it works out. We chose to just do one night to avoid the complications of Friday night travel. Some people can’t get off work early, some live in a more congested area…just be aware of everyone’s travel and try to find a place with equal travel times for everyone.
Be mindful of everyone’s budgets.
To that same idea, everyone has a different budget for fun extra activities. We found a really affordable Airbnb option that was still safe, clean, and adorable. We also chose a cheaper area of the state, so when we did eat out, it was never expensive. This made the weekend stress free and it didn’t feel like you were constantly pulling out your wallet or groaning over the bill.
Divvy out responsibilities when packing.
Another way to make sure everything was split evenly on the trip was to assign each person with something to bring. Jenny brought snacks and a starter log for the firepit, Olivia brought wine and s’mores materials, other Jo brought games, and I brought spa night supplies… and more wine. I have to say, Jenny totally killed it by bringing doritos and pumpkin spice pretzels. Wowza.
Set expectations low.
This may sound odd, but when you’re just getting away from it all, you shouldn’t feel pressured to accomplish a lot or check off everything on your activity list. Relax. Enjoy the journey to your location. Stop to pee on the roadtrip as many times as you need. If the Alpaca farm looks lame, don’t go. Being together is the most important thing that you will check off your list.
Laugh it off.
After making verbal plans to stop at Starbucks on the trip and then missing every one until we got to farm country and there were no more, we were very caffeine deprived and ended up settling for really bad coffee. On a trip with a group of people, there are so many times where hangry-ness, tiredness, or general annoyances can kind of damper the mood. At one restaurant, it took us almost 2 hours to get our lunch served to us. I think each one of us wanted to punch the waitress at different moments of that dreaded 2 hours. But we laughed. Stuffed our faces when it finally got there. And then went and got really good ice cream to make us feel better. Don’t let stupid inconveniences overshadow the joys of your adventure.
Go off the grid and stay in the moment.
Although we did a good job of snap chatting and photographing every funny moment, we also spent time just enjoying being outside and being together. Ditch your phones. Ask silly questions like “whats the next vacation you want to take” or “what goal do you want to accomplish this year”. Talk to each other. Laugh really hard. That was the best part.
When in doubt, pack wine.
Don’t need too much explanation for this. When there is nothing to do but sit by the fire you just made with a marshmallow roasting in one hand and a glass of wine in the other, that’s just not a problem at all.
Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls
What it really comes down to is putting others before yourself. It’s not too hard to get along for a two hour car ride or even a 36 hour getaway, but this can be a lesson for everyday. When you’re faced with an irritable person or you yourself are feeling on edge, ask God for the Fruits of the Spirit; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. What would it look like if these beautiful fruits were pouring out of you? In the workplace? Among your family? On a girls getaway? How would your interactions be different? I’m praying for these qualities to be a part of my character and the outpouring of Jesus in my life. These girls have shown me these qualities countless times over 20 years and I thank God for them in my life everyday. Their encouragement, love, and support is so so priceless. Can’t wait until Girls Glamping Getaway 2018!