About the Author

Emily P. Freeman is a writer who creates space for souls to breathe. She is the author of four books, including her most recent release, Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World. She and her husband live in North Carolina with their twin daughters and twinless son.

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  1. Emily,
    I really liked the idea of “letting your vacation take you”. Just like I need to relinquish every day to the Lord, I also need to relinquish control of my vacation. Let it (vacation) and God take me where they want me to go. I also agree with keeping the expectations realistic. Nothing kills a vacation like unmet expectations. Thank you for some thought provoking ideas to ponder before I pack my bag.
    Blessings,
    Bev

  2. Ugh! Yes!! We leave next Saturday with my mom, my sister, and her husband plus the 4 of us. Trying my best to NOT think about it so much! Step back and stop with the plans.

  3. Ive had to shift my expectations and paradigm on what a “vacation” is. For me, its now a family trip and not a vacation. On this family trip, I’m still cooking, washing clothes and the like so I don’t consider that a vacation. The children have a ball and my husband and I relish in the joy they’re having. I do take mini-mind vacations often by STOPPING to embrace the beauty right before my eyes. This mini-siestas rejuvenate and refresh. Praying your vacations are filled with love, joy and peace.

  4. And even though we might go to the same place year after year, each visit is subtly different from the one before.

    And that can be a very good thing.

    And if the ocean’s breezes really flow your way, someday you might find a little house not all that far from the sea and move there for good.

    And that is what we’re doing even as we speak …

  5. Wow! Why have I never thought of it this way before?? “Low on expectations, high on love.” Yes!! This will help shape the way I think about vacationing from now on. Thank you for writing about this!

  6. Oh, I NEEDED this today. In a few weeks, we leave for Hawaii to visit family. Vacation? Yes. Attached to this many-dream-to-visit location are hurts from past visits. I’ve been working to prepare my heart for this time with family who don’t know Jesus. I always end up tired from all our preparations before a big trip. I probably will this time too. But, if my heart is rested, filled up with Jesus, I think that might just make the difference in my outlook on this trip.

    And this? “Because if you can’t settle in to your real life, you won’t be able to settle in on vacation.” Oh, that spoke deep to my heart today.

    Thank you, Emily. I’m planning to re-read this post often in the next few weeks!

  7. Low on expectations and high on love. These are words to live by. Many people in my life have continued to say, “You need to let go of your expectations,” but I find I need something to replace them with, love is a wonderful alternative.

  8. Beautiful post. So very true. Thank you for reminding me our true peace is not from where we happen to be physically but where Jesus lives in our heart.

  9. “Vacation is more mindset than destination.” It is so easy to forget that. I often get caught
    up in my own thoughts, my own worries, and my own world. Thank you for the
    reminder.

  10. “Vacation is more mindset than destination.” Amen to that! When I’m on vacation and want to see all and do all, I tell myself that I’ll be back one day. I don’t know if that’s true, but it helps me relax and go on vacay-mode.

  11. Your words are so healing, and they give me permission to just be! Thank you – needed this just now!

  12. “You’ve felt the deep sadness in the sunshine.” Oh goodness girl, that makes my heart skip a beat. I have a story, another time! Excellent word.

  13. Beautiful analogy between the sea of healing and rest. Truly, if you can’t settle in where are, you won’t find it elsewhere on vacation. Rest and blessings to all…

  14. Emily,
    Rest takes courage! So very true!!! It can be hard to “rest” on vacation with family. You want to do it and see it all. A few years ago my hubby and I took a week long “staycation!” We planned a few activities for the week, but mostly we just wanted to “veg” out rest, rejuvenate and enjoy each other. I love exploring the area I live in and not having to rush around all the time. I have come to want/need more spiritual whitespace as I’ve dealt with my aging dad and work stresses for 1+ year. I believe people make a big deal out of “going” somewhere for vacation and if they stayed home for a week they might feel more rested.
    Blessings 🙂

  15. Thank you for these amazing words. I have littles and we are not in a place where any kind of vacation would be restful. We haven’t had a real vacation in years. Thank you for the reminders that I can rest right where I am.

  16. Emily you remind me to breathe… That’s what we need to do, just relax into His arms and breathe without being breathless…

  17. Emily,

    I’ve had this post sitting in my inbox, marked to get my attention, for over a month now. Yikes. It just so happens that I’m preparing to take my 4 little ones on vacation (and there is such a difference between a trip versus a vacation, isn’t there?) and I’m trying to get everything in order (laundry, packing, correspondence…a clean email inbox). How funny that you mention all of that “regular-ness” happening today – a Tuesday. Thank for all of this insight. My soul needs a vacation; and, I can sense that my children’s souls need a vacation, too. I’ll be keeping all of your words with me today while I pack, and throughout our travels. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    Jane