A Secret to Staying Young: Planning Good Times with Great Friends

The view from our rental house!

The view from our Oregon coast rental house!

We’re pretty much milking this 50th birthday thing as much as we can — distillery party, Vegas trip, Bryan Adams concert in Atlanta, and our upcoming Hawaii 5-0 trip to Kauai. Recently, we added some icing to our proverbial birthday cakes by spending a weekend at the Oregon Coast with four other couples we’ve been friends with for 20+ years.

We’ve written before about the rejuvenative power of a weekend getaway, but not much beats sharing good times, good drinks, delicious food, laughs, and inside jokes with (not so) old friends. But pinning down a weekend that five couples can all get away for can be tricky.

 A Doodle poll helped us find a good weekend for everyone!

A Doodle poll helped us find a weekend that worked for everyone!

Call us nerdy if you will (and many of you will), but we are big fans of using a Doodle poll for this kind of planning. With Doodle, you can send out a list of all the possible weekends to everyone. People mark which dates are available for them, and in the end (hopefully) there’s at least one choice that works!

Finding a place to stay (that is reasonably priced) for a large group can also be tricky. We searched national and local vacation rental websites and took full advantage of the filters they offer to make sure no one had to sleep on the couch (although I heard that a few unnamed friends did end up falling asleep on the couch after a few too many glasses of rhubarb collins and a wild game of Evil Apples).

A shared Google Sheet helped us plan our meals

Meal planning via a shared Google Sheet.

Finally, we used a shared Google Sheet to plan who was bringing which meals — and, more importantly, which cocktails.

Even though using these tools to plan a weekend at the beach might seem like the ultimate in nerd-dom, it does save a lot of e-mails, phone calls, and texts; gets everyone involved in the planning; lets everyone show off their unique culinary & bartending skills; and leaves more time for having fun once we’re together!

Since the details were all been figured out ahead of time, the weekend itself was all about hanging out and having fun. Walks and runs on the beach, some retail therapy, party games, good stories, maybe or maybe not jumping the fence to use the neighbors’ larger deck for happy hour, and a few cocktails here and there (and there and there and over there) accompanied by delicious meals. We could not have been luckier with the weather at the coast that weekend, and we could not be luckier to have such fantastic friends who are such fun to travel with. We’re looking forward to spending many more weekends with them!

We hope that your next travel adventure with friends is great, whether it’s for a week or a weekend!




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