Okay, so it's like this. The Muley family (at least, at this point, Muley and Mrs. Muley) is trying to figure out where to go on a family vacation this summer. We had thought about just doing a few weekends close to home, but the more Mrs. Muley and I pondered this, we realized that we won't have too many summers left to travel together with our girls, and that we need to try to take as many trips as possible while our kids still want to go places with us.
Last year, thanks to a generous, unsolicited financial donation from my parents, we were able to splurge and take the girls on their first visit to DisneyWorld, which they absolutely loved. Well, we don't have the financial resources to do that again, so we are thinking a bit more economically. With the increasing expense nowadays of air travel, we want to go somewhere we can drive to instead of fly to. Even though the price of gas is outrageous, it's still somewhat cheaper to drive instead of fly (unless you plan on driving to Cape Horn in South America, which thankfully is not one of our contenders. I hear it is almost impossible to get Dr Pepper down in Argentina).
So, we are at the moment thinking of returning to the vacation oasis of Branson, Missouri. We were just there three years ago, but there are some advantages to returning so soon. First, it's definitely cheaper than DisneyWorld or Colorado or New York City or Hawaii -- some other spots on our ultimate family travel wish list. Second, we can drive there from Waco in a day's time. (That would give our girls a chance to catch up on all their DVD watching in the car). Third, we all had a good time in Branson the last time around, and if we go again this summer we'd be doing things we didn't before, such as possibly going to a huge amusement park and doing some cool stuff on the lakes.
The problem is that as we do some investigating on the Internet, it seems that in the nice places we would want to stay, the cheaper rooms and packages are mostly booked up. (ARGH! What's with these annoying, well-organized early vacation planner types?) We haven't looked very long at this, but hopefully we won't be faced with a choice of staying in a huge multi-bedroom suite in a nice place (and paying through the honker for the privilege) or staying in a budget one-room efficiency in the Ozark Outhouse Motel out beyond the city water treatment plant.
Have any of the three or four regular visitors to this site been to Branson recently? If so, any suggestions?