Birmingham Daycation: Making an Impact

This daycation fell in the middle of Spring semester and if I thought Fall semester was bad, Spring semester was its slightly more stressed older brother.

Confession time: I was so overwhelmed with school, work and everything else in my life I almost cancelled the Daycation. But I realized if I didn’t go I would still be tired I’d probably just lay in bed and watch Netflix. I realized that if I didn’t take a day for myself to recoup and refuel I would be no good for the busy week I had ahead. So, despite everything I decided that I needed to go for me and my mental and I’m so glad I did! After the trip, I I got back to my house around midnight and yes, I was tired but I felt recharged, rejuvenated and ready to be productive for the upcoming week. 

First stop pictures (DUH) It’s important to be present and enjoy the moment but it’s also important to document your experience for memories sake. Find your happy medium and rock. I’m convinced females have a sixth-sense when it comes to back drops for pictures and photoshoot locations. We weren’t in Birmingham for more than five minutes when we found a tall parking deck with a roof top that overlooked the city. We got out and started giving face to the camera we each got our turn slaying our looks with the beautiful city behind us. When I’m stressed and overwhelmed often it takes a toll on how I look and how I perceive myself. In the weeks leading up to going to Birmingham I did not feel good about myself and how I looked when I saw myself in the mirror. But it’s something about dressing up beating my face and giving looks to the camera that just make me feel better.

Next it was time to dive into what we had come for which was the cities civil rights history. We went to Ingram park, The Civil Rights Muesli, and 16th St Baptist church. It was all on the same block. We walked through Ingram park and where engulfed with moments and statues that depicted the struggle and triumph of the civil rights era. We then walked to the civil rights museum which BTW is FREE on Sundays. The museum starts with a short film then takes you on a journey through the civil right era. Its highly interactive so it made me almost feel like I was in that time. Then we walked across the street to the historical 16th ST Baptist Church where 4 young girls were killed in a church bombing. Which we had learned about since elementary school.  The whole experience made me so emotional to see all that my ancestors went through. Just being there made me more appreciative of my life. Yes, college is hard and yes, I’m supper stressed about my future but my ancestors were getting lynched, hosed down, injustice and harassed to make this future possible for me.

Afterwards we headed to the mall to do a little retail therapy. Look I usually hate shopping on vacation especially at chain stores because you can stay home and do alllll that BUT forever 21 was having a 65% off of clearance so you know, “Treat yo self”.  Shopping always makes me feel belter in the moment plus the sale let me splurge without breaking the bank so win win. This trip not only expanded my knowledge on my history as an African American woman in America it also made me hopeful for the future. I took so much away from this trip. I will cherish this trip for years to come.

  1. TIME: Since we were only staying for a day, our goal was to leave by 9:30 am, so we could get the maximum experience.  We were exhausted from late-night shenanigans and adventures we went on before the daycation.  But as soon as we got into Birmingham around 12:30 pm, we all perked up and got excited. the fact that we were in a different state made created a new wave of energy and life.
  2. DESTINATION: After our last daycation we decided then and there that we needed to make this a regular thing. Once we realized how easy it was we wanted to make a goal of it. Our goal was to go a little bit farther, go somewhere with rich history, and somewhere where we can learn and take something back from. WE agreed fun but impactful.  Since it was black history month we thought Birmingham would be a perfect destination. #BlackHistoryMatters
  3. RESEARCH: WE did look up We did not do a lot of research with this trip we just kind of went with it. We didn’t even know the museum was free on Sundays or that the church didn’t let visitors in on Sunday. That works for me though. I’m a very go with the flow type of person but if that doesn’t work for you that’s ok! There’s many travel sites that can help you with your perfect travel plan.
  4. BUDGET: $15 each for gas + additional spending money
  5. FOOD: We shopped for a couple hours and by this time we were all getting a little hangry. We were so engrossed in our daycation that we hadn’t eaten anything since breakfast and it was now around 7pm at night. Someone recommended a cute burger spot in downtown Birmingham, were we laughed, ate and reminisced on the wonderful day we had. We spent about $10 on the amazing meal.

Love Always,

Chynna Toliver