Good post, Dave. Everybody always says that long-distance relationships tear your soul out and should not be done under any cir***stances, but I disagree. Some of the most fulfilling (albeit painful, as of my last relationship) have been long-distance. Granted, it was more because they were who they were more so than the situation, but it goes to show that if the two of your a strong people (these relationships are not for the faint of heart), then I think long-distance can really do your relationship a lot of good when you finally make it into the same area.
I definitely agree with that last statement of making the most of your time together, and not to schedule everything in advance. My favorite parts of visiting my ex were when we were just puttering around in our PJ's.