(I feel like Olaf from Frozen, proclaiming his love for the wonderful season.)
With Memorial Day weekend behind us, summer is officially underway! To many, this means days spent at the pool, lots of watermelon and popsicles consumed, and of course, summer vacations. Kids look forward to fun-filled family getaways after school lets out, and I can fondly remember all the summer vacations I took with my family growing up.
Whether you’re traveling with tweens, teens, babies, or toddlers, here are a few of my favorite tips to help make your vacation a little easier and a little less stressful.
- Pack snacks – This is probably my number one tip, as we all know that ‘hangry’ is a really thing. As a mom of a 3 year old, I know how important it is to keep snacks with me at all times. When you’re traveling, whether it’s in a car or on an airplane, always make sure that you have semi-healthy, filling snacks for the kids, and also for yourself. It’s a lot easier to get frustrated with a family member when you’re hungry, so make sure those tummies are happy!
- Plan ahead – This pretty much goes without saying, but make sure you have a solid plan for your vacation. Going to the beach? Make sure you pack sunscreen. Headed on a long road trip? Make sure to bring plenty of activities for the kids to do in the car. You don’t necessarily need a day-by-day itinerary (unless you’re a type A planner and your family enjoys that type of thing), but having a general idea of the things you want to do is a good idea. You also want to make sure to pack the right clothing for the weather. If you’re headed to Florida in July for example, you definitely want to make sure to bring your swimsuit!
- Stay hydrated – This is an important tip, especially if you’re traveling somewhere warm. Make sure you and your kids drink plenty of water, as dehydration is not something you want to have to deal with on vacation. A great way to keep your water cold is to freeze your bottle the night before, then let it thaw when you take it with you the following day. If you’re out in the sun for a long period of time, or especially active, keep those water bottles filled!
- Don’t over pack – I am guilty of this, for sure, but every vacation, I do a little bit better. Try and pack only what you need, instead of bringing everything you own. Instead of packing 10 shirts for a 7 day trip, try bringing pieces that can be layered. Lightweight scarves are also great as they help change up an outfit. I love to use packing cubes to help me figure out exactly how much stuff I can bring. We have a color for each member of our family, so it’s very easy to see whose clothes are whose when you arrive at your destination. Also, unless you’re going to a remote island, anything you decide (or forget) not to bring can usually be purchased.
- Go with the flow – Vacations can be a lot of fun, but they can also be a little stressful at times. Sometimes, plans change, or something happens that throws everyone off. Instead of letting it ruin your vacation, just take a deep breath and ‘Let it Go’. (Ah, the wise words of a Disney princess). Remember that you are on vacation after all, and that you’re enjoying family togetherness (or maybe the problem is your family, in which case, I highly recommend retreating by a pool with a glass of wine for a bit). Either way, relax your expectations a little, and just have fun!
Vacations are the things memories are made of, so snap those photos, and have the best summer vacation ever!
Guest Post by Madison Mom – Jamie L!