Summer is upon us, which hopefully means more family time and maybe even a family vacation. As I have been preparing for our first trip as family of six, I have had a lot on my mind. Most people refer to family vacations as a “trip” and less of a “vacation” because of the amount work that goes into getting your little people somewhere. I can see where people are coming from, but this is a wonderful opportunity to strengthen family bonds and make memories. My hope is that with the right vacation choice, preparation and flexibility, these times can be enjoyable and memorable for everyone.
Going on the right type of vacation for your family is key to having a good time. My kids are 6 years old, 4 years old, 18 months and 6 months, so as much as I know my older kids would love Disneyland, I need to understand that probably isn’t the best choice for my younger kids right now. I need something that allows flexibility like nap time and doesn’t require a schedule. So, when considering your family’s specific needs when deciding where to go, be realistic! Family trips don’t have to be over the top. You could even plan a day trip to Bear Lake!
The next important thing is preparation. Make sure you have small, simple activities to keep them entertained and enough snacks for the drive or flight (I have learned you can NEVER have enough fruit snacks). Some people buy new activities to make the trip more exciting. I like to get a new movie for the iPad. You know your kids and what they enjoy. They may even enjoy looking out the window a bit.
Earlier, I used the word “flexibility” when traveling with your kids, but really, I mean “patience.” You are going to have to change your plans because that’s just how it goes with kids. For me, just mentally preparing myself for extra bathroom breaks and food stops makes it so much less frustrating when it actually happens. Give yourself extra time, and be willing to be flexible. Practice patience and remember that even if things aren’t going as planned, you are together, which is the whole point.
Let’s make the most of our family vacations this summer and hopefully create some long-lasting memories!