Hey guys! How are ya? In this post we are going to help you uncover the reason for your trip, since this happens to be a pretty dang important choice that has to be made. Deciding where to go on vacation and what time of year you go have equal impact when picking your spot. You’ll see. Planning a family vacation can be stressful as hell, and if we’re being totally honest, taking the trip can be stressful too. Does that mean you shouldn’t go? Absolutely not. Pack up and get outta there!
PS: This is post 2 in our ‘Step By Step Guide to Planning a Family Vacation’ series. For post number one, click here.
When deciding where to go on vacation:
There are about a million things that can help in your decision making process. Pinterest is a biggie, don’t overlook it as a very valuable resource. Ask friends and family about their most memorable vacations- sometimes their best stories will come from places you never even considered visiting. Check out my Pinterest travel inspiration board here! Follow along! We’d love to have you.
Ask yourself this:
Is it a more laid back trip? Is this a time to simply unwind and reconnect with the family? Are you sneaking in some education for yourself and/or the kids? Is it more of an activity-centered trip?
I love either of those types of trips, don’t you? I mean first of all you are getting the hell out of dodge (yay) and secondly, you are getting the hell out of dodge. Haha 🙂
Regardless of what type of trip it is, I am a huge fan of planning. You know there’s an old saying: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Uhhhh, not today, Satan. (Side note: I am super competitive in my normal day-to-day life, so failure? Not an option.)
Determine WHY you are taking this vacation so you are able to easily narrow down the WHERE.
Do you want a more relaxing trip? Although as parents, we all know we never truly let our hair down. Even when the kids are in their 40’s, we will still be parenting them. I believe this to be true because my dad is still telling me what to do and how to do it. I’m 35. MAJOR eye rolling going on right now, FYI.
Anyway… life is so busy for all of us, all of the time, that it’s totally worth planning a vacation that takes the hustle and bustle of our crazy lives and throws it right into the trash can. #ByeRatRace
Two take it easy trip ideas that your family will love:
A beach week (or even a weekend) accomplishes the relaxation part pretty nicely. The kids can- and will- basically live in their swimsuits. Which cuts down on laundry in a big way. There is something wonderful about hanging with your squad by the ocean; being calmed by watching the waves, realizing that your most pressing concern is whether or not you’ll be able to finish the moat on your sand castle before high tide sweeps it away completely. Ahhhhhh. Please pick us up on your way out there, thanks in advance.
Another fantastically relaxing trip is a quiet log cabin tucked away in the mountains somewhere. There, you simply listen. Listen to the leaves, listen in the stillness. You’ll hear birds chirping during your long walks in the woods, maybe a little stream gurgling nearby. Absorb every second of the solitude because when you get back to reality and that time clock, you’ll find yourself more calm and composed (at least for the first 5 minutes). Don’t believe me? It’s ok. Drop me a note after you come back. I’ll spare you the ‘I told you so’. But I’ll be thinking it.
Two big city (activity packed) trip ideas:
If you’ve seen my Instagram or read some of my posts, you’ll know how much I adore this city. I’ll do a more detailed post on D.C. in the future.
There are TONS of museums there. Tons! So educational, and the kids will never realize it. Ever. Personally, learning new things is always a win for me; but huge bonus points if the kids suck up some additional knowledge outside of being force fed gobs of semi-boring information while they’re trapped at school. One of the Smithsonians had a hands on exhibit available on one of our trips where we were able to isolate our own DNA with a cheek swab. Ummm, that was pretty bad ass. I carried that little vial of myself around in my purse until it finally broke. Hope no one clones me.
If the kids do a little learning on a trip, they really and truly don’t even realize they’re learning. **Sneaky moms out there always trying to get one over on the kids, raise your hands.**
Mom: 1, kids: 0.
I find that new facts make for lively conversation for ages after the vacation- and I really enjoy getting the kids’ takes on places. Things look very different through the eyes of a 7 year old versus an 18 year old. Pretty sure you would get a kick out of that too.
New York City:
Look, folks, there’s a reason they call it the city that never sleeps. Also one of my favorite spots to visit- I swear that you could spend two weeks in either NYC or D.C. and not see half of what either place has to offer.
Because there’s so much culture in NYC it can be tough to figure out where to start. Everything from art to history; the numerous theatre experiences; the parks; eating till you collapse… Seeing the Statue of Liberty and the 9/11 Memorial are not to be missed.
Most of all, what an opportunity to sneak in a little more info by teaching the kids part of our nation’s story.
Mom: 2, kids: 0
Deciding where to go on vacation is one of the most exciting times in our household… Everyone has an opinion, everyone has some input. Finally, something that brings us all a little closer, even if we want to kill each other 6 out of 7 days a week. Family life, y’all. It’s something else.
What helps you in deciding where to go on vacation? Leave us a comment and let us know! We’d love to hear from you.
Safe travels! xo