Hey Moms! If your kids are like mine, they have already begun a countdown to the last day of school. Anticipating all the homework-free days ahead seems to lessen the burden of these final weeks. If your summer plans include traveling, you know how much work it is to plan and prepare for a trip. Whether your family is leaving for an extended trip or a short excursion, a bit of advance planning will help decrease your stress level and increase your enjoyment. Traveling with young children involves many details. To make the process easier, consider the following list of 10 helpful traveling tips:
1. Clean your house before you leave. No matter how well you plan for a vacation, if you don’t also plan for your return, you can quickly undo many of the stress-relieving benefits of a vacation.
2. Be sure you have some non-perishable foods in the pantry plus a few quick-fix foods in the freezer for your return. This will eliminate the need to stop for a meal on your way back home.
3. Help your family find the balance between packing too much or not enough. Encourage mix and match clothing, one or two pair of shoes, and lots of layering options.
4. Carry your insurance and prescription cards along with a small first aid kit.
5. Keep a folder on hand for the duration of your trip to hold all of your paperwork, confirmations, receipts, passports, etc.
6. Present each of your children with their own travel tote. Fill their tote with snacks and drinks, small travel games, books, stickers, colored pencils and coloring books. Use this bag exclusively for travel and it will remain novel. Plus, your children will look forward to future journeys with their travel tote in tow.
7. Should you need help while on the road, dial the phone number on the back of your driver’s license (very small, above the barcode). Free road side assistance will be on the way.
8. Rather than purchasing your typical souvenirs, consider bringing home a non-perishable food item to enjoy together upon your return home.
9. Don’t return on a Sunday. However, if you must, make it an a.m. return. Sufficient time to prepare for the week ahead will reduce everyone’s stress level.
10. Download and/or print pictures and view your video footage as soon as possible. Make some popcorn, sit back, and enjoy reliving your trip together with a family vacation movie night.
Family excursions can be some of your most enjoyable times together. Remember; don’t sweat the small irritations that will inevitably creep in during your trip. Set a good example for your children with flexibility and patience. Savor these memory making opportunities with your family. You deserve it; you’re a Mom! Happy Traveling!
Kirsten Berger Coaching