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My family recently took our first little weekend getaway all together! How exciting! Best part… I didn’t plan it! (I’ve got an amazing mother-in-law.) Worst part… it was our first time! Let’s just say this REAL Fit Mama learned some REAL good tips after this experience. We’ve all gone on trips of some sort; growing up my family did annual trips. Bless my mother’s heart for getting everything taken care of prior to leaving. I now have a whole new appreciation and respect for my mother.  I’d like to share the following:

Lessons learned:

  • Start EARLY! As in getting separate lists written out for each person of the family – husbands included. While these lists were overwhelming, it felt fabulous to cross things off the list! The list is also a great thing to bring with to make sure nothing is left behind.
  • Remember it’s a VACATION! I forgot this frequently from the beginning packing stages, to being involved while we were there. Once you have kids, and are taking a family vacation, it’s also about letting them enjoy the experience.
  • Pack MORE food, less toys. I packed quite a few toys for my kids forgetting that it’s a new place and honestly they’d be excited with a stick even if it were just at a new place vs. our house. We packed quite a bit of our own food, but food costs a lot of money to eat out but we easily could have gotten by with less eating out and more eating in our rooms. This also helps staying on track with a healthy lifestyle! Temptation was everywhere.
  • Ask as MANY questions as you can while booking, and before arriving! The kiddos are going to be so ready and excited once you get there to jump right in. See what the earliest time to check-in could be the morning you arrive. Free breakfast? Any special events going on? If so, how do you become involved?
  • Bring your own pillows from home. I didn’t learn this from this trip, but having a little comfort from home makes a BIG difference when you’re worn out!

We were fortunate to have not only my family of 5, but my in-laws, brother-in-law and his girlfriend along too. Having those extra hands was such a blessing. I’m pretty sure after that 2nd night of little sleep my hubs and I probably wouldn’t have been on speaking terms if we didn’t have all of them with us!

As I look to plan our next “experiment” (yup, I’m using the word “experiment” interchangeably with “vacation” until further notice), I’ve got to ask…

Any helpful traveling tips friends?