The summer is half over and it is finally time for our family vacation. This vacation is really special because a lot of “firsts” will take place on this trip. Our first family vacation outside of the state of Texas. (Yea for NO road trips!) The Diva and Stinker’s first time on an airplane. (Umm… prayers please?) And our first vacation that lasts longer than a weekend.
In my typical OCDish form in preparation for this trip, I have several checklists. I don’t want to forget anything, so I write everything down. It’s color coded and extensive but in my opinion totally necessary.
Here are the top 10 must have items that will help us survive this vacation and live our best summertime lives.
- Ziploc Bags: Miss Double Digits found a great idea on Pinterest. Each day of the trip gets a bag which includes the outfit, undergarments and accessories. The girls labeled them with their favorite colors and basically packed their own suitcase. #Winning
- Weather App: I added our travel location to my weather app so that I can (a) pack properly and (b) know what to expect. I’m a weather fanatic, as I mentioned in Tell Me About Yourself, so you know I watch it constantly.
- A Budget: We’ve been planning this trip for over a year. (And by “we” I mean my father. Thanks Dad!) But that gave me plenty of time to have a savings budget in place. I wanted to be sure that I had enough for everyone to have a good time and not have to check the account every day.
- Reusable bags: We are travelling to a state that charges for plastic bags at grocery and convenience stores. It is so quick, easy, and FREE to keep a reusable bag in my purse for smaller shopping. No sense in wasting money on a bag.
- Car chargers with multiple plugs: Everyone in our family has at least two electronic devices. But that number is higher when you add in cameras. Being able to charge up while we drive from place to place will be key for us. Properly documenting our vacation is a must!
- Extra earbuds or headphones: These things break more often than I like when children under the age of 10 are their owners. Having an extra pair will eliminate the tears and heartache later.
- Colorful washcloths: Hotels only have all white towels. There are 5 of us and no one remembers whose towel belongs to whom. Now, everyone has a color and knows that it’s theirs. And they don’t cost much.
- Sharpies! This should be a staple in Mom’s purse, but in case it isn’t, add it now. Having seven family members on a trip means multiple identical items. Being able to quickly and clearly mark red solo cups or to-go boxes will make a world of difference later. (I also recommend using a color other than black, too.)
- A kid friendly camera: The best investment I think I’ve made is a camera just for my daughters to use. I don’t have to hear the endless chants of, “Oh Mommy, take a picture of that!” They can take as many pictures as they want. I’m excited about seeing this vacation from their eyes and viewpoints. Plus, it also ensures that my camera is safe from kids’ hands.
- Vacation Rules: I have to keep reminding myself that we are on vacation. All of my “at home” rules don’t have to be enforced. Instead, I have some “vacation rules” that let the kids have more freedom and stay safe. It also lets me take a breather from being the serious Mom all the time.
I hope that this list is helpful. I’m looking forward to making new memories and not loosing my mind while doing it. Happy Summer Vacation!!!