One Thing That Guarantees I Have A Great Day On Vacation With My Kids.
And no, it is not vodka for breakfast. (Though, come to think of it…)
It is minimal plans. Ideally, if possible, actually, it is zero plans.
When we would take the girls away with us, Brian and I used to plan a ton of activities to keep busy, scared of potential boredom and the whining and screen time demands that would follow.
In turn, I would wake up on the first morning already stressed out about getting the girls out in a timely manner and in good moods so we could all “enjoy” said activities. And I am NOT good at faking cool and chill when I am even the slightest bit anxious.
Last week, I took the girls down to Boca Raton to visit my mom for a few nights. Traditionally we have gone down over Christmas, and my mom (like any good grandma in Boca, I guess) would make tons of plans for us to keep the girls busy, also fearing they would be bored (and, in turn, not as apt to visit again!). This time around, I convinced her to make no plans. And she actually listened (well, with the exception of a couple dinner reservations, but no harm there- easy to cancel as needed!).
Without plans, both my mom and I were significantly more relaxed. (I got my time obsession from her- if I anticipate being even one second late to ANYTHING- even if the arrival time is one I made up in my own head- my heart palpitates and I sweat profusely.)
As such, the girls were able to enjoy their best trip to Boca in recent memory. We let them lay around after eating breakfast in their pjs watching iPads, if they wanted to spend 5 hours in the pool, that was totally fine. If we took an hour longer to leave the apartment than we expected, no biggie- it was just as much fun, if not more so, for me to blowdry Alexa and Goldie’s hair (which they NEVER let me do at home- I think it partly had to do with THIS new blowdryer purchase ) and watch them make messes of their faces with my mom’s eyeshadow palettes.
Sure, on paper it seems like a smart idea to figure out a day to go down to the Palm Beach Zoo, or slot a beach morning into my Google Calendar (with a reminder an hour before so I start packing my beach bag)- but in reality, it isn’t. And we didn’t know how much better of a time we could have on vacation until we gave the no-plans thing a go- which is why I share this tale today…
Try it. I bet you’ll like it. And please share your travel-with-kid tips below- we have a big trip planned with the girls in April and I need all the advice I can get.