Summer is upon us, which means two things: school is out and the temperatures are HOT! Families are in the midst of summer activities and are desperately trying to figure out how to keep their children from bouncing off the walls. Many parents are taking that family ‘trip’—I call it a trip because with little kids it is not exactly a relaxing vacation, however it can be just as fun.
We can all agree that traveling with young children is quite the adventure—the adventure starts even before you leave—the planning, the packing, the preparation. It undoubtedly makes you pause and reminisce about the days when you could throw a few items into a bag at the last minute and be ready to go—oh yes, those carefree pre-child days. However, the smiles you see on your children’s faces, once you reach your final destination, will make you quickly forget about the packing hassle.
A family trip is so much more than taking care of your children in a different location—it’s a growing experience for all of you. It is a time to get away from the daily routine, step out of comfort zones and find that frequently elusive “quality time” as a family. Below are three reasons to go ahead and spend the money to take that family trip right now.
Family Bonding. It’s no secret that we are living in a time where we are always connected and always “on.” A family trip lets you disconnect and unplug so that you can live in the moment. There is nothing quite as wonderful as bonding while being in a new place, experiencing new sights, and tasting new foods together. Your children are only young for a short number of years, and now is the time to focus on your relationship with them through quality time and family bonding.
New Experiences. Children thrive on new experiences—they have a desire to explore and see what’s out there. For them, almost everything is new and exciting. Peer over the edge into the Grand Canyon, let the waves tickle your toes, splash in the mud puddles, relish in the smell of freshly made smores over a campfire. We live in a beautiful world that can be admired through photographs but is infinitely better when explored on foot.
The Stories. One guarantee from a family trip – there will be stories. While you will all experience the same things, your stories will be vastly different. You will remember the same things but from very different perspectives, which usually leads to laughter. For example, last summer we stayed on the North Shore of Oahu and had a lovely time at the beach visiting with friends. However, the one story our son remembers best of all is that in the parking lot of our hotel; there was a “blinking lamp”… yes, a blinking lamp in the parking lot. He frequently asks me to this day why that lamp was blinking and when we can go back to see it. So while my husband and I are reminiscing about the ocean breeze and the beach front cabana, our son fondly thinks back to the blinking lamp. Gotta love kids!
The family trip doesn’t have to be wildly expensive or full of excess—what it needs to be is fun. Now go on, slip out of those work clothes, slide on a pair of flip flops and start planning your next adventure.