We just returned from a major road trip, a trip I've been planning for the past twelve months. Some of my friends give me a (loving) hard time about planning every minute, right down to when I'll do laundry and when I'll "relax." It's true that I like to be prepared- to "expect the unexpected"- and that's because I've learned from my mistakes. Over the years, I've learned what works to keep my family healthy and happy while traveling. Here are eight rules I follow while traveling with my family:
You’ll hear me say it often on this site: Be prepared. I truly believe you can never be too prepared, or plan too much. And while it’s been a personal resolution (since, about, oh... 2002) to try and be spontaneous, I have a lot of evidence to support planning ahead of a trip.
I’ve written about how to pack the car, but if you’ll allow me to micromanage you just a little bit more, I’ve got a few suggestions on how – and what – to pack in a suitcase when traveling with the kids.
The days of spontaneously hopping in a car and hitting the road ended when our daughter was born. After that point, even a simple trip to the grocery store required careful planning and a car full of “just in case” items. Nowadays, we can pare down some of the items necessary (yay, no more lugging the Pack N’ Play!) , but packing the car still requires a lot of care and thought. The Boy Scouts had it right: Be Prepared. Being prepared pays off in many respects. I recently wrote about items I take on a trip for CTinStyle, one of my favorite blogs, here but I thought I would update some of my suggestions.
Whether you're planning your first vacation or are an experienced adventurer, traveling with children can be a challenge. Without proper planning and preparation, even a local weekend getaway can quickly take a turn for the worse. In all of my experience planning and embarking on driving vacations with my family throughout the United States, I have found that these simple guidelines can make a huge difference, and will lead to an exciting, stress-free vacation that creates lasting memories, and strengthens family bonds. So before you go, run through this list to make the most out of your trip.
We’re coming up on our third visit to the “mice” in Orlando this summer and our children are so excited! We were definitely bitten by the Disney World “bug” and keep coming back for more magic. It truly is (one of) the happiest places on Earth, no matter how old you are.
Regular readers and followers know I am a planner. I start planning a trip to Disney World even earlier than I plan most other trips. Lately, I have found myself sharing some advice with friends who are going to Disney for the first time. I thought I would share my tips:
One of the recent perks of my blog has been the opportunity to discover new products for traveling. Some of the following items came to me by way of media contacts and some items I sought out myself, hoping to fulfill a need. In either case, I thought I would share new items I have packed for all of my summer travels (we’ll be on the road for six weeks this summer!)
If you are one of my regular followers, you know how important I think having an alternate plan is; I hate surprises and always try to anticipate problems ahead of traveling with my family. As much as I try and plan when I pack a suitcase and pack the car for a trip, undoubtedly something unexpected will come up.
While there will always be some things out of my control, and some things I just won't anticipate, knowing how I will deal with the unexpected when it inevitably comes up takes some of the pressure off of me. Here are my top tips:
Over ten years. Almost 193,00 miles. All around the country. My 2007 Chevy Equinox served me well. I loved that car. I regret not taking more pictures with it at stops along our road trips. That car saw a lot of the American landscape. I wouldn’t go so far to say the car was a member of the family, but it did protect and serve my family for a long time.
So, after lots of saving, planning for our largest (to date!) summer road trip for 2018, and seeing great incentives from Chevrolet, my husband and I decided to purchase a new car. My husband’s family has been faithful Chevrolet drivers for over thirty years, and we like the team at our local dealership, Maritime Chevrolet in Fairfield, Connecticut. They had a 2018 Premier Chevrolet Equinox on the lot; we test drove it and were hooked.
This might seem odd: a family travel blogger posting a holiday gift guide? Absolutely! I have been offering advice and my personal experiences to so many people recently, I thought I would share with everyone.
I am a huge proponent of giving experiences for the holidays instead of material possessions. My husband and I strongly believe that the best gift we can give our children is time together, exploring and learning about our world. I also love the area of supporting my community through museum and nonprofit memberships to further the good work so many places do to preserve history, protect land and wildlife, and give children the opportunity to learn and grow outside of the formal classroom.
I first wrote about "giving experiences" on CTinStyle before I launched Coast2CoastwithKids. Since that time I have both given and received even more experiences as gifts. Regardless of where you live, there are experiences you can share with children of all ages. Here are my favorites:
I love photos; I am convinced I am Shutterfly's #1 customer. Not only do I print photos, but I also create lots of gifts and mementos of our travels through Shutterfly. Look for an upcoming post on using Shutterfly to create unique memories of your travels. I also scrapbook, both as a hobby and as a way to preserve our family memories for my children. I literally have dozens of scrapbooks filled with thousands of photos. But today, I want to focus on things you can collect while you’re traveling so you have tangible reminders of your travels.. Many of these items can be displayed in a variety of unique ways so that they do not turn into clutter. Here are my top 6 favorite keepsakes: