We've only been back from the beach for a week, and I still have tons of fun posts to share with you. But first, I wanted to share some of our survival tips that can help make your vacation as a family more enjoyable.
1. Get into character for your trip. You can get your kids excited by reading books related to your destination. For our trip Pierce and I read Misty of Chincoteague. And I read many books about the beach to all three boys.
3. Bring a white noise machine or fan. Ever been in a hotel next to the elevator that kept dinging all night? Or even worse...next to a group of middle school soccer kids? Enough said! Sleep is priceless!
4. Bring your own snacks, and tons of them. The grocery store on the island didn't have much selection and was extremely overpriced. I was so glad I'd brought a huge tote of snacks, which not only kept the boys happy on the 8+ hour drive, but also came in handy on our many excursions, like our 6:45 am walk to get a good spot at the pony swim (more on that later, I promise!), below:
5. Take advantage of free programs. We found a NASA visitor's center that was free. There were also a couple of free visitor's centers on Assateague, along with a Junior Ranger program that Pierce was able to do.
6. If you will be gone for an extended time, consider renting a house. The townhouse we rented turned out to be less costly than a hotel, and the best part was the laundry machine. We hit the beach twice a day, every single day. So there were a lot of sandy clothes. I ended up doing 6 loads of laundry during our week, but when we got home at the end of our trip the only dirty clothing we had were the clothes on our backs. It was wonderful knowing I wouldn't have piles of laundry to do when we returned.
8. Let each child have a small amount of money to get a souvenir from the trip. They will be excited to have their own money to spend, and picking something out will truly be a treat.
9. Use Culturelle Kids Probiotics to prevent stomach issues and help support kids' natural defense systems. We've been using Culturelle since Pierce was a baby suffering from severe acid reflux. It was recommended by his gastroenterologist. Now, they have an easy chewable form and it's a real lifesaver when on trips. We rarely eat out meals, so on a vacation daily meals out can wreak havoc on little bellies. Just a dose of Culturelle a day will help in maintaining digestive health. And Pierce even enjoyed the taste! If your child doesn't like chewables, they also have a powder format that you can stir in juice, milk, or a soft cold food like applesauce.
10. And speaking of health, be sure you bring any special medications your child might need, like fever reducers or allergy medications. Even if they are fine when you leave home, you never know when something might pop up. Better to have it on hand than to have to try to find a drug store in a new area late at night. We were so thankful to have medications on hand when Cort unexpectedly broke out in hives one afternoon!
What are your tips for taking family vacations?
Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post and provided with Culturelle samples. All opinions provided are my own.