When we first started traveling, I had a conventional first aid kit. It got dismantled as certain things were needed and others weren't. Ointments and some other often-used stuff earned a permanent spot in the diaper bag and other items were relegated to the glove box (we have yet to find a need for that space-age blanket). The pouch that gets tossed in my suitcase morphed over the years, and eventually shrunk into a modern medicine bag that holds items that help with the little emergencies we encounter fairly often.
I’m still going. And going and going and going. Friends have asked how it is that I can have this sort of energy in the midst of everything. Right after claiming that I’m trying to be mindful, how can I also write about being busy and needing an on the go snack? Well, life happens, that’s how. One pal recently said I reminded her of Princess Poppy from Trolls. She then cheekily, musically chanted, “Get back up again!”
Chelsea talks a lot about family health and well-being from both an individual and a group perspective. Self care is a top priority, as well as being mindful of our kids growing older. She tries to grasp onto every second of these precious days as they slip by, while also carving out time for herself. Multitasking to the max. I think those are traditionally thought of as "motherly" characteristics: being cognizant of personal needs while simultaneously bemoaning the passage of time.
There are a great many opportunities throughout life for a person to learn valuable lessons in which to build their character. Adversity and circumstance shed light on the truth of who we are. The worst mistake someone could make is to not gain any knowledge or advancement from the trials in our lives. It is how we grow. It is how we go from darkness to light.
Every parent strives to give something to their child that will improve their life. Every parent also strives for simplicity. We always run the chance, throughout everything we do, that it may somehow explode into a swirling vortex of hectic chaos. There's one thing I know about chaos: it’s…uh, chaotic. So where does that leave us as far as unique and fun experiences for our children?
Great Wolf Lodge invited us for a visit a couple weeks ago, but Nate got called into work at the last minute. I was momentarily panicked about being alone at this epic indoor waterpark with four little kids, but I realized that the situation was more or less the same as usual. Once you find yourself outnumbered as a parent in a big family, it's chaotic fun no matter what the specific balance is! I rolled with it, and soon realized that Great Wolf Lodge had a TON of cool things specifically catering to big families like our own.
Man, that's a click-baity title if I've ever read one! I hope you're not all expecting some epic Ziplock bag solution to help bring vegetables camping, or carrots sprayed with vinegar to make them last. I've tried all that stuff. It didn't work. Nope, our "hacks" nowadays tend to be more of the grab-and-go sort. Nate and I have four kids so when we say we have a simple solution, you're always going to find straightforward, honest, REAL answers even if it's something like "go to Target and buy this thing." Ka-bam. Problem solved. It's not always creative, it's not Pinterest-y, but it'll get the job done as fast as possible and it'll usually save you money.
Visit California recently reached out to me for my experience and expertise to help spread the word about National Plan for Vacation Day. They wanted my take and advice on helping people better use their unused vacation days. I love traveling with my kids - especially in southern California - and proposed a plan that they loved and agreed to sponsor for our blog. So this is my take on how to use those stowed away vacation days to improve your standard of living!
I feel like vacationing together is the Amazing Race of friendship tests. It COULD go well. You might double your fun-having capabilities and emerge champion in epic memory-making! On the other hand, it might implode into a bicker-fest. Your besties might decide to claim the master bedroom for the duration of the vacation rental, leave their hot curling iron on the bathroom floor and scream about you owing them $1.63 for your family's excessive ketchup use on barbecue night.