Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Family Vacations

(source: fedupusa.org)

Whether it's a trip to Disneyland or a hike to a local waterfall, family vacations are important to families.  The reason is that it allows your family to get away from the craziness of the world for awhile and bond with each other.  Building that bond is important....brother/sister, father/son, mother/daughter and all the other combinations.  That bond is what helps children to know they are loved, it helps them to have stability in times of stress, it gives them good memories and feelings to draw upon, and it is an opportunity to express all the languages of love to your children and your spouse.  Think about it...you spend quality time together, you give each other words of affirmation as you learn new things, you may give each other small gifts, and you do acts of service as you get ready, come home, and even while you are there.  It is amazing how family vacations can draw even struggling relationships closer together.

Here are some tips for making the most of your family vacations, big or small:

  1. Choose and plan where to go together as a family
  2. Build up the excitement by reading and searching on the web things about your destination and sharing them with the family.
  3. Pack, but don't stress.  Give the kids a checklist to pack themselves and then check their bags over.  This will increase their involvement, excitement and responsibility.  There is usually a store where you can pick up things you forgot.
  4. While you travel, read the history to the kids of the places you visit.  This increases enjoyment.
  5. When you get there, decide together what things are important to you.  You could let each child pick one thing.  Ownership also increases enjoyment.
  6. Take LOTS of pictures!  And even videos!  (After a recent death in the family, I am really committed to doing this!)
  7. After you get home, spend time talking about what you loved, and maybe make a scrapbook for the kids to look at again and again.  This will increase appreciation, and also bring back those special feelings every time they look at the memories.

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