Family Trip or Vacation? I Choose Both

With summer fast approaching, I don’t know about you and your family, but we are looking forward to a few family trips and even a little vacation in there. Now some of you may be thinking what’s the difference, but in my book there are HUGE differences! Truthfully, we (the husband and I) didn’t know there was a difference until after baby number 2 came along. Up until that point our little sidekick would travel with us, no fuss. So why would it be any different with number two?!? Boy were we wrong!

Hotel Cart

Our first “Family Trip” came when the kids were 1 and 3. Yes, it took us over a year to attempt to venture out overnight with both kids in tow. We didn’t go far; a quick, one night up to Pigeon Forge. We had planned on wearing the kids out at the pool, a nice night in the hotel, nice breakfast the next morning, and then head back home. Well, the pool part worked great, we got dinner in (I think), and then it was off to bed, which was where it went downhill. Let me tell you, there is no easy way to get two kids to go to bed in a hotel room. As soon as one is almost asleep the other starts up. Needless to say it was a LONG night and we couldn’t wait to get back home! Family trip FAIL!


S and L Beach

Our first Big Family Trip was later that year and we headed over to Myrtle Beach. This time we had backup in the form of grandparents. This was an added bonus because we could find little bits of “relaxation” during the trip, which were MUCH NEEDED!! Sleeping arrangements were a a little easier, but all four of us were still in one bedroom, so when one woke up we all woke up. There would be no sleeping in on this trip. As with any family trip, all activities are planned around meals and naps. There is no leisurely “lets just see what the day has in store and go from there” attitude. The whole week must be planned ahead so we can make the most of our time. This is how “family trips” go for us, and I’ve done it on weekend trips, several beach trips, and even on our Disney trip. Everything is preplanned and there’s not much room for relaxation.


On the other hand, I love me some Vacations!! The husband and I try to plan at least one vacation throughout the year, and if we’re lucky enough we might get a second trip in there. For us, there is no better vacation than one in which we can sleep in, watch whatever non-animated show we want, and eat wherever we want. When we head out on a vacation, we MAY plan one night out at a specific place we really like, but that’s about it. Everything else we do is kinda spur of the moment. We look and see what’s available, but by no means set anything in stone. We have done everything from snowboarding, to zip lining, bike rides, to a cabin getaway, to just laying on the beach all day (and I do mean ALL day). The highlight of it all is that we get to do it together, but it’s just the peace of not having to know where everyone is and what they are getting into. I’m here, he’s there and did we put on enough sunscreen, that’s all I have to worry about. If you haven’t taken a grown up vacation…DO IT!!

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There are so many great options for vacations right around us, so don’t wait, it is SO worth it, for you and for your kids! They truly miss us while we’re gone and want to hear all about what we did, see the pictures we took, and of course see what treat we brought back for them. It makes us cherish them even more when we are able to take a few moments and step away.

Do you have any vacations planned for the summer? Let me hear about them, we’re always up for trying new places!


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5 Responses to Family Trip or Vacation? I Choose Both

  1. Katie May 15, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

    We haven’t done a family trip since the twins were born. They only started sleeping through the night at 19months & we haven’t wanted to put ourselves through that at a hotel. We are planning a vacation (well, for me) when my husband is on a work trip in the Florida Keys.

    • Beth May 15, 2014 at 12:53 pm #

      we have done several vacations with just us that are combined with work trips!! I wish my husband would have a work trip in the Keys…LUCKY YOU!! Enjoy, and I hope you can relax!!

  2. Jessica Cantwell May 15, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

    We usually do one adult vacation (this year all inclusive resort in the Dominican) and one family trip to Myrtle Beach with hubby’s parents. In addition, throughout the year we will do a weekend guys friends trip and a weekend girls friends trip. This way we are relaxed and always have another trip to look forward to while working so hard and raising a toddler!

    • Beth May 15, 2014 at 4:17 pm #

      We love all inclusives!! Those are my favorite because you don’t have worry about money or anything once you get there…just relax!!
      I think I’ll try to work in some girls (and guys) weekends into the mix!! Great ideas!!

  3. lauren May 17, 2014 at 9:54 pm #

    great post! such a huge difference!

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