I love going on vacation. However, for me -- and, I would guess, for many other moms -- sometimes taking a vacation ends up being just as much work as staying at home; the only difference is the location. Here are some of the ways I've figured out how to make trips more enjoyable and less stressful for me:
Location, Location, Location
1. Pick a destination that really, truly offers something for every family member.
2. Look for vacation spots, such as family cruise lines or resorts, that offer structured programs for kids of all ages, from little ones to teenagers.
Know (and Voice) Your Expectations
3. Be clear with family members ahead of time about the expectations you have for your vacation experience, from the types of activities you want to participate in to the curfew you set for your kids.
Stop! In the Name of Fun
4. Don't overschedule. We run around so much at home, from meetings to practices to tutors, that vacation is the time to stop and relax.
Permission to Check Out
5. Designate a specific time each day as your "check in" time with the electronics: computers, BlackBerries and cell phones. Other than that, give yourself permission to check out.
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