When our kids were this little, we started a luggage collection for each of them from Pottery Barn Fairfax luggage collection. We slowly added new pieces to their collections until they had the complete set. I strongly recommend this to any family with kids! It has helped keep our vacation packing and traveling very organized and simple. Organization is KEY to successful family vacations.
look at my cuties!!
With this luggage, each child has different bags for different needs: snacks in the small bags, toys in the duffle bags, and clothing in the suitcases. We don't usually take EVERY luggage piece on all our vacations, but they are all still helpful when we need them.
Each boy gets a different color and their names are embroidered onto each piece. This is also helpful in staying organized.
We followed the same color pattern with sleeping bags. These warm sleeping bags from LLBean also have their names monogrammed on. We've had these for years and they have held up so well!
I've put together a quick list of travel tips before taking off on your next family vacation!
For more info on finding treasure spots to dine while on vacation, see this previous post.
Chris and I feel it is important to show our boys the area RIGHT around and near us so they can understand where we live, and grasp the history and geography of it. Integrating learning with travel is also a priority for us! I was raised traveling and learning a lot and I want the same for my boys! The more they experience the land where they're being raised, the more they can identify with it as theirs.
Because of this, we traveled a lot in our home state of Colorado, in Utah, and also in Arizona, the state Chris and I were raised.
To kick off the year, we went to Colorado Springs, Colorado, and visited Garden of the gods, the Air Force Academy, the Olympic Training Center, and Focus on the Family headquarters.
Later that spring, we took a road trip to Arizona to spend Easter with my grandparents. The boys just adore them and look forward to visits to their home sweet home! It was a cozy place to spend Easter. On our way there and back, we made a lot of memorable stops. We traveled through Indian land, touring Monument Valley and also Montezuma's Castle Indian ruins. But our favorite stop was at the GRAND CANYON!! It was the boys' first time to see it and I will remember it forever. It was such an exciting family time. We surprised them by taking them on a helicopter over the canyon! It was an experience of a lifetime for each of us!
For Memorial Day, my other set of grandparents came to visit our family. I'm so appreciative that they make the long road trips to come see us all! The boys get giddy anticipating their visits. We took a day trip to a neighboring town, Glenwood Springs, via AMTRAK train!
For our anniversary, instead of just the two of us escaping, we took the whole family of FIVE to Aspen, Colorado, for a western, horseback riding adventure. We loved every second, experiencing life as cowboys on a sprawling mountain ranch.
One of the best trips of the year was a weekend trip to Park City, Utah! Park City is my new lover. I want to marry it and live there forever. It is beautiful and full of my interests! Chris and my brother had a long distance rifle shooting competition there (which I shared about here) and we also attended an INCREDIBLE table styling main street event (which I shared about here). Aside from those events, we took the super fun alpine slide down the mountain, we did a zip line, and we watched talented athletes train for the Olympics. This is where the 2002 Olympic Games took place. This vacation ROCKED. Seriously.
In midsummer for Father's Day, we took a couple traditional camping trips and got dusty. No shopping malls or nice hotels, just tents and fire smoke. The boys kinda sorta like this type of thing.
A huge travel highlight was our houseboat trip on Lake Powell! Thankfully this vacation was longer than just a weekend. ;) Chris and I were born and raised here and it will always be HOME. (I've shared about a previous trip there here) These incredible houseboat experiences are compliments of two incredible people that we are blessed to know! I will be sharing a lot more about this summertime vacation and these friends in an upcoming post! Our time spent on the lake were some of our most loved moments of the year. The peace found there is unlike any other. Our entire family agrees that there is no place like Lake Powell, there is no place like home.
Ohhh, that's not all! We have been a giant traveling machine! To see BEAutiful photos and details of other vacations in 2011, you can visit these following links. I have entire blog posts dedicated to a collection of other favorite travel we did in 2011!
click on any link below to see details
- Our *once in a lifetime date* to Outstanding in the Field: A Restaurant without Walls in Vail, Colorado
- Fall Colors in breathtaking Telluride, Colorado
- Thanksgiving R & R in Gateway, Colorado
- Aspen Holiday kickoff (part I) and snow day (part II) and sleigh ride (part III)
When the vacations are over and bags unpacked, collecting memories in jars is the perfect way to hang onto vacations for always. To make your own Vacations in a Jar, see this previous post.
Okay lovers. That is a wrap for this family on wheels 2011. I think Chris and I accomplished our goal. Maybe just a tad overboard...just a bit...but I have a crazy habit of that anyways. ;) But time and experiences are the most valuable of all, and looking back, we are thankful that we made these times for each other and our aDORable boys.
Because before long, our little people go from these little guys...to much bigger guys. :( So, as I always say: make every minute COUNT.
This post is linked to: House of Grace Best of, Under the Table & Dreamin, Think Pink Sundays, Seasonal Sundays, Met Monday, Making the World Cuter, Tuesday Tutorials and Tips, Tasty Tuesday, Tempt My Tummy, Tip Junkie, Get Your Craft On, DIY Design, Works for Me Wednesday, Blue Cricket Design, Transformation Thursday, House of H, Tablescape Thursday, Show off Your Stuff, Strut Your Stuff, Show and Share Day, Foodie Friday, Frugal Friday, I'm Lovin It, Tickled Pink, Friday Flair, Design Dazzle, Be Different Act Normal, Funky Junk Interiors, Weekend Wrap Up DIY by Design