What I learned on our first family vacation


Snacks taste much better without clothes on.  Shoes, however, are mandatory.

Even after being on the road for a long time, the kids will be ready for more.

Especially if you tell them water is involved.

If your kid is going to puke, it will happen in bed sometime during your deepest sleep.

Kids don’t nap during vacation.  And, they stay up way too late.

Car naps definitely help.

Eating out for every single meal is totally overrated.

Even when you tell your hubby he might have high expectations, he won’t believe you.  (But, he will tell you later that he had his expectations set a little too high.)

Vacation ice cream is even tastier than ice cream at home.

Stuff gets lost.  Even in a one room hotel “suite.”

The hotel you chose, because it has an indoor pool, will inevitably have the pool closed during some length of time.  Then, when you get the okay to get in…it is freezing.

Churches are beautiful and make for gorgeous pictures.


Always check the hours of visitation for historical sites.  Chances are, the lighthouse you scheduled to visit will be closed the one day you show up to explore.

Never underestimate the power of a pail and shovel on the beach.

There are never enough places that are high enough to put things out of reach.

The television is low enough that it can and will be turned on and played will eighty-million times.

Packing a flat iron and blow dryer “just in case” you want to do your hair, is just a waste of space.

When your husband says you are just going to wonder around, but he has on tennis shoes, follow his lead and put on tennis shoes, too, not sandals.  Ouch!

Ring around the rosies is even more fun while being played on a wobbly, wheeled luggage cart.

Even when exhausted, it’s pretty easy to remember why you love your family so much.

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  1. Welcome home! It looks like you had a heck of a good time! The girls are a hoot! And ice cream does have a special flavor while on vacation!

  2. It definitely looks like a wonderful time for you all…the napping picture is too cute!

    What is with the indoor pools being freezing…had the same experience.

  3. Looks like you guys had a great time. When we get home, I always find I need a vacation from the vacation. Beautiful church pics.

  4. great post, except for that puking in bed thing…I know it will happen to me at sometime, but I pray really really hard it doesn't! A girl can dream, right?

    love all the pics

  5. What a wonderful post! We're going to be going on our first family vaca in July and I'm going to remember some of these things!

    The blue sky in those pictures is amazing! Beautiful photos 🙂

  6. I'm so glad yall were able to get away on a family vacation!!
    Looks like a wonderful time!!
    You are right..there is nothing like vacation ice cream!!!!

  7. How wonderful! So glad is was an enjoyable trip!

  8. I think your vacations were amazing. All pictures are great.

    Have a beautiful day.

  9. Oh the places we go and see! Love your pictures!

    We had Puking on our vacation too! I have a puke bucket in the car with me. My Oldest gets very very very car sick.

    OH How I love taking pictures of churches and stain glass windows!

  10. Love that last shot!

    I always feel like I need another vacation to recover from vacation with my kids!

  11. Looks like a great trip Krystyn! Love pictures of little girls at the beach 🙂 Where did you guys go?

  12. Looks like fun! I think we experienced the same stuff on our vacation. Those hotel room stays can be quite challenging and very entertaining at the same time!

  13. Looks like a fun vacation!! And I agree, snacks are always better without clothes!

  14. Love love love it! Great post and pretty much sums up most of my family vacations 🙂

  15. Looks like one of those great American vacations (minus the Chevy Chase stuff)! All the pictures are fabulous and I'm sur the memories made are even better.

    It's only so many weeks until Summer vacation, right?! 😉

  16. Amen sister! Even with all the stuff that goes wrong, vacation with two kids (although tiring) is so worth it!!

    So glad you had a great time, even though your feet look like they hurt bad!!

  17. The last picture is priceless!! Looks like you guys had a great time! I'm guilty of the bruised feet from sandals because why would I wear tennis shoes and I always over pack and never have I used the blow dryer or curling iron that I've brought! Pony tail or messy bun all the way!

  18. Sparkette says:

    That was great. Gotta love a lessons learned post! 🙂

  19. That's funny and sweet, all rolled into one. It's quite timely for us, too. We just got back from our first family vaca, and are still feeling the "aftershocks" of late nights, early morning and non-stop days.

  20. Looks like you guys had a blast! And I'm loving the shoes with no other clothes look- I might have to give that one a try! 🙂

  21. Glad you were still learning, even on vacation. Hee hee! Looks like such a fun trip (well, minus the feet – ouch!)

  22. To add to the indoor pool….also check the size before booking…we booked one with a pool that was literly 4 foot by 6 foot…no joke lol
    The flat iron is tooo funny…and soo true!
    Sounds like overall it was a great time…and I looved this post it is put together great …and so original!

  23. Looks fun! We'll be hitting the beach in a couple weeks. I'm excited!

    And I always pack my blow dryer and flat iron too 🙂

  24. i can not get enough of these pictures!! looks like such a wonderful trip friend!

  25. Stumbled upon your blog today and it's already bookmarked! Great pictures. Looks like a wonderful vacation.

    My husband and I are taking our very recent 2 year old and our "will be" 4 month old to visit friends for the first time in May. Neither have slept within screaming proximity of each other. Neither have slept in a hotel. Neither have driven me to drink….yet. Here is to hoping we don't decide to leave one behind! 🙂

  26. your pictures and commentary are great. I really like the one with Matt and the girls at the ocean edge.

  27. Looks like you had an incredible vacation. What wonderful photos and memories too. Glad everyone had fun. Hope your feet are feeling better!

  28. We took our first family vacation last Fall, from Portland, OR to Miami, FL. It was awesome to see my son having so much fun on the beach. I’ve been missing it every day since then.

    1. Our middle daughter has been asking us “when it’s summer, can I get a shovel and a beach bucket?” I guess she wants to go back, too!

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