You start to get excited about 2 weeks prior to your vacation. You have the resort location booked and your airline tickets for each member of your family safely tucked away. There is only one last item to tend to — packing. For many parents, this last step can be overwhelming. However, if you make a list of everything needed ahead of time and pack each day’s attire separately, especially for children, you will reduce the feeling of anxiety and look forward to your vacation.
An easy way to pack for children is to pack for one child at a time. Lay their clothes out, creating one outfit complete with socks, undergarments and accessories, for each day. For example, day one is a beach day so you lay out their bathing suit or trunks, sandals and goggles, shorts and a tee. Then you place everything inside a zip-lock bag and close it. Label the bag “Day One” and add the child’s name. If you have three children you repeat the process three times. It’s also wise to have one bag labeled as extra, so you have one additional set of clothing for emergencies. Ideally, you should have three separate bags, too, allowing each child to keep their own things inside of their own bag. Doing this makes things much easier for you as the parent.
Parents should also have a separate suitcase to keep their things neat and organized. You can use the same system of large zip-lock bags and include your accessories. For instance, for an evening out to dinner, include the unique jewelry and stockings that complement your dressy attire. Pack the shoes and purses/bags you need to match your outfits place inside the suitcase first with the zip-lock bags entered last.
It’s best to have a medium piece of luggage to hold these items for convenient access. It should include things you use daily such as toothbrushes and toothpaste, shampoos and conditioners, deodorant, mouthwash, makeup, and your hairbrushes and combs. You should also pack grooming items like nail clippers, tweezers, shaving cream, razors, and a blow dryer, hair straightener and hair ties. Keep your family safe while out in the elements by bringing plenty of sunscreen and lip balm and sunglasses. An emergency first aid kit for accidental cuts and any medications you or a family member may take, along with aspirin, are also essential.
Many children have a favorite blanket or pillow they simply can’t sleep without. Including them in the packing list will make your life easier. Make sure that you also bring your camera to keep the vacation memories vivid long after you return and a laptop if you must do some work or check in with the office while away. A large umbrella and lightweight jackets are also recommended, even if the projected vacation forecast shows sunny skies and warm weather.
What Not to Bring
The last thing you want is a full suitcase and items still sitting on your bed that you need. So, it’s important to eliminate things that you may need like a heavy garment such as a coat, as a just in case the weather changes take along. Go with the essentials and if the weather becomes a little cooler one day, change your itinerary.
Vacations are a great time for families to enjoy quality time together. Make a comprehensive list of what you need ahead of time, pack each day’s attire in separate zip-lock bags, and keep your toiletries and essentials in a separate bag for easy access. By doing these things, you’ll keep the focus on having fun on your vacation rather than what you forgot to bring.