Let's get rugged! Nature-loving parents like to pack up the kids and take them on outdoor adventures. These mamas and papas don't mind all the extra effort that goes with collapsible accommodations. But we wanted to make the planning process easier for families, so we've compiled our ultimate guide to adventure. Check out these tips and tricks for camping while pregnant or with a baby from Kampgrounds of America and stylish finds for the woman who likes to look fab, not drab in the wilderness.
Nothing says Labor Day like a car full of loved ones headed for an end of Summer getaway or celebration. Before you brave the road with your precious cargo, check out these little-known safety tips! I spoke with Becky Michalkiewicz, the statewide child safety seat coordinator of the California Highway Patrol, who offered up this expert advice.
- Watch out for anything in your car that's loose, like toys. "It is important to make sure the environment of your car is the safest possible," says Michalkiewicz. "Make sure there is nothing that isn't strapped down because that becomes a projectile" in an accident.
- Don't clip items on your car seat, even something like a toy mobile. Attaching items that didn't come with your car seat voids the manufacturer's liability if you are in an accident and the car seat malfunctions.
- It may sound simple, but make sure you know how a car seat looks and sounds when it is installed correctly. Michalkiewicz said the CHP commonly sees car seats that are not attached at all.
If you need help, contact your local highway patrol. The CHP, for example, will schedule an appointment with a trained technician to check your car seat and how it fits your child.
The more the merrier. The family vacation is just as likely to include friends, as it is family these days. Arranging a trip with another family not only gives the adults and tots added companionship, it provides added sources of entertainment and potential babysitting throughout the stay. For couples with friends located in various parts of the country, the group holiday can get the kids acquainted while the adults catch up.
But planning a group getaway requires careful planning. Before finding a date and location that everyone can agree upon, couples must identify other families that will make compatible travel companions. Sharing similar parenting philosophies, wake and bedtimes and ability to stray from the plan will maintain order once everyone comes together.
Do you travel with other families, or do you stick to smaller vacations?
Last week we had the pleasure of traveling down to Paradise Island in the Bahamas to check out the grand opening of the Atlantis Resort's new kids club courtesy of JetBlue, Atlantis and LEGO. During our stay, we explored the resort's heart-pumping water park, tested out some of the latest technology, toured aquariums, and swam with the dolphins. Check out the highlights here!
Taking a small family vacation can be fun and relaxing, but it can also be exciting to holiday with other families. If the couples agree on parenting philosophies and a destination, the outcome can be heavenly. Mommies and daddies share the load of cooking, bathing, and playing with the kids — giving each other a rest. And, the tots relish in having travel buddies.
Many families split up their free time for a little one-on-one bonding. Pops gear the kids up for outdoor adventures while moms may plan an aquatic getaway. Before bikini clad Kate Gosselin took her eight tots on a beach trip to North Carolina, the controversial mama took Mady, one of the eight-year-old twins, on a girls' trip to San Diego leaving dad in charge of the other seven youngsters. Prior to that, Jon took Cara on a solo ski weekend in Utah.
Do you and your hubby each spend special alone time with each of your children?
Photos courtesy of TLC
The first time a person lays eyes on the Grand Tetons outside the town of Jackson, WY, it takes one's breath away — even a tot's. Nestled between mountains and national parks, the Jackson airport does not serve every major airline, but can be reached through other large hubs. Once there renting a car is a breeze and a must if one intends on taking advantage of all the area has to offer. Aside from the splendid landscape families can also soak up a week's worth of activities. Here are some of my picks!
- Alpine slide — Youngsters who like slides will jump for joy to ride the alpine slide at the Snow King resort. After riding the chairlift up the mountain, kids barrel down the pipe on a sled to the base of the hill.
- Gondola ride — If hiking isn't in the cards, a gondola trip up to the top of Teton Village will give everyone a sublime view of the valley and afar.
- Horseback ride — Lil buckaroos can saddle up for an old-fashioned trail ride through the parks with the opportunity to see wildlife, nature and get some grub along the way.
To see the rest of the exciting activities, just read more
The Summer months always seemed to go by so quickly when I was little. Maybe those hot sweaty months flew because my rock star mom made the most of our classroom free days with road trips across the country. Starting out at the crack of dawn, my mother, sister and I would pull out of our driveway with the car filled to the brim with suitcases, dolls and refreshments to keep us chipper. My sister, the navigator at 11–years–old, would flip through the AAA TripTik getting us from city to city over a few days period. Starting in Texas, we would make stops in New Orleans, Nashville, Washington DC, Monticello, Myrtle Beach all the way up to NYC. A trooper to boot, my sublime mommy carted her two young daughters on sight–seeing tours that would make even Clark Griswold jealous.
This morning I longed for those road trips when my mom and sister called me from South Carolina. They are finishing up their East Coast adventure with my two nieces. Carrying on a family tradition, I miss out as my life is now out here in California with my own family. I look forward to packing up my offspring someday and showing them the sites just like my mama used to do, and still does, for us.
Spring is in full swing and before we know it, Summer will be here! And, that's a time when a lot of families opt to take trips.
Whether you prefer a weekend jaunt to an extended stay, or a red-eye over a mid-day flight, lilsugar's newest feature, Junior Jetset will be bringing you advice and options for traveling with tots.
From hotel room rates to kid-friendly destinations, it will offer ways for your wee ones to earn their wings!
To see the first place I'd recommend, read more