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Saturday, June 7, 2008

After 11 days on vacation, we are happy to be home again. Our vacation went amazingly smooth, thanks to some great planning on the part of my husband. He really gets all the credit. I thought I would share a few tips today about some things that helped make this a great vacation.

1) Set up behavior consequences in advance. Kids are often so excited on vacation, that they aren't always on their best behavior. Identify some simple consequences, announce them in advance and follow through. Here's one example we used. Our kids (especially the 3 boys) are very physical, with touch, hugs, and wrestling. They will often start with an arm draped around someone, only to end up in a good-natured tussle. This isn't good in a public place, and we've told them not to act that way. So when it happens, they get to hold Mom or Dad's hand for awhile - constricting their freedom. We've used this often on hikes, and it works. Not only does it stop the behavior, but it calms them down and ends up wonderfully with the positive touch from a parent.

2) Pack an emergency bag. We always carry a backpack and include the following: sunscreen, Ibuprofen, lip balm with sunscreen (a must!), and bandaids. We just added a new item to our emergency bag: baby powder. This was great to have in sticky Florida. We all got a little chapped.

3) Give your kids' spending money. Our kids have very few opportunities to make money, so on vacation we buy all their snacks and souvenirs. But it gets tiring to make sure we give equal amounts of money. So this vacation we gave each child money to spend at his/her discretion. There was no begging for a snack, or for this or that souvenir. They chose how and when to spend their money. Of course, we had some limits - like no ice cream before dinner.

When our children were little, we actually used this as a reward for good behavior once at Disneyland. We bought some Disney Dollars, and if they got through an hour with obedient and respectful behavior, they received a dollar. We found that the reward worked much better than the threat of punishment.

4) Hold your kids' spending money. We have 2 out of 5 kids that keep track of money. The other three lose it with alarming frequency - having money fall out of pockets and leaving purses in restaurants. At home, we figure this is a learning experience. But on vacation, it's heartbreaking to me when they lose it. On this trip, I put each child's money in a separate envelope and doled it out as they requested. It was a bit more management for me, but it worked great!

Vacations have the potential to be fabulous experiences, or to become a drain due to little annoyances. Hopefully, these little tips will help enhance your next vacation.

In His Love,


Michelle said...

Your vacation tips are wonderful and practical. I have especially enjoyed your budget friendly ideas. Thanks for sharing! Glad to hear your vacation was great.

Chatty Kelly said...

Just poping over to say hello and that I'm praying for your team as we head to She Speaks next week.

Can't wait to meet you. And also wanted to put in a kudo for Janet Burke. She is a wonderful woman to work with and is filled with grace. I've enjoyed her to pieces working with her in submitting an article to the magazine. So please let her know.

Digging for Pearls said...

Hi Glynnis,
I'm so glad you had a great trip with your family. I wanted you to know that I am praying for you as you prepare to soon leave for She Speaks. May God use you in a mighty way and that you will be faithful to the call He has on your life.


Nicki said...

What a great idea about giving them their own money!

Praying for you with She Speaks coming up!! Can't wait to see what the Lord does!!

Bride of Martinstein said...

(Well, Chatty Kelly, I seem to be following you! Janet Burke sent me a wonderful rejection letter. I just love her!)

Hi Glynnis,

Lysa tells us that things are kinda going nuts for you lovely ladies. Please know that there are many, many, women praying for you today, and as the conference approaches. I'm one of them!

Blessings to You!

Helen Martin

Lisa said...

Glynnis, I'm ashamed to admit that this is my first visit to your beautiful blog, but it definitely won't be my last.

Thank you so, so much for the wonderful travel tips! We have two little ones, 6 and 4, and they crave structure. When we take our weekend beach trips this summer, I'm going to write these down and take them with me.

Sending MANY prayers for you and all the precious women attending She Speaks. I wish I could count myself among them! May our Lord blanket you in peace and hold your hand every step of the way.

Love and prayers!

Sonya said...

I am glad you had a great vacation! I loved your tips and will remember it on our upcoming vacation.

I'm praying for you and your family today as you prepare for the upcoming She Speaks Conf.

Pamela (MrsJoeB) said...

Glynnis-I will be at She Speaks next week and attending one of your sessions-know that I am praying for you daily until we meet!! I am so excited for what God will do in and through each of you for us at this conference!
In His Graces~Pamela

Joyful said...

Sounds like you enjoyed a fabulous vacation. You (your husband) sound so organized!

I will be attending "She Speaks" next weekend and I just wanted you to know of my prayers. I am praying and claiming Psalm 91 over you - that God will guard, guide and protect you and that you will find your refuge, strength and hope in Him.


Alyce said...

Just wanted to let you know that you and your team have been prayed for with the upcoming She speaks conference. I pray that God does some amazing things during that time!

Patti VZ said...

Hi Glynnis...

Just a reminder that we are praying for you, especially in the coming days.

KelliGirl said...

I wanted to let you know I'm praying for you and all of the P31 team as you put the finishing touches on She Speaks.

I can't wait to attend. I know that God is going to do an amazing work in and through all who attend.


Robin said...

I have actually used some of those same tips with our family vacations - and they work!

I just stopped by to let you know that you and the whole Proverbs 31 team are in my prayers - especially for the next 10 days or so!
I am so excited about SheSpeaks - God is going to meet with us there!

Kay Weathers said...

Lysa asked that all the proverbs 31 readers pray for all the proverbs 31 speakers so hear I am. I'm praying.

Marilyn said...

As Lysa requested, I have prayed today for you and the other ladies on the speaking team for the "She Speaks" Conference. I pray that God's arms will hold you close and minister to each of you individually and also as a group.
You're in awesome Hands!

May God bless you,
Marilyn in MS

Laura said...

I love to visit your blog...always leave with great ideas and feeling a bit more organized (at least in my thinking). Just wanted to let you know how excited I am for SheSpeaks and that I am praying for God to be glorified mightily through you!