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Prioritizing the Family Vacation

Last week, we went to Florida on vacation. Before we left, I was consumed by list making, packing, and planning for the plane flight with Liam. We’ve taken lots of driving trips with Liam and gone on lots of long weekends but this was the first longer trip, far away from home and our first ride on a plane with a toddler in tow. I was honestly so anxious and busy that I forgot to be excited for the actual vacation part of things. I haven’t taken a full week off from work since my maternity leave. In fact, my last real “vacation” was my honeymoon. It never really struck me until we got there and remembered how awesome being on vacation was. Of course, the beautiful weather and lovely kid-friendly resort helped but it was more the feeling of having nothing to do but have fun together as family for a week that felt so great. We had a wonderful time and it made us so happy to see what a great time Liam was having too. I think we all had a serious case of the winter blahs and this trip was just what we needed to get out of our funk.

Up until now vacations just never seemed to be a high priority in our family budget. But both my husband and I were lucky enough to have gone on at least one vacation a year with our families growing up and looking back, some of our fondest childhood memories happened on those vacations. As we looked back on the week and our own childhood vacation memories, I think we both realized that an annual budget for a vacation needed to moved up the list of priorities. We certainly won’t always (or ever) have a budget for a lavish getaway but this trip reminded us of how important it was to set aside whatever we could for some annual family trip where we can start building our own family memories.

Does your family prioritize family vacations in your budget? How do you make it work during years when the budget is tight?


  1. D. Lewis April 29, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Excellent post! As a mother of 4 children, I definitely understand vacationing on a budget. I’m always on the hunt for great deals for my family and I. Just last summer I found a wonderful vacation for a great deal. My family and I went to Great Wolf Lodge in Pennsylvania. I definitely believe that this resort is one of the best family resorts in Pennsylvania in terms of value and entertainment options. There is something for everyone…spas, water parks, bowling, arcades, shopping, and food! You can’t go wrong with this place!

  2. best family vacations May 12, 2013 at 8:47 am

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  3. Joan Price June 7, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    Thanks for the post! As a mother of 2 it is diffidently hard to find a place that not only fits your budget but also your children’s interests. This past summer my family and I stayed in one of the pigeon forge vacation rentals in Tennessee and had a blast. Not only did it have a little something for everyone, but it fit right into my family’s budget.

  4. Janet July 1, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    It’s sometimes difficult to put money away for a family vacation, or to try to find time to take one, but as you’ve said – it is important to do so. Make the time and you’ll be glad you did!

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