Three Cheers for Family Vacation!

22.7.16 Ali Moore 2 Comments

There's a reason people always say a vacation with kids isn't actually a vacation at all, but a trip.  A trip where you are still 100% accountable for doing everything you always do for them, but in a new place, without all of your things that make all the things you are in charge of doing more practical and safer.

Like childproof door locks so your toddlers don't wander on to your downtown Denver balcony while you and your husband + baby are still sound asleep, only to groggily hear knocking from the glass doors and watch your husband sprint to the said doors to find the children.

(Telling this anecdote for illustrative purposes, obvs.)

In reality, this vacation actually did feel like vacation.  Most of it anyways.  Probably 70% of it, which is the majority so count it as a win!

I started stock-piling car gear for the kids well in advance and had three entire tubs full of snacks, new lap toys and books.  And guess what...we used nearly all of it, and the kids were ahhhmazing in the car.  Like really, really good.  Like so good we only used the iPad for a movie once for an hour and a half.

Preparation and low expectations are the keys
to traveling with our brood at this point in the game.  Ha.

We VRBO'd this great cabin about 10 minutes from downtown Breck and loved the location and the national forest in our backyard.  We spent hours there finding sticks for the fire and hunting for bears (and Andrew and I praying we didn't stumble upon one).

Seriously, we spent so much time in these woods, and the kids took their job of finding the best firewood sticks very seriously.  Give them a task, and they're allll over it.
(Surprisingly we didn't see Henry's pants around his ankles out in public but one other time on this trip!  Too bad that other time happened to be in a restaurant right next to our table.)

We listened to a lot of country music in the afternoons while the kids played outside and we watched the sun disappear behind the mountains.

We tried to say yes more since it feels like we say no 1,542,399 times a day in real life.  Cookies for snack for the third day in a row?  Why not?!  We even tried to let Henry and Nelle share the cute kids' room in the matching twin beds until they wouldn't fall asleep EVER.  We gave them second and third and fourth chances at the next naptime and the next bedtime and so on, but they just. can't. handle. it.

Henry asked when he and Nelle could share a room foreeevbbber, and I thought to myself, "probably never."  (At least not a room with a balcony.)

We picked hikes that even Nature Girl Nelle could handle,
and June hitched a ride on me pretty much the entire trip.

June started walking while we were in Colorado!
She spent her time alternating between practicing her steps and eating dirt.  Ha.

She was so proud about both so we didn't get in her way.

On our last morning in the mountains, I drank my coffee out on the deck
and Nelle found me asked to play red light/green light except with pink lights too
which meant neither stop or go, but dance.

It was probably one of those you-had-to-be-there-moments, but it was so funny to me and SO Nelle.  I wondered if we would have had it without family vacation time, and that made me smile.  All these things we got to see and do together and just be and the moments that came from them.

We thought about driving the entire way straight through even though we didn't leave Breck until after lunch on our last day there until we crossed over the state line and were snapped back into reality with the time change and the math put us home at midnight at best.  We pulled into the Holiday Inn Express parking lot in Goodland and snagged the second to last room for the night.

We asked the kids what they liked better, the beach or the mountains, to which they replied, "the hotel!" so three cheers for Goodland, Kansas once again.

And three cheers for family vacations and perfecting fake smiles. 


  1. Seriously that VRBO is dreamy!!! Is there a link to it? Because seriously amaze.

    1. So sorry!! Just saw this comment months later! Ack! Here's where we stayed -