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Moms Talk: What Are Your Summer Vacation Plans?

And how do the kids factor into the getaway equation?

Now that the sun is shining and the breezes blowing through St. Louis are carrying an inkling of summer, we at Patch are thinking (read: dreaming) about vacation.

We suspect you are, too.

But families with children often can't just pick up and travel to the far corners of the world. It takes time to plan a trip that involves everyone or to schedule a getaway during which the grandparents can watch the youngsters.

So onto this week's question: Whether you're planning a summer vacation with your children or a romantic getaway that won't include them, what factors have you taken into consideration? What items should be on the to-do lists of others planning similar trips?

Martha Baur May 04, 2011 at 12:03 PM
This year it's going to be a long weekend at The Cape in Massachusetts to visit some friends. I think beach vacations are the easiest for families with small children. Who doesn't like playing in the water and building sand castles all day? I highly recommend North Carolina's beaches. You can't beat the Southern charm and they're often very affordable if you do your homework. Florida's beaches are fun too. The last time we were there a huge group of live starfish washed up in the shallow water. The girls were going crazy with excitement. One starfish even had a broken "arm" and a new one was growing back. Definitely true memories in the making! If you're planning any sort of vacation via airplane this summer...book fast...tickets are getting expensive!
Laura Falk May 04, 2011 at 12:36 PM
We'll drive up to Michigan for a week. My father-in-law has a house up there. It's by Lake Huron, so the kids can play in the (chilly!) water. There's a long driveway they can spend hours racing the bike & Big Wheel up and down. There's no shortage of things to do once we're there. The challenge? The car rides up and back. We try to bring lots of snacks, lots of books, usually a new activity book or two, and lots of kids' CDs. So far we haven't succumbed to the portable DVD player, but that seems to work for a lot of people!
Dr. Cynthia (Cindy) Haines May 04, 2011 at 02:28 PM
We are looking forward to our second summer trip with extended family to Innsbrook MO. Last year, we discovered that the main ingredients for summer trip fun for our kids are: cousins and fishing. And happy kids on vacation = happy mom on vacation! It is also a great reminder that it really is the simple things that bring the most joy. -Dr. Cindy Haines (www.drcindyhaines.com, author of The New Prescription: How to Get the Best Health Care in a Broken System)
Jayne Langsam May 08, 2011 at 09:55 PM
Now that it finally feels close to summer, I can think about maybe getting away. I have one child that works at a camp all summer, so I do hope to plan a weekend their this summer and a weekend with my other child in New York. The older my children get, the less planning I seem to do. Just enjoy the hanging around with them.
Nate Birt (Editor) May 10, 2011 at 06:03 PM
Love, love, love Michigan. That sounds like a blast. I spent a summer at the Detroit Free Press and have visited the Upper Peninsula several times. That's always the trick with family vacations — keeping the kids entertained! Good luck, and have a great time.

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