What To Pack For Your Next Family Vacation

13 Necessities Required To Survive Your Next Family Vacation, And One Of Them Is Alcohol

Everyone needs a little something to get them through the week.

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Family vacations can be very overwhelming. Not just for your parents, who most likely planned the entire cross-country road trip, but for the kids in toe, too. I mean, after a couple days, the charm of hanging out with your family 24/7 and staying in the same hotel room and the cramped car for those long drives, can sometimes wear off. So here are twenty things you should bring on vacation.

1. Car activities

Odds are, it's going to be a long car ride, so you are going to need some things to keep yourself entertained. It could be a book, a road trip scavenger hunt, the license plate game, a hand-held electronic device, magazines, your phone, toys, etc. Car rides can be boring, so be prepared.

2. Headphones

This item is one of the most important things to bring. You can play your own music in the car, use them to make phone/FaceTime calls, listen to music at night, watch Netflix and keep up with your shows, listen to audiobooks, anything. Plus, they can tune out your siblings arguing or any family member singing.

3. Comfortable shows

Whether there's going to be a lot of walking or not, it's always a good idea to pack a pair of comfy tennis shoes. That way at the end of the day, your feet won't hurt, and you'll be ready for the next day's adventure.

4. Practical clothes

This goes along with the shoes, you want to focus on what you're seeing on your vacation, there's no need to be constantly pulling your shorts down because they're too short or pulling down your crop top because you feel self-conscious. It's a vacation, you're never going to see these people again, so go ahead and wear old T-shirts and baggy shorts. Who cares?

5. Car snacks

Make sure you pack enough car snacks to make it to your destination and back home. When you're bored in the car, you're gonna want to eat junk food. You're on vacation, you can go to the gym when you get back home.

6. Maps

No matter how reliable your parent claims the GPS is, always bring a map or printed directions. It's always good to have a backup plan. Especially in uncharted territory.

7. Alcohol

Your parents put a ton of time and effort into planning this, they deserve some fun too. When the kids are away (hotel swimming pool, hotel lobby, etc.), the parents will par-tay!

8. Sunscreen

It doesn't matter where you're going, sunscreen is essential. There's nothing worse than getting a terrible sunburn within the first few days and suffering for the rest of the vacation. Just make sure to reapply as needed.

9. Sunglasses

It's the middle of the summer, there's going to be sun wherever you go. Sunglasses will block the sun, and you'll look super intimidating, so no one will talk to you. Win-win.

10. Camera

Digital cameras can take amazing photos, but not always needed. A phone's camera will do just as well. There's always a chance for some great photo opportunities and life is a photo shoot, treat it as such.

11. Rain jackets

Even if the forecast says sunny all week, it's good to be prepared for anything. These jackets can be used as regular jackets, as well. But, it's always a good idea to bring these on any vacation.

12. Bug spray

There are bugs everywhere. Mosquitos are the absolute worse, and mosquito bites are just as terrible. So, douse yourself in the spray and you will thank yourself later.

13. Portable charger

Phone batteries only last so long, and you don't want to miss capturing photos of the most beautiful spots. And, of course, answering social media and texts.

Cover Image Credit:

Christina Stover

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When You Make A Girl An Aunt, You Change Her World In All The Best Ways

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest girl in the world.

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My brother and his wife recently blessed our family with the sweetest bundle of joy on planet earth. OK, I may be a little bias but I believe it to be completely true. I have never been baby crazy, but this sweet-cheeked angel is the only exception. I am at an age where I do not want children yet, but being able to love on my nephew like he is my own is so satisfying.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a very protective person.

From making sure the car seat is strapped in properly before every trip, to watching baby boy breathe while he sleeps, you'll never meet someone, besides mommy and daddy of course, who is more concerned with the safety of that little person than me.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her a miniature best friend.

There is something about an aunt that is so fun. An aunt is a person you go to when you think you're in trouble or when you want something mom and dad said you couldn't have. An aunt is someone who takes you to get ice cream and play in the park to cool down after having a temper tantrum. I can't wait to be the one he runs to.

When you make a girl an aunt, she gets to skip on the difficulty of disciplining.

Being an aunt means you get to be fun. Not to say I wouldn't correct my nephew if he were behaving poorly, but for the most part, I get to giggle and play and leave the hard stuff for my brother.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her the best listening ears.

As of right now I only listen to the sweet coos and hungry cries but I am fully prepared to listen to all the problems in his life in the future.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the best advice giver.

By the time my nephew needs advice, hopefully, I will have all of my life lessons perfected into relatable stories.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a number-one fan

Anything you do in life sweet boy, I will be cheering you on. I already know you are going to do great things.

When you make a girl an aunt, she learns what true love is.

The love I have for my nephew is so pure. Its the love that is just there. I don't have to choose to show love every day, I don't have to forgive, I don't have to worry if it is reciprocated, it is just there.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest person in the world.

I cannot wait to watch my precious nephew grow into the amazing person that I know he is going to be.

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5 Ways To Pass The Time On Your Lengthy Road Trip


"Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and enjoy the journey."

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Whether you're driving home for the summer, taking a cross-country road trip with your friends, or driving out-of-state for an internship, the time you spend crammed inside a car can be the death of you as the hours seem to drag on and on. From someone who drove through six states alone in an entire day -over a thousand miles- here are a few things you can do to make the time go faster.

1. Start driving early.

The earlier you start driving, the better. Driving in an unfamiliar place as the day begins to transition from day to night can be a little unsettling; you could get lost by taking the wrong exit or turn, or God forbid you're having car issues and left somewhere dangerous, or you need a bathroom break and are forced to pull up to a gas station that's straight out of a scary movie. When you're driving and the day starts getting darker, you become more exhausted than before.

2. Listen to audiobooks.

A concept: the book you never got to read during the semester because you were too busy with your other classes but it's read by your favorite author in audio format to kill at least a good four hours (or more depending on the book) during your road trip.

3. Listen to podcasts.

There is a podcast for everyone and everything, I promise. When you find the one podcast that speaks to you, it is a never-ending rabbit hole from there and you'll end up wishing your road trip was longer.

4. Get some snacks.

Stopping anywhere other than a fast food joint can delay your trip and the fast foods available to us aren't always the best options. Be sure to pack your favorite snacks or even your favorite easy homemade meal. If you're going to stop for a break, make the time well-spent by eating something you actually enjoy and you'll feel good to drive for another few hours.

5. Create a hit music playlist.

No road trip would be complete without a playlist compiled of your favorite jams to get you by. Take the time to explore new genres or nostalgic classics.

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