This weekend, Ace's family planned a trip to Virginia Beach to celebrate my nephew Ethan's first birthday. All-in-all it was a nice mini-trip, but I learned some valuable lessons for such expeditions in the future:
1. Make sure that there is a set agenda before ever getting in the car. In other words, make sure everyone is on the same page about when to arrive, when and where meals will be, when and where different activities will take place. We spent at least 10% of the trip just trying to track each other down and decide what to do next.
2. Don't leave at 12:00 noon on Memorial Day Weekend and expect to actually arrive at your destination in the 3.5 hours the GPS promised. No, no, no....take the number the GPS gives you and multiply that by at least 2. Its a much better idea to head out early in the morning and pack lots of snacks in the car to keep the kids quiet. And if you know this information (Arne), kindly share it with others! It took us over 6 hours to get there Saturday!
3. Get to the beach EARLY. This is something we actually did right! Sunday morning, we got to the beach at 10:00 a.m., had NO trouble parking and got a fabulous spot on the beach in an uncrowded area!
4. Even though the hotel website says they have a pool, call ahead and make sure its open and operational before promising your 4 year old a dip in the pool after dinner.
5. Of course you'd never forget to put sunscreen on your children, but make sure you slather it on yourself. I look like a lobster today. I can't stop thinking about the new wrinkles I've created!
6. Remember the whole point of the trip is to have FUN!!