By Katie Bugbee, Care.com
Family vacations sound so idyllic. Your beautiful family, playing together, smiling and laughing, sleeping soundly, never whining. Right? Because we all know that there’s no whining on vacation. And no rainy days either.
Oh, right. That is a total dream.
Let’s face it, rain happens. And whining does too. No matter if you’re home or staying in the most amazing house in a dream location. And it’s always great to have a few extra games and summer activities up your sleeve so when the kids say “what are we doing today?” you get those smiles you were envisioning when you booked your dream.
Here are a few ideas that might help your vacation feel even more special – rain or shine – and no whines.
Make the Easiest Dessert. Take paper cups and fill them with various fruit juices. Freeze for the day and you should have tear-away popsicles by dinner.
Start Special Scavenger Hunts. Here’s a great way to entertain the kids, while you put your feet up and watch! Write clues that help children find specific objects around the house. Once they find the object, they’ll have the next clue. Switch this classic game up by hiding pieces of a 25-piece puzzle. The game isn’t over until the puzzle is complete. Or, you could theme the hunt around a special activity for the day (beach theme, movie clues, etc.), where kids have to guess the big event.
Play Shadow Tag. On a bright sunny day, head outside where you can see your shadow. Choose one player to be "It." He or she tries to tag the other players by stepping on their shadows on the ground. When a player's shadow is tagged, he becomes "It."
Become Animal Experts. Ask each other the wildest questions about wildlife. Like: How do giraffes clean their ears? Do tigers swim? Where do crocodiles poo? Research the answers and design stories or art projects around them, all to be designed and shared with each other later.
Host Beach Olympics – with handmade medals. Create the course for things like a gymnastics routine, sand castle smash, beach relay, ring toss and other sand-friendly/funny games. First person to run to the water wins.
Create Salad Spinner Art. Take washable paints, a salad spinner and some paper – and head outside. Lay paper under the spinner and start spinning while pouring the paint in.
Host Driveway/backyard Mini Golf. Don’t have equipment? Get creative. Use paper cups, tennis balls and a stick – or your legs.
HomeAway & Care.com Helps Families Enjoy Their Vacation
HomeAway, Inc.’s updated mobile app makes it easier for families to find child care thanks to an integration with Care.com. Care.com is the world's largest online destination for finding and managing family care, with 15.2 million members, spanning 16 countries. The company’s ability to help HomeAway® guests find a babysitter fills a large need – more than 70 percent of people using HomeAway.com plan to travel with their family or a group and the average party has at least one child, according to company data.*
Finding a reliable sitter while on vacation is a challenge that many families face. With Care.com’s integration in the HomeAway app, planning and enjoying a family vacation has never been more simplified. As the first travel app that enables families to search through more than 6 million providers on Care.com, families can now easily find, contact and access background checks for millions of vacation sitters no matter where they are.