Travel is exciting, yes. But, the packing process—especially for families—is stressful. To do it efficiently takes time and focus. To avoid mass dumpage into the suitcase, I start packing two weeks before we leave. And, I challenge myself to halve what I “think” we need.
I place a cardboard box next to the table and drop things in as I think of them: books, sunscreen, shampoo, and medicine. First, I pack the kids. I begin laying the clothes out by category on the dining room table: undies, PJs, tops, bottoms, dresses, hats, shoes. Then, I create a small grooming kit for each kid with brush, toothbrush, hair ties, and Band-Aids. A few days later, I revisit the mounds and remove what is not entirely necessary.
Fact: South Beach is a paradise for grown-ups: sun, sea, sand and a super-sexy party scene.
But, here’s a little-known secret: Miami is a spectacular family getaway. This past winter break, I headed down to South Florida with my husband and two daughters to defrost and indulge in some family fab adventures.
HOME AWAY FROM HOME
For this trip, we shacked up at the Fontainebleau. Located on the beach, this iconic hotel offers apartment style suites outfitted with a washer/dryer and kitchen, a major bonus for a travelling family. This allowed me to pack less and be better prepared for the hunger-inspired tantrums that crop up every few hours. Having a leisurely breakfast in our PJs versus having to get dressed and face the crowds (pre-caffeine) for overpriced cereal is a game changer. It is a luxury that adds that extra element of relaxation to the vacation.