Prepping For Our Adults Only Vacation!

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Hey Hey!! Hope this finds you having a great week so far!!
(And if it hasn't been's to hoping things get a little bit better in the latter part of the week!)

I am so excited to share all about our 15th wedding anniversary trip to Playa Del Carmen!!
But- before I do that- I thought I would share how I went about getting us ready to actually go on our trip!!

I am sure ya'll will be shocked when I tell you it took A LOT of planning on my part to get everything in order and ready for us to leave for 4 nights/5 days. HA!

First things first. Aaron and I booked this trip back in late March. That's when our wedding anniversary was and deciding to take this trip was our gift to each other!
We decided on the dates for our trip- but before we booked our resort and airplane tickets- we checked with our nanny who we have used one other time to watch the kids. 

If she wasn't available to watch the kids- we weren't going to lock in those dates!
She was available (YAY!)- so we pushed the purchase button on our plane tickets and resort!!

*Some of you might know that one of my brothers lives very close to me. And my mom lives just about 20 minutes away from me! Knowing this- you might wonder why we hired someone to watch the kids when we went on our trip.*

And the answer is- we don't believe it's our family's job to watch our kids in that capacity.
We have five kids, 3 dogs and a very full schedule. My brother and his wife have their own children and their own busy schedule! My mom is wonderful and very healthy- but there is no way I wanted her driving the kids all over Raleigh and then having to do all the daily household things on top of that. My mom is a grandma- not a babysitter!

So- we set up our nanny to watch the kids Wednesday night (we had to leave at 4 am on Thursday- so she came over the night before to sleep over and be at the house when the kids woke up) through Saturday morning. My mom came over Saturday morning and stayed one night with the kids and left Sunday afternoon. She was happy to be with them, take them out to dinner and to church on Sunday morning! Our nanny came back over Sunday afternoon and stayed until Monday evening when we returned!

We were SO thankful to have such a wonderful and responsible person watch the kids. 
It gave us such peace of mind!!

Ok. So we got childcare all set up. We also made sure to include the childcare cost in the budget for our vacation!

Next- I needed to figure out who was going to let our dogs out during the day. The woman watching the kids works at their school- so everyone was gone during the day (except for the weekend). I was so thankful my sister in law and my good friend agreed to let the dogs out for us!

Childcare. Done. 
Dogs let out during the day. Done.

Next up- rides to practices and games!
This was a little stressful for me! Cora has a good friend who is on the volleyball team and she lives close to us. Her mom was so generous and she covered all of Cora's practices and games while we were gone. Charlotte ended up having THREE games while we were gone! We figured out rides to all of them- but it felt like a lot when I was planning everything out! HA!

Once I got all the logistics figured out- I made a few "cheat sheets" to help our nanny and my mom.

I didn't want to make some overwhelming, long daily schedule- so instead- I made this "schedule at a glance" and just wrote out the important points for each day.
(I included what days the kids have gym because they wear a different uniform)

Another "hand out" I made was this daily checklist. I categorized the "to-do's" into morning/afternoon and evening. Our nanny found this very helpful!!

I know from spending a lot of years babysitting and also watching friend's kids- it's nice to know what the parents allow. Knowing that- I put together this "YES" list. My kids are pretty good at behaving and not pushing the limits with other adults- but I wanted our nanny to be clear on what we allow the kids to eat and to do!
Speaking of "YES" foods- I made sure to have ALL of the kids' favorite snacks stocked in the pantry. And I also got some extra treats that I don't buy all the time. I had the ingredients for all the dinners that were going to be made. I had an extra gallon of milk in our outside fridge. I made sure there was plenty of bread for sandwiches and lots of apples and oranges. The kids were packing their lunches while we were gone and I wanted them to have lots of fun options to put in their lunch :) I wanted the kids to be excited and happy about their meals and snacks while we were gone- so I put a lot of effort into that!

The last hand out I made was a phone numbers list for my mom. She wanted our pediatrician's office, the resort's number, our nanny's number and my good friend's number.
I also made a contact sheet for our school secretary. I let her know how long we would be gone and the people that needed to be contacted in case of an emergency. 

I will be honest with ya'll- there was a point in all of my planning that I kind of freaked out and told my husband I wasn't sure if we should still go on our trip. It just felt VERY overwhelming to be leaving the kids, not to mention, LEAVING the country. 

We have only gone on one other "big" trip and that was to Charleston for three days to celebrate our 10 year anniversary! 
If you want- you can read the blog post I wrote about it HERE!

Anyway...with encouragement from my mom and my good friend AND lots of prayer- I worked through those feelings, got everything and everyone organized and it was SO WORTH IT.

The kids did great while we were gone. Our nanny and my mom were so complimentary of how amazing they were. Everyone got to where they needed to be, they wore clean uniforms and have a lunch packed every day. HA! 

And Aaron and I had the most AMAZING vacation we have ever been on.

I know this was quite a rambling (and potentially boring) post...but I just wanted to share what it looked like for us to leave for a (almost) 5 day trip! 

Next up- I will share all about our vacation!!

Hope you have the BEST day!



  1. Glad you are back blogging- enjoy your honest, always real take on motherhood and I like your recipes as well. This was fun to read. I am glad that you and your husband got away. My husband and I went to Mexico for our 15th as well. We did have family watch our kids... but we only have three and we divided and conquered (my husband´s parents are divorced so we sort of have two ¨sets¨ of grandparents nearby). We felt OK asking for help with the kids because we did not frequently ask for their help; I don´t feel like we took advantage of their time ever when the kids were little. That said, it was super thoughtful of you to incur the cost of hiring someone to watch your kids rather than ask your family to do it. Looking forward to hearing about your trip. I hope you had an amazing time!

  2. I’m so excited you’re blogging again! And I can’t wait to hear about the actual trip-we are going to Secrets Maroma in November!

    1. OMG! You are going to be blown away!! So excited for you!

  3. So glad that you are back…. I love your blog!


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