Post-Trip Planning: The Recipe for a Stress-Free Summer Vacation

Summer Vacation - Post-Trip Planning - Camping

In the hustle and bustle of vacation season, we tend to spend most of our time preparing for takeoff; buying sunscreen and bug repellent, reserving the rental car, finding ticket deals on excursions, the list goes on. Although once the vacation is over, part of the “post-vacation blues” is that we often come back to a big mess that was left behind in the frenzy of preparing for the trip! Do yourself and your family a favor this year, and set aside some time before you leave to plan for your return, too. Here are some post-trip planning ideas to get you started!

Clean the house

Leave for vacation with a clean, tidy home! It’ll make your return so much easier. If you run out of time to take care of all the cleaning and tidying yourself, hire a local cleaning service to do the job for you, which can likely be done in one visit when you’re already on your vacation. Or if you only have time and budget to do a few things yourself, starting the dishwasher before you go and making the beds are two small tasks that you’ll thank yourself for when you get back. 

Bring a laundry bag on your trip

Coming back home and sorting through all your clothes to do the laundry can be tedious, so lessen the work by packing a laundry bag with you. You can put your dirty clothes into the laundry bag as you go, and when you get home, there won’t be any guesswork or sorting required. Easy peasy!

Lay out your work clothes for the next day after vacation, and clothes for the kids’ next day plans

Let’s face it; you’ll likely be tired when you get home. And no matter the time of day it is that you walk through the door, we suspect you won’t be too thrilled about taking care of all the details to prepare for going back to everyday life the next day. To lend your future tired self a hand, before you leave for vacation: iron your work clothes and hang them up, set out your shoes, have your work bag ready – whatever it is that will help you be more prepared and less stressed. For the kids, you can set out clothes and shoes for daycare if that’s where they’ll be going, or an overnight bag if they’re headed to another relative or their other parent’s home upon return.

Freeze some Dream Dinners meals, so they’re ready for you when you get back

No need to worry about what you’re going to eat when you walk into the house, hungry and tired from travel. Have some Dream Dinners meals frozen and ready to go! If you have a few options, you’ll be able to take a quick glance and choose something that is fast, easy, and a crowd-pleaser for the whole family. Having one make-from-frozen meal front and center in the freezer will make things even easier. Or, if you have someone watching your pets or house-sitting, ask them to take a few meals out to thaw the day before you get home. No need to discuss where to order take-out from, and then be at the mercy of the wait and delivery time. We got you covered!

Plan something fun to do within the next week after you’re back home

We mentioned it before, but post-vacation blues are a real thing. Post-trip planning can help! Parents and kids alike can feel down when returning from a great trip, back into the routine of our everyday lives. Before you go, you can be proactive about this by planning something to look forward to once you’re home again. Maybe a relaxed family and friend game night the following week, a trip to the zoo the next weekend, or tickets to see an anticipated movie. Having a fun event already planned will help you stay on the vacation high, rather than having the blues sneak up on you.

 

We hope these post-trip planning ideas are helpful for you and your family! Are there other things that you and your crew do before leaving on vacation that have proved super useful? Let us know! Share them with us on social media (Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram), so we can all learn from each other about how to make our vacation transitions even better. If you’re heading out on a vacation soon, bon voyage! And if you’re just returning from a trip, welcome home! Wherever you are in the process, we hope you’re having a happy, healthy summer.

Going Somewhere?

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If you’re going on vacation this summer, dining is often the most expensive and time consuming piece— don’t let the stress of meal planning and reservations lead to expensive dinners that can limit your fun. Whether you’re flying to a faraway and exotic location, visiting a secluded family cabin in the woods or simply going camping, we’ve got you covered. 

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Tips for Family Travels

Travel with Dream DinnersLabor Day weekend is one of the busiest travel weekends of the year and we know traveling with kids is no easy task, especially when it involves long flights or car rides.

Try a few of these easy summer travel ideas so you can spend less time worrying about the stress of travel and more time making memories with your family.

– Bring a variety of your kids’ favorite healthy snacks such as sliced or dried fruit, popcorn, granola bars, trail mix, or string cheese. Keep perishable foods in a small cooler with plastic bags of ice that can be refilled at gas stations for free as the ice melts.

–  Make erasable activity books by inserting coloring book pages, crossword puzzles, and other activity sheets into page protectors in a three-ring binder. Give kids a pack of dry-erase markers or, for less mess, dry-erase crayons to use with their new activity books.

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Camping with Dream Dinners

Camping trips are a breeze with Dream Dinners! With the Taste of America menu in July, yours can be too. Use them frozen in addition to your ice in the cooler and as they thaw, dinner is ready to cook. Easy, less mess, all ready assembled means more time for smore’s and less time washing.

Take the Memphis Flank Steak, Buffalo Ranch Chicken, and New Orleans Jambalaya out of the freezer right into your cooler. All your ingredients are packed for 3 delicious camping dinners.

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