Saturday, June 20, 2009

Here is Part Two of Preparing for a Successful Summer Vacation Trip. Below are tips for packing the family, packing the car and getting settled in when you get back home.

· Clothing (this is another topic for another article!)
· Jacket or sweater for cooler temperatures
· Bathing suits, towels, flip-flops for poolside
· Toiletries—use travel size whenever possible
· Sunscreen!
· Medications—in original pharmacy containers
· Sunglasses, extra pair of prescription glasses
· Alarm clock, watch
· Plastic bags for wet clothing
· Laundry bag
· Recreational gear, such as fishing pole, running shoes
· Deck of cards
· Personal CD players
· Camera and film
· Cellular phone
· Night light
· Ear plugs
· Empty bag or suitcase for souvenirs
· Tote or backpack for day trips
· Rain poncho/umbrella
· Water bottles
· Extra batteries
· Phone numbers of family members or friends watching the house
· Traveler’s checks and money
· Medical insurance cards
· Driver’s license or other photo identification

· Extra water for the car only
· Toolkit for roadside emergencies
· Owner’s manual
· Insurance card, vehicle registration, auto club membership info
· Duct tape
· Jumper cables
· Extra fuses
· Air pressure gauge
· First aid supplies
· Flashlight and batteries
· Fire extinguisher
· Extra keys
· Pillows and blankets
· Travel games
· Plastic bags for refuse
· Pack items you will need during the trip (cooler, games, snacks, etc.) separately from suitcases
· Snacks and drinks in a cooler
· Moist towelettes for washing hands
· Paper towels or napkins
· Roll of toilet paper

· Turn air conditioner back on, or lower
· Unpack your car
· Sort laundry as you unpack your suitcases and start a load
· Pick up your mail from the post office if it isn’t being delivered
· Pick up your pets from the boarder

This may seem like a lot to do and remember, but your goal is to have a safe, fun trip. The better prepared you are, the better the chances of having a great time away!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Get organized for your summer vacation

Now that summer is in full swing, you’re probably ready to hit the road, whether it’s a family reunion weekend, a trip to the beach, or a road trip in the van with the kids. Here are some checklists to help make your vacation a relaxing and memorable time. By planning ahead, you will avoid the stresses associated with missing or forgotten items.

This is the first of a series of blogs on getting ready for vacation. The first step in getting organized for a vacation is taking care of everything at home:

· Notify post office that you will be out of town—complete a Hold Mail form
· Notify newspapers to hold delivery
· Arrange for someone to watch the house, pets and plants
· Notify local police that you will be out of town—many towns offer a vacation watch service
· Put your house in order, change the bed linens and do the laundry—you’ll appreciate returning to a clean house and clean clothes
· Print out driving directions (
· Buy snacks and drinks for the road
· Give itinerary to at least one family member and friend/neighbor
· Place some lights on timers
· Unplug small appliances
· Set air conditioner to higher temp, or turn off
· Make sure freezer door is closed

· Take car in for servicing—check fluid levels
· Have oil changed in car
· Check tire pressure, and condition of tires
· Make sure all lights are working properly
· Clean out unnecessary items from trunk

Check in next week for part 2--Packing