- Start early. This is especially important when travel plans include children. Now that I have kids I've found it takes me an eternity to finish the simplest task and more than once I've been forced to leave town before my to-do list was complete. Though it may seem a bit extreme to pick up that extra pack of diapers or pay all the bills a week early, it keeps things from getting frantic the day before departure. It also means there's more time to take care of those pesky last minute items that always seem to crop up when you're trying to leave town! 2. Pace yourself. Running a million errands at top speed while hauling kids in and out of their car seats is enough to make anyone lose their mind. Taking care of one or two items a day from the pre-vacation to-do list makes life a lot calmer than when attempting to cram them all in at once. I've also found I'm not so tired when we finally leave for our trip and I'm able to enjoy the experience more! 3. Get help. Recruit a spouse, parent, friend, or even the kids if they're old enough! Having an extra set (or two) of hands to help with everything gets it all done a lot faster and with a lot less stress. Now that our son is three, I've found involving him in our travel preparations gives him a sense of responsibility as he helps pack his clothes and pick out the toys that he's going to take. It also helps him feel excited for the new adventure we're about to set off on!
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