Click the link below for the weekly family rail, with tips on having a good family vacation, reviews of “The Secret World of Arrietty” and “The Borrowers,” and more. Or check out these other links.
Tip of the Week
When it comes to planning your family's vacation, you can find a lot of value in that old saying "teamwork divides the task and doubles the success." Divvying up planning responsibilities helps ensure that one member of the family is not overwhelmed with tasks, and that everyone is excited about and invested in the trip.
"Sharing time together is one of the most appealing aspects of family vacations," says Kimberly Miles, a travel planning expert with the Myrtle Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. "Families can start their vacation fun early by sharing planning responsibilities. It can be a great way to teach kids organizational and planning skills, and make sure everyone takes ownership of the family vacation."
Here are some ideas for dividing the work and multiplying the enjoyment of the family vacation planning process:
- Start with a survey: Successful teamwork requires constant communication. Your family vacation team effort should start by polling the members. Where does everyone want to go? Of course, you won't be able to fulfill every desire, but you can come close by encouraging everyone to be specific. For example, it's not enough to say everyone wants to go to the beach, because not all beach destinations will offer the same appeal for all family members. Will your family members be relaxing or frolicking on the beach? Spending the whole trip in the sand and surf, or looking for other attractions to round out their adventure? Do they want to stay in a busy beachfront hotel, or somewhere quieter and off the beaten path?
- Research your options: Many families rely on the Internet for planning and booking their vacations. The Web can be a great resource for information about a variety of destinations - from what attractions you'll find there to how much hotel rooms will cost during your travel dates. Look for family travel blogs and websites that provide specific destination information, visitor reviews, tips and advice. Don't overlook the value of word-of-mouth. Check with family and friends to see if they've visited your destination of choice, what they thought of it and what attractions they recommend.
- Assign age-appropriate tasks: Once you've chosen your destination, the real teamwork begins. Divide up tasks based on each family member's abilities. Mom and Dad will probably do the actual booking, but teens and older kids can pitch in with tasks like prepping the house to be vacant, and researching what to do and see. Grandparents can help with driving and packing. Even young children can play a role if you allow them to choose some of the snacks the family will pack for the trip. Encourage everyone to choose one activity or sight in which the whole family will participate in. This will help ensure everyone gets to do something they enjoy, and the entire team gets to take part in a variety of activities.
Family Movie Night
“The Secret World of Arrietty,” now in theaters
Synopsis: A Japanese film based on the popular children’s book “The Borrowers.”
Violence/scary rating: 2
Sexual-content rating: 1
Profanity rating: 1
Drugs/alcohol rating: 1
Family Time rating: 1. An absolutely fantastic family film. You could even have your kids read “The Borrower’s” first and then see the movie.
(Ratings are judged on a five-point scale, with 5 being “bad for kids” and 1 being “fine for kids.”)
“The Borrowers,” by Mary Norton
Synopsis: This is the classic story — read and loved by children all over the world — of Pod, Homily, and their daughter, Arrietty, who live under the kitchen floor in a quiet, half-empty house and get their livelihood by borrowing from the “human beans.” - Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Did You Know
Doctors say that exercise during pregnancy – even during the third trimester – does not harm the baby. And the exercise is good for the mother, so doctors encourage them to start of continue an exercise routine.
GateHouse News Service