Tag Archives: Grandparents

The 7 D’s of How to Survive Vacation with Young Kids

  1. Dependence.  Like anything in your life, it is important to start with prayer. So, as you leave your driveway, have a time of prayer – before the DVD player begins, headphones go in, and snoring happens. Along with prayer, it may be a good time to go over some ground rules and behavioral expectations.
  2. Dramamine.  Almost as important as prayer – Dramamine. Check with your doctor first, but if possible, give your kids Dramamine to help with car sickness, sleep, and also limits bathroom trips. I call this the vacation trifecta!
  3. Diapers.  You may say, “but my kids are out of diapers”. I don’t care. If someone has to go the bathroom and is not at an age where they can hold it for a reasonable amount of time…inform them diapers are available. Hey, if it gets us another 100 miles without a stop, I’d put on a diaper (No, this has not happened…yet).
  4. Drop New Beats. One of the best traditions of a long trip is Daddy’s Vacation Mix. On the mix are new praise songs, soundtrack songs from their favorite movies (the year of Frozen was especially painful), and fun songs as well. It always is a surprise and must not be started until we are officially driving on vacation.
  5. Drive. Drive. Drive.  As Dorie would say in Finding Nemo, “Just keep driving, just keep driving”. With every stop, you are adding at least a half an hour to your trip. And time your stops well, by doing gas and food in one stop. The more you drive, the less you will have to drive later. A mantra you will thank yourself later.
  6. Dad & Mom. If possible, bring the grandparents. No, it’s not just for an extra set of eyes at the pool and beach (although that is a wonderful thing). But the kids love the memories they will build with their grandparents too and will treasure those special times.
  7. Don’t Expect Rest. I used to bring several books on vacation. Not anymore. I bring magazines now. I might get a page or two at a time. Laying out…not gonna happen. I’m not complaining. I’m in the “Dad, come swim with us” phase of my life. And I absolutely love it.


Vacation Beach(Credit for photo:  http://karimephotography.com/)

What are some tips you have for a great vacation trip? Driving many hours in the car with young kids is not an easy adventure, but these are some tips for a sane trip, fun vacation, and a refreshing time away.  What are some ways you build memories and make it special?  Feel free to comment.



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2 Great Articles for Parents & Grandparents

As a young parent, I eat this stuff up.  Anything to help me build faith into my kids, I’m willing to listen.  Encourage you to enjoy these reads…

Helping Kids Keep the Faith


20 Ideas for Grandparentsgrandma_teen_750_367_s_c1






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How to Build a Spiritual Home – Part 4

Exterior & Roof – 3 A’s of parenting – Attention, Affirmation, & Affection – Matthew 3:17

God’s Word does not have many verses that speak about loving your kids – much of the prescriptive truths about parenting are regarding discipline and spiritual guidance.  However, here is something to consider.  God, and his treatment of His children provide countless lessons of the love for His children.  From the patience of the people of Israel to the sacrificing of His Son…Love is seen over and over from the Heavenly Father.  So what better verse to use than Matthew 3:17, a loving Father’s words for His Son.

roofFrom the book “Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters” by Dr. Meg Meeker:

“From the moment you set your eyes on her wet-from-womb body until she leaves your home, the clock starts ticking.  It’s the clock that times your hours with her, your opportunities to influence her, to shape her character, and to help her find herself.”

The need for appropriate loving tough dramatically INCREASES when kids get older.  My wife always was told by her dad to get all her kisses and hugs from him…and that’s what I’m going to tell my girls.  But I better make sure I give them those hugs and kisses!  So you know that song “Steal My Kisses From You”…I just see when parenting daughters, when I give my girls kisses, I’m just stealing kisses from teenage boys!

There’s a Spanish story of a father and son who had a disagreement. The son ran away, and the father set off to find him. He searched for months to no avail. Finally, in a last desperate effort to find him, the father put an ad in a Madrid newspaper. The ad read: Dear Paco, meet me in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your Father. On Saturday 800 Paco’s showed up, looking for forgiveness and love from their fathers.

Don’t let your pride get in the way of your parenting.  Boys need love & attention too from you.  It

effects their self-esteem, treatment of others, and treatment of themselves.  Parents & Grandparents, Love on your kids  & grand-kids every chance you get.  Not just when they hit the winning home run or get 1st chair clarinet or get a 30 on their ACT…give them a hug on a Saturday afternoon, or text them how much you love them when they get out of school, or tell them how proud of them you are before bedtime.

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How to Build a Spiritual Home – Part 2

As discussed last week, there we be no home unless there was a foundation.  So, make sure you are building a firm foundation, rooted in God’s Word before you begin working on the next step.

Once you have your foundation, it’s time to begin framing your house.  And in building a spiritual home, the framing is your Godly example.


Step #2 – Framing – Godly Example 

Proverbs 13:22 – A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children, but the sinner’s wealth is laid up for the righteous.

James Dobson says “”Our very survival as a nation will depend on the presence or absence of masculine leadership in the home.”  Do you know the longest running TV comedy of all-time? “The Simpsons” – which portrays a dad that is lazy, unintelligent, overweight, self-centered, and an alcoholic.  The voice of the character says he has to “let his IQ go” when he performs the voice of the dad, Homer Simpson.  Yet, USA Today cited Homer Simpson as one of the “top 25 most influential people of the past 25 years!!  “D’oh!”

In America, we are experiencing an absence of our FathersThe average time father has meaningful dialogue with son each day – 38 seconds.  25% of teens claim they have never had a meaningful conversation with their father.  And 25 million kids grow up in US without a positive male role model in their life.  This has led to the sad statistic of children spending 40% less time with their family than a generation ago.

But this is not new thing.  In the Old Testament, we see the misguided parenting of Eli, and the parenting struggles of Noah, David, and others.  It’s time to set a new cultural trend and it begins in your home.  So, whatever category of parenting you fall into, here is what you need to do:

 Fathers – give your children a spiritual leader that they need.  Strive to be like God the Father.

Mothers – encourage your husband to be that man.  Support him, ask about his devotional life, encourage him to find a mentor, and to find an accountability partner.

Grandparents – Be a support to the fathers.  Mature believers help equip our Fathers.  Help find resources, buy them books or videos, be a Paul to the Timothy’s around you.


In case you missed it, here is How to Build a Spiritual Home, Part 1.

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