Six Vacation Essentials

By now you know that traveling is something I am quite familiar with, both for business and pleasure. Like anything else in life, the more practice you have at something, the better you get at it. So with that said, I will share my six essential components to a fun vacation…starting with…

  1. GIGI Juice – Those bright colored cups my daughter and I are holding are not filled with water, and not with lemonade…we are drinking ‘Gigi juice’, named after my special summer concoction: in a large pitcher filled with ice, you start with 2 parts vodka, 1 part tequila, 1 part orange or pineapple juice, about a cup of rosΓ© wine, a splash of cranberry juice, and the juice of a lime. You can really play with the ingredients to suit your preferences…we like it strong and not too sweet – the perfect adult beverage to start your morning on the beach!

2. Great Food – You might be surprised to hear that we don’t look for ‘fine dining’ on vacation, with or without the kiddos…what we look for is excellent food in a setting that is relaxed and has a good vibe. Our recent destination, Grand Cayman, has no shortage of great places to eat. Here we are having breakfast at the Waterfront Urban Diner, lots of healthy options beyond typical diner food…other favorites here: Morgans, Luca, or Tillies for dinner, and Calico Jack’s for the best jerk chicken, served on picnic tables on the beach. Some of the best ceviche we ever had was at the Macabuca Bar & Grill, a fun spot for lunch.

3. Toys – When it’s just Peter and I going on vacation we always bring our football. On a family vacation the toys we bring are at a whole new level! Hayley actually packed an entire suitcase dedicated exclusively to fun stuff – collapsable pails, multiple floats, paddle ball, etc. Some items we leave behind for other families to enjoy, certain favorites come back with us…

4. Flexibility –  Especially when you are traveling with others, keeping an open mind is key, and makes for a happier group…before we took this trip my daughter suggested that we visit the Cayman Crystal Caves as a family activity one day. After taking a look online I gave Hayley a call: “There is no way I am doing the caves. I don’t want to leave the beach, there are bats in there, and it’s of zero interest to me. You can take your kids, but I’m not going.” Hahaha. See picture above? We did the caves. Truth be told, we were desperate for a rainy day activity. More truth: Gigi Juice helped.

5. Music – Gotta have music on every vacation, and never with headphones! Though we are respectful to those around us, we like music for dancing, singing along, and enjoying with others…We always bring along a small bluetooth speaker, a few playlists, and access to Pandora…on this particular vacation we had the added treat of hearing my son and his girlfriend performing at the Havana Club, a unique venue across the street from our hotel. Declared song of this trip: Cake by the Ocean, by DNCE…;-)

Vacation casual with my two kids πŸ™‚

6. Cool Resort Wear – You knew this had to be on the list! Planning outfits is part of the fun of planning vacations – swimsuit outfits, evening outfits, a few daytime outfits, and many fun accessories – hats, sunglasses, handbags, jewelry, shoes, etc. Fortunately my family also finds this fun too. Way in advance of a vacation I always make a list of every single outfit down to the last detail – that way when you are on vacation there is nothing to think about since it’s already been planned. πŸ˜‰

At Morgans, my favorite restaurant on Grand Cayman!
Matching swimsuits from Pocket Full of Posies, Osterville, MA

Cannot end this post without a big thank you to Linda Mitchell from Luxury Destination Travel for helping us to plan this wonderful vacation at the Caribbean Club! Her tips and guidance are always spot on!

Happy Friday all!

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  • Looks like you all had a blast! I so enjoyed all the pics. We leave for California in the morning. Can’t wait.


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