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Old 08-10-2009, 05:52 PM   #21
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Are you absolutely sure you can't cruise? I've heard of good success with the prescription patch for seasickness. It might be worth investigating. Cruising is great for young families.

Another option we've done is to bring an older teen/college student/young adult as a babysitter with our family to the beach. In advance, establish (for example) that they will be responsible for the children from 9-3 every day or 12-5 or whatever suits, and then they are free to come and go all the other hours of the day. I pay them an hourly wage while they are on duty, they get to eat our food, and basically get a free place to stay for a week at the beach in exchange for 35 hours of childcare. It's definitely important to make sure that the babysitter is a really nice kid, one that won't get into trouble, someone your family knows and is comfortable with. (That's the hard part actually... I was fortunate to have a cousin who was just the right age and would probably have watched the kids for free for a free place to stay at the beach .) Also, you'd need to rent a condo or house that is 1 BR bigger than what you'd normally need, so the babysitter gets their own room. With the right person, this can work nicely and isn't unreasonably more expensive.

Good luck - hope you find something that works for you & your family!


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Old 08-10-2009, 06:42 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
We have the opposite problem,our kids have grown up (15-20)and now dont want to accompany us on vacations, i kinda miss all the fun we used to have on family vacations.Vacations with just the wife and i lack the excitement,chaos and unpredictability of when the kids were along.
Give them a few years to feel confident as adults, then they will want to go with you again. Of course, the parents need to treat them as adults too.

My kids (20 and 24) recently didn't mind to come with us on our vacation. We had exchanged our timeshare for 2 suites (yes, 2 suites each with kitchen, living room and Jacuzzi in Las Vegas). They were smart now to take us up on our offer to pay for nearly everything.

Same thing happened to my sister and her grown daughters. They went to Paris.

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Try Iberostar for kids' programs and all inclusive
Old 08-10-2009, 07:18 PM   #23
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Try Iberostar for kids' programs and all inclusive

We've had great luck with Iberostar Paraiso Lindo in Riviera Maya. The resort is huge, as there are actually 5 IB*'s side by side. Lots to see and do, the kids clubs are excellent and go until the kids' show at 8:30 pm. The staff (known as Star Friends) even remember us from year to year (we've been there three years in a row with a 4, then 5 then 6 year old!)
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:01 AM   #24
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I can also speak very highly of the Iberostars in the Cancun/Playa Del Carmen area. Prices are very cheap right now; we just got back from the Iberostar Quetzal - but the Tucan, the Lindo, the Paraiso Beach, Paraiso Maya are also all excellent. A week with airfare from California for two people was under $2K, and that includes food, drinks, and entertainment. They are a very family-friendly chain. Only issue is I'm not sure if they have fully supervised activities all day for young kids.
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Old 08-12-2009, 06:59 AM   #25
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Hi Brewer, We were exactly in your position years ago when our kids were young. We stayed at the Franklin D. Resort in Jamaica and had 2 nannies to care for the kids. Gave us a nice break and we could be with and play with the kids whenever we wanted. It has been a few years since we were there, but you might want to check it out. Regards
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Old 08-12-2009, 07:54 AM   #26
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That sucks that the grandparents or family won't babysit for 4-5 days while the two of you vacate. Our two little girls are virtually the same age as yours (3 and 4.5), and we are very lucky to have two sets of their grandparents and some aunts that fight over who gets to take them for a few days. So we have done a couple of quick trips to vegas this year sans kids and we are hoping to go to Mexico this winter (if swine flu and company related quarantines aren't an issue).

But that doesn't solve your problem. Two things come to mind. First, reconsider cruises? DW gets very seasick easily, but had no problems on our last week-long cruise when she kept herself loaded up on non-drowsy Dramamine, and there is chewable Dramamine for the kids. Side effects were minimal, but consisted of mild drowsiness occasionally (I think that's why they took so many naps ). I have heard the patch works even better. But it could be bad if you figure out on day 2 of a 7 day cruise that the medicine isn't working. Our kids liked the Kids Crew childcare onboard and it is free most of the time, otherwise fairly cheap per hour (such as when you are in port).

The second idea would be tag-team vacationing. Go with another couple that has youngish children, and trade off babysitting time. You take 8 am till 4 pm on Monday with all the kids, then the other family takes 8 till 4 pm on Tues, then repeat. Maybe work out evening babysitting trading on a case by case basis. It doesn't get you completely kid free, but it comes pretty close. Not sure if your wife is like this, but my DW has separation anxiety from the kids and starts missing them before the vacation is over. This arrangement would prevent that.

I feel your pain though - we really enjoyed the short vacations away from the kids where you don't have to worry about being responsible for other human beings. Best of luck!
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:40 PM   #27
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We have done three Club Med trips with our two boys - once to Dominican Republic and twice to Cancun. I love Club Med for its casual style and lots of activities. Cancun is much cheaper now because 1) heat, 2) swine flu worries, and 3) drug war worries. We just went in July and had a wonderful time.

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