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Compartment 14B

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Vay-cay-shun baby! Time to get ready!

2010-01-08 - 3:40 p.m.

No, I'm not leaving right now. But on January 22nd, this particular branch of the family tree is headed to Beaches Boscobel in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, mon. Wait, wait! Don’t click that link yet or I’ll never get you back, it is that mesmerizing to explore all that that place has to offer. (Plus it seems to be crashing Explorer today, WTF?)

Instead, let me just point out that all the children’s programs are included, even from age 0 months on up. For Biscuit’s age range, there’s this:

“From the smallest newborn to those that have attained the grand old age of 24 months, your baby is always in the very best hands at Beaches. Luxurious, climate-controlled nurseries-filled with cribs, strollers, high chairs, rocking chairs and simply everything your little one could ever need or desire-await to cradle your babies in the very lap of luxury, from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. every day of your stay. Our Certified Nannies, child development specialists that have been trained and certified in accordance with an accredited U.S. university, love nothing better than to coddle, care for and bring smiles of delight to little cherubic faces.”

And for Grommet?

“At Beaches we've got your toddler covered. In fact, at Kids Camp, your three to five year-olds can truly have a blast with their very own set of activities, supervised, of course, by Certified Nannies. At this age, we're well aware, there's energy to burn and a whole lot of steam to blow off. That's why we'll make sure that your tyke has ample opportunities to have fun and play happy. Toddler pools, shell collecting, face painting, treasure hunts, puppets, costume time, magic shows, sand castle building and so much more, the list of activities for kids on the go is unending. Children must be potty-trained to participate in this age group.”


Now, in person, one mom rather incredulously (and holier-than-thou-ly) asked me if I would really leave my children with strangers while in a foreign country, because she certainly never would.

You bet your bippy I would. These resorts charge mucho moolah to stay there and aren’t about to have their bread-and-butter threatened by providing sub-standard care to their precious little geese that lay golden eggs charges. Oh relax, I’m not planning on waving bye-bye to them in the morning and not seeing them again until night falls, but I will make a conscious effort to take advantage of this program for at least a couple of hours every day. I want to have a real vacation, but I don’t want to leave my kids at home with the grandparents, and this seems like the best of both worlds. I plan on bringing my camera (duh) and taking pics galore, but I also plan to partake of various activities from yoga to waterslides, and even plan to bring my running stuff – it’s not like it weighs much.

How did I find this place with a water park, scuba diving, golf, and children’s activities (Sesame Street characters even have “stations” throughout the resort) all included? Simple, the internet spit it out as a result of various searches like “best resort children”. Beaches Boscobel has made it onto a lot of “top” lists from places that have reviewed family resorts worldwide. And happily for us, the Airmiles program happened to include it as an option – and we had a LOT of Airmiles – otherwise it would have been serious $$$$.

As of now, I have two weeks to get ready. I may not travel as much as some people, but I do have a strategy that’s worked really, really well for me when I have travelled. Using this method, I have so far found that I rarely wish I’d brought something I didn’t, but I also almost always use everything I brought (except for things I bring that I don’t want to end up using, like first aid supplies: sadly even then it’s not unusual at all to need these, clumsy as I am), so it’s not like I tend to over-pack. To benefit the world, I am going to share this method. What can I say? I’m a giver…

1) Research
2) Make a list – not just of what to bring but what you need to do, like arrange for plants to be watered and mail to be taken in
3) Search your house for what you’ve got
4) Shop for what you don’t got (or know you have but can’t find, dammit!); borrow what you can
5) Lay out everything in piles beside the bags
6) Pack
7) Groom
8) Lay out your clothes to wear and put bags, etc. in designated area ready to leave the house.

I know # 7 looks weird, but bear with me and I’ll go over each step in more detail in my next entry…

Before - After

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