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Category Archives: Travel

Taking a family vacation – Big4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort

We are a family of 5 and over the years we have found it really hard to find accommodation that suits 2 adults and 3 children, typically most hotels/motels have a limit of 4 per room. When the kids were younger this was ok I would top and tail 2 kids in one bed so […]

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  • Ms_MotorbikeNut

    Our family stayed in the Big4 Emerald Beach Holiday Park back in 2007 & we all loved it, it was right on the beach & close to Coffs Harbour must go there again next year when we have some more time & $ saved

    (((( Hugs )))) XXXX Kisses XXXXReplyCancel

  • Trish

    We are booked in for a few nights of camping here in October after we return from 4wding to Cape York and I cannot wait for the kids to wear themselves out on all the great playground equipment. I think they will be over the moon with play equipment after being cooped up in the car for 4 weeks. We always try to stay at Big 4 whenever we camp – their facilities are wonderful and they always have excellent playgrounds and activities for children. We have three boys (8, 6 and 3) so we NEED something to keep them active and entertained.ReplyCancel

    • Suzi Del Popolo

      Can I suggest cheap fold up scooters… They don’t take up much room as opposed to taking bikes like we did when I was a child, but they are easy for the kids to get around the park and up to the kids activities area, and extra play equipment when bored!ReplyCancel

  • Sounds like a fabulous time was had by all!

    We have stayed in cabins a bit, just in caravan parks, nothing as fancy as a resort :) – but yes, have found them much more convenient than hotel rooms, even back when we had only one child (we also have three). Kids sleeping in a separate room, living room & kitchen separate to bedrooms, usually a small verandah with a table and chairs. What’s not to love?
    For our big road trip we have planned for next year (if the aussie dollar doesn’t drop too much further), we are planning on camping, but I can see a few cabins along the way will be luxury we’ll sometimes be prepared to pay for (if they have that sort of thing in the States, which I’m not sure of).ReplyCancel

  • Missyj

    I have not yet had kids but my husband and I do travel a fair bit and we love the Big4 parks and have stayed at many of them. We also have a Big4 membership which is fantastic – we’ve saved a fair bit of money using it. One of my favourites is Swan Hill resort along the Murray River in Victoria, lovely rooms, fantastically friendly staff and great grounds & facilities. We can’t wait to have kids and travel Australia visiting these ‘resorts’ that are far superior than ‘normal resorts’.ReplyCancel

  • Rowena

    I love your blog and guides. However, I thought this guide was aimed at those staying at home with babies and toddlers. Not sure about other families but holidays like this are not on our horizon for a few years yet. With only one income and three kids under 6 this idea will have to go on the bucket list.ReplyCancel

    • Suzi Del Popolo

      Hi I just wanted to say we stayed at this park in 2008 with two Tweens and in a tent. For a very cheap holiday, we had a site with our own ensuite, and a caravan/tent spot. So it doesn’t have to be the cabins and luxury all the way- the park activities are all free! We spent more money outside the park on island trips etc. it was however one of the best trips we ever did, we packed the kids’ fold up scooters and hardly ever saw them!ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer

    I too have 3 kids and find it hard for accommodation for 5 (any other suggestions or websites that help with this would be appreciated). Even though my kids are all under 6 years of age, I love posts like this. It gives me something to look forward to and the confidence that there are places out there for “larger” families to go to (more than 4) :)
    Glad you had a great holiday.ReplyCancel

  • […] school holidays we visited our beautiful friends that live in Arlie Beach.  We were invited over for dinner and I heard all about my friend Stacey’s famous […]ReplyCancel

{Free Printable} Road Trip Checklist and Aussie Road Trip Games Book

Queensland start school holidays at the end of this week, so many families will be preparing for holidays with many off on a road trip to spend the long weekend with family. We went on a 12 hour road trip with the kids about 18 months ago, it was long, but lots of fun and […]

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  • Megan

    you are a life saver Kat, we are going on a road trip this weekend an dI am so busy with work I just haven’t had time to think what to pack, this is brilliantReplyCancel

{PRINTABLE} Pre-travel checklist

In just over 2 weeks I will be on my way to New York to BlogHer’12. I am REALLY looking forward to the conference and visiting NEW YORK CITY!!  I would like to say a very big thank you to Howards Storage World who are helping me get there. I was actually worried as my mind has been […]

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  • MummyToFive

    Ooh I’m so jealous! I wish you could swish me up inside one of those bags and take me with you Kat!! Your going to have the bestest time over there and take lots and lots and lots of pics!!! ReplyCancel

  • enjoy your trip. I love having checklists for travelling. Travelling alone isn’t so bad as long as you are organised.  That tree is pretty but sorry I doubt you’ll see it like that now since its summer over there.  Blooms like that usually occur during Spring.ReplyCancel

  • Utterly Organised

    Hi Katrina, you will LOVE New York – I am so jealous!! Make sure that you visit Magnolia Bakery for a cupcake, they are delicious.ReplyCancel

  • Cat

    NYC is awesome!! – we’ve been twice in the last couple of years, with kids.  We last went in March/April, when our kids were 8 and 10.  Central Park is amazing, just gorgeous.  Hope you get to do lots of exploring as well as meeting lots of great people at the conference.  CatReplyCancel

    • Im really looking forward to central park and seeing all the lights at night JReplyCancel

  • Oohh.. How exciting, Kat! I’m sure you will have tons of fun at BlogHer and yes, will learn tons too.. Can’t wait to hear all about it! And yes, this printable looks really neat as well. Thanks, Kat!ReplyCancel

    • I’m going to have a blast, really looking forward to it, thanks Prerna JReplyCancel

How to organise your carry-on luggage when travelling with children

This is a guest post by Linda Andersom from Mums on the Go You are travelling on a crowded plane with two small children. Your toddler manages to spill juice all over the front of his clothes only seconds before your baby pukes on hers. You are rummaging through your carry-on bag with one hand, […]

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  • Kate

    Lollipops for my kids are at the top of my packing list. Regardless of their age (my kids are 11, 9 & 6), lollipops are a lifesaver for kids with helping them equalise their ears on take-off and landing. The sucking of the lollipop easily takes care of ‘popping’ their ears. And if they’re not old enough, give your toddler/baby a bottle or drink with a straw to achieve the same result.ReplyCancel

  • Kelly

    This blog was just in perfect timing for my trip from Bris to Melb on my own with Mr 3yr old and Mr 8 mth old – Thank you for the many ideas as I was starting to stress about the thought.  Flying with one child was easy but never having flown with 2 I just didn’t know what to expect.ReplyCancel

    •  have a great trip to Melbourne with your little ones. My personal experience has always been that the more organised I am before the flight the more calm and happy the exerience is for all of us … especially if I am flying alone with them. I am sure Mr 3 will be a wonderful helper :) and if it all goes pear shaped … breathe deeply and remember the day will end! LOL   Happy travels – LindaReplyCancel

  • Great timing for me also as we’re travelling UK to NZ next month with 4.5 and 2.5 yr olds.  Toys that I found priceless on the last flight were coloured pipe cleaners, plasticine, triangle shaped coloured pencils (so they didn’t fall off) and a couple of favourite stories.  Tip A – insist that favourite stuffed toys go into the hold.  These were my biggest bug bear to try and keep hold off during transit!

    Thanks for your ideas – zip lock bags are awesome!ReplyCancel

    •  I love your tips about triangle shaped pencils/crayons! I will be adding that to my packing lists in future :)  Have a great trip to NZ next month and hope zip lock bags make your carry-on luggage easier to work with during the flight. Linda ReplyCancel

  • Rachael Edwards

    We had a few plane trips when our third child was just a baby. We also had an 18 month old and a 3&1/2 year old, so 2 very young children to occupy. Probably the best advice we were given was to break the trip into 15 minute blocks. For every 15 minutes you need one snack and one activity, which will take about 5 minutes each, leaving you with 3 or 4 mins of boredom to deal with before they’re ready for another toy or snack, so a 2 hour flight you want 8 snacks and 8 activities/toys, though you could probably double up on a few. Stickers and colouring books are absolutely awesome!ReplyCancel

  • JB Perth

    Having just flowing with Miss 3 and Master 5 – spare clothes are a must for yourself as well as kids.  If they vomit, it is usually over you too!  Also take old thin towel (found old cloth nappies great) and face washers (with plastic bag).  These can be used as bibs when they eat to catch things falling off the tray, wipe hands & faces, clean up vomit, endless!  Make sure you are happy to throw them away.ReplyCancel

    •  great suggestions! I always laugh when my husband wears a pale coloured t-shirt when flying with us and then complains at how dirty he is on arrival!!  Nothing I wear of my kids are wearing is “precious” as who knows what will happen to it during our travel day ;)  LindaReplyCancel

      • Brooke - Little Miss Moi

        This sounds really bad (because I generally abhor matching outfits) but I dress my girls in matching outfit for flights (they only have one matching outfit, it’s become their ‘flying uniform’) when I am taking them solo. It helps me see them if they run off, and people know they belong together, and I figure if one gets lost at the airport I can point to the other sister and say “She’s dressed just like this”.ReplyCancel

  • KJ

    I never dress my kids in clothes I would be sorry to throw out, and change my own shirt to an old one on the plane. And yes, on long haul you need two changes! Having had an 18-month-old do a spectacular fountain vomit over herself and me, I was very pleased to put the whole lot in a bin bag. I also pack a lightweight bassinet or stroller blanket for each child (ours are 2, 4 and 6yrs old) for something clean to lay their head on in transit lounges, as they seem to collapse to the floor at the gates! Also… whilst not related to carry-on, stagger your meals if you are flying with your partner by requesting one meal at the beginning of the food service, so one parent can be (mostly) done before the other tray arrives ;) ReplyCancel

  • Wonderful tips, taking them all on board, about to head off to the States (from Aus) and taking my 7 and almost 3 year old. I need all the help I can get!ReplyCancel

  • Amy Li

    some of the toy manufactures put out small toy catalogues, I’ve picked up a Thomas and Friend train one and the Matchbox cars, all free of course. Found them in the toy sections. Small and compact to keep in my handbag, great for my 3 year to read on our flight to HK. ReplyCancel

  • BelCC

    What great ideas!! We don’t travel a lot but I’m actually planning on implementing some of them to just condense the about of stuff we cart around when out and about with our kids!!ReplyCancel

  • Very helpful :) We’re travelling in June! While we’ve travelled with our son as a 3 month old and as a 17 month old, we’re going to attempt it with him as a 2.5 year old and I never feel like we’ve mastered it because his needs/personality etc change each time!ReplyCancel

    • Brooke - Little Miss Moi

      Hi Kez, I personally thing 2.5 is the age when the kids start to be great travellers. They are over the excitement of wanting to walk everywhere, and activities such as colouring or movies can hold their attention for longer than 30 seconds! Good luck.ReplyCancel

  • Brooke - Little Miss Moi

    I always take a spare plastic bag for garbage, as the flight attendants never collect it regularly enough. I clean up as I go. I take a carry on bag that can fit under the seat rather than in the locker, so I can access things when the seat belt sign is on, and get us all packed up as we are taxiing along the runway. As most of my travel is international, I always keep passports and pens in an outside pocket for easy access when I have a moment to fill in the forms. Sometimes it takes three or four attempts! If I do the ‘new toy for the plane’ tactic, I always buy the same thing, because a different one will guarantee fights. And I take what I can carry myself – if I let my kids take a carry on bag for themselves, guess who ends up carrying it?ReplyCancel

  • Rach

    Thanks for the extra tips! We fly next week to Quebec Canada with a 5, 4, & 10 month old (& my grandma with dementia). Im starting to think we are crazy! This tips certainly help though :-) ReplyCancel

  • Louise

    Great tips! I second the change of clothes for parents as when a small child tips over their drink, it WILL land on you. A backpack with leash for toddlers can save your sanity in a crowded airport, especially when your stroller is in Oversize Luggage and you are trying to simultaneously grab luggage off the carousel while keeping hold of your little one.ReplyCancel

  • Maria

    Great tips:) Other things I’ve found are: Take two bags: one for the things you definitely need (food, activities, and wipes mainly) goes under the seat. The other bag has the might-needs, and goes in the overhead locker (the nappy bag, spare clothes, and baby paracetamol (which I’ve used surprisingly often!)). Agree with spare adult clothes. I try to pack spare kids clothes that are interchangeable between them all. The other thing for toddlers is a sleeved bib- goes on at the start and doesn’t come off until the end! Finger puppets and stickers are great activities.ReplyCancel

  • Alecia

    We found that always having a bottle/sippy cup drink on hand for babies/toddlers, or lollypops for older kids is great, give them to them as we are taking off and landing to stop their ears from hurting.ReplyCancel

How to stay organised when your husband travels away

This is a guest post by Naomi from Seven Cherubs As a mother I like to be organised and prepared in advance as much as I can be for unexpected and expected events that happen with our family. One expected event that often happens in our home is that my husband travels away for work. […]

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  • Bricknellpiano

    Thx for posting this right now.  My husband started going away for work for about 10 days every month about 6 months ago, and I already am doing some of your suggestions, but I will now start having a special helper and rewarding myself and the children.ReplyCancel

    • I really like the idea of the special helper too, I am sure the kids feel great for helping too!ReplyCancel

  • AshMmisforMe

    So true Naomi! I’m Miss Super-Organised when my husband is away! Just need to be super-organised when he’s not now! :) Love the sleep-out in the lounge idea!ReplyCancel

  • Colleen

    I have a number 9! Invite your mum to stay! My daughter’s husband travels for work too so I try to arrange things at home so that I can spend some time with her…for company and I hope that I am a bit of help as well..I suppose it is a bit of a circle as I need to arrange things at home before I can go! My daughter has 3 children the youngest 8 weeks the oldest 4 and a 2 year old in the middle..she is amazing..I think she uses all your tips..I think I am her treat! Last week they all went off for afternoon tea..the boys loved it..not McDonalds a lovely restaurant for hot chocolate and cake!
    No. 10 might be…a calendar just for the time dad is away. Marking off the days before he comes home.  A big star sticker on the day he comes home. One leading up to him going for a few days is also good as it helps to know ‘the when’
    No. 11 Keep a diary. For littlies it might be a picture diary of what they did while he was away. Cutout from a catalogue if you went shopping, printout of a photo doing something or a drawing. Older children can write a story or just a sentence.
    Great to share with dad when he come home.
    I have quite a few of these little books from when my children were young and their dad went away.
    It can be hard going but it can work…you just have to work at it….
    Just like everything else associated with being as parent! ReplyCancel

    • Cookiemother2

      Colleen, you’re right! 
      The best piece of advice I’ve had about this topic is when my husband’s cousin suggested that the weekend he was away was the best time for me to visit her in the country! It upped the adult:child ratio, and gave them something fun to do. Now I always make sure we have fun stories and great photos of our fun to share with him when he gets back. He loves knowing we had fun family time while he was away, and he sends us pictures of fun things he has done too. ReplyCancel

  • I might need to print this off and leave it for the Bloke! I’ve never been away from home more than one night before, and I have not one but THREE business trips coming up in the next couple of months – including one overseas one where I will be away for about five days! The first one is coming up in four weeks and is two nights interstate, and I’ve already started planning for it – I’ve organised the morning off before I go, I’ll take home a copy of my itinerary so they know where I am – although I won’t really be contactable during the day (And I’d better make sure I leave him with money for the cleaner, lol.)

    Meals will be planned before the first trip – although I’d lay money on them either going to the pub for dinner or getting takeaway at least one night I’m away (or that might be the meal plan for the two nights I’m away)! His mum will be back in time for my second trip (which is the longest one), so he’ll have a little bit of help for that one, and she loves it! The last one is as soon as I get back from the first (get back Saturday night, gone again Monday morning. Sucks, hey?) ReplyCancel

  • Newtohubbybeingaway

    Great ideas, everytime hubby goes away as a mum of 4 I freak out thinking how am I ever going to do this. I’m not a very organised person and I guess that is where I lack but with ur post and my motivation to get organised I think I am going to be okay next time he goes.ReplyCancel

  • Love the extra suggestions ladies. I did not think of adding them as I have no family near me and can’t rely on help in that way and love the suggestion of giving it to hubby as well. Thanks so much for having me Katrina xxReplyCancel

  • Sarah

    Thanks for the tips.  I am a mother of four beautiful girls aged 13, 9, 6, & 3.  My husband has just started to do away work for the next 5 months, hopefully coming home weekly to fortnightly depending on workload. I also work part-time.  I am fortunate that my mum and dad are coming to stay for a bit of stress relief and company during the weeks that he is away.  I know my girls are going to struggle a bit but thanks to modern technology we will be able to Skype on a regular basis. I really love the idea of the “special helper”.  ReplyCancel

  • alint

    When the woman I love broke up with me, my world fell apart. I had gone to several casters and I got no results or insufficient ones. I found [email protected] and gave another try to retrieve my lover and restore the passionate relationship I had with her. I’m so glad I did and trusted him. He performed a spiritual cleansing to banish negative energies and cast a love spell. After 4days, the man I missed dearly started to call me and told me few days ago that she still loves me and wants to try again. Thank him fo me.ReplyCancel

  • Frank Silver

    My name is Mr Frank Silver,I live in Mexico,and I’m happily married with a lovely wife and three children. I had a very big problem with my wife few months ago,to the extent that she even packed her things away from me and my kids for almost 5 months,and i tried all my possible best and effort to bring her back,but all to no avail.I discussed it with a very good friend of mine,and he gave me an advice concerning a spell caster,and i quote.“There’s someone who can handle your situation,he’s always ready and able to do anything related to spell casting,i will like you to contact him with his email,which is as follows.”Ekpiku spell temple”. I never believed in spell casting,but he convinced me and i had no choice than to follow his advice,because i never dream of loosing my lovely wife.And that’s how i contacted him with his email address,and i discussed with him and so surprisingly,he told me that I’ll get my wife back a day after.so i never believed,until when i got home,the next day,my wife called me to inform me that she was coming back…..So amazing!! That’s how i got my wife back through spell casting and our relationship was now stronger than how it was before.One of the price i was asked to pay was to tell it to people around me that problems like this,can always be solved by “Ekpiku spell temple”. So! my advice for you out there is to visit this same website,and tell him your problems too,if you are in any condition related to love issue or getting your ex back,to have a happy family.THANKS…. HIS EMAIL ADDRESS IS [email protected] : CONTACT HIM TODAY VIA THIS EMAIL ADDRESS: [email protected] AS HIS POWERS ARE SO STRONG AND VERY EFFECTIVE AND HAS NO BAD EFFECT INSTEAD IT HAVE A VERY GOOD RESULT AFTER CASTING THE SPELL. [email protected]ReplyCancel

  • lisa

    my husband also works away; i find it useful to also have the number of the after hour locum service as inevitably my kids always fall sick with ear infections etc at night when he is away. Much easier than dragging two small children to an after hours place to wait to see a dr…ReplyCancel

The Mother’s Guide to Taking a Break

This is a guest post by Caz Makepeace, from the blog yTravel Blog. image credit There’s the pull that comes with being a mother. From one direction to the next, the demands never stop. The dishes continue to pile up in the sink as you race around in a frantic 15 minute pick-up-everything-from-the floor-and-shove-it-somewhere dash. You’ve […]

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  • Wait!? The is such a thing as taking a break??ReplyCancel

  • * there … I hate it when I do that :/ReplyCancel

  • Ha ha. My break is coming up in 15 hours – a weekend in Sydney by myself – no kids, no hubby, no breaking up fights, horrendous dinner times, repeating myself all the time, etc. cannot wait!!ReplyCancel

  • I love her phrase “don’t break this date with yourself”. The idea of making a date with yourself is wonderful. There are too few such dates in my diary. I’m making two today; a haircut and a morning to visit friends. Thanks Caz and Kat!ReplyCancel

  • Waiting for the night off so I can sleep all the way through without the break up of sleeps for my lil boy’s feeds & without the guilty feelings the next day…… Dream dream :) ReplyCancel

  • Going camping weekend after next to sit on the beach with a glass of wine and a book!ReplyCancel

  • [...] all mothers, not just those with newborns, The Mother’s Guide to Taking a Break is a guest post by Caz Makepeace on The Organised Housewife. This bit, “Place the word [...]ReplyCancel

  • [...] contributing their posts the ‘Organising You’ series:  Organising and celebrating you, A mothers guide to taking a break, Making your freezer work for you and Organising my [...]ReplyCancel

  • Pam

    Needed to read this today thank you! Time to make the date for our return to Thailand – we’ve been just talking about it for way too long :) ReplyCancel