I had a lunch date with some girlfriends a few weeks ago and we were talking about family vacations. One friend is taking her family to Colorado this summer and I gave her the #1 piece of advice I always give vacationing families: Skip the hotel. Rent a house on HomeAway!
If you’ve never stayed in a vacation rental, you seriously need to consider it for your next trip. Our sponsor, HomeAway is the world’s leading online vacation rental marketplace and they have more than one million listings in 190 countries. From something in your neighboring town to a place in Florida or even Paris and Rome, you can get twice the space at half the price of a hotel room.
We went to Breckenridge, Colorado last summer and found a 2 bedroom condo on HomeAway. It was perfect for us. It was central to all the attractions and after we put the kids to bed at night my husband and I sat out on the balcony. We drank wine and people watched on Main Street. Another night we rented a movie. In the mornings, the boys could turn on the TV just like at home. They made themselves cereal and watched a show and mom and dad got to sleep in. This would NEVER happen at a hotel in such a confined space.
This Breckenridge trip wasn’t our first HomeAway experience. My husband’s family often goes skiing and we love to find a huge house on HomeAway. It’s so much more personal than individual hotel rooms. The wives sit up at night playing dominoes and the guys watch whatever sport they can find on TV. We usually take turns cooking dinner because it’s too hard to take a big group out to eat every night. And while we cook, the kids play outside in the snow while we watch from the window. It is such a fun time and having a house altogether really contributes to the overall experience.
So while my girlfriends and I were discussing how much we love having the extra space and flexibility that renting a home or condo allows. We of course had to talk about the kitchen. Because you know when there’s a kitchen you (probably) feel obligated to use it. And frankly, planning a menu while trying to get out of town can be a little terrifying.
So I asked around, polled on Facebook and came up with a 7-day Vacation Menu Plan and Shopping List with some quick, classic, kid-friendly dinners. You can adjust the menu and shopping list as needed depending on your family size and the duration of your trip.
Here are the meals you’ll find on the plan:
- Day 1: Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup – Perfect option after a long day of traveling.
- Day 2: Tacos – Use beef, turkey or chicken. Hard shells or soft. Whatever your family loves.
- Day 3: Spaghetti – Classic easy dinner and family favorite
- Day 4: BBQ Chicken – Bake it in the oven or throw it on the grill. Use any cut of chicken you like.
- Day 5: Baked Potatoes – Cook them in the microwave if you are short on time. Add leftover meat sauce to make them more filling
- Day 6: Italian Sausage Rigatoni – Quick, easy pasta dinner and it’s delish.
- Day 7: Pita Bread Pizzas – Everyone loves pizza and this is a great way to use up leftover meat and veggies. Do classic Italian pizza or BBQ chicken.
This little meal plan should make planning your next vacation a piece of cake. So skip the hotel, rent from HomeAway and take this menu plan with you. I wouldn’t be surprised if it ended up being the best vacation you’ve ever had.
HomeAway is also hosting the HomeAway Kidfluencers Contest this summer! Kidfluencers have a chance to win a $5,000 vacation rental stay to anywhere in the United States in 2015. Watch their 15 to 60-second videos describing why their family should win a vacation from HomeAway. Then vote on your favorite from June 8 to 12 to determine the winner. For more details on the contest, visit http://bit.ly/1c0IN33.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of HomeAway.