In July we will be going on a trip with my extended family (parents, siblings and their families), which is something we do together every few years.  This trip is going to be smaller in scale than past trips, but we are determined to wring every bit of fun out of the trip that we can.  On our family website we have been posting ideas and giving our opinions about things we can do on this trip.  We are planning activities that include the entire family as well as leaving times open for individual families to do things alone.  Many of our ideas could be used for stay-cations, family reunions, or other family gatherings, so I thought I would share:

*The area we are planning to visit has a few “commercial” tourist options available.  The top vote-getters for our family are tubing on the river and visiting the pools and waterslides.  We could also visit an arcade with lots of games and free movies on Friday evenings, an alpaca farm that offers tours, and a ranch that offers wagon rides complete with dinner and entertainment.  There are a couple of miniature golf courses available.  We are playing with the idea of creating a family (mini) golf tournament.

*It has been a tradition in our blended family for all the females to paint our fingernails and toenails all the same color for trips.  Our female relatives like the idea and want to do the same for this trip.  My 11-year-old niece is pushing for the color to be green this year.

*There are biking and hiking trails available.  We might pack picnic lunches and hit the trails for the day as a group, or we might leave this option open for individual families.

*The menfolk would like to fish the river.  Again, this option is open for the entire group or for individual families.  

*There are several of us who own Magic Bullets.  We are considering bringing them all along and having an afternoon of making smoothies and relaxing.

*We might use all of our digital cameras to go “hunting” for the best pics of wildlife.  We might even make it into a contest.

*Those in the group who are used to exercising daily might form a morning walking/running group.

*For the last big family trip we took (a cruise), Hub and I made t-shirts for the entire family to wear one day.  If we can come up with a cute idea, we might do the same thing this year.

*When our blended family went to Oregon last summer, one of the activities we did that was a hit was to play glow-in-the-dark tag on the beach.  My mom is already gathering glow-in-the-dark necklaces and bracelets for a gigantic game of tag.  Hopefully we can find a place big enough to play it.

*If we can find a park we might play some softball, or steal-the -flag, frisbee, or other games we think of.

*We are checking to see if our accommodations have outdoor grills or firepits.  If they do, we plan to have a giant family cook-out.

*On the first morning of the trip we will all meet at my parents for breakfast before driving caravan style to our destination.

*Our accommodations are a bunch of mini-cabins owned by my 80-year-old aunt.  We plan on doing service for her by cleaning the cabins or finding other needs she has. 

It has been great to use the family website to bounce ideas off of each other.  As more and more ideas are presented, the excitement for the trip grows (especially among the kids).  If you’ve had any experiences that worked well with your family, please share!