When it comes to parenting, worrying is part of the job. That worry can be hard to let go of, even when you’re focusing on the all-important task of getting away to reconnect with your spouse. But since worrying is strongly discouraged on vacation, there are some steps you can take to alleviate any guilt, worry, or hesitation for leaving the kids at home. Consider the following suggestions so that you can not only have an amazing adventure in your marriage, but also grow closer with your kids by making them a part of the experience back at home.

1. Promise an exotic souvenir, but tell them it’ll be a surprise. Then bring back something like an amber trinket from Amber Cove, DR, or a shark tooth from Grand Turk, that you can use to teach them about the places you’ve visited.

2. Bring stamps with you so you can mail postcards back home throughout your trip. It’ll be fun for the kids to collect all the different postage seals.

3. Schedule Skype or Facetime dates. You can hear about the exciting parts of their day, let them know how much you’re missing them, and even say a bedtime prayer together.

4. Plan a mini-vacation for the kids at home so that the week is special for them too. When you get back, they’ll have adventures of their own to share!

5. Leave a letter for them to open each day you’re gone. You can tie it to your itinerary so they’ll feel like a part of the trip, or suggest fun activities for them to do that day.

6. Plan a special dinner for when you return. Include some of the exotic foods from your trip and encourage adventurous palates!

7. Use this as an opportunity to talk to your kids about marriage! Tell the story of your marriage and let it be something for your children to look up to.

8. Ask your kids for their suggestions on making your time away special for your spouse. Children often have the most clever and creative ideas!

Most importantly, communicate with your children. You might be surprised what questions they have, or fun ideas they add to your plans. And remember, once you’re on your trip – it’s OK to focus on your spouse, and it is worth it! We think this LLYMI Cruiser said it best: “My husband and I enjoyed ourselves immensely just focusing on us… I feel like I can come home and be a better mom for my children and a better wife for my husband.”

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