The 10 Stages of Vacationing With Kids as Told in Gifs

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By Christine Cordova, Associate Social Editor
Updated May 9, 2017
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Image: Erik Dreyer / Getty Images

Parents know that the annual family summer vacation trip comes with its fair share of highs and lows. Whether you’re road tripping though national parks or hunkering down in a hotel room by the beach, the story is the same; it’s fun until it’s not. We’ve chronicled 10 moments every parent experience in one way or another, from the promising day one to the welcome end.

1. I’m so excited, this is going to be GREAT

You’ve spent months planning every detail of this trip and you’re more than excited for the much-needed time away from your day-to-day life. This vacation is going to fun for the whole family. Let the countdown begin!

2. No, you aren’t bringing that

And suddenly you realize that one child does not need the 150 stuffed animals you’ve bought her over the last two years, and of course she wants to pack all of them for the trip.

3. Are we there yet?

One kid’s screaming and one kid’s kicking the back of your seat and you realize you question who wants to be out of the car more, you or them?

4. Now we’re here. Let’s eat.

You’ve finally arrived and everyone is in agreement; it’s time to eat. But now the debate is what to eat.

5. The kids are finally asleep.

While the kids were shoveling cookies and ice cream and candy all day, you were patiently waiting for the moment when you could break out that bottle of wine you stashed in your suitcase.

6. How am I already awake?

Why does this room not have black out curtains?

7. I spent $20 on that float, you better use it.

The package even said, ‘fun for all ages,’ so why is your 4 year old not over-the-moon about that dolphin?

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8. But remember our honeymoon?

Endless tanning and cocktails seem like a distant memory now that vacations are filled with swim diapers.

9. Why did we bring all this stuff?

There’s nothing fun about packing up for the return trip. And you’re leaving with way more than you came with. (You swore you wouldn’t do this.)

10. Can we be home now?

After hours in the car, you’re longing to sleep in your own bed. Not to mention you need a vacation from your vacation. Time to start planning the next trip (maybe this one will be without the kids).

Looking for ways to make traveling with kids easier? Check out our tips here.

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