6 Socially distanced Spring Break ideas for families

Two chairs by the water

Are you totally stressed out after a year of mostly home confinement which has only been broken up by routine visits to the supermarket, doctor’s office, gas station or drug store? Well, you are not alone.   Many families feel the exact same way and are desperately seeking socially distanced spring break ideas for a much-needed getaway. While attitudes about travel vary widely right now, there are ways to lower your risk if you decide to break free from the monotony to preserve your mental health this year.  

Before I share some of my socially distanced spring break ideas, let me first encourage you to:

  • Follow established mask wearing and social distancing guidelines.
  • Get tested before and after your trip.
  • Stick to road trips as driving offers the most controlled means of transportation.
  • Plan outdoor adventures.

Rent a remote cabin

Itching to swap your concrete jungle for more enticing scenery that’s free from smog, loud neighbors and honking horns? Drop off the Wi-Fi grid and rent a remote cabin in the mountain or woods to totally unplug for a few days. You can read and play games to your heart’s content or explore nature trails on foot or by bike.

Visit a national or state park

Being outdoors creates fantastic opportunities for families to relax, bond and have a great time, so please add an RV, van or tent camping family vacation consideration to the mix. Not only will it get you immersed and interacting with nature, but you’ll be able to benefit from the reported health benefits of increased Vitamin D intake, more peaceful sleep, and improved moods.

Go camping

Being outdoors creates fantastic opportunities for families to relax, bond and have a great time, so please add an RV, van or tent camping family vacation consideration to the mix. Not only will it get you immersed and interacting with nature, but you’ll be able to benefit from the reported health benefits of increased Vitamin D intake, more peaceful sleep, and improved moods.

Reserve a beach cottage

Sandy toes, freckled nose. Is there really anything about a sun-drenched beach vacation to oppose? Of course not! A beach cottage is the perfect temporary home base for going swimming or snorkeling, building sandcastles, planning picnics by the shore, or launching kayaks.  And even if paddleboarding or island hopping is more your thing, you can do that too. When you’re by a beach, your relaxation choices are easy.

Take day trips from home

After the year we’ve all had, nearcations or day trips have quickly become a means to obliterating those pesky lockdown blues. There is no denying that the appeal of acquiring a new passport stamp is always tempting, but sometimes cool adventures can be found right outside your front door or city border.  All you have to do is purposefully look for fun, local experiences.

Hop on the houseboat trend

Still undecided? Why not rent a houseboat and get the best of both worlds? With a houseboat you get your very own private suite (kitchen, bathrooms, living room, and sleeping quarters) plus a sweet ride!  It allows you to live on the water, enjoy unlimited watersports and dock wherever and whenever you want.

New travel health apps and tools

Travel health app post hero image

Need help finding Covid-19 testing locations or country requirements for travel? Airlines have started to roll out no touch, secure, and efficient travel health apps and tools to help with trip planning.

VeriFly (American Airlines)

This app allows you to find travel requirements based on your international destination. You can also upload test results for confirmation. Once approved, VeriFLY generates a QR code that is scanned at the gate.

CommonPass (JetBlue, Lufthansa, Swiss, United, and Virgin Atlantic)

CommonPass is a global platform that travelers will be able to use to access their lab results and vaccination records, then share their health status safely. It will be available in both Apple and Google Play Store.

IATA Travel Pass (Emirates, Qatar, and Etihad)

This IATA initiative is a “digital passport” that will act as a global registry to help travelers find correct information on testing and vaccine requirements for their trips. It’s slated to launch in March 2021.

Travel-Ready Center (within the United app and on United.com)

This center enables customers to upload and validate test results, review local entry requirements, find testing providers, and store vaccination records.

Delta.com’s new online tool

Whether your tip is to Europe, the Caribbean or elsewhere, Delta’s new online tool helps passengers locate testing centers across their international network.


Do you know of any others? Please share them below.

33 Great trip activities you can do with your family and friends

raid trip activity packet for the entire family

Psssst… guess what? I did a thing!

With the help and support of my loving exasperated at my many rounds of edits family, I hunkered down for a few months earlier this year and created JURNEAZEE [pronounced Jurn – easy], my first-ever digital product.

It’s a boredom-buster combination of 33 great trip activities you can do with your family and friends. The full activity pack includes coloring pages, crossword puzzles, word-finds, scrambled words and bingo cards to keep everyone engaged and entertained at home or on long trips.

Why now?

With more people than ever traveling by car and many others choosing to stay home due to safety concerns during a global pandemic, it’s timely.

What does it do?

Jurneazee makes journeys easy by taking the stress out of long trips and transporting users on a virtual expedition around the world.

How does it do that?

The trip activities highlight interesting tidbits about multiple destinations and point out special nuggets on signature events, cool places of interest, local lingo and food. Jurneazee not only relieves boredom – it appeals to the culturally curious traveler inspires wanderlust as well.

Where can you find it?

Right here on my brand new My Travel Stamps SHOP!

For only $16 (less than 50 cents per page), the Jurneazee Trip Activity Packet includes:
 – 5 coloring pages
 – 5 crossword puzzles
 – 5 bingo cards
 – 8 scrambled word puzzle sets (7 words in each category)
 – 10 word-finds
 – Answer sheets

Plus, persons have the option to buy the complete packet or individual sections.

When can you get it?

Now, just in time for the holidays.

Are RV road trips the next big thing? Here’s what you need to know

Motorhome parked by the sea showing a palm tree at sunrise

Are the past months of confinement starting to get to you? Yup, me too. Tons of other people seem to feel the same way, and that’s why RV road trips are a growing vacation trend, one which is expected to hold steady at least until until we get a vaccine)

But can cross-country road trips be done safely?

The plain truth is, 𝙞𝙣 𝙖 𝙥𝙖𝙣𝙙𝙚𝙢𝙞𝙘 𝙣𝙤𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙞𝙨 𝙜𝙪𝙖𝙧𝙖𝙣𝙩𝙚𝙚𝙙! But if you follow CDC/WHO guidelines, make wise choices, and act responsibly, you may be able to get away for a bit.

So, we all know cars are an option. But have you ever thought about going the bigger, “all-inclusive” route and renting an RV? I have. I’ve been doing a lot of research about them, so I thought I’d share some of the things I learned with you.

Picture of an RV Van at sunset

Let’s start with the basics

What is an RV?

An RV is a recreational vehicle. They have always been popular with people looking for freedom and a simpler life, but recently there has been a spike in demand for them from travelers looking to have more control over their health and safety during the pandemic.

Are there different types of RVs?

Yes, RVs come in different sizes!

Class A Motorhomes are big bus-sized vehicles, suitable for large families or groups. A Class B Motorhome is smaller and usually shaped like a van. They are great for couples and people travelling solo. Class C Motorhomes offer mid-size family comfort and convenience, often similar in size to a U-Haul truck.

There are also tow behind trailers, pop up trailers and truck campers.

Information on different types of RVs

What type should I rent?

The type of vehicle you rent will depend on how many people are going on the trip, how much you want to spend, how much advance planning you want to do, and the type of adventure you want to have.

For example, bigger vehicles give you more space and better amenities, but they cost more in terms of gas and campground/RV park fees. On the flip side, camper vans are easier to drive and park, but you won’t be able to pack as many clothes into them or have as much room to cook elaborate family meals.  

Now, let’s talk about more specifics.

Tips for planning

Map out your route (i.e. pay attention to things like height restrictions for bridges and tunnels, stops for gas, and terrain that may be tricky to navigate).

Research parking ahead of time. This is super important and can make or break your trip. I’ll list apps that can help with this later in this post.

Book your campsite way in advance. As I previously mentioned, the demand for camping has exploded due to COVID-19, so availability is limited.

Allow for differences in travel times because everything takes longer than when driving in a car.

4 Tips for Planning an RV Road trip

RV Parking 101

Parking can add up, so planning for it depends on your budget and how long you intend to be on the road.  If your vehicle has solar panels and its own generator, you can go off the grid and avoid pricey campgrounds or RV Parks.

But if you’re hoping to save money, you can try to secure an overnight spot in a state park, rest area, truck stop, casino or Walmart. Always check on rules and local ordinances first though as they vary by state, city and business.

Handy apps and websites

HipCamp: They allow you to tap into their database of nearly 400,000 camp-friendly sites that range from national parks to blueberry farms.

iOverlander: This is a crowd-sourced app that shows you locations you can park for free, as well as get tips on mechanics, clean water sources, where to get propane, and more.

US Public Lands: Available from the US Government, this app lists their public lands. One user said, “It’s a great way to research an area and find some hidden gems that aren’t in the directories.”

a List of apps and Websites for camping


Campendium.com: This site gives you reviews and information on nearly 27,000 campsites in the United States, Canada, and Baja Mexico.

Freecampsites.net:  They are a simple, map-based search engine that helps you find free and/or cost-effective campgrounds.

HarvestHosts.com: Harvest Host is a paid membership network that allows you to stay at breweries, vineyards, and even some farms for free.

Companies that rent RVs

There are many RV rental companies to choose from, but the following five kept coming up in my research:

RV Share
Escape Capervans
Jucy RV Rentals

Disclaimer: This is not an endorsement of any company. These tips are meant to be starting points only. Please conduct your own research on anything you’ve read in these slides before making final decisions on your RV Road Trip.

a List of companies that rent Rvs

Now, before you hit get behind the wheel, be sure to check out some of my other resources here for road trip game ideas and useful road trip checklists.

Do you have any great trips for RV road trips you’d like to share?

12 Road trip games that will make your car ride easier

Black woman leaning against trunk of SUV packed or a long road trip

There’s no denying that spending multiple hours in a cross-country car ride can be challenging – no matter how much you love your fellow passengers. That’s why it’s always good to have interactive road trip games planned to overcome restlessness and boredom during the journey.

Already tripping over that upcoming road trip? Don’t worry. I got u. I’ve already hooked you up with 4 road trip checklists to ensure you don’t forget anything. Now, I’m sharing 12 road trip games that will make your car ride easier.

Games for Small Kids

I Spy

One passenger spots an object that will remain within everyone’s line of vision for a while and gives clues to help the kids guess what it is.

The Alphabet Game

Let your kids look around them (inside and outside the car) for objects that begin with letters of the alphabet, going in order from A to Z

What Color Is It?

Name a list of things that have the same color and challenge your kids to kids guess what the common color is. For example, you can say “strawberries, tomatoes and cherries” if you want then to come up with RED.


Take turns choosing a song. Everyone in the car then sings along as loudly and animatedly as possible.

Games For Older Kids

 Story Time

One person comes up with the opening line of a story then family members take turns to add one line until it comes to a natural end.

The License Plate Game

Have your tweens work together to spot all the out-of-town license plates they can find and make a note of the different states represented.

Hum That Tune

Start this game by asking one person to hum the chorus or opening line of a popular song. The first person to guess the tune correctly gets to go next. 

The Movie Game

In this game you connect actors/actresses by the movies they have starred in. So, begin with naming an actor in one move and then family members must name other actors from the same movie without any repeats.

Games for Adults

The Hot Seat

This is your chance to find out things you wanted to know all along.  For this game, each passenger has to answer five questions they normally wouldn’t.

Never Have I Ever

One family member lists something they have never done, while saying: “Never have I ever… “

The other players each get a point if they have done it. The player with the most points wins.

Two Truths and a Lie

One player makes three statements and others try to decipher which two are true and which one is false.

The Rhyming Game

Have the first player choose a word and then the other passengers must take turns coming up with a word that rhymes with it.

What other road trip games have worked for you and your friends or family? Please hare them below.

Plus, I’ve got something new coming! Stay tuned.

And if you found this post useful, don’t forget to save and share. Sharing is caring, okay?

4 Road trip checklists for 2020 and beyond

Woman in convertible going on a road trip

It was estimated that 37 million Americans took a road trip over the 4th of July weekend this year, and the global number for summer travel was predicted to hit an all time high. Were you counted in those stats?

If not, I wouldn’t be surprised if you are desperate to get away from the quarantine confines of your home or neighborhood for the fall. Plus, I am willing to bet you are planning to get to your next destination via RV or car. Airlines haven’t stopped flying, but with so much still up in the air, road trips seem to give a greater sense of control over your personal space, which reduces the perceived risks to our health and safety. Wouldn’t you agree?


Before I go any further though, let me just say that non-essential travel during a global health crisis is a sensitive subject and very much a personal choice. So, the decision to hit the road – whether in North America, Europe Africa or the Middle East, or another region of the globe – will be totally up to you. But if you do plan on revenge travel or that safecation, this post is designed to help you put together a thorough road trip checklist. One that’s especially right for you!

First. let’s break down everything you’ll need for your vehicle.

Next, with all that time on the road, let’s note all the gadgets that may come in handy.

Now, it’s safe to assume you’re going to need help with navigation, finding gas stations, parking, making last-minute bookings and other tricky stuff, right?

And last but not least, no road trip is really complete without a happy family. Yes, there may be tumultuous toddler meltdowns, testy temper tantrums among siblings, or missed exits because Dad didn’t check directions. But at the end of the day, those are the things that make vacations fun and memorable.

Plus, coming soon, my very own compilation of travel-themed activities for the entire family! It will be great for road trips as well as for dealing with boredom and wanderlust while stuck at home.

Road trip activities coming soon

What else would you add to YOUR ultimate road trip checklist? Please share it in the comments section below.

Let’s talk post ‘Rona travel: What destinations are on your wish list?

Black woman on beach looking out to sea and dreaming

The effects of the pandemic have begun to recede in some countries and borders are slowly starting to open up again, so the thought of post COVID-19 travel is no longer as far removed as it was three or four months ago.

Regrettably, cases are still rising where I am, which means I don’t plan on getting on a plane today, next week, or even next month. But by no means has that daunting reality stopped me from dreaming about travel – like all the time.

So if you’re like me, maybe you’ve been paying close attention to how destinations are handling the crisis, and you’ve either been put off or impressed with their responses.

The responsible, measured and meaningful approach taken by these three destinations completely won me over, so they now sit atop my post COVID-19 travel wish list.

Visit Auckland

I’ve added Auckland to my bucket list because their in-crisis travel video gives me goosebumps whenever I watch it.

I mean… Every. Single. Time.

Narrated by an 11 year-old girl, it is a love letter to Mother Nature that reminds us how important it is to give the environment a break once in a while. Because, like us, nature needs time to heal.

The poignant visuals and moving voice over ends with…”Dream. Plan. And when the time is right, we’ll welcome you. But for now, listen. Papatūānuku (our earth mother) is breathing.”

Visit Portugal

Portugal’s advertising message was similar, but their campaign was built around the idea that It’s time to stop.

Using footage shot before the lockdown and audio recorded at home on a cell phone, the narrator tells us, “It’s time to stare humanity in the eyes. To take a break for the world. Time to make a pause, so we can play again.

“To reset. To re-center. Switch off, to move on.”

Now who can argue with that?

Visit Jamaica

Let me be honest. I didn’t really need to hear Jamaica’s promise that Brighter days will return to decide to visit the land of my birth as soon as I feel confident enough to travel again. But hey, the beautiful imagery and the soothing island lilt brought on an even greater sense of urgency to run home and submerge myself in a heavy dose of feel-good nostalgia. And I’m guessing it may have the same pull on you too.

I know I am biased, but how can anyone remain unmoved when they hear the narrator say, “Jamaica serves the world with one heart and as one people. Even though we are many beating hearts, in times like these our hearts beat as one.”

Certainly not me. LOL.

Well, that’s my list.

If you had all the money and time in the world to make your post COVID-19 travel wish list come true, where would YOU go?

Learn to speak like a Jamaican in three easy steps

Are you dreaming of jetting off to the Caribbean when this extended period of social distancing is over? Why not jump on the armchair travel trend and learn to speak like a Jamaican while you plan for the day you’ll be free to move around again? It’s no secret one of the best ways to immerse yourself in another culture is teach yourself how to communicate with residents in their local lingo.

Below are fun, short instructional videos to help you learn to speak like a Jamaican in three easy steps.


In this 1st episode you’ll learn how to greet someone with our Caribbean lilt to your tongue.

Phrases used:

Whah a gwaan?
What’s going on?

How yuh duh?
How are you doing?

Yuh awrite?
Are you okay? As in, you good?

Asking for directions

Now here are two basic ways to ask for directions:

Phrases used:

Weh di [insert name] deh?
Where is the __?

Weh mi can fine __?
Where can I find [insert name of place]

Terms of address

For Lesson 3, we explore common words that are used when speaking to someone you consider a friend or colleague.

Phrases used:


Have you ever been to the land of Red Strip beer, and some of the most well-known reggae music and sports icons? Not yet? As soon as it’s safe to travel again, you should go check it out.

Additional links to help you learn to speak like a Jamaican:

The traveler’s Instagram guide to understanding Jamaican slang

11 colorful expressions only a Jamaican would understand

Can armchair travel cure wanderlust? Here are 11 ways to find out.

WHEW. We’re only in the second quarter of 2020 and already the COVID-19 pandemic has turned our lives completely upside down!  Serious concerns about public health and the need to mitigate the spread of this dangerous disease has led to national, regional and city decrees to stay home. As a result, armchair travel, the art of exploring the world from the comfort of your own couch, is experiencing a powerful rebirth.

Previously perceived as an activity mostly reserved for sedentary individuals, that’s no longer the case. Virtual vacations are now all the rage because they’ve become a lifeline for gloomy travelers practicing self-quarantining and social distancing for the greater good of themselves and mankind.  Of course, nothing beats a real-life destination experience. But with technology and ingenuity, there are still fun ways to cure your wanderlust while you shelter-in-place.

Miffed you had to cancel your last trip? Here are 11 ways to armchair travel your way out of your current travel slump:

1. Sharpen your language skills.

2. Read a bunch of travel-themed books to inspire your next trip.

Find suggestions on how to invoke the ultimate book list envy here: Forbes, Conde Nast Traveler, and Mom.com.

3.Join a live cooking demo to learn about regional or global cuisines.

For example, you can head over to @travelsaintlucia for an Instagram LIVE class every Tuesday and Thursday.


4. Take a virtual tour of your fave museum, theme park or zoo.

Are there any museum lovers out there? If so, this is your happy time! Google Arts and Culture has partnered with 500+ museums and galleries to bring you multiple exhibits.

5. Get crafty with destination keepsakes (like seashells).

6. Explore different regions of the world through dance.

7. Binge watch your favorite travel movies or television shows.

Not sure where to find them? Tastes will vary, but these lists from Conde Nast Traveler and The Guardian are great places to start.

8. Picture yourself on a bike in a nature park.


9. Check out live beach cams or wildlife scenes for blissful mental escapes.

10. Try out cocktail recipes and reminisce about the great travel stories that accompany them.


11. Listen to some podcasts to keep the travel hunger burning.

For Travel + Leisure recommendations: Click here.

For Travelnoire recommendations: Click here.

How do you cope? By creating a diverse global music playlist, putting in ear buds, and blocking out all the anxiety-inducing news? Drop your tips below.

FINAL NOTE: Please adhere to all medical guidelines to stay safe and healthy!

Over-the-counter medications you might want to add to your travel checklist right now

When was the last time you had an awkward case of explosive diarrhea or suffered from painful gas and bloating while traveling?

Never? Lucky you. Not recently? Well, be grateful.

Getting sick is hard in general, and when you’re not in a familiar place, it gets even trickier. Plus, if you don’t speak the local language fluently enough to explain your symptoms, that adds another level of stress to your situation. That’s why I’ve compiled a list of over-the-counter medications you might want to add to your travel checklist right now.

DISCLAIMER: This article was written to give general travel tips only. It is not intended to be an endorsement of any drug manufacturer or a replacement for personal consultation with a medical practitioner (which I, categorically, am not). Please check with your doctor or local pharmacist for all possible drug interactions with your current prescriptions. Also, as an additional precaution, kindly seek information on side effects that can worsen other underlying conditions before taking of these any over-the-counter medications.


Contaminated food or water are two of the most common ways pesky bacteria and parasites enter our bodies. When that happens, uncomfortable abdominal pain and loose, and inconveniently frequent bowel movements follow. But those are not the only triggers, so watch out for tap water, tempting street food delicacies or even uncooked veggies in high-end restaurants. Food intolerances to products with diary, fructose, and artificial sweeteners, as well as reactions to medication can cause them too.  

Imodium A-D and K-Pek II are two common treatments for diarrhea. Getting adequate rest and keeping hydrated are also recommended. If brands are different overseas, the key scientific ingredient to look for is Loperamide (lo PER a mide) Hydrochloride.  Get out your translation app and ask for that at a local pharmacy.


If you experience headaches or migraines, a painful period, arthritis symptoms, or minor aches and pains from a cold, flu or sore throat on the road, chances are you’re going to need a pain reliever.

If that happens, Advil, Genpril, Midol, and Motrin can be your solution. I’ve read that Motrin is especially suited for reducing swelling and inflammation.  If you’d rather not pay the price of the brand name products, get the store label which has Ibuprofen (eye BYOO prue fen) in it.


Getting to explore regions and landscapes different from our own is often a blessing, but it can also expose us to foreign substances that trigger allergies. For example, things like pollen from plants we’re not used to being around, as well as mold or dust mites popping up in unexpected places can cause nasal congestion, sneezing, a runny nose, or an itchy rash on your skin (also called hives).

Antihistamines like Claritin, Clear-Atadine, QlearQuil, and Zyrtec help to reduce those allergic symptoms. If none of those are available, look for products with Loratadine {Lor AT a deen) as the active ingredient.

Meds for travel

Motion Sickness and Nausea

If long journeys by bus, car or train, or leisurely cruises on yachts and catamarans cause you to become lightheaded or woozy, Bonine and Dramamine are two over-the-counter medications you can usually depend on for relief.  They prevent nausea, vomiting, or dizziness caused by motion sickness. Bonine is also used to prevent and treat vertigo (extreme dizziness. or a feeling that you or your surroundings are spinning around). The scientific name is Meclinizine (MEK li zeen) Hydrochloride and it generally causes drowsiness.

Swelling, itching and skin rashes

If you ever run into problems with rashes, insect bites, dermatitis, poison oak/ivy, eczema and a variety of conditions that cause itching, you’ll want to have a corticosteroid ointment in your medicine stash.

Topical creams like Anusol HC, Cortaid, Cortizone, Neosporin and Proctozone are used on the skin to reduce swelling, redness, itching and allergic reactions. This type of over-the-counter medication is for external use only, so be careful not to ingest it by mouth and do not get it in your eyes. Special care may also be needed when applying it to kids or seniors.  The scientific name is Hydrocortisone (hye droe KOR ti sone).


Let’s face it, going three days or more without a bowel movement is not something anyone would wish on themselves – even at home. So, imagine what that level of discomfort would do to you on a bucket list vacation you planned and saved for, for months. Trips cause changes to your normal eating patterns and disrupt routine daily activities, and those factors, along with others, can lead to constipation.  The best way to combat that is to ensure you have enough fiber and water in your diet, and stay active. But if that’s not possible or doesn’t work, mild laxatives can push your bowels along.

I’ve read that stimulant laxatives are the fastest acting, and those include products made from aloe, senna compounds (Ex-Lax, Senokot), bisacodyl (Dulcolax, Correctol), and castor oil.

Other important things to note:

Before you begin taking anything, please do research to find out which medicines may interact with any other drugs you are taking.

Report any negative side effects to your health care profession or doctor as soon as possible.

Do not take doses higher than those prescribed by your doctor or listed on the label.

Follow the storage instructions and keep containers tightly closed to protect items from moisture and heat.

Check for expiry dates and adhere to them.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of any medicine with children.

Editors Notes:

I’ve had my tummy give me the rumbling sign in many inopportune places. The most embarrassing time was just as I was about to check into a hotel in Medellin, Colombia, and out of nowhere, the tell-tale cramping sign started. In hindsight, it must have been the fruit juice I drank on the flight from Cartagena because I was fine up to that point.

“¿Dónde está el baño, señorita? “ Like a hovering guardian angel, those long lost vocabulary words from my high school Spanish classes rapidly surfaced.

“Al final del pasillo y a la izquierda.” The stunned receptionist responded.

Thankfully, I was able to ask for, and find, a bathroom in a timely manner. Honestly, I was out of commission for so long that my sister almost sent a search party to look for me because she was stuck watching our bags. When I finally got back to the desk to complete my transaction, the pleasant enough front desk employee asked a million questions with her eyes.

As the saying goes: “Once bitten, twice shy.”  I now know the benefits of packing over-the-counter meds in my carryon.