~ Family Vacation ~
fam·i·ly /ˈfam(ə)lē/ - consists of the people who support and love you.
va·ca·tion /vāˈkāSH(ə)n,vəˈkāSH(ə)n/ - an extended period of leisure and recreation, especially one spent away from home or in traveling.
When these two things come together, it turns new experiences into unforgettable memories. Looking back on my childhood, my memory is inconsistent. There are stories that I can remember dating back to when I was three years old, but there are also more recent memories that have been forgotten along the way. One thing remains constant, and that is that all of our family vacations throughout my childhood and upbringing contribute to the majority of my dearest memories. These are the moments that can be re-lived down to the finest details; the days that turn into stories shared years down the road; and the times that are reflected upon throughout a lifetime. It all starts with the question: how can I plan the perfect family vacation? My thoughts immediately turn to relaxing by a pool an enjoying the hot tub. My husbands ideal family vacation involves getting away and staying at a quiet, peaceful location. Meanwhile, my daughters just want to play all day long and explore new places. Here is how we were able to incorporate everyone's wishes into one, picture-perfect family vacation:
This is what pulling up to paradise looks like! We decided to book a weekend retreat at this extravagant AvantStay property in Temecula, and the curb appeal upon arrival was breathtaking.
"A stunning first impression is not the same thing as love at first sight. But surely it is an invitation to consider the matter." - Lois McMaster Bujold
We hadn't even stepped foot inside yet and I already knew that we were going to be blown away by the interior of the estate.
The sounds of the water flowing through the fountain, the graceful birds chirping in the distance, and the vibrantly colored flowers scattered throughout the front landscaping fill the air with a natural perfume scent. We were ready for our getaway to begin!
All six bedrooms were fitted with linens, towels, fluffy pillow, and comforters. Each room had a complimentary style that enhanced the properties overall esthetics.
Every detail of this AvantStay vacation in Temecula was well thought out and executed down to the soap quality, softness of towels, the fine woodwork of the furniture, placement of artwork and welcoming ambiance.
I never imagined that a home could be so pristine while also making you feel welcomed and comfortable. I was fully ready to relax and enjoy the afternoon!
While Ava and Aura were going from room to room deciding which one was theirs, I took some time with Adra to soak up the incredible living room space that's equipped with a gorgeous stone fireplace, enormous big screen tv, and comfortable seating available for well over a dozen people.
This is when I realized that this was our first family vacation since Adra was born :)
I loved how the living room was furnished and the entertainment unit was fully equipped to have an at home movie night experience and the fireplace had an open area to sit around and tell stories with the girls.
I loved how elegant yet comfortable the furniture and decor was.
On my way upstairs to check out which bedroom my daughters chose to sleep in tonight, I walked passed the Wine Cellar and fell in love with the entryway. What's a vacation without some wine?!
Anybody want to guess what room Ava and Aura gravitated to? If you guessed the game room, then you are right! This room is loaded with so much entertainment it's amazing. There is a pool table, a foosball table, a mini arcade game, darts, Jenga, tv, couch, a ton of board games, a queen size bed and even a full kitchen overlooking the basketball court.
Spoiler alert: this isn't the nicest pool on the property :) but it sure was fun to play Dad/Aura vs Me/Ava. After spending a few hours playing with the girls in the game room, it was time to go for a walk and check out the rest of the property behind the house.
Just outside the back doors is an astonishing area with something for everyone in the family.
Of course the girls bolted straight for the playground :) They had so much fun on the swings, slide and mini rock climbing wall. While they were swinging, my husband and I took a walk through the surrounding landscape.
I am completely in love with the sound of water slowly trickling down stream and the sight of hummingbirds eating nectar out of blooming flowers. The best part, there is no background noise. No cars, no sirens, no loud neighbors and no city lights.
The air was pure, the sun was strong and the breeze was light.
This scenery was colorful, serene, and peaceful. I could spend all day soaking up the outdoors in this breathtaking environment.
The miniature golf green was one of the coolest features on the property. Ava and Aura had a blast hitting their first hole-in-ones ever!
Well, if I was looking for my husband at any point, I knew exactly where he'd be :) This court has tons of extra room to play ball with plenty of people too.
It was time for my favorite part of vacations, the pool!
This is really what I had been looking forward to!
The well manicured landscaping provided perfect shading over the pool and hot tub. The surrounding sights brought a sense of comfort and privacy. It was time for a dip!
Look how much fun Adra was having floating around the pool wearing her new mermaid swimsuit in this big unicorn blow up floaty.
The girls loved sitting on top of the waterfall kicking their feet inside the hot tub. Watching them play in the water and have fun together while I'm relaxing is priceless and one of my favorite parts of our vacation.
Ava wanted to lay out and get a little sun. I love that there was a door from outside that led directly into the master bedroom. I snuck in for a quick bath before dinner.
The master bath has a double sided fireplace and its accompanied by a dual head walk-in shower. I could lay in this tub for hours!
Aura insisted that we wear our matching boots for dinner. This gorgeous stairway grabbed my attention when I first walked into the property. I love its curvature and intricate wall paneling.
Isn't Aura just the cutest!
It was dinner time and the dining room is exquisite. The table accommodates twelve, plus there were table leafs available that can extend the table to seat twenty! The chandelier, drapes, diamond cut glass windows and hand carved wall unit really took this room to the next level.
This day was memory making at its finest. Without micromanaging the afternoon, we were able to balance being active and relaxing throughout the day. During dinner, we went around the table and said what our favorite part of the day had been, and we all had different answers. Ava was all about the game room, Aura was most excited about the playground, my husband was in love with the basketball court and I was in complete bliss poolside.
Not all vacations are created equal, and this family bonding time will go down as a forever memory. Next time we book with AvantStay, we plan on inviting a few of our friends and their families also. Thank you for joining me on this vacation adventure, and an even bigger thank you to AvantStay for the most amazing hospitality!
For videos from our family vacation, click here!
Book an AvantStay luxury vacation home for yourself or with some other family and friends by clicking here!
*USE CODE: ASHLEYLYN250 for $250 off your booking!