We do what I would consider a fair amount of traveling in our family. We travel a lot for vacations, weekend getaways, camping, and sports/dance competitions.

As much as we love checking out new hotels and resorts, we love the convenience of actually renting a whole house.

It’s hard eating 3 meals a day at a restaurant when you have kids! Let’s face it, we can only take so many tantrums, spilled drinks, and broken crayons.┬áRenting a house lets you at least have some meals in a relaxed atmosphere of home.

I know, who wants to cook on vacation? You don’t have to do anything elaborate. Even just cereal for breakfast is fine. It’s less stressful than everyone getting dressed and going out. Not to mention the money you will save by eating out less.

Staying in one hotel room is also really difficult for families. Kids have early bedtimes usually even on vacation. I can’t tell you how many times Eric and I have had to go to bed at 8 o’clock so that our kids would!

We recently vacationed in Marco Island, Florida. We rented a beautiful home through HomeAway.

We rent through HomeAway quite often. We rented on a previous Marco Island vacation, in Cape Cod, and in New Hampshire. We loved them all! It has been a wonderful experience every time.

This beautiful house had 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and a perfect pool area. The first thing Eric did when we arrived was checked out the pool of course.

The home had 4 bedrooms which were more than we needed. It was actually less expensive for a 4 bedroom home than it was for a 3 bedroom.

Good tip with HomeAway: don’t limit your search requirements too much when you are looking for a rental because sometimes you can get a better price for say a 4 bedroom home than a 3 bedroom home.

The master suite was beautiful with a sliding glass door right to the pool.

The master bath was equally amazing.

There were 2 beautiful bedrooms with queen beds. The 4th bedroom had bunk beds which Eric loved. So fun!

Each bedroom had its own TV. You would have thought it was Christmas Day when my kids saw this. That is a real luxury for them. Bonus for parents: no constant fighting between the kids on what to watch.

There was a formal living room and a family room.

The house was so beautifully decorated. It was like it was straight out of a magazine! There was, of course, a dining area and fully stocked kitchen with anything you could ever need.

What’s better than breakfast poolside?

The star attraction for our family was the pool! We spent hours just playing, relaxing, and swimming.

I can’t tell you how many pictures over the years I have of my kids standing in the freezer. Yes, weird kids! HaHa

We have a few tips when renting a home. First, pay the additional cleaning service. I know everyone wants to try to save some money on vacation but who wants to spend the last day cleaning?!

Second, make sure linens and towels are included. It is a real pain to have to pack towels and sheets.

And third, read the reviews on each property and choose a rental based on them. I do not choose a home that has no reviews even if the price is right. It just gives me peace of mind to know others have stayed and enjoyed the home.

We had such an amazing time in our HomeAway vacation rental! Give it a try on your next vacation. I promise you will love it. Happy Vacationing!!