Wendy Perrin of CN Traveler recently advised families - "On each trip, do an activity you’ve never done before." This new thing "seals a destination in a child’s memory" and provides a "feeling of accomplishment". I agree with Wendy and I'm a big fan, but not everyone is up for "snuba diving (halfway between snorkeling and scuba)" in Honduras" and riding camels in Egypt. For those of us who may be a little wary of long plane trips with young children or being submerged in huge bodies of water while biting down on a piece of rubber as a life line, also consider simpler ideas that are helpful to parents as well. Such as, implement a novel and never-done-before "you carry your own bag for a change" rule. Maybe it's just my problem, but whenever we make a decision to leave home, even if only for a night, my children morph into pack rats. Rolling backpacks are filled enthusiastically with objects they have not seen for years, but suddenly cannot live without, especially for the next 24 hours. We negotiate and eventually I let them complete the task and go to bed. Then, with dramatic sighs I remove the football, the light saber, the craft kit with 5,000 beads and string, the doll with more shoes and clothing than any of us humans are taking, and the pack with 14 extra AA batteries, "just in case". For years, my husband was the traveller emerging from a car or plane with a pink Princess roller bag slung over one shoulder and a bulging Batman backpack on the other. Slung around his neck with his own laptop case and on his face, he wore a grim, long-suffering look. I was walking in front, holding the little, free-swinging hands of the gentry. Another activity never done before on our trips is to leave the elevator buttons and phones in the room alone. I don't know why but children are fascinated with elevator buttons. They run to press them, and once is never enough. An elevator button demands to be pressed at least five times by a child! My house has several phones. When one rings, I can guarantee you, no one under the age of 10 is picking it up, regardless of whether I'm in the shower or it's sitting three inches away from the child. Yet, within minutes of arriving into a Hotel room, my children are grabbing the phones, terrifying me with utterances such as "let's get some room service up here" or "who do we know in Australia"? Right now, my goal for our summer trip is to travel without Minecraft. I'm sorry Wendy, I'm working on nobler travel objectives for my family, but clearly, we're taking baby steps.