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"Are we there yet?" - said the crock-pot

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A crock-pot full of food.

My family loves to get away at least once each year, and as a mom to three kids, I find that vacations can be anything but relaxing. Especially at dinner time. There’s always a long line at the restaurant, the kids are hungry and cranky, and we pay way too much for a mediocre meal.

A few years ago, I decided to re-think how our family vacations. I decided to bring along my favorite appliance…my crock pot. I made a list of my family’s three favorite meals, grabbed a few items from my pantry and we were off.  

That summer, my crock pot completely changed our vacation experience! On the days we spent on the beach, I relaxed and it did all the work. After a long day in the sun, everyone feasted on their favorite meal within fifteen minutes of coming in from the long day. We enjoyed our family time with no lines, no waiting, no bored kids, no meltdowns and no extraordinary prices. After a little clean up, we decided to go out and enjoy a game of put-putt.  During that week, we found that crock pot dinners not only saved us money, they saved us two hours of time we would have spent at a restaurant and we were able to go out and have family fun instead.

Over time, my crock pot has cooked meals in several states. I’ve learned that I can prepare meals prior to vacation, freeze them and pack them in a cooler for the trip. Having the kids help plan the menu ensures they will eat what is prepared.

My traveling crock pot saves us a little time and money allowing us to splurge a little more on entertainment expenses. We still go out to eat at least once while on vacation, and we enjoy it even more since it’s not an every night event.