Happy Fourth of July! If you’re like me, you’re probably juggling a lot of things today and wondering why, once again, you didn’t plan ahead for the day. Well, my fellow overwhelmed and underprepared planners out there, I have done some research to help you in a pinch. Below is a quick checklist for how to manage holiday travel stress and making sure you’ve got all of your firework safety steps squared away.

First Things First, Travel

Traveling with the whole family, plus all of the gear you need can be a headache. The prep work for fun is the least part of a fun day, but with a little last minute time-management, it can go much smoother.

  • Do a quick two-minute meditation – I’ve written before about managing stress during the holidays and while July 4th may not cause the same level of stress as hosting your entire extended family for Thanksgiving (oof, I got tired just writing that sentence) there’s still anxiety to be found in what was once a low-key long weekend.
  • Checklists! The power of a checklist cannot be denied. It helps to keep the family organized, it reduces the stress of remembering last minute items and if you have young kids, it can mitigate the number of items you take along with you.Your basic checklist is everything you would bring to the beach or any summer outing. Sunscreen! Coverups! Bathing suits! Towels! Snacks! You get the idea. But also something I have found useful is to have kids participate in making the list, this can help avoid a meltdown about what toys to bring. Give your kids two options each for toys to bring and give them the opportunity to choose which one. It gives them some control and a way to participate in family responsibilities.
  • Don’t Forget the Apps! There are so many apps these days to help you have an organized, successful trip. Here’s just a few to help you out traveling this holiday.
    • Dark Sky – Get up to the minute, super local weather updates for wherever you’re headed.
    • WiFi Map – Is there anything worse than hitting a wifi dead zone in unfamiliar territory? This app can help with that!
    • Inrix – There are a lot of apps that help you deal with traffic when driving but I’ve found that the AI on Inrix is heads and shoulders above the rest. It also offers a lot of alternate routes and real views of routes to see where traffic is.

Sparkle with Safety

I grew up in California so the idea of lighting fireworks was so foreign, even back in the day, that the first time I drove up the eastern seaboard and saw signs for “fireworks for sale” I assumed I was either in an alternate universe or very brazen townships with no laws. Turns out, not everyone feared the anger and disappointment of Smokey the Bear growing up, and there’s as much fun to be found in (safely) lightening fireworks as I always dreamed. Here are a few tips to sparkling safely this 4th of July.

  • Know the law! There are environmental reasons that states differ when it comes to fireworks, check to make sure you’re keeping your family and the environment safe when celebrating.
  • Keep a hose and bucket of water nearby when lighting fireworks
  • Never reignite fireworks that have failed to ignite. Pour water on fireworks that do not go off.
  • Ignite fireworks on gravel, grass, sand – avoid locations with tall trees, shrubbery or that has recently experienced a drought.
  • Make sure children are kept at least 10 feet from where fireworks are being ignited.
  • Never put fireworks or sparklers in your pocket or keep on your person.

We love any opportunity to have a fun-filled day with friends and family. Laughing, playing, enjoying the company of the people we care about the most. Is there anything better? Hoping these tips help you have a safe and stress-free holiday! As always, tag us in your photos on social media – can’t wait to see how our WubbaNub Families celebrated!