I have come to absolutely adore this large family of mine! I’ve fully embraced “the more the merrier” sentiment and admit that our vacations are way more fun with all these kids!
Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s a lot of stress to pack and prepare for 7 people. However, there are a lot of advantages to large families. First, everyone has a buddy, so there’s always someone to play with. It’s rare to not have someone willing to jump in a game of pool, ping pong, or Roblox. Secondly, there are plenty of helping hands with dishes or taking out the trash. Even meal preparation has become a family affair and I love my helpers! Furthermore, older kids make great babysitters. Our oldest son is responsible enough to care for his younger siblings which gives Robert and I the chance to run a quick errand or take a walk together.
If you’ve followed my journey on social media, then you are familiar with Lodgewell, a destination vacation rental company in Austin, Texas and the surrounding hill country. Lodgewell is well known for rolling out the ‘red welcome mat’ to provide guests with an unforgettable experience. For instance, guests receive a ‘welcome box’ filled with items from local and small businesses. This is proof that we are kindred spirits! Their properties include one-of-a-kind, off the beaten path getaways that can not be duplicated. Seriously! I’m done with the traditional hotel room. I’m only vacationing in unique rental homes where I can spread out, explore like a local and feel inspired when I leave.
Two years ago, my relationship with Lodgewell began when they so graciously provided me an amazing getaway at the Littlefield Lofts in downtown Austin on New Year’s Eve. Prior to going, I had just received unsettling news from my ex husband that sent me into a tailspin. Because he would have our kids for the next 10 days, my choice was to get out of town or slash some tires. Just kidding, but I am still grateful to Lodgewell for the reprieve! Since then, there have been countless memories made while staying at their rental properties. You can read about our trip to Good Morning Ranch, or find more places to stay and things to do in Austin Texas, here.
Most recently, I was excited to take my newly blended family and our neighbors to Lodgewell’s newest property, Camp Blanco. Get this… Camp Blanco is an old Girl Scout camp located in the Texas Hill Country. It is awesome, y’all! There are six structures on the 18-acre property which spread across 600 feet of the Blanco River. The Ranger, which is the old lodge, The Brownie Bunkhouse, The Kookaburra game room, The Daisy guesthouse, and The Tagalongs, literal tents for the ultimate glamper, make up this amazing camp. Lastly, the Do-Si-Do is the original and revived girls and boys bath house.
Our kids LOVED this property.
You know that you booked a good one when tears are shed on check out day. We cooked huge breakfasts, watched movies, and played endless games together. The Kookaburra game room includes three garage style doors that open onto an expansive patio. The outdoor views and indoor space was the perfect atmosphere to play poker, shuffle board, foosball and darts. Our family hosted a traditional talent show on the back deck. Oso, our puppy and newest addition won 2nd place, while I performed ballet moves!
In addition, we fished, kayaked with boats provided in the outdoor pavilion and played football along the water’s edge. The water was so clear that you could almost reach down and grab a fish. The kid inside me really wanted to jump into the Blanco River. However, the trip took place in January and I don’t do cold! Later, we gathered around the bonfire pit to roast hot dogs and s’mores provided by the Lodgewell team. Seriously, our kids can’t stop talking about this trip and can’t wait to go back.
If you are looking for the perfect place to take your family this year, look no further than Lodgewell.co. I have no doubt that you will find an amazing vacation property to bring you and your loved ones closer together. Simply, take a look at our past stays and find more property information on their website for places to stay or things to do in Austin Texas. Our Turn It Over podcast listeners and Homemade Magazine and blog readers will receive 10% off their nightly rate (taxes and fees excluded) when you book at Lodgewell.co with code “TURNITOVER.”
Good Morning Ranch – 10 acres of outdoor wander near Wimberley, Texas. This is a great spot for the whole family to turn off technology and enjoy the great outdoors. During our stay, our family rented a boat on the lake and explored nearby nature preserves. We ended each night around the bonfire soaking up the Texas sunsets and roasting s’mores. Visit susierobb.com/blog for Rob’s signature cocktail that he created on this particular trip!3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, 1,800 square feet of living space for 8 guests to spread out and soak up all the country vibes.
The Littlefield Lofts – 2-story lofts in the epicenter of downtown Austin, Texas. I’ve stayed here with my girlfriends for a girls weekend, and brought the whole family for a trip, too. Each December, Lodgewell hosts ‘Dale on the Rail,’ who is the tallest elf in Texas and sits on the patio rail overlooking Austinites from his swanky downtown digs. My favorite is the over-the-top decorated, open concept 2-bedroom “winter wonderloft” at The Littlefield Lofts. The holiday stay includes a Santa mailbox, treats, hot cocoa and Austin skyline views! Condo sizes vary, so visit Lodgewell.com to find the perfect one for you!
The Graeber– Party like a rock star! No, seriously. The hottest musicians stay at the Graeber for SXSW, so you’ll feel like a celebrity too, when you rent this beast! The Graeber is an insane trailblazer mansion that mixes the 1880’s stone walls with a 1960’s renovation on 6th Street in downtown Austin. Unique features include an indoor swimming pool and a glass dome ceiling that was flown in by way of a helicopter. Plus, it’s located among some of Austin’s most popular places and events. On my stay, we attended a comedy event at Stubb’s BBQ. 3 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 9 beds
The Provident & Trifecta – Located in the heart of downtown Austin, the Heierman’s building once operated as the first-class Provident Hotel from 1890 to 1920. Over one-hundred years later, the three floors have been completely remodeled and updated while retaining its original old-school charm. Whether you’re staying overnight, gathering for work, or hosting an event, The Trifecta gives you three unique and versatile historic downtown spaces for any of your creative uses! Board rooms, office space, team summits, bachelor parties, photo shoots. Endless possibilities to use one floor or the whole building! 3 spacious urban lofts, 3,000-4,000 sq feet