There's a difference between a vacation and a family vacation.
This isn't new information. We all know this.
Family vacations are about survival and not loosing your cool in a public place. Total relaxation begins when you return home and you can breath a sigh of relief that its over.
That being said, we were very thankful for the opportunity to slip out for a kid-free dinner while on our family vacation. We asked ourselves is this heaven? And a whispering voice said, "No, it's La Playa".
La Playa has been a special place for our family ever since my brother and his wife were married there over a year and a half ago. It's the perfect mix of charming, laid back beachy and upscale, formal atmosphere. At night you can sit around the fire, wiggle your toes in the sand, watch the tide roll in, have a drink, and even make s'mores. (After buying the kit in the gift shop they'll be the most expensive s'mores you've ever eaten, but it's all about the experience, right? And it occupies the kids, something that most parents will pay a premium for.)
Every trip we take with the kids seems to get easier. Last year when we were in Florida we were ready to leave earlier than scheduled. We had had enough "fun". This year, we could have stayed a few more days. Baby steps.
Even with the airline losing the kids car seats, foreign objects landing in one kid's eye, and a random 24 hour vomiting producing bug for another kid it was our best family vacation.