Last week, we escaped to Woodstock, a charming town two hours north of New York City. And we realized that the secret to a great family vacation is…

…having more grown-ups than kids! My mom joined us on the trip, and it was awesome to have a ratio of three adults to two children. That way, it felt like a relaxing vacation, versus a business trip:) You could actually steal moments for yourself, read a magazine, stare at the trees, spend one-on-one time with each child. We were so grateful to have her!

We also realized that a second baby is officially one million times easier than a first. Three years ago, when Toby was born, we also took a trip to the Hudson Valley, but we were totally frantic. Honestly, we were basketcases and even took him to the emergency room one afternoon for basically no reason. With Anton, we were so much more relaxed—my level of parental anxiety is 1/100th what it used to be, thank goodness—and Anton was happy to go with the flow. Parents of two, don’t you agree that it seems so much easier, emotionally? (The title of this book made me smile.)

Anyway, we were lucky enough to rent a farmhouse in Woodstock from a friend of a friend. Toby spent hours every afternoon splashing in the pool, Anton gazed up at the trees from his bouncy chair, and we picked tomatoes from the garden for dinner.

We also discovered an awesome wooden playground at a nearby elementary school, where we headed every morning with coffees and croissants. The maze of tunnels, bridges and forts inspired lots of pretend play. Over the course of the week, Toby was an airplane pilot, a bus driver, an ice-cream man, Mick Jagger, Keith Moon and a librarian.

The hippie town of Woodstock was so colorful and friendly! Every day we stopped by a little toy store, got lunch and then splurged on ice cream. (Salted caramel was the crowd favorite.)

On our last day we went on a more ambitious adventure. First we got lunch at the Rhinebeck Farmers’ Market and then went to the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome for an old-school air show. Toby liked the planes although at times they were a little too noisy. :)

At night we would just chill at home, grill steaks and drink rosé (which I’m totally into these days). I’d definitely recommend the Hudson Valley if you’re in the mood for a relaxing trip with delicious food and beautiful scenery—the towns of Woodstock, Saugerties, Hudson, Tivoli and Rhinebeck are all charming. (There are some tips at the bottom of this post.) We’re already planning our trip for next summer. xoxo

P.S. Five getaways from NYC.