Deciding Where to Stay based on Price

We went to Disney World on our honeymoon. It truly was magical. We decided we wanted to go back on our five-year wedding anniversary.

Five years and three kids later, we went to Disney World. Yes, we were a little crazy, but we were so excited to take the kids! We knew it would be a completely different experience, AND IT WAS! We had a blast, but in a whole new way. Somehow taking children made it a different kind of magical. We definitely want to go back.

Read more

Where You Stay Depends on Your Location

We walked into the only hotel in the city. I was thoroughly surprised at how “normal” the hotel seemed to me. The dusty dirt roads and mud brick buildings surrounding the hotel made me wonder what I would see when I went in. While traveling in West Africa, camel rides and markets were on the docket, but I was looking forward to meeting locals and seeing what life was like! I was in college, and my desire to wander was strong! Read more

The Family Adventure Awaits…

The flight was so long! I had never been on a flight longer than a couple of hours before. The take-off and landing were exciting, otherwise it felt like a bumpy car ride with about one hundred strangers and a handful of people I knew. I picked up my luggage, and the anticipation was too much to bear! I just flew over the Atlantic Ocean and was in a land far removed from my own. Read more

Beginning to Nurture a Picky Eater

My last post dealt with the excitement of getting to experience new foods when traveling. I hope I stirred you to get out of your comfort zone and explore foods in new ways!

However, I realize we are not always alone. I am wanting to help you travel with your kids, and I know the red flags are exploding in some of your minds… “But my kid is a picky eater!”

First, do not freak out! We can get through this together! Read more

Confusion from the Unexpected

He sat there, looking at me. A man. His hand was outstretched toward me…longing. His clothes were tattered, frayed beyond the worst piece of used clothing I own. He was dirty and, though the area smelled of body odor from being in the big city, I imagined he smelled from lack of personal hygiene as well. I could tell he was blind in at least one eye, but his face was a bit mangled so it could have been worse than I knew.

I did not know his story. I did not know the struggles he went through. I did not know if he had any support at all. I did not know how hungry he was, and I honestly did not know how to respond. Read more

Expect the Difficult

The leaders announced it was time to call parents. Everyone traveling with me pulled out their phone cards. (In 2003, cellphones for children were unheard of, and roaming charges were crazy expensive!)

I vividly remember walking past the phone and the line of children leading up to the phone. My parents could not afford a decent phone card, so mine was to be used only in case of emergency. As I walked past the line—knowing I was not going to talk to my parents for three weeks and it really was not that big of a deal to me—I recall children crying because of how homesick they were.

Going to the United Kingdom as a teenager without your parents and without being able to contact them is quite an ordeal. But I think I was just born to travel, and it did not phase me too much. However, every child is different! Even as a teenager I knew not to judge the kids who were homesick and missing their parents. Now, having children, I know even better how different children respond to different situations. Read more

A New Normal

I woke up in a new and unusual place. The family I was staying with was very different from my own. I was surprised by how quiet it was. We had been in the United Kingdom for just under two weeks, and all we had been exposed to was cities. Cities busier and more bustling than I had ever seen coming from Alabama. Yet, here I was staying in the home of a wonderful family who lived “in the countryside.” They had opened their home to me and another student on this trip, and we were soaking up every minute of it! Read more