Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Travel enriches..

I adore travelling.  When I was 26 I resigned from my job and travelled around the world for a year. That year was one of the best years of my life!!

Travelling represented freedom, an escape from reality and a chance to explore different cultures.  It was a HUGE eye opener and gave me an overwhelming feeling of 'WOW'.  It definitely changed my life!

Now I'm married with 2 young kids - I really want them to experience that 'wow' factor.  I want to encourage adventure, to enrich their lives, minds AND souls!  I want to say 'bah' to the parents who pour scorn on my ideas, who have a joyless view of family holidays and who can't see beyond the arguments, travel sickness and compromises!

I want them to explore

embrace nature

try new things

and spend quality time together as a family

I want to have the pleasure of showing my kids just how AMAZING the world is. I want us to share unforgettable experiences together!

So I think we need to do a road trip.  Preferably through America - we'd drive Yosemite to Yellowstone!  We'd fly into San Francisco, explore the quirky streets and stop for pictures at the bridge, spend time at Fisherman's Wharf and soak up the atmosphere.  From there we'd head to the truly magnificent Yosemite National park where we'd unwind and explore.  We'd drive through dramatic desert scenery in Death Valley before stopping overnight in Las Vegas and saying hello to Elvis.  Then we'd jet off to Salt Lake City followed by several days around the uniquely diverse and majestic Yellowstone National Park. What an AWE INSPIRING trip that would be!!

I'm dreaming BIG here of course.  But I firmly believe that anything is possible. I travelled extensively in my 20s, there's nothing to say I can't travel extensively with 2 young kids in tow.  I want to explore the world afresh, take stock of my life and appreciate what's really important.  I think an American road trip would be just the ticket!

Now where's my passport..?

This post is an entry for the #Flying100 Family Holiday Challenge, celebrating how flying allows us to make memories and ‘be there’, in association with #Flying100. Find out more at http://bit.ly/flying100

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Holidays are always an education! #Wales4Kids

I love Wales. I was born in Chester which is very close to the North Wales border, so it holds a special place in my heart. I remember family holidays to Rhyl and Prestatyn, good old fashioned seaside holidays, the beach, fish and chips, donkeys, 1p amusement arcades and ice cream. And I remember with fondness holidays with the grandparents to Llangrannog (in particular searching for glass bottles at the banks of a river and getting my red wellies stuck in sinking mud!).

Wales is beautiful, but it's only really as an adult I've come to appreciate its stunning scenery. We were lucky enough to have 2 short breaks to Wales last year - both very different, but we had such fun!

The first break was a 2 night treehouse stay in Machynlleth. Our 2 young kids (5 and 4 at the time) were SO excited - none of us really knew what to expect but we were delighted with our new home.

The treehouse was accessed via a field full of sheep and the kids adored the little walk across to our fabulous house. They were quite taken with the outside loo which they had to walk over a little ropebridge to, and they were most amused by the outside shower, such good fun!!

They learnt that they didn't need their electronic games, the TV or any modern gadgets to have a good time. They were delighted by the rope swing, by fishing with nets in the little river and chopping up logs for the fire.

We talked (lots!). The kids were intrigued when we told them that people in the 'olden days' didn't have electricity for example.

Getting back to basics was great for all of us and it was a truly memorable holiday - complemented by beautiful Welsh scenery of course!

Our next break was a week in a friend's holiday cottage in Morfa Nefyn. We were blessed with some amazing weather and certainly made the most of it. We spent the majority of time outdoors.

We learnt that exercise is good for the soul and that learning to jump high and cartwheel can be exhilarating.

We spent time at the local butterfly centre, and learnt all about snakes and centipedes too!

And we perfected our rope climbing skills...

We also learnt to be kind to each other and to cherish our relationships.. awww!

So whilst holidays can be relaxing and a chance to wind down, really they do teach the children so much. They needn't be expensive either, especially if they are taken in the UK. When children are exposed to different things, whether it be a different location or a different activity they are naturally inquisitive - and this lends itself to learning. Their curiosity knows no bounds and their questions can lead to some really interesting debates!

This post is an entry for the Visit Wales #Wales4Kids Family Holiday Challenge. Wales is the perfect place for a fun-filled family break and you can find out more on Wales here: http://www.facebook.com/visitwales or follow on Twitter @visitwales.