Growing up, I listened to my father’s tales of his navy days. Hearing sweeping stories of adventures in Italy, Spain, Saudi Arabia and more, had me enamored with the idea of travel. I knew I wanted to see the world. Since my mother was an immigrant from Honduras, I had a passport as an infant and took my first international trip to my mom’s home country when I was 10 months old. My family took us to Honduras every few years. But since my Dad was also a travel lover, we went on a different family adventure every year. Sometimes as small as a week camping visiting Civil War sights, sometimes as grand as a Caribbean cruise or Cancun.
But I dreamed bigger, I wanted to see the whole world. Europe was my first stop. At 19 years old I was accepted to my school’s study abroad program in Barcelona. I nervously boarded my first solo flight, arrived at Barcelona and that experience opened my eyes to exploring the world. For this trip I had had to get a new passport. I vowed I would get a new stamp every year on that passport. 10 years later, as I renewed the passport, I had 16 stamps from 11 countries in 3 different continents.
Fast forward several years and I found myself married, in a corporate job I loved, and planning a trip to Machu Pichu to celebrate my 30th birthday. Then, the stick turned blue. Yep, I was pregnant and that was the end of planning for that adventure. We decided to do something more low key, Mexico. Except I had the luck of getting pregnant in 2009, when the swine flu became an epidemic in Mexico. We finally decided on Hawaii.
When in Hawaii (and really throughout my pregnancy), people told me to enjoy it, my traveling days were over. This at first sadden me. Then it bothered me. Then it really, really bothered me. Why? Why did it have to end? Sure, it would be harder. It would be more expensive. But was it really done? For good?
Against everyone’s advice, decided to planned a 3 week trip for the last month of my maternity leave to New Jersey, with side trips to Connecticut and Toronto, Canada. At the start of my leave, I was home during the winter months nursing a newborn, so I had lots of time to read. This is when I discovered travel blogs. Soon I realized how many traveling families were out there.
As you can imagine, my son’s adventures didn’t end with that trip. During the first 2 1/2 years of his life we went to Connecticut, Toronto, New York City, Los Angeles, Mt. Shasta, Santa Cruz, India, Cabo San Lucas, and numerous trips to New Jersey. Then we gave him an entirely new type of adventure; he became a big brother. Once we added our daughter, our family felt complete.
With more confidence the second time around, I planned a month long trip to India during my maternity leave. I started this blog to record our adventures so my kids could read about what they did later in life. But I have discovered that I love to write about our adventures and I love sharing them with the world. I’m determined to show my kids, and the rest of the world, that travel is possible at any point in life, even to someplace as “exotic” as India.
Meet the family
My husband picked up a camera when his niece was born 15 years ago and hasn’t put it down since. A working professional who’s enjoying the hectic Bay Area start-up life , he loves to drop everything and travel with the family whenever possible. Born and raised in Chennai, much of his family is still in India, which is one of the reasons why we try and visit as much as possible.
My son was born with an old soul and a heart of gold. At times incredibly insightful for his age, but also filled with the silliness that comes with being a young boy. He took to being a big brother right away. While there is always sibling rivalry, he’s the first to come to her rescue or defense. He loves playgrounds, and enjoys exploring new ones every time we travel. He has his favorites in New Jersey, Mumbai and Buenos Aires. He’s known to give big hugs to his sister, play with superheros, trains, cars, or anything that moves, and is an unapologetic Pokemon fan.
My daughter is only 5 years old, but already shows she’s not afraid to try anything. She worships her big brother and once she started walking on the eve of her first birthday, she following him and has never stopped. She loves climbing, the water, and getting into trouble. Turn away for one second and she’s up at the top of the tallest slide, has opened all the crayons and is making a masterpiece on whatever surface is available, or has pulled out all her dolls and stuffed animals for a tea party. An extrovert, she’s the one who goes up to strangers in any country, waving, talking, and singing with them.