Being on holiday doesn’t have to be about geography. It is as much about adventure, exploration or even relaxation as it is about flight schedules, hotel rooms or miles traveled.
So if a far-flung destination is not in the cards just now, consider putting your creative juices to work to manifest a never-to-be-forgotten memory for you and your family. And, don’t forget to take pictures. Clear the calendar and consider these five ways to savor some family time without depleting your savings:
1.Go for it.
Plan to participate in a half marathon, hike the canyon or camp in the backcountry. This is the year to research, plan and execute that idea you’ve been talking about but never had time to organize. Declare it a family affair and make the preparations part of the fun.
2. Trade houses.
Find a friend or family member in a nearby neighborhood who is willing to join in the fun. Think about it: new toys in closet, bikes in the garage, playsets in the back yard and cereal in the cupboard. (Agree up front on what is included in the deal.) Trade information about local walking paths, parks, restaurants and movie theatres. Then enjoy the new view.
3. Make it a weekend – Part of the holiday mindset includes saying no to checking work email, or sending text messages, snap chats or posting on Instagram. If not for a week, agree to make family the focus for one whole weekend. Visit a new restaurant, go to a ballgame, take a long bike ride or play board games at home. If duty calls, let folks know your family is on vacation.
4. Focus on Free – Museums, festivals, lectures, parks, concerts and libraries are all sources of family fun where the admission is often gratis. Check local web sites and create your no-cost itinerary for the length of your “vacation”.
5. Book last minute and local – Check travel web sites for last minute deals in your home town or in a nearby city. Without air and significant gas charges, taking advantage of these down-to-the-wire deals can be worth the minimum expense. You’ll enjoy the travel treat knowing you’ve kept expenses in check. Contact: www.lastminute.com; www.travelzoo.com; www.hotwire.com.
A little rain..... A cancelled flight...... Lost luggage.
In our family, when things don’t go according to “plan”, we say, “it will make for a better story later”.
Still, sometimes we welcome a little inspiration.
A gentle reminder of why we travel and how fortunate we are to see so much of the world.
These travel quotes, old and new, provide all that and more:
1. “A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” - Lao Tzu
2. “He who does not travel does not know the value of men.” - Moorish proverb
3. "Don't tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have traveled." — Mohammed
4."Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." - Helen Keller
5.“The journey not the arrival matters.” – T. S. Eliot
6.“Tourists don’t know where they’ve been, travelers don’t know where they’re going.” – Paul Theroux
7. “To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.” – Bill Bryson
8.“If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home.” – James Michener
9.“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J. R. R. Tolkien
10.“Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
11.“Wandering re-establishes the original harmony which once existed between man and the universe” - Anatole France
12. “Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind.” – Seneca
13. “What you’ve done becomes the judge of what you’re going to do – especially in other people’s minds. When you’re traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don’t have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road.” – William Least Heat Moon
14. “The first condition of understanding a foreign country is to smell it.” – Rudyard Kipling
15. “The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G. K. Chesterton
16. It is not down in any map; true places never are. - Herman Melville
17. To get away from one's working environment is, in a sense, to get away from one's self; and this is often the chief advantage of travel and change. - Charles Horton Cooley
18.“The traveler sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see.” – G.K. Chesterton
19. “There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
20. “A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” – Lao Tzu
21. “Experience, travel - these are as education in themselves” - Euripides
22. “We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and untrodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey.” - John Hope Franklin
23. “You lose sight of things... and when you travel, everything balances out.” - Daranna Gidel
24. “I see my path, but I don't know where it leads. Not knowing where I'm going is what inspires me to travel it.” – Rosalia de Castro
25. “Make voyages! Attempt them... there's nothing else.” – Tennesee Williams
26.“Travel, in the younger sort, is a part of education; in the elder, a part of experience.” -Francis Bacon, Sr.
27. “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” – Mark Twain
28. “My travels led me to where I am today. Sometimes these steps have felt painful, difficult, but led me to greater happiness and opportunities.” – Diana Ross
29. “We wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.” – Hilaire Belloc
30. “Travelers, there is no path, paths are made by walking” – Antonio Machado
31. “We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls.” – Anais Nin
32. “Through travel I first became aware of the outside world; it was through travel that I found my own introspective way into becoming a part of it.” – Eudora Welty
33. “I have wandered all my life, and I have also traveled; the difference between the two being this, that we wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.” – Hilaire Belloc
34. “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
― Albert Einstein
35. “No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow.” – Lin Yutang
36. “Travel can be one of the most rewarding forms of introspection.” – Lawrence Durrell
37. “Travel can also be the spirit of adventure somewhat tamed, for those who desire to do something they are a bit afraid of.” – Ella Maillart
38. You may not find a path, but you will find a way. -- Tom Wolfe
39. "Travel penetrates your consciousness, but not in a rational way." -- Milton Glaser
40. “For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
41. "Traveling is almost like talking with men of other centuries." -- René Descartes
42. "One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things." -- Henry Miller
43. "Two of the greatest gifts we can give our children are roots and wings." -- Hodding Carter
44. "We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open." -- Jawaharal Nehru
45. All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” – Martin Buber
46. "The journey is my home." — Muriel Rukeyser
47. "To travel is to possess the world." – Burton Holmes
48. “Keep things on your trip in perspective, and you'll be amazed at the perspective you gain on things back home while you're away...One's little world is put into perspective by the bigger world out there.” – Gail Rubin Bereny
49. “One of the gladdest moments of human life, me thinks, is the departure upon a distant journey into unknown lands. Shaking off with one mighty effort the fetters of habit, the leaden weight of routine, the cloak of many cares and the slavery of home, man feels once more happy.” – Sir Richard Burton
50. “Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Scott Cameron
51. “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St. Augustine
52. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain
Do you have a favorite inspirational travel quote?
Photo: Copyright Lynn O'Rourke Hayes. The Road to Hana, Maui, Hawaii.
Each time I embark on an air travel trip I am reminded of what an adventure it can be!
And I’m a grown-up! I marvel at the challenges faced by parents of young children today. Getting through the security check point with diaper bags, strollers, toys, snacks, gear can be daunting.
If boarding a flight with the kids is part of your travel plan, here are a few tips to help you avoid snags in the system:
Print boarding passes in advance. Confirm flight departure times. Remind older children to bring their IDs and have yours ready. Arrive at the airport with time to spare.
TSA’s 3-1-1 program means:
Don’t forget your passports.
Will you be spending time on the beach in Mexico or skiing Whistler in Canada? Don’t forget. Passports are required.
It is important stay hydrated when traveling. But water bottles are not permitted through the security line. Rather than buy high-priced water bottles in the airline gate area, bring an empty bottle through security and fill up at the drinking fountain. It’s more eco-friendly too.
Pack your snacks.
Airlines rarely serve complimentary food on board. So avoid expensive airport and onboard dining options by packing healthy and familiar food for the flight. By keeping everyone fed in a timely manner, you’ll avoid cranky kids and parents.
Talk with your children about how you will spend your time on board. Then be sure to pack the books, art projects, ipods, games, headsets and other gear necessary for the flight.
Backpacks or roller bags for all.
Children like taking responsibility for their own gear. Ask everyone to carry as much as possible in their own backpack or carry –on. It’s good practice and lightens the load for the adults.
Family members can get separated during the crazy process of going through crowded security lines. Let TSA representatives know you are traveling as a family if they try to steer you to apart. If you do lose sight of one another, plan to meet at a designated spot on the other side.
Make sure the kids (and the grown-ups) are aware that while moving through the security line, it is not the time for jokes or silliness. An ill-timed, kooky comment ( no matter how innocent the intent ) can cause unexpected and unpleasant consequences.
Different country, different rules. Shoes on? Shoes off? Computers out or in? Review country and airport guidelines before departure. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when moving through security in another country.
Have a great time!