Travel.

Waves crashing to shore. Smells of sunscreen in the salty air. Toes in powdery sand. Giggles. Lots and lots of giggles.

Traveling opens our senses to the world around us.

Whether you are looking for intense adventure or quaint seclusion this world has a place for you. Here we will let you know if traveling has filled our cup and some quick tips to make the best of your upcoming travels.

Anna Maria Island

Traveling can redefine our motivation and goals. For some, travel is the key to happiness. We dove in to see if this was true for us over the last 11 days. We packed our bags and headed to Anna Maria Island in Florida.

Our Trip

First, we headed out of town to cheer on our local hockey team in playoffs. We then drove down and spent the night with a delightful relative. In the AM, we took off to Florida (leaving the negative temps and snow behind). Here we saw crocodiles to manatees. Spent countless hours in the sand and water. Watched dolphins, fished, and visited the Mote Aquarium (highly recommend). Don’t forget the sea shells.

The question here is did this trip bring us happiness? More importantly do we feel this made us better people. Did it improve our inner peace and overall health?

There was so much more to this trip than having our children see dolphins and play in the ocean for the first time. This trip provided us uninterrupted time to grow as a family.

Therefore, we learned that our giggles did not come from what was around us but rather who we were with. Without distraction of our devices we could more clearly embrace each other. We learned that we each have our faults. Too much sand castle building can create mid-day meltdowns.  (Coming from the 4 year old that feels nap times are no longer needed) Thankfully we found that the cure to this is ice cream!

We learned that no matter how much we plan sometimes no agenda is best.

Challenge

This week we challenge to you travel. See something new. This does not need to be an extravagant vacation but can be anywhere near or far that takes you away from the busy life we are in. To slow down time just for a moment to take in the smells, sounds, and the world around us.

Conclusion

Travel, for us, was reinventing. Yes, traveling with kids can be a chore but ever so rewarding as well. We more than welcomed our own beds last night but laying down and talking about all of the memories was ever so worth it.

It is so easy to get caught up in a daily routine. Humans naturally crave routine and the known. However, the reward of rejuvenation, personal reflection and growth is something to cherish. Travel and new experiences provides just that.  

We will definitely continue to check out what the world has to offer. This can be done on a budget! No need to spend a lot of money to create memories.

Quick tips

Don’t sweat the small stuff (your days will never go exactly as planned). Remember your picture of a perfect day is not always going to be the same as your travel entourage. Perhaps you travel alone?  Enjoy!

Keep a journal. Sit down at the end of the night and write down all of your fun memories.

Take family photos. Don’t be afraid to ask a stranger to take a group pic. You will want this memento one day.

Set a budget and stick to it. There is nothing more daunting then regretting the price you paid for a vacation. Money does not buy happiness. Stick to your budget because it will be great no matter what! Don’t forget your local parks. These are a great budget friendly option to spend time with your family/friends.

Include everyone in on the planning. This way you know everyone is able to do something they feel they would enjoy.

Don’t over plan. Cramming too much in one day is just exhausting. Also, if you don’t complete everything on your agenda this can be frustrating. Set the highlights and let spontaneity solve the rest. 

Where are your favorite places to travel? Does traveling promote peace or protest for you?

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