It was seven years ago (while taking Dave Ramsey's FPU course) when Brandon and I wrote down a family goal of providing our children with the gift of travel. Why the gift of travel? Our hope is that the gift of travel goes well beyond the gadgets we provide them with. Our hope is for our children to understand exploring is a must, to know learning takes places everywhere, and to appreciate for God created wonders and to appreciate family time.
Traveling allows us to explore new places, new cultures, and take new adventures that are different than our way of life. They learn to ask questions, they learn to navigate in other cities, they learn to see everything from a different perspective. During our recent trip to Walt Disney World our kids enjoyed Epcot, where they had the opportunity to visit other "countries". We all were able to get a glimpse into eight different counties' food, architecture, clothing and music. We tried authentic Chinese food, taste tested world Coca-Cola flavors, and even visited with two students from Norway.
We also want them to know that learning takes place everywhere. I hope that a day never goes by where they do not learn something new...I want them to be inquisitive, I want them to absorb as much information as possible. Through the gift of travel, out children get the opportunity to be engaged in their learning. Our children saw a living history museum at the Hall of Presidents and rode many rides which showed the impact of technology throughout history and what it will be like in the future. Even during my husband's and daughter Calyn's trip to Washington DC she had the opportunity to be engrossed with the history of the United States.
Appreciation...from standing on the gorgeous Bandlands to touching the blue Atlantic ocean, we hope our children look around and see the beautiful wonders God has created. Appreciate life from a different perspective...one that they wouldn't have standing on our front doorstep. Yet, we also hope our children appreciate the family time, appreciate the journey of the travels and just not the destination.
At the end of the journey it isn't about the destination, it is about the journey together as a family...from the standing in lines for rides, to running in the rain, to sitting in the airport during weather delays, our vacation wasn't about Florida...it was about the journey of exploration, the learning, and the appreciation. It is about, Zephyr saying "Do you remember the ride to Mars, mom?" or "Do you remember ocean, mom?"...yes Zeph I do! And I now know that the gift of travel will forever be with my children.