We spent our week in Arizona at the The Westin Kierland Resort . I had the chance to stay there for a conference the year before and I knew it would be the perfect spot for a family vacation. It’s beautiful, with mountain vistas and meticulous desert landscaping. They have pools at the condos and a full waterpark experience at the hotel. They also have one of the most unique features I have ever experienced at a Westin, bagpipes at sunset. On the last green at sunset every night they play while kids dance to the music and people stand watching in wonder. The night we watched, Maggie was awestruck. She clapped at the end of each song and loved being with her grandparents. We made alot of memories on this trip, but this night was magical.
About two weeks ago we went to Greenville, SC on a bit of a getaway “staycation” kind of a trip. Doug’s parents offered us the use of their home in Greenville for the week and we were excited to explore this city. I was blown away. Really. Who knew this incredible approachable, foodie-filled city was just here? Well I think we just about visited 2 new restaurants a day, discovered about 5 parks, explored the beer culture and enjoyed this beautiful city with a river running through it. I was in awe. I don’t think I have experienced a downtown as vibrant as this one outside of Chicago or New York. It was packed with families, side walk cafes, street musicians and offered the southern hospitality available only in the deep south. Maggie was in heaven and we took our time to relax, read (I even got through the entire Harvard Business Review this month!) and build memories. Throughout a vacation, I often tuck away memories and think “I need to remember this moment”. I had quite a few of them, but perhaps my favorite moments on this trip were seeing Maggie discover her love for the outdoors. An unforgettable date night to celebrate my Masters (more on that to come) and hanging out with my BFF, Barbie, for a girls night out. There are alot of “Remember this moment” pictures but I thought I would share one that really puts the reason behind vacations into perspective. It is about connecting with family and building the moments that make up the fabric of your story together.
We are bound for Hawaii this Friday and I just finished my planning book this weekend. I am really excited about this trip (both happy and nervous about flying with Maggie). I will share our book when I get back – but as part of my planning I thought I would share the new adventures of flight with a baby. So a few things I have learned for the trip (a checklist if you will for happy flying with a family).
1. Bring a copy of the birth certificate (if under 2 – you need proof for most airlines to ensure that baby flies free).
2. Strollers under 20 lbs and car seats are able to be checked without baggage fees. (it is recommended by the airlines to bring an umbrella stroller – however Mag’s isn’t quite ready for it yet – so we are taking the bigger stroller).
3. Baby formula can be carried on in larger quantities than the standard 3.4 oz – however you need to declare it before you go through the x-ray.
An update to come after Friday – let’s hope Maggie loves to fly!
We welcomed our newest traveler on October 15th at 10:36 a.m. Maggie has brought us such joy ever since we learned we would be her parents. Doug and I have often talked about how we would pass on our love of travel to our little girl and we started with her nursery. I have always loved the book “Oh the Places You’ll Go” by Dr. Suess and felt this would be a great theme to help inspire her journeys. We plan to explore a few new states this year and in this blog, I hope to document our adventures together. I know it won’t be easy traveling with a baby – but we know that sharing the world with our little girl will be rewarding. So look forward to some traveling tips for families and what I am sure will be some amusing learning experiences along the way.
In the great words of Dr. Suess to our dear little Maggie: Congratulations! Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away!
Now in our final trimester, Doug and I talk often about how we are going to try our best to share our passion for travel with Maggie. We have made the commitment to travel this next year – with the understanding that it will be challenging, full of surprises and different than bk (before kid). But to share our joy of discovering new places with our little girl will bring memories unimaginable. I figured someday I could share with Maggie how many places she went before she was even born. It’s been a new experience to travel so much while pregnant (the wine tasting was out of the agenda and the morning sickness wasn’t too fun) but I have to say seeing the world with the realization that I would be bringing a new life to it has been humbling. From Fort Lauderdale to LA to Maui this little girl has been all over this country in the past 8 months.
So to Maggie in the words of our dear friend Dr. Suess: “Oh the places you’ll go. Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away!”