Visit to Versailles

Family travel in 7 links

Blogging is a very forward-looking art form, which is mostly great, but sometimes it’s nice to reflect a bit on where I’ve been instead of where I’m going next. That’s why I am so pleased to participate in the My 7 Links Project from Tripbase. I was tagged by three bloggers, also colleague and friends – Melanie Waldman of Travels With Two, Jennifer Miner of The Vacation Gals, and Heather Cowper of Heather on Her Travels . This project is aimed at showcasing posts in different categories on travel blogs; each of us is supposed to share links to posts from our most beautiful to the post that we’re most proud of.

I started blogging here just over three years ago, without much of a plan. What started as a creative outlet in the face of an unsuccessful attempt to sell a conventional book about traveling for 13 months with a toddler quickly turned into a life-changing force in my household – one that’s kept us traveling and offered me more opportunities than I ever could have imagined it would. As I approach my 500th blog post (this one is number 491), it’s fun to take a trip down memory lane. I hope you’ll enjoy reading these posts as much as I enjoyed choosing them. And many thanks to Tripbase and the bloggers who tagged me for inspiring this post.

Tommy under the Eiffel TowerMost Beautiful Travel Post – Paris is our oyster

This post captures everything that I loved about our family visit to Paris – the magic of the Eiffel Tower, ice cream on the Ile Saint-Louis, and most importantly, the way my children fell as wholeheartedly in love with the city as I had nearly 20 years previously. This was our first family trip to Europe and the first trip I blogged about too, so it brings back so many happy memories.

Most Popular Travel Post – LEGOs in Paradise

I think that lots of people must be interested in both LEGOs and visiting the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas, because this post about my trip there with Teddy is consistently in my top ten posts. The entire trip was amazing – we swam with dolphins, spent lots of time looking at marine life, and enjoyed the many pools Atlantis has to offer. But it was the partnership with LEGO that was one of the best aspects of the trip. Teddy loved helping to create the huge mural, “meeting” the giant LEGO scuba diver, and also going on the scavenger hunt. Atlantis Resort continues to offer many of these activities at their summer fantasy camp; I haven’t shared that fact with Teddy who would head back there in a heartbeat.

Most Controversial Travel Post – True confessions of a traveling mom

This was really a stretch for me because I don’t really “do” controversial here. (Which begs the question readers – would you like me to? If so, feel free to tell me in the comments). It’s not that I don’t believe in the value of controversy or even have strong opinions, but since my main goal is to inspire not agitate, I think I tend to keep my more strident thoughts to myself. That said, I consider this to be my most controversial post because it’s one where I admit something about myself I’m not very proud of. And if you’d like to find out what that is, you’re just going to have to read it.

Teddy pushing his suitcase in Heathrow AirportMost Helpful Travel Post – How to pack only carry-on bags for air travel

When I published this post, a support group I could have called Overpackers Anonymous basically started on my Facebook page. I was shocked to see how many other travel bloggers admitted to packing too much when they travel! My report from the trenches after two weeks in Great Britain with only carry-on bags has all the tips you need to get through security and onto an airplane with both your kids and all the toiletries and shoes you’ll need for that family vacation. I’ve sworn off checked luggage and urge you to do the same.

Travel Post Whose Success Surprised Me – How to take kids to an art museum

Going to art museums with my kids has always felt so natural to me, but I wasn’t sure how interested other parents would be in this topic. I was surprised – and pleased – to see the enthusiastic response I got to this post where I offer tips on helping children enjoy looking at art. I also love all the suggestions in the comments, which I think really add to the post and will help any parent who wants to take children to an art museum.

Post That Didn’t Get the Attention It Deserved – Road trip tip: Eating on the road

I’m sharing one post here from my Road Trip series, but I really feel like all of these posts offer lots of great information about how to take long driving trips with kids. We’re genuine, old-school road trip veterans over here – my children have circled the Midwest multiple times in small, uncomfortable vehicles without screens. And most importantly, they’ve liked it.

Copy of Ingres portraitTravel Post I’m Most Proud Of – What my mother taught me about travel

I am proud of this post because it contains my late mother’s lovely sketches; sharing her legacy is important to me. But the post also captures an important piece of what makes me a traveler and a blogger today – and also what I hope to share with my own children.

Tag! You’re it!

Like a chain letter, each of us has been asked to tag other bloggers so we can read what they have to say. I’ve picked some of my favorite bloggers from Best Family Travel Advice whose blogs I admire and I can’t wait to see what they excavate for us. Without further ado, the baton goes to:

Amy Whitley of Pit Stops for Kids

Colleen Lanin of Travel Mamas

Michelle Duffy of WanderMom

Anne Patrone of 500 Places With Kids

Meg Keough of Backpack to Buggy

Reader Responses

3 fellow travelers had this to say

  1. Thanks for this sum up of your blogs. It is great for us who just joined you. I enojed reading all the recommended blogs.
    I have a little suggestion: when I make comments from my IPad, the little box “Share here” is too little because only two lines are visible while I’m writing. It would be easier to read back my writing if it would be bigger.

  2. Have to agree that writing a controversial travel post just doesn’t do it for me- why spend all that energy stirring up the pot only to have nothing but hurt feelings result. I know it works for some, but I like the travel advice which I can chose to take (or ignore) just like the big girl I am.

    And thanks for nominating me – I’ll be working hard on my 7 Seven Links post

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