The Ideal Trip with the Kids:
Building relationships with your children (or nephews, nieces, grandchildren).
Parents and grandparents are an integral part of a child’s life day to day. But some days will always remain more special in a child’s mind. I have very fond memories of family vacations I took as a child. I can clearly remember a trip to Disneyland, camping trips, and numerous car trips to see remote sites deemed worthwhile for a visit. These memories stand out in my mind today, as an adult, because they were far from my usual day-to-day childhood existence. And, as an adult, I tremendously appreciate the effort my parents made to save their money for that big trip one summer, as well as, the patience they must have demonstrated on road trips with three young children arguing over extremely limited and highly valued space in the back seat. But, as a child, what I really remember was the excitement of the trip.
As the parent, aunt, uncle, or grandparent, you have the opportunity to make some special memories for your little loved ones. I often traveled with my daughter in the hope that some of our adventures together would create indelible memories for her. Today, she can easily name some of those highlights from her childhood and we always have a wonderful experience re-visiting those times. I also traveled with my niece as a young child and know that the time we spent together helped strengthen our relationship. It was always my desire that she and I be close, even when we were separated by distance or the inevitable teenage disinterest that occurs as a child gets older. Our time together helped her know that I cared, was interested in her, and that she was important to me. I hope to develop the same type of relationship with my nephew, who is now the same age as his sister was when she traveled with me.
If you are interested in building relationships that matter, start while they are young. Begin building those relationships and experiences together. Choose a destination that both of you will enjoy and that will leave a lasting memory for the child. Take them out of their usual world and show them the bigger world. Your relationship with the child will grow in leaps and bounds, just as they eventually do. More importantly, taking the time to show that you care and want to spend time with them will mean the most to them as they grow older.
To plan The Ideal Trip with the Kids, check out the articles on these recommended child-friendly destinations and find resources for traveling with children:
San Francisco, California
Salt Lake City, Utah
San Diego, California
Kansas City, Missouri