Tag Archive for: New Zealand

Great family travel blog from Down Under

The Delaneys, hanging out Down Under.

The Delaneys, hanging out Down Under.

I’m always eager to promote the work of other writers whom I admire. Especially when they’re not professional writers.

That’s precisely why I have been LOVING this blog, by my friend, Matt Delaney, and his wife, Allison. Earlier this month, the duo took their two kids on a three-week vacation to New Zealand and Australia. They rented an RV and are touring the region. And they’re chronicling their adventures for everyone to read.

The posts have been detailed, honest, humorous and informative. They also have been thoroughly engaging—especially with all of the family photos they’re posting from along the way.

What’s more, I applaud Matt and Allison for taking this trip in the first place—their kids are not much older than L and R (I met Matt, a financial planner, while serving on the Board for the kids’ preschool), and a three-week road trip in a foreign land with two kids under the age of 8 is hard-core.

(Actually, the trip fits perfectly into this “storybook” campaign I’m doing with Expedia.)

In any event, take a few minutes and read up on the Delaneys’ adventures Down Under. They’re over there until June 8 or so, and I suspect they’ll publish a number of other posts between now and then.

If you could go anywhere on an epic family trip, where would it be and why?

Family Travel Dreams, in a Jar

Our jar of travel dreams (not the Skippy).

Our jar of travel dreams (not the Skippy).

Some households have a bucket list. Others have a corkboard brimming with ideas. At our crib (pun intended), we keep all of our family travel wishes in something called a Dream Jar.

And it’s overflowing with vacation fantasies we’ve saved over the years.

There’s a magazine clipping in there about beluga whale-watching near Churchill, Manitoba (my pick), and handwritten notes about a family-friendly trek through the New Zealand bush (Powerwoman’s). Other destinations in the mix: Hermanus, South Africa (both of us); Dubai (totally me); Petra (my archaeologist wife).

Even L, who is no stranger to maps of North America, has stuffed the Jar with a Nebraska piece from one of her many puzzles of the U.S. (She is obsessed with the Cornhusker state because of Bruce Springsteen. I admit: I am very proud of this fact.)

With our upcoming stint in London (we’ll be there from August to December of this year), we recently have stuffed the Jar with all sorts of information about our new home. L’s contributions focus mostly on parks. Powerwoman’s are almost exclusively museums. As for mine? Well, they’re bars.

(By the way, I’m not ignoring R here. She’s just too young to have opinions about this stuff yet.)

The Jar has a commanding position on our kitchen counter. Whenever we decide it’s time for another family trip, it’s the first place we go.

Over the last two years, we’ve probably sorted through the snippets and scribbles dozens of times. Still, every time we pop the top, it’s like we’re seeing our dream destinations for the first time again. South Africa! Nebraska! The possibilities are intoxicating.

I’d be remiss without noting the jar’s provenance; we got it from an artist whom I met while reporting a story in Lima, Peru. Powerwoman and I lived there for a few months back in 2005, well before our girls were even on the agenda.  Looking back, that experience still ranks as one of our family’s greatest adventures; it’s fitting that the Jar now plays such an integral role in the adventures to come.

How do you keep track of your family travel dreams? Let me know in the comment field above.