Welcome to Live Free Creative, the podcast that provides inspiration and ideas for living a creative, adventurous, and intentional lifestyle. I’m your host Moran Anderson. And I hope that each time you listen, you feel a little bit more free to live your life. Exactly the way you want to live it.
Hello there, my friends. Welcome back to the show. You are listening to Live Free Creative Podcast, Episode 123. I’m your host Miranda Anderson. And this show today is about exploring the world at home and abroad.
I’m super excited to introduce you to a guest today. My good friend Preethi Harbuck is here to talk to us about this topic of exploring the world, exploring our own cities. And exploring from home like we need to do right now during COVID.
Preethi is an MBA, mom of five, and a global explorer. Preethi’s blog, Local Passport Family is an incredible free resource for all sorts of global travel tips, as well as ideas for exploring and learning from home as a family.
She has a passion for global education, especially anti-racism and diversity education, and incorporates that into her regular life as a mom of five. And also shares that with us on her blog, through things like the Global Children’s Book Club and the Global Service Advent, both of which she’ll talk a little bit more about during the episode, and you can find on her blog, local passport family.
As always, you will be able to find all of the resources from the episode today livefreecreative.co/podcast. Look for episode 123, and I will have linked everything where you can find Preethi, her resources, and the other things that we talk about today in the show.
Now I know after nine months of not being able to really go anywhere because of the global pandemic, it seems like maybe a weird time to be talking about travel. I will tell you though, my friends, after having this conversation with Preethi, my fire was re-ignited for not only traveling the world, which I love and I’m really looking forward to doing again soon.
It was re-ignited for simply learning about other cultures, other peoples, and how we can discover things to fall in love with in our own cities and even from home in our own living rooms.
In the interview, you’ll hear that Preethi and I go through three specific types of travel. One, is traveling abroad, and she gives all sorts of great tips for that. Two, is traveling locally at home, exploring where you live nearby, your own home and city. And number three is traveling from home, couch traveling, where you can look things up online and learn about new cultures and people without even leaving the front door.
I love the way that this gives us a whole picture. We can get excited about traveling the world even right now, today, without going anywhere, and also prepare ourselves mentally, emotionally, financially for hopping on a plane the next time we’re able.
Before we jump into the episode, let me share a very quick, magical adventure moment.
Segment: Magical Adventure Moment
Places that I’ve been missing most over the last year is Big Bend National Park. This huge national park is located right on the Western border of the United States between Mexico and Texas. And it is one of the least visited most remote national parks in the country. In particular, what I’ve been missing is sitting in the historic hot Springs on the banks of the Rio Grande river.
Let me paint you a quick picture. Imagine a dusty parking lot, feeling like you’re in the middle of nowhere, crossing a little wooden bridge and then wandering down a dust and rock path for about a mile. You can hear the sounds of a river running nearby, but you can’t really see it because of the overgrown bamboo and brush all along the trail.
On your left side is a pretty steep cliff with jagged rocks. You can see where some of them have tumbled down over time onto the path in front of you. On your right tall greenery swing in the wind. The sun is beating down and you’re hot and sticky and happy.
All at once the trail ends, you turn to your right and you see what looks like a giant concrete box sitting on the bank of the river. This box is filled to the top with still water. And as you get closer and dip your toes in, you recognize that this is it. The historic hot spring. Where the water pumps up from the earth at around 105 degrees.
You slowly lower yourself into the water feet, squishing into the silt at the bottom. And you acclimate to the intensity of the heat. You sit and soak in the water and soak in the incredible beauty of this moment.
And when you can’t handle it anymore, you slowly climb out, walk down the bank of the river, and wade into the freezing cold rushing waves of the Rio Grande. In the Fall, the water’s running low. So you can wait out to the middle of the river and sit down on the hard rocks, lean back and let the water rush around you.
It’s a little like being in the middle of a waterslide without actually going anywhere. Right across on the other bank is Mexico. You may see a wild horse or two wander over to the edge and gaze across wondering what you’re up to.
If you’re smart, you will have packed a lunch so that you can get out of the cool water and enjoy a little picnic while you alternate between the cold water of the rushing Rio Grande and the hot water of the historic hot spring. You may be joined by others and you might not.
And as you start your trek back to the car down that dusty path, you will be grateful. For this day and this moment in this beautiful place in this forgotten land.
Interview with Preethi Harbock
Now I hope that you will enjoy my interview with Preethi Harbuck.
Preethi, I’m so excited to talk to you today. How are you?
P: I’m great. Thanks so much for having me Miranda.
M: Oh, my gosh. It’s such an honor. Before we jump in to that different aspects of this show, to share with people about traveling with their families, I wanted to just have everyone learn a little bit about you, who you are, a little bit of your background, and why you are the person that I’m talking to about travel.
So tell us a little bit about yourself.
M: Yeah, absolutely. So like you said, my name is Preethi and I am the writer over at Local Passport Family, both the Instagram and the blog. And I am a mom of five. My husband and I have five kids who are ages 10 down to 10 months, and we love exploring. We love exploring around the world as well as from home.
We feel really passionately about learning from other cultures and other ways of life, and travel has been an incredible opportunity for us to be able to do that in our home and in our family.
My husband and I started traveling kind of right from the get-go, we knew that was something that was important to us.
So about a year after we got married, we took a summer and we built in the season of travel for ourselves. I had just quit my job to go back to grad school. And my husband had just graduated and was about to start a job. So he built in a few months where we could explore the world thinking that that would kind of be our one main hurrah and our chance to explore before we got into kids and family life and all of that.
Little did we know that we would spend a lot of our time parenting traveling around the world as well.
So I’ve currently been to–I believe it’s 62 or 63 countries and 43 of those have been with kids. We’ve also explored 49 U.S. States. We are missing Alaska. We’re hoping to get there at some point in the near future. And we are hoping to see much more of the world.
More than anything though, we love the experience of education that comes from seeing the world and getting to know its people. That’s always been really important to us.
M: Oh my gosh. Ok, first of all, so inspiring. I love hearing that you started traveling as a young couple and that just became something that you did, that you just continued to do it, and you add one baby, and then you add another baby, and then you add another and another and another. A 10 month old!
I feel like it’s just the prime example of: You can do this, like to those moms listening that are like, Oh my gosh, traveling feels so overwhelming. Or I have a baby, what do I do? It’s so fun to hear from moms that are doing it, that can do it, and that are doing it well. That’s so awesome.
P: I think it’s important to remember, too, that we didn’t start traveling with five kids. We started with one kid, and then we started traveling with two kids. It’s incremental. It’s never like, someone’s going to hand you five babies and you all of a sudden start traveling.
M: And say, Go explore Europe with your five babies! Yeah, no, it’s so true. You know, it’s so funny, Dave and I had a similar kind of start. I grew up traveling. I traveled a lot as a kid with my family and Dave traveled because he played rugby and he was able to travel. He went to Europe, and Africa, and Australia, New Zealand as part of a rugby team.
And so when we met, we both were like, Oh, we have this in common and we really want to make this a priority. And so we had a similar sort of gap summer. We actually just took a month, but I had just graduated. Dave hadn’t yet started law school.
And so we felt like, okay, here we go. Let’s do it. And we went to Thailand. It was so fun and it felt like that last hurrah. And then we decided that we wanted to keep traveling.
And then when we did our first big trip, when we had our first baby. Milo was 10 months old and we took him to Jamaica. It was the funniest comedy of errors, everything went wrong. Milo just cried basically for six days straight, everything was hot and humid and sandy, and it was hard to find food that we liked.
It was just like we tried to take a baby and insert him into like our shoestring backpacking style of travel that we had done as a couple and realized that it did not work. Traveling with kids was very different. Logistically, financially, there were so many differences because you can’t just take five babies and hand them to someone and say, Okay, go travel like you always have.
Traveling with a family is different than traveling alone. And I am so excited to hear some of your favorite tips for how to travel well with kids. Because it isn’t just inserting kids into your normal adult travel lifestyle. It’s a little bit catering the way that you plan and think about traveling to your family, right?
P: Absolutely, yes. There are for sure differences to traveling with kids and without. I will say though, that the things that are important to you in travel don’t have to necessarily totally go away when you start traveling with kids. I think a lot of people think that when you start traveling with kids, you’re limited to Disneyland at that point. And you can only do kid friendly activities.
To me, anything kid friendly is anything that kids can develop an interest in, which to me is basically anything. As a parent in general, whether I’m traveling or not, I tend to cater to my interests and parenting. I think you mentioned recently actually Miranda Elf on the Shelf and how you have no interest in Elf on the Shelf.
P: Same way I have zero interest in Elf on the Shelf. So I just don’t do it.
A lot of people have zero interest in museums. So if you don’t have interest in museums, there’s nothing that says that you have to take your children to museums. I love museums. So we take our children to a lot of museums.
M: Such a good reminder that like you stay in the driver’s seat as you’re planning. I mean, take consideration for the options, but don’t do things that you feel like you have to do.
P: Exactly. You might need to modify schedule or logistics, but the essence of what is important to you in travel, doesn’t have to go away.
M: I love it. So smart.
Preview of the Discussion
Okay. So, like I mentioned, in the beginning of the episode, we are breaking this down into three sections. So the first section we’re going to talk about is traveling with kids in the traditional sense where you pack up either in the car for a big road trip. Or you are flying across the country or across the world, and actually taking your kids out into the world on a trip.
Now, because of COVID we know that right this second that is not what we should be doing. It’s not recommended. In fact, both Preethi and I would say, please do not consider this episode an invitation to travel right now. Don’t travel now. But refer back to this episode when you do want to travel for some ideas.
And then the second section, we’re going to talk about how you can travel within your own community right now. And maybe we wouldn’t call it travel, so much as explore or discover, loving where you live. And I’m so excited to hear previous tips on that.
And then we’re going to finish off the episode, talking about traveling from your couch, from your computer, from actually being home. And Preethi, you’re such a good example of this, how you’ve pivoted during this time where you can’t be out traveling the world to be still learning about the world and having those experiences from home.
1. Traveling With Kids
M: So let’s start with the first section. What are some of your favorite tips? Assume that one of our listeners wants to travel with kids, hasn’t really ever done it, and doesn’t really know what she should be thinking about or what considerations to take when planning a trip with young kids.
P: Yeah, absolutely. So the first and most important piece to me is learning about wherever you are going. I mentioned before that the education piece is hugely important to us, especially when it comes to diversity and inclusion education.
That is a big focus of my work and what I try to help people learn about and their own families. And anytime we can gain that education, it just becomes so much more exciting for all of us. I know that when I learn about a place before going there, I am so much more excited to go and explore and see things.
And kids are the same way. When they have a little bit of a taste before they get to a place of what it entails, then they get a lot more excited about it.
Kids especially thrive on familiarity. And so the more we can tell them about it in a repeated way to get them excited, the more they’re going to enjoy the experience once they’re there. Because it feels familiar. It feels exciting to them.
They like being in the know. Kids so often feel like they’re not in the driver’s seat, like they’re not in the know, like everything is new and overwhelming. So when they feel like they’re empowered with that knowledge and that excitement, then they can really get into the experience as well.
M: That’s such a fun first tip. And I know you have more. I just want to riff on that for one second, because when we very first met, you and I online, I had just shared that my family was going to go on this trip to Italy.
This is a few years ago, and you were preparing to take your kids to Italy and you messaged me and said, Hey, we’re planning a trip to Italy. Can we talk to you about it?
And we didn’t end up doing a call with our kids, like we thought we might, but you were like, Oh, Here’s a way to interact and teach my kids about Italy before we go. Here’s another family that’s going to do it.
You’re very proactive about: before you go, learn, so that the experience can be enriched. And it was just such a good example. And it was fun that we connected that way and we were able to then become friends and, you know, there’s just so many different ways to do that, to learn ahead of time.
And in fact that exact trip, that Italy trip we gave to our kids for Christmas, and we didn’t go on the trip until April. And so in the interim, we had five months of countdown where every week we did an activity or went out and got gelato or listened to an Italian opera, or like we did all of these little activities related to Italy.
And I feel like that was the first time that we had done that much preparation, mostly because I was trying to kill time so that it felt like they got a Christmas present, you know, even though we didn’t go until spring break. It really did enhance, like it took the whole experience to a whole other level than I, as an adult, had experienced because I felt like we were so prepared.
We recognized things, everything felt a little bit familiar in the most wonderful way. So I think that that’s such a great tip.
P: Absolutely. I think that’s such a great point, Miranda, and I know you and I both feel really strongly about experience gifts. We’ve both written about that. And I think that’s part of the fun about it. You get to gift this time together and you get to gift this opportunity to learn together and connect together. The learning is not just individual it’s connected. When we learn as a family, it brings us closer together as a family.
And like you said, it doesn’t have to be these huge grand things. You don’t have to go check out the entire library section on Italy, you can do simple things like going to get gelato, like turning on some Italian music while you’re cooking in the kitchen. It doesn’t have to be a big deal.
M: Yeah, so fun. Okay. What’s another tip you would give for someone an overwhelmed mom feeling like, Oh my gosh, I don’t know if I can travel with my kids. What if, what if they’re so hard?
P: And I think that’s a great point. What if they are so hard? They probably will be hard. I think setting your expectations is so important because it probably will be difficult at times. In fact, I will be shocked if it’s not difficult at times, there will be times when your kids cry. There will probably be a time when you will cry. There will probably be a time when you miss the train, or forget your tickets, or get into an argument.
There will be things that go wrong. Like you said with your Jamaica trip, there are things that will just go wrong. That’s the nature of travel, whether you’re doing it with kids or by yourself. But I think the joy is in knowing that you can still gain so much from the experience, even when things go wrong. Not in spite of things going wrong.
M: So smart. Yeah. It’s so true. Just set your expectations where you know that the goodwill outweighs the bad and there will be bad and that’s okay. And that’s life, right? Like that’s life that you carry into travel. I think some of us think that you pass through this magical fairy dust when you board a plane or when you like land in another country or another city. Somehow you’re protected from actually being in real life. Because you’re on a trip, things are suppose all be glorious.
And I’ve seen those people on vacation that look mystified that they missed a train or that something’s wrong because they’re like, I’m on vacation. Dang it. Things are supposed to be perfect right now. I’m supposed to be happy the whole time.
It is nice to remember that you are you and your kids are them everywhere you go. And so if you have a little bit of a whiner or a sensitive soul or someone who doesn’t like yogurt, I guarantee that will be the way that they are traveling as well. And that’s okay. You just have to mentally prepare for that.
P: Absolutely. And I think that’s great training for everyday life too. To remember that we can still take joy from our circumstances, even when they’re not perfect and that we can learn from those experiences. We can work through them and it doesn’t make the experience not worthwhile just because something went wrong.
M: Totally. Give someone advice on where to go if they haven’t done a lot of travel, maybe someone’s stayed in the same town or state, and they haven’t done a lot of travel. But they want to, they they’re interested. How would you invite them to–what would you have them take into consideration as they’re deciding where to begin.
P: Absolutely. I think that goes back to thinking about what your interests are, because you could look at all of the reviews in the world that say, Go to Italy, Go to Japan, Go to wherever. But if you’re not interested in the things that are available in those places, it’s probably not going to be a very fun trip.
So I would say first and foremost, think about what you like to do. And then, beyond that, be willing to try new things. Because a lot of times in travel, that’s the great part, that we get to experience things that we don’t do on a normal day-to-day basis. And you might find that it’s something you really enjoy.
So maybe you don’t go to somewhere that has only beaches if you hate sand and hot weather. But if you go somewhere that has a ton of museums or that has a lot of walking around cities, you might want to consider a day trip to a beach. So take your interest under consideration and look for places that have those things, but don’t necessarily limit yourself to only those things.
M: Do you ever consider how easy it will be to communicate or what the transportation might be like? If you’re comfortable with buses and subways versus like renting a car or those types of things. You’ve gone all over, but do you think that some of those logistics people would take into account too?
P: We personally don’t take that under consideration just because we know that we are comfortable figuring out getting a rental car. We are comfortable on public transportation. We are comfortable using Google translate on our phones. We’re okay with that. But if that’s something that’s going to really stress you out and you haven’t done a lot of traveling, maybe kind of ease your way into it.
Think of if communication feels really stressful to you. Then maybe consider somewhere where you either know the language or maybe just get a device that will enable you to be able to communicate more easily. Google translate is super easy. You can just download it on your phone. It will literally allow you to just type in what you want to say, and then you play it for the person and then it will decode whatever they’re saying back to you.
So look for things that will make those potentially stressful situations a little bit easier for you, and then just do it. Which is another big tip I have for travel. The best way to get better at it is just by doing it, which is the nature of most things in life. Right? We get better at the things that we practice doing and travel is like that as well. It requires practice.
I think about the first trips that we took, including that very first summer, Dan and I traveled with, I believe it was, four different pieces of luggage. To like full-sized suitcases. So we each had a full suitcase, like a checked bag and we each had carry on bag, like a duffle size thing.
Looking back it almost gives me heart palpitations, even thinking about that.
M: That’s what you travel with now, or even more than you travel with now as a family of seven, right?
P: That’s probably double what we traveled with now, which is just funny. But we just didn’t know then. We hadn’t done it a lot. We didn’t know what we would need, what we could get by without. We didn’t know what kind of situations we would encounter. We had both been to Europe and Asia before, but we hadn’t traveled extensively on our own and we hadn’t ever gone for that amount of time before. So we just prepared for every use case. And now we don’t do that.
We have traveled a lot more. We’ve practiced a lot more. And so we have a better feel for what we personally need. And that’s true for going places as well. We recognize what we are personally comfortable with. So I feel like if you are uncertain about something, give it a shot. I mean, the worst that can happen is that it’s a stressful trip and you will probably make it back home and you’ll recognize like, Okay, that was probably not the best trip for me. Let me try something else next time.
M: Yeah, it’s so true. Thinking about that silly Jamaica trip, one of our big takeaways, because we had always tried to travel super shoestring. We loved like getting into the culture. So we wanted to stay like in hostels or in like guest houses. Dave and I had never chosen to stay in a resort or like a fancy hotel. We always had traveled together to these–we want to eat the real food and imagine that’s how you are too. You want to be in the culture with the people.
And we’d planned this trip and it was a seven day trip. We’re like, okay, well we pay the same amount for plane tickets and the guest house isn’t that expensive. So we might as well make it worth our money. That’s kind of what we were thinking. And we got there and then it was just so much trickier than we thought. And Milo didn’t sleep in. The guest house was really hot. I was fine. I could sleep, but my 10 month old had never not been in air conditioning before he was so confused. “Why am I so uncomfortable?” The poor thing.
M: And we realized as we flew home, I mean, the funniest thing is that that was like one of our most memorable trips. And we, actually looking back, we love it. But in the minute there were lots of really aggravating things about when we were there. But we on the flight home, I remember that we had this discussion. We spent the whole flight home talking about, Okay, now that we know this. We just learned so much. That was a crash course in international travel with kids. What will we do differently.
And we realized we might not want to choose a non air conditioned guest house with babies. We might not want to do seven full days. We would rather take that same amount of money, put it into a little bit nicer of an air conditioned hotel on the beach, you know, and maybe do three days. And that way, if everything goes wrong, we’re home quicker. And if everything goes right, we leave wanting more rather than leaving, like, Oh my gosh, I’m so happy to get on this plane.
I think that your point of like do it and you’ll learn and you’ll find out and as you go. You become better and better at it. And you find that you get to a point where you’re like, Oh, okay. Yeah, I get this. I know how to do this. And that’s a really fun place to be. But you don’t just jump from A to Z. You have to go through the stages of learning to be able to get better.
P: You can read all the blog posts in the world about what has worked for other families when traveling, and that might not be the case for you. There are probably some 10 month olds out there who will sleep just fine in heat and who wouldn’t be bothered at all. And there are probably some families out there who will feel a lot more comfortable with taking a bunch of baby gear. We personally feel more comfortable with leaving the gear behind and dealing with it, you know, and you won’t really recognize what works for your family until you try it out.
M: Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s a great advice.
Okay. So to wrap up this first section, I would love to just talk briefly about finances. Because I think that so many people feel like finances are the barrier to travel. Especially once they have kids. Okay, I want to travel. I have this dream of like traveling the world and in my head I’m a globetrotter, but my bank account says that I am a stay-at-homer. How do you plan financially for travel? And what advice would you give to others who want to travel but feel like finances are the reason that they don’t.
P: I have two thoughts on this first, how to come up with the money in order to do the big expenses like accommodations, flights, those kinds of things. And then second is what to do about the funds while you’re actually in the place where you are, wherever you are.
So first of all, accommodations and flights, those are kind of the big expenses, no matter where you’re going. So those are the ones that we try to focus on when we’re trying to reduce costs, because obviously we’re traveling as a family of seven now. And so that clearly is more expensive than traveling as a family of two. However, I will say that it is not seven times more expensive to travel as a family of seven, than it is to travel as one person by yourself. Obviously it is more expensive. It’s not seven times more expensive.
M: Yeah. That’s a good point. That’s an aha! moment for me because sometimes I do think, Okay…I multiply everything but no, that’s true. I mean flights and maybe some of the food, but like one hotel room, two hotel rooms, as many people as fit.
P: Exactly. And a lot of times for accommodations in particular, we almost always stay in home stays or home exchanges. So we have stayed in Airbnbs. We’ve stayed in VRBOs. We’ve even done a home exchange. So we were in Europe for the entire summer. That was 2 1/2 years ago. Summer of 2018. We spent the entire summer in Europe and one month of that was in Paris. And while we were in Paris, we did a home exchange.
So this preach and family stayed in our home here in California, and we stayed in their home in Paris. It was in the 20th abalone Smoltz. It was right by the subway. We got around everywhere and our accommodations were totally free for a month. It was really, really neat. And we also had all the benefits of a home.
We had a full kitchen, we had kid toys when we were there, we had multiple bathrooms. So we were all crammed into this. Tiny hotel room. And so I would encourage people to think outside the box for what you might be willing to do if you might be willing to stay out a little bit further. So you can get maybe a two bedroom apartment that you were renting instead of a tiny little studio hotel, right in the middle of a city consider if you can reduce costs by.
Changing where exactly you’re staying, how far you’re willing to commute, the type of accommodations you’re using, whether it’s a hotel or a home exchange or an Airbnb, there are lots of different options. Consider whether you can reduce costs by making some of the food. Because even if an Airbnb, for instance, might be a little bit more expensive than a hotel, you might have two bedrooms instead of one, and you might have a kitchen, which means you don’t have to eat out every meal.
We also tend to Airbnb our place while we are traveling. Obviously that’s not as true. Um, during COVID we actually bought an RV this year. So we were gone for several months, kind of quarantined an RV. And for some of that time, even we left. Some extra time in between guests, um, and in between the cleaners.
So we were even still able to Airbnb our place while we were gone. Then at your place, you mean you Airbnb, your physical home that you own in California while you travel to offset some of the cost of travel? Yes, absolutely. We’ve managed to offset most of our accommodation costs. Through Airbnb being our own home.
And I have lots of tips on that because it is definitely a learning curve. So I’ve written a couple of posts on that because it takes a little bit to get into, but once you manage to figure out the system, it can be an amazing source of income to subsidize your own travel. Then with flights nowadays, we tend to not use points as much just because there is.
Enough of us that it’s hard to get enough points to cover, you know, either six or seven tickets, but if you have a smaller family, that’s absolutely an option. We traveled on miles and on points through credit cards for years and years and years. Um, until we had probably our fourth baby, um, even with three kids, we managed to do miles a lot, and you’d be amazed at some of the like miles hacks that, um, people come up with through credit cards.
And there are tons of blogs out there that will. Teach you all about that. So those are wonderful options. We have no qualms with traveling budget airlines, like we love flying Norwegian air, which is dirt cheap. In fact, I think it was last fall. I think it was just about a year ago. We flew to Eastern Europe and we went through London, our flights from, uh, our home here in Bay area in California to London.
We’re like $170 each one way, like dirt cheap. So then we obviously had to, we paid for one check suitcase for all six of us at the time it was, you know, like 50 bucks or something, which actually is ended up, ended up cheaper than carrying on luggage because they charge you for that. So we just checked one suitcase.
We bought these dirt cheap tickets. We brought our own food. Like we have no issues with just picking up on the way to the airport and eating that on the flight. Instead of paying extra for a nicer airline to bring you airplane meals that we don’t really care to eat anyway. So you don’t necessarily have to have the very fanciest, um, of accommodations or of, um, flights or whatever.
Think about what is most important to you? Obviously, if you’re going to be uncomfortable and miserable the whole time don’t do that because it won’t be very enjoyable. But if there’s something that you don’t care about that much, think if you can eliminate that. Yeah. It’s so smart. Again, it goes back to like, what matters the most to you?
What is the purpose of travel for you and your family? And then like think outside the box for making those things happen. If you want to just get places and see things, then who cares about where you stay or what flight you take. If you want to have a luxury vacation, then maybe you will, you know, fly on a nice airline and sip the beverages and sit on the beach at the resort.
And both are totally great options. They just are for totally different styles of travel. And so you just have to know. What it is that you are looking for and, uh, and know that that it’s possible that it’s available for you to do that. We have. Usually plant, I’ve been talking on the blog a lot about planning.
In fact, all of November was focused on the different, you know, time schedules, uh, planning, annual planning, quarterly planning, monthly planning, and weekly and daily planning. And one of the things that I mentioned was that Dave and I like to, and for years since, I mean, for 10 years, over 10 years, we have planned tried to plan almost all of our travel for the entire upcoming year in November of the year before, for whatever reason, just like around Thanksgiving.
That’s when we. Are kind of in the like, you know, everyone’s a little bit like, okay, end of the year, let’s like, what’s coming up and that’s enabled us to think if we want to go on a big trip, like in August or October, we can start putting away money for that monthly in December or January. And, you know, And we are a family that totally budgets.
Like I know actually I’ve been surprised to lately actually I’ve had this conversation with a couple of friends and family lately that I’m like, wait, you don’t use a budget. What does that even look like? Like I just, don’t, we’re such planners that like, I have like a grocery budget. I have like a clothing, but you know, like we, we really pay attention to where our money goes, I guess maybe more than some people that I didn’t.
I thought everyone did that, but I don’t think everyone does things the way you do things. And then your mind blown that I’m like, I don’t even know how it would function if I didn’t like have money going, the places that I tell it to go, you know? So not that that’s wrong. I think, I mean, my friends and family that don’t have budgets are doing well.
Um, there is, even though I was authorized, um, but, but what’s so nice is that we can make the F we actually can look and say, what do we want to, like, where are we going to make room for this? So that might be less eating out or less like activities. At home because we know that that money is going to this trip that we’re doing later on in the year.
And it’s just having a little bit of foresight. It also helps us buy tickets in advance. It helps us, you know, um, get excited about where we’re going and do all of the like learning and, and anticipating. And so that’s just been really nice too. Not feel like we didn’t like decide yesterday that we’re going to Hawaii tomorrow.
Like generally you do a little bit of planning, preparation and budgeting, really anything that you want to do as possible. You just make choices. Budgeting can sometimes have a negative connotation, like, Oh, we have to budget for this. Or we have to stick to a budget that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
It can be a really wonderful freeing thing to know that you have these certain constraints and you can work within those constraints. Yeah, I’ve never thought of budgeting as negative, but that is interesting that some people might think of it as meaning you don’t have enough money. I think of a budget as the sort of spreadsheet that, that I choose where my money’s going.
Absolutely. So, so, so interesting. I just want to quickly touch on saving money while you are wherever you are traveling. Because I think that people can sometimes feel overwhelmed by that. Like, Oh, we have to buy all this food. We have to do all these things. Things. And when I started my blog and my Instagram, a couple of years ago, I specifically named it local passport family, because it’s really important to me that wherever we are, that we try to act as locals would, like you said that when we go a place, we want to experience the real food there.
We want to talk to people who are from there. We want to have more of a local experience and feel immersed in the culture, wherever that is, whether it’s domestic or international. And so I don’t think that we always have to be. Tied to living as tourists because obviously living as a tourist, whether you’re in your own city or somewhere else is going to be significantly more expensive than living as a local woman.
And a lot of times we are not spending a ton more money on food. For instance, when we’re traveling than we would at home, because we’re cooking some of those meals, we are not eating out every meal. We’re doing sandwiches for lunches. We’re on the go. We’re eating oatmeal at home before we leave for breakfast and we might eat out one meal a day or something, or we might not eat out a meal a day, depending on how long we’re somewhere.
So I think it’s important to recognize that you don’t necessarily have to always act like a tourist. You don’t have to go to every single tourist site. We went when we were in London a couple of years ago, we didn’t go on the London eye because I didn’t particularly want to spend a ton of money to go on the London eye for this view that I didn’t think was really all that fantastic.
Anyway, more important to put my money toward other things. For someone else it’s really important to go on the London eye and you can work that into, like you said, your budget for what is important to you and put your money there and cut back on something else. Totally. Well, and the other thing that I’ve realized in traveling with other people, a lot of people think of traveling as sh as a jumping off point of a shopping trip.
Like anywhere you go, they like land in the city and spend days and days and days shopping and buying souvenirs and, and. You know, packing this whole other suitcase and, um, with things to take home. And obviously I am not much of a shopper generally, and I, so souvenirs have never been that big of a deal to me.
So I thought that it was interesting to realize actually, my favorite example of this was that when I was in Germany a couple of years ago with Dave, he was traveling for work and I tagged along because the hotel room was paid for it. Was it. Cheap flight for me. So we kind of took advantage of, of the opportunity for me to go.
It was my birthday too. So I invited myself on his work trip and I spent most of the time by myself because he was in meetings and in the courtroom and stuff, I did a lot of wandering through boutiques and through really cool German shops. I was in Munich and I just fell in love with these local boutiques and shops.
And I didn’t really buy anything. Like, I think I bought one or two small things, but I didn’t like, I didn’t pack. I could have, because I loved that many things that I was like, Whoa, this is so cool. But I, I enjoyed the browsing and the looking as like a cultural experience, more than, as a shopping and, and consuming experience.
And I felt the same good feelings. That I would have if I had brought a bunch of stuff home, and yet I D I didn’t come home and have to figure out where to put all this stuff and take care of it. And, you know, I didn’t spend the hundreds of dollars I would have spent. So I think that just inviting people to consider just like you don’t have to go out every day.
You also don’t have to buy t-shirts from everywhere you go. You don’t have to bring home, you know, bags of stuff from, from shops. Like you can. You can enjoy the experience of being there without all the extras that might feel like they’re a financial strain. Absolutely. I think that’s such an important point that.
It doesn’t, we don’t have to have a physical memento of the experience. The experience is the wonderful part of it. We don’t need something else to add on to the experience. And I think about this with experience and gifts as well, because I think a lot of times there’s a tendency to give something physical, to accompany the experience gift, which can be wonderful.
Sometimes it’s something that really goes along with the experience or as important to have for the experience, which can be great. Other times though. Sometimes I think that. We’re still giving a physical gift and tacking that on to the experience guests. So then you ended up having two guests and you still have the staff, um, which sort of takes away from the whole purpose of the experience gift in the first place.
Right. Yeah. It’s so true. Okay. I love it. So those are such great tips. I am now just like so excited for when the world opens up again, hopefully in the next six months or so that we can start to safely travel again outside of our own homes. So let’s move into the second section where you can. Love where you live even right now in COVID and travel safely, locally, explore your own city and, and state give us your best.
You’ve been such a good example of this, but not everyone has an RV. So you’ve traveled the whole country during the last six months in your RV. Cause it’s we were just talking before we started recording about how you’re you can be stay at home orders. Anywhere you go because the RV is your home. And so you can go to the bathroom there and you can make your meals there.
And you’re literally like, not interacting with anyone ever because you have this self-contained unit. What about the rest of us, teach us how to travel and how to explore during this time that is quarantine pandemic friendly. So I feel so strongly, and I think this applies to both exploring locally, as well as exploring from your couch.
But exploring to me is really a mindset so much more than a destination. When we have that feeling of curiosity and excitement for new experiences and new events and new activities, then everything becomes exciting. Even when we’re right at home, we moved to the Bay area. About four and a half years ago.
And the first two months that we lived here, we were living in corporate housing right in San Francisco itself. And it was amazing. It was before my oldest started kindergarten. So I had three little kids at home, none of whom were in school. So we just explored every single day in San Francisco. And it was incredible.
We found all of these tiny little hidden gems. We went into like, Probably, I don’t know, 30 different churches in the city of San Francisco. We went into mosques when we were able, we went into synagogues that had incredible stain glass and all these beautiful, different depictions. In fact, there’s one in the middle of San Francisco.
Um, That has this incredible stained glass of Moses receiving the 10 commandments, except instead of Mount Sinai, it’s Yosemite. That’s incredible. It doesn’t have to be something really huge to be incredible in your city. Even if your city is a smaller city and you don’t have tons of museums or gardens or whatever, I guarantee that there are incredible things to go and.
Or it might just be, um, an area of the city that is a little bit overgrown. It might be fun for your kids to go run through. It might be a flower garden. It might be, it might be a museum. It might be a tiny museum that isn’t necessarily world renown, but it might have some really, it might have some hidden gems in it that you might be able to learn about and explore a little bit more with your family.
So there are so many opportunities to get out and to explore right within your own community. Yeah, it’s so great. I remember laughing a couple years ago. My older sister is quite a traveler. Like she, I mean, she just, that is her. She eats and breathes and sleeps at like, she loves it. That’s all she wants to do.
And we were joking. Um, her husband was kind of joking with her about like, what if you couldn’t travel? And I said, yeah, what would you do if you really like had a whole year that you couldn’t go anywhere and you had to just focus on loving where you lived and being in your city. And this is of course three or four years ago when the idea of that happening that you actually couldn’t go.
Anywhere was just ludicrous. Like what in the world would happen to make that a reality? And we kind of like fleshed out this whole like, well, I guess if I couldn’t go abroad, then I would do what you’re saying. Like, I would like, there’s so much here. And, you know, I grew up in salt Lake and that’s where she lives.
And we were like, think of all the things like antelope Island and. There is like a railroad thing. And there’s so many different canyons and parks and national parks and state parks and lakes and rivers. And like there’s so much right there that even growing up there, even being an active family and outdoorsy family, there, there are so many things to discover that because sometimes when we’re so focused on going other places, we forget what is just like within arm’s reach.
And it’s really enriching to, to. Actually start to like place where you live by the things that it offers, uh, the small histories, the little, um, like you say, hidden gems, like, what is it that makes where you live your city, your town unique. Why did, why did it even form? Like, what did it start with? Who were the first people that were there?
Why were they there? What were they doing? I’m sure that everywhere has something about what makes it up. A place that’s different than somewhere else. And those things are so fun to find. Absolutely. And even if it’s not something super old or historic, it can be something that’s special to your community.
Maybe it’s a fun bookstore. Maybe it’s like a tower that you can go and climb. Maybe it’s a hike. Maybe, you know, there’s so many different options. What do you think? What is your favorite way to find those places? Just Google searching or like hashtags on Instagram? Like how do you, you’re such a seasoned Explorer, local and abroad.
How do you discover those places that you want to go experience? Yeah. I mean, I mostly do Google searches. And then when we go to places, we try to talk to the people who are either working there or visiting there or whatever, and get other ideas. I have a giant Google spreadsheet where I just track everything.
So then if someone mentioned something else, I’ll immediately put it in there that way, when we’re wondering like, Oh, what should we do? Where should we go? You know, we want an activity. I can just go to my list and we can go to that place. You know? So then we don’t forget as much. As you start to explore it, you start finding so many more places.
I feel like that’s the biggest thing with exploring locally, especially when I start looking for hidden gems, you don’t run out of them. You just end up finding even more. Yeah. So do you systematize this for your family? Uh, especially now that you’re like home, do you try to go on an adventure every week?
Do you try to discover something new once a month? Like, what is the way that you keep yourself motivated and also accountable that you don’t just, I mean, I know that you. Personally, probably don’t have the problem of kind of slipping into a routine where you’re not doing it because your routine is to go travel.
How would you recommend to someone or, or is there a way that you sort of keep yourself motivated and excited about it? Even though sometimes it’s a lot of work. Yeah, so pre pandemic. Um, I would say probably about once a month, we would go into San Francisco and try to find something new or something that we’ve loved before.
That’s our nearest, like big, big city that has a lot of stuff to do. So that’s kind of, what’s fun for us during the pandemic. We have made weekly hikes part of our family routine. So typically on Wednesdays, Oh, like, you know, I have a running list of hikes that are either close by, or maybe a little bit further.
Um, but all within, probably about 45 minutes of our home and I just have a running list. And so we try to do one a week and that at least gets us in the habit of getting out and feeling like, okay, like we have something else to look forward to something to go and do. We’re the same way. So we do, uh, uh, our, we do a weekly hikes on Sundays and I’ve been sharing a little bit about them on Instagram.
And the other day, someone asked me about how I find the trails. And I said, Oh, I just Google search. Like family-friendly hikes around Richmond. And I had maybe a dozen and people say, you have to use all trails. All trails has all of the trails. And I was like, Oh, I’ve never heard of that. So, um, that’s a resource that is new to me.
And. Apparently lots of people like it. So if you want to kind of find hiking spots, that’s a good resource for that. Um, and right. And it’s nice. Cause you can look within a very small area and it’ll give you a bunch right. In that region. It will also tell you the distances and also how difficult the hike is.
Based on most reviews. So that’s really nice. Yeah. Really nice for kids too. If you have beginner, hiker is if you haven’t done a lot of hiking, your older kids may not be super, may not have a ton of stamina. So just, yeah, I think it’s a good idea to just start easy and then see what came and starting with like a half mile hike.
And I think you’ll be amazed that as you do it consistently, that stamina really does build up. Before we left in the spring, our hikes were generally around like, Two miles. If we did a three mile hike, we’re like, Oh yeah, we did a three mile hike today. And we’ve been hiking for years as a family, but still not doing like long ones.
You know, the summer we were hiking. So consistently as we were going to different public lands, that we were doing nine mile hikes with, you know, 22,000 feet of elevation gain. And our kids were doing that. And it felt like a wonderful accomplishment and amazing how kids really can build up the stamina and how you can’t do.
Yeah, a good example. Just another good example of when you start doing it, you get better at it. It becomes easier. It becomes more fun. Yeah. So that’s amazing. And I love the idea of kind of putting a general like monthly or quarterly exploration date on the calendar and starting to like, build that into a families.
Routine to just know that, okay, what are we going to, what are we going to discover this month? What are we going to discover this quarter? That is about the way that we’ve been doing it too. And it’s really fun because we’re consistently looking forward to something that, um, even in the pandemic, I feel like that is something that has saved me mentally and emotionally to just know that there’s, there’s always something good coming up.
And I’m the one who puts those on the calendar. Yeah, it’s really fun. So those are some great tips for exploring locally and reminding people that even in the pandemic, there are safe ways to explore outside in your communities, in your cities, obviously follow all of the guidelines for your own area. I know they’re a little bit different state to state and city to city.
There is so much good. And even in the winter, actually, maybe Preethy. Do you have any suggestions for, I know half the country is really. Cold and snowy in the winter and maybe going on outdoor adventures, isn’t quite as easy. Do you have any tips for how to handle like weather when you want to explore, but it’s cold.
Yeah, good gear. And I think that’s true for travel as well, whether you’re exploring locally or whether you’re actually going somewhere to travel, it’s worth figuring out the right gear. And it doesn’t always have to be super expensive gear. Um, we went to Zion national park last February. So February of 2019, so cold, so cold.
And we also went to Bryce, which is even colder. Hi, the day we were in Bryce was probably like, I don’t know, zero degrees or something. It was so dang cold. Um, zero Celsius. I think it was like, just about freezing, um, for the high. So yeah, so cold. We had our will-based layers. We had, um, big coats. We had snow pants so that we weren’t getting soaking wet and we didn’t have fancy snow pants.
I think I got like. You know, $15. Walmart’s no pants, but they work. And they, we, it kept us from getting soaking wet. So we weren’t like refreezing. Um, and it makes it so much more enjoyable when you have that gear and you’re able to actually play and experience and have fun in the cold instead of just constantly being annoyed that you’re in the cold.
Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s so true. Um, someone, the other day mentioned this, uh, it was like a Scandinavian word that I said something about Hooga about that cozy feeling, you know? And she said, wait, have you heard this one? And I don’t remember what it is anymore. Something with an S, but it basically is Norwegian for no bad weather, only bad clothes.
And. They’re like getting outside every single day, no matter what, because the weather shouldn’t dictate the way that you connect with nature. And I was like, Oh my gosh, I love that idea. And I also have a friend locally here in Richmond who is just a great example to me of sustainability and eco-friendliness and she, um, she’s actually been on the show sustainably Rupa, and she just shared it.
An Instagram picture, it snowed enrichment. It doesn’t normally snow here. Like maybe, maybe once a dusting a year. Um, but all the kids of course wanted to go play outside in the snow. And she had a picture of all of her, three kids in a thrifted secondhand snow gear. And it was either borrowed or second hand, super inexpensive, but well, you know, well loved.
And she’s like, it’s, you can totally have all the gear, even if you don’t want to invest in. You know, invest a ton of money or invest in all new things. Like you can, there are ways to do this just with a little bit of intention. So I think that’s a good reminder this, some of the snow gear and we had our well base layers from travel already.
We purchased some of the snow gear because we had already gone to the snow a couple of times, and we had borrowed friend’s gear so we can use it. We knew that our kids loved the experience of playing in the snow. We knew that we would get use out of it. Um, and that we had enough kids that we can pass it down.
And so we waited and we tested out. We borrowed first. We, you know, so I think that you don’t have to go out and buy a bunch of stuff, right. In the beginning, you can borrow, you can test it out and then if it works for your family, then you can consider investing in that gear yourself. Totally. I love it.
Okay. So I am now also excited about continuing to discover things locally and just like give myself a little boost that I need for the winter time that like we can still discover amazing things and have all of those fun, like connected feelings even at home. Um, so let’s move into this third section, um, which you have been such a fun example of.
All of the, um, discovery of travel from literally your couch, creating ways that you can connect with cultures and people throughout the entire world without leaving your home because of the pandemic. So tell us how you’re doing this. What are some of your favorite ways to travel and discover from home?
Absolutely. So this past summer I created what’s called the global children’s book clubs. So the purpose behind it was twofold. First we were missing travel. We wanted to be able to connect with the world. We wanted to still learn from the people of the world. And secondly, we really wanted to put more effort into, um, anti-biased, anti-racist inclusive, diverse education in our family.
And in our home, we wanted to diversify our bookshelf. We wanted to. Diversify the perspectives that we were hearing from people who grew up in different circumstances, who had different ways of life. And we wanted to learn about that. So I created this book club, which was 26 days of global education. And we went through every letter of the alphabet.
So 26 days, one letter for each day and each day had a different country. So a for Australia, B for Brazil, C for Cambodia and so on. And it was such an incredible experience. We listened to picture book, read alouds for each of the countries. Most of the authors of the books actually did the read alouds themselves, which was.
So neat to see. And then we learned about foods. We learned, we did craft projects, we learned about dance and other movement activities, and it was such an enriching experience for our family to be able to connect with the world in such a fun way. Right. The global children’s book club is so incredible because it’s a full immersive experience for each of these 26 countries.
And guess what listeners. Preethy did all of the work, so you don’t have to do it. It was an incredible free resource, 26 countries with. Activities crafts, like you said, those read alouds are so cool. It was really fun to hear that authors themselves read their books. And I imagine it was really a fun experience for the authors to do that as well.
And I think that not only do you have all of these different countries and different free resources for people to be able to travel from home, but I also love that you kind of, each one of them is like a blueprint of what we can do if there is. Something that we’re interested in a different country or different culture or a different place.
You know, even if, as specific as like a city or something that you really want to get into how to access that place through, you know, multimedia and crafts and activities and music and those different things. How to do that all from home, you show us how to use it. Videos like you recommend some videos, you recommend books, you recommend music, you recommend food.
There’s some recipes included. There’s some specific crafts included. And I think that it’s such a great blueprint of, Oh, I actually don’t have to just be home. I can, you know, through all of these different mediums find. Incredible things and places and cultures and people, even though I can’t go there physically right now, I love that idea of the blueprint random, because yeah, these aren’t intended to be completely comprehensive forms of education for a country.
Obviously you can’t learn everything about a country from a blog post, but hopefully. It’s an opportunity to figure out like, Hey, I’m really interested in that form of dance. Maybe I can learn something else about it, or maybe this food. I really love the flavors in this. Let me look up some more recipes.
So like you said, it’s a jumping off point right now. We’re actually doing the global service advent. So very similar format with the books and the crafts and all of that. But every country actually has a nonprofit that we are learning about and supporting each day through this time in December as well.
Yeah. And all of those donations are being matched as well. So you donate $5. It ends up being what, $20, because it’s matched by a couple of places personally matching. And then my husband’s employer is matching as well. And so, um, anything that you want to donate to these organizations will get quadrupled.
And so hopefully it does some good all around the world during this time of year. So awesome. You just are such a rock star and really like living your values, which I am so inspired by that, like choosing what matters and then really making space to, to live it out, to create resources for people to be doing and exploring, and donating and learning and helping others along the way as well.
So thank you so much for all of the good that you do and all of the ways that you help the rest of us explore. And, and learn about the world and its people as well, such a kind thing to say Miranda. It has been an incredible opportunity for me. And I have to say our community over on Instagram and on my blog, it has been remarkable hearing people’s experiences and the way that they have contributed, I feel like.
I have started some of this, but so many people have contributed. So many people have added their perspectives and really pushed me to dig a little bit deeper, especially when it comes to anti-biased anti-racist work, the conversations that come up. Um, the questions that people ask, I feel like have been really thought provoking and enriching for me.
And so I’m really appreciative appreciative of that, and I hope that other people can come and join in on that conversation as well. Yeah, well, you make it so accessible for everyone. So that’s so awesome. Okay. So I feel like we have just done a really good job of giving people, some ideas for traveling with their kids, actually getting out there, exploring locally, and then also traveling the world just from home with some of the resources that.
Preethy has made available for you and the ideas that she gives you to even be able to, you know, then launch in and explore a little bit more on your own. I have a couple of questions for you as we close at preview that I just went. I think they’d be fun to ask. So tell me, what is your very favorite place to travel?
You can’t say you can’t say everywhere. Oh man. I know. I feel like I get asked this question a lot. Um, and it’s a really difficult question to answer. I feel like whenever I’m learning about a place, I’m like, Oh yeah, I really loved that place. Like, let’s go back there. I will say a few. Favorite favorites.
Um, London, I feel like is just an all-time favorite because London’s amazing. I love France because I studied abroad there. And so I feel connected and you speak French fluently, right? Yep. Beyond that though, Cambodia is just an incredible country with such a beautiful history. Um, the people are so kind the food’s amazing.
Um, so that’s a great one, India. I love because my family’s from India. So, um, It just feels special to me, Jordan is another one that I feel like is not on a lot of people’s radars, but is amazing. Like, so family-friendly that people are so kind and welcoming. Um, and it’s just beautiful, like such an incredible, incredible place.
So those are definitely some favorites. Morocco was such an amazing experience for our family, like the colors and the food and everything. There is like busy and crazy and just stunning. And so. Yeah, really? There are just too many to name though. That, well, that’s a good handful, even though I asked for one, I guess I’ll take five.
I love it. Okay, so here’s another question. I think I know the answer. Oh, you want to, you want me to say my favorite place? Let’s hear about yours. Oh, my gosh. Well, the first thing that comes to mind is Paris and I don’t speak French, but I really just feel like, and not such a cliche answer. I’m almost embarrassed that I would say that Paris is, there is something palpable about the, the.
Oh, there, the something the X factor in Paris. And I just like, I really, really love it. And I think I also have been plum and I are planning a trip to Paris for sometime in the next couple of years, whenever it safe. And we decided to, you know, plan on it financially. And, um, and so I think that it’s been on my brain because I I’m excited about taking her and showing her and thinking about what are the things that I want to do with her there.
Um, so. So I think that would, I would say that right now is like the first thing on my list for make sure you take a jot down to Leone, which is the study, the city that I studied abroad in. Um, I feel like a lot of people don’t necessarily go there, but it’s beautiful. It’s like a smaller, more accessible version of Paris, but still like it’s maybe even more French feeling then Paris.
Ooh. Okay. I like it. Okay. So next question. And I think I know the answer, but I’m just going to ask you anyway, if you. Like, if you only had one more place to go one more, one more week or month to travel, would you go to somewhere totally new or would you go back to places that you love new? For sure.
Somewhere now. Yes. Yes. Okay. What are your favorite books? Not about travel, but books that you’ve read that helped you feel like you’re somewhere else. Do you have any books that you love that you feel like you’re kind of escaped to a new place when you’re reading it? Great question. I actually really love picture books for this reason, because even though they’re short, I feel like they really kind of pack a punch in terms of feeling like you’re immersed in.
This culture for just a short period of time. There’s something about having the illustrations along with the words that can feel just really like fun and immersive. So I’m thinking of a few from the global children’s book club, actually that have been really like fun to read. One of them is from Morocco, actually.
It’s called. Storyteller, and it sort of just takes you through this almost magical journey and you know, that it takes place in Morocco, but it’s not necessarily teaching you about Rocco. You know what I mean? So you feel like you’re there. And so I love that we did for the letter and we did Navajo nation, which obviously is, you know, within the United States, but it was so fun to learn a little bit more about indigenous culture and history.
And we read the book fry bread, which is an absolute favorite. And again, It sort of just takes you into the culture. You feel like you’re within these families and these communities. And so I love books like that. That sort of help you feel immersed. Yeah, I love that. Okay, great. So the answer to that question is go look at the global children’s book club because there’s 26 of them and you’re going to love it.
Every single one of them is great. Okay. Amazing. So last question, where are you going to go next? The first place that you’re going to go when COVID. When COVID is over the world opens again, you’re going to you and Dan are buying flights. Where’s the first place you want to go? Well, so this last summer, my husband had paternity leave.
He gets about three months of paternity leave, which we feel really, really fortunate for. So the plan was to travel that entire time. So we actually had three different kinds of areas that were on our docket, and we hadn’t decided which ones or which order or whatever. So I’ll mention those. The first is Alaska.
Like I said, it’s the last, your 50th state. I can’t believe you guys. Aren’t just going to Harvey up there. Like why not just road trip. So that’s what we’re thinking now, now that we have this, you know, 20, 20 COVID RVE, which was not in the plans, I will say, not even a little bit. We are actually thinking that we might RV up to Alaska with them.
Oh my gosh. Please do. Just so I can watch, I just want to follow along on Instagram while you do that. So fun. Yeah. So we’re super excited about that. We’re hoping by next summer that things will be open enough that we can do that beyond that. We are hoping to go to Eastern Africa, to Kenya and Tanzania in particular to go on Safari and to explore some there, as well as to the Balkans.
We’re hoping to explore around there a little bit like Croatia and Albania and those areas. So yeah, those are some on our list. Okay. I love it. Well, I can’t wait to watch you catch your first Alaskan salmon. When you’re in, when you’re there next summer, actually, when did the salmon run? Is it in the summer or the winter?
I guess they don’t know. Well, clearly I need to put together an Alaska all need to learn about Alaska. I love it. So fun. Well, thank you so much for sharing all of your wisdom and your incredible tips and, and your inspiration with us, just for being an amazing mom who is out there. Not only doing good at home and sharing about global cultures and diversity and anti-racism education.
From home, but also be an example of someone who can get out there and, and see the world and take your hits to belong and not feel like it has to be perfect in order to do it and, and have it be amazing. And I just am so grateful to know you and to have you on the show. Oh, you are so kind Randall. Thank you so much for having me and for all of your amazing contributions as well.
I feel like you have done such a great job of building travel and experiencing the world and learning about the world into your own family culture. So I loved hearing from you as well. Oh, thank you. Well, hopefully this episode inspires some of you who are listening to start traveling now at home, get prepared and kind of nestled into the idea of exploring other cultures from your couch and exploring your own neighborhood.
And then in, in a few months in 2021, when the world doors. Fling open again, you’ll be mentally prepared and hopefully, maybe financially prepared in some little ways to get out there and travel with your kids. Um, and hopefully Preethy, and I will be right behind you. Okay. Wasn’t that such a fun interview?
I’m so grateful to Preethy for her time. And I hope that you enjoyed listening to the show. Has it got you as excited about traveling from home and real traveling abroad as it has me now, I wanted to give you a quick and kind of funny update because I had to go look up. What was that Scandinavian term that I had heard?
The word is free loops live. Which roughly translates as open air life. And I actually found a book written all about this concept and idea. So I’m going to link that in the show notes, it’s called there’s no such thing as bad weather, a Scandinavian mom’s secrets for raising healthy, resilient, and confident kids, which sounds right up my alley and goes really well with the concepts that we talked about in today’s show.
So find that in the show firstname.lastname@example.org slash podcast. I also want to remind you to subscribe to the show. If you are a new listener, I release an episode every Thursday morning at 6:00 AM Eastern, all in hopes to inspire you to live a more creative, adventurous, and intentional lifestyle. In addition to my weekly episodes, you can join me on Patrion with a Patrion podcast plus membership for just $6 a month.
You get a bonus episode with an accompanying worksheet every single month, as well as access to the digital self-development book club that I host. With an incredible group of women. Once a month, as we get ready for the new year is a really fun time to join me in the podcast. Plus membership group, you can actually join with an annual membership that gives you a discount.
You can just pay one time for the whole year, have access to an entire year’s worth of book clubs, bonus episodes, and this chance to just dive a little deeper into your own self-development and intentional living with me. It’s a really fun community and I would love to have you be part of it. And in addition to that, if you haven’t yet left a rating or review for the show, I would love to invite you to do that over at iTunes.
It only takes a couple of minutes and makes a huge impact. I appreciate every single one of those reviews. So thank you so much. Happy holidays. All of the fun things are culminating right now at the end of 2020, we need a, we need some time to celebrate don’t we? So I hope that you are taking that time, enjoying those moments with your family.
And I will be here to chat with you again next week.