Thanksgiving is this week- I can’t believe it’s here already.
When I think about Thanksgiving and what I’m thankful for, the first thing that always comes to my mind is my family. Although I’m in the travel business and am also thankful for that, I would not enjoy it nearly as much if it weren’t for my family. They have been my travel companions through the years. They have also been a strong support as I started this business and continue to grow it.
In that light, I thought this would be a good time to talk about some of the travel experiences I have shared with my family.
When I was growing up, my family vacationed in Minnesota nearly every summer. We would occasionally travel somewhere else – my dad thought it was important that we see more of this great country than one state other than where we lived. I wasn’t as excited about it as he was, since I loved Minnesota so much, but I can’t say that I didn’t enjoy seeing Mount Rushmore, Niagara Falls, the Oregon coast, and many sites in between.
When I got married, I talked my husband into trying out a Minnesota vacation and he loved it as much as I did. Our children also became hooked on vacationing at the familiar resort.
In the back of my mind, though, I had always thought it would be great to travel to Europe – especially to the Netherlands, since our family has a Dutch heritage. My opportunity came in July of 2000, when I made my first trip abroad with my mother – a trip I will never forget. We were only able to be gone a week, but we traveled from the south to the north and back south again, meeting and renewing friendships with distant relatives.
A couple years later, I talked my husband into taking a trip abroad with me. Again, he loved it as much as I did. We spent a few days in Germany before going to the Netherlands to see our relatives and the places that were now becoming familiar.
I am thankful that I have been able to make several trips to Europe since that time – most of them with one or more family members. I’ve traveled with my husband and I’ve traveled with my daughters. I have special memories from each trip.
When my family and I went to Europe in 2009, we were able to see the concentration camp at Dachau and remnants of the Berlin wall. I was able to introduce my daughters to their distant Dutch cousins. We cruised the Rhine River, enjoying views of ancient castles and old, established vineyards.
When my youngest daughter and I traveled together we visited Salzburg, Austria, where we took a Sound of Music tour. We slept on an overnight train on our way to Venice and later did some hiking in the Swiss Alps.
My husband and I toured World War II sites in Europe including the beaches at Normandy, the Battle of the Bulge area, and Nuremberg.
We especially enjoyed the different cuisines we were able to experience throughout the trip.
On each of the trips since 2009, we also visited Paris. It has been a blessing to share my love of Paris with my family.
This past September, I was able to share Paris with the clients on my tour. We had a great time – and I am thankful for each person that accompanied me. I am grateful for the opportunity to lead another tour to Paris in September of 2017. (Watch for a special announcement about the tour in this week’s newsletter).
I have so many great memories from my travels, but the best part was that I was able to experience them with my family. Do you have treasured memories of travel that you have done with members of your family or with friends? Share your experiences in the comments below.