part of the BootsnAll Indie Travel Challenge Project

For week 18 of the Indie Travel Challenge, pick any one of these questions (or as many as you like!) to answer in your post. What is your earliest childhood memory of traveling with your family? Did you take regular family vacations? Did your family encourage travel? Did any of those family trips inspire your adult life as a traveler?

i have no one to thank more for my love of travel than my parents, who themselves (especially my mom) are pretty wanderlusty. i think my earliest memories are going with them on ski trips and road trips to national parks while i was still in elementary school. oh and a trip to canada in 1986, of course our first trip to the UK a couple of years later (that i barely remember save for random snippets), a trip to europe after i graduated college and my brother graduated high school, trips when they came to visit me while living in germany, a couple of trips to asia, some more to europe, canada, mexico, a handful to disney world…the list goes on (and not in order!). we usually do (and still do) one big trip every other year or so.

indeed, my brother and i were very fortunate to have grown up with the parents we have: people who recognize the value of travel and had the means to instill that in us.

actually, i also have to thank my mom’s job for letting her accrue all those frequent flyer miles. we probably wouldn’t have traveled so much had it not been for her business trips, which took her away pretty often but was more than made up for by great family vacations around the globe. (she has always had, until recently, higher elite status on united than me; in the last couple years we’re even — both of us are premier gold for 2012.)

to this day i love to travel with my family (especially my parents) because they ensure a higher standard of living than i would get if i were traveling by myself, and they don’t do package tours, which jives with how i like to travel. (and if i travel with them, they pay for a lot of it, too :P .)

i normally don’t take (let alone post) family photos (or even keep many online; look at me, scanning things in!), but here goes. too bad i’m not at the ‘rents now; they have tons of snapshots — in fact, most of these are files or photos they’ve given me.

Brother, Me, Mom, Dad (China 2010)

Mom (whose head is not as oddly-shaped as it looks in this picture), Dad, Brother, Me (Switzerland, 2006)

My brother is going to kill me for this. Aunt, Me, Brother, Dad, Grandma (Florida, 1996)

Dad and Mom visiting me in Germany (2007)

Not really a family trip, but my cousin Laura did come visit me in Germany as well. This is us on the bus coming back from Stuttgart Airport after a trip to Paris. (2007)

For giggles, here's a picture of my maternal grandparents and my paternal grandmother on a trip to England probably around 1990 or so

p.s. i just came back from a weekend at disneyland with my family; in 25 days i will be going to greece with my parents (who will be in berlin for almost a week before that).

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