Here Wee go!
To travel is to live.
Hans Christian Andersen
Welcome to Baby Vagabond! The website dedicated to the idea that children are a reason to travel and not an excuse not to.
What’s In A Name
Baby Vagabond. Since no one ever thinks of their sweet cherub as an unemployed and shiftless vagrant, the name is whimsical and even endearing. Babies are still free and untethered spirits. Not yet tied down to responsibilities or burdened by the indoctrination ahead, our babies – our children – are open and sincerely curious of almost everyone, everywhere and everything. They experience life the way we all still should.
We love living life through their innocence and often “idle hands are the devil’s workshop” sticky fingers. When they are done with one thing, they drop it and pick up the next thing. When they are no longer interested in being over ‘here‘, they make every effort, even against practicality, to be over ‘there‘. Young, free and unemployed, babies are who we wish we could be … with the paycheck of course! In the early years, when it is time to make a move, all the most important accoutrements practically fit in just one bag; food, drink, change of clothing, entertainment, favorite things, not-so-favorite things that will do in a pinch and items to turn any place into nap time in a cinch. If that doesn’t sound like a vagabond!
Mommy and Daddy Get The Gold Star
Seriously, congratulations for your decision to embark on the adventure of traveling with a young child. Whether you have experience and know how to travel with a young child and would like to share valuable input and encouragement or you want to foster wee wander lust in your little tyke and need help to get over the anxiety and apprehension, babyvagabond.com is your adult time out. Grab a cub of coffee and computer mouse. Your parent peer group is here for you. This community shares your reasons to travel with your young children.
Does it matter to kids whether they travel or not? Sure. Just ask parents who do travel with young children. My co-workers 5 year old daughters’s repeated asking about this summer’s vacation actually got the family vacation put on the calendar. Kids love to get away. I think they also love the break in the routine; eating a little more junk food, different bedtimes, seeing and experiencing things differently than you do at home, sharing in the responsibilities of packing and planning – it’s just one big adventure!
Sure, infants won’t know the difference, but a travel experience is just like any other experience. While children aren’t aware of the experience they are having at the time, it is still forming their development. Sometimes it is not about what is taught, but what is caught. Traveling as an infant will just bring about the conditioning for travel as a toddler. Before too long, your little one will be asking “where are we going?” soon to be followed by ‘are we there yet?”
My personal confession: I did not travel as much as I would have liked with my daughter when she was small. I used excuses like, “I want to wait until she is old enough to remember where we go” or “I think it is better to wait until she can walk longer distances” or “I’ll do more traveling when I don’t have to pack a baby bag and have to find places to change diapers” or “I’ll start traveling with my daughter when I have more money”. All very valid reasons to postpone travel, but know that it doesn’t get any easier as time goes on.
Whether its being ready to travel and then learning baby #2 is on the way, your family becomes larger and more settled in, more family members makes it more difficult to chose where to go, your living expenses increase making it more challenging saving for an entire family to travel, or waiting so long that your babies are now teens who would rather travel with the neighboring family rather than be with mom and dad and annoying siblings on a family vacation, waiting for years to see and experience the places you kept promising you would visit will only lead to time and opportunity lost.
While my daughter and I did travel, I am sad that I didn’t make more attempts to travel with her while she was younger seeing the benefit of those far and few between travel experiences in how she appreciates cultures, has continued interest in learning something new about a people and their culture with no judgment, has a broader bandwidth for differences and not just ‘tolerance’. I love listening to her talk (sometimes argue) with her friends about comments that really have them come across small-minded. I have to gently remind her that they have not been afforded the benefit of her travels; you know different because you did different.
While it is definitely never too late to start traveling, choosing not to do so could be something you regret. This website is here to encourage all parents to travel with their children and to underscore that they are never too young to foster the wee wanderlust. There are so many aspects of travel that help you to raise your child into good people. Travel will teach children patience, an appreciation for other people, and understanding that everywhere is not the same and that is okay, how to be resourceful, to learn and appreciate the ability to ‘make do’ and so much more!
Here wee go!
Don’t wait until it’s too late to start traveling; when it feels like more of a chore to get the children on board. Start creating an appreciation for an experience instead of an electronic gadget. Get them familiar with the idea that the best memories are the ones that you create. That some of the best souvenirs are the ones on your camera memory card.
This is it. No more excuses. Mom. Dad. You are going to start traveling with your kids and babyvagabond.com is going to help. Whether you need information on how to travel with a stroller, the best places to travel with a toddler or just the best places to travel with children, think of this as your one-stop resource. After all, you already have your gold star.