Sweet Getaway: Chicago and Virginia

After a year of planning, saving and budgeting, we finally had our much awaited family vacation in the U.S. Agenda: Visit family and have a grand time!

My husband and I believe that travel is part of the education that we can give our children. We feel that through travelling, may it be local or international,we are able to teach them about culture and about being independent. In our trips I see my kids become more self reliant and confident. Being emersed in the different cultures and practices of the places that we visit is something that we are happy we can give to them. I see them step up to help each other, us and themselves as there is no yaya or helper to help them look after their needs. These are the valuable learning experiences that we feel are the most important during our family trips. Having a meaningful family experience is the number 1 priority! Of course the bonding of being together 24/7 with less distractions of phones, laptops and friends is a plus that we get from these trips. It’s just us and them…whether they like it or not!

This year we were so excited to be visiting family and friends in Chicago, Virginia and New Jersey, and to see Washington DC, New York  and Balitmore on the side. Included in our schedule were to go to the touristy places, as this was the first long haul trip for the kids! We were adamant in including places to visit that would widen their knowledge of history and culture, but of course the priority was to bond with the cousins and family. Also we were able to experience an 18-hour road trip from Chicago to Virginia that almost made me loose it! — it is not easy being in a car for that long! 🙂

We are happy and thankful for the opportunity to travel. With God’s provision and my husband’s passion for saving, we were able to bring the kids state side! This is truly a memorable summer for us! 5 weeks of great weather – snow, spring and warm weather! Great bonding time with the family! Seeing old friends and new places! We did have a grand time getting to know family and spending time with them!

By the way, please stay tuned for my series on “Shop Love”, all the wonderful shops that I visited and loved that I hope you would love too! Sharing with you some snapshots of our Sweet Getaway!…and some tips for traveling that I have learned along the way. 🙂

TIP: Bring a junior sized pillow for long plane trips, it makes the trip a lot more comfortable especially for the kids. :)

(taken with fuji xe-1)

TIP: Bring junior sized pillows for long plane trips, it makes the trip a lot more comfortable especially for the kids 🙂

Bonding with cousin Reb in Chicago
Bonding with cousin Reb in Chicago (taken with fuji xe-1)
Chicago cityscape and The Bean
Chicago cityscape and The Bean (taken with fuji xe-1)

ord

(taken with fuji xe-1)

TIP: Take a lot of pictures during your trip! may it be with a camera or your phone camera!…print it…document it…place it in an album. These are the memories that you will have long after your trip. 🙂

From the 103rd floor see thru ledge of the Willis Tower (formerly Sears) in Chicago.
From the 103rd floor see thru ledge of the Willis Tower (formerly Sears) in Chicago. (taken with iPhone)
Snow in springtime! We were happy to experience snow in Chicago!
Snow in springtime! We were happy to experience snow in Chicago! (taken with iPhone)

TIP: Be ready with clothes for the varying weather you might experience in the places that you will be visiting…look up the weather forecast before you leave. Better to be ready especially if you will not be staying with people that you know from whom you can borrow clothes.:)

family

(taken with fuji xe-1)

TIP: Be sure to spend time with people that you will be visiting. Bond with them! Get to know them! 🙂

In front of the Capitol in Washington DC.
In front of the Capitol in Washington DC. (taken with fuji xe-1)
Cousins!
Cousins!

TIP: Take lots of pictures of the next generation, the next time they might see each other is when they are all grown up!

Time Square New York and The Capitol in Washington DC
Time Square New York and The Capitol in Washington DC (taken with iPhone)

TIP: Bond with your wife/husband and children…this is what the trip is all about! Enjoy their company and get to know them too!…also take lots of family photos for school projects for the school year. hehe!

Washington Monument
Washington Monument (taken with Fuji xe-1)

 

Styled my cousins bridal shower!
Styled my cousins bridal shower! (taken with iPhone 4s)
Fun at Georgetown Cupcakes -- yummy!
Fun at Georgetown Cupcakes — yummy! (taken with iPhone 4s)

 

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  • I felt so bad that you guys were not allowed to come to Canada. Be sure to be ready the next time you visit.

    Looking forward to seeing you guys next year January 2015 for our family reunion (Juane Clan).

    Take care and talk to you later. I enjoyed your pictures and so good to see your family enjoyed your vacation and a very
    memorable trip.

    Love you,
    Tita Mir

    • Thanks tita Mir! Yes, we did not know that they will be asking for many requirements that I did not bring with me on our trip. Next time we will get our Canadian visa from here so that we are sure to be able to visit you! We will be spending time with Tina next week:) take care!