We knew traveling as a family would change us, just not this much

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This was the best year ever for our family! 

A year ago, we moved into traveling as often as we could make it fit in our schedule…to creating a life and schedule that would let us travel more than half the year. These past 12 months have changed us in so many ways both individually and as a family. I expected this change to have a huge impact on our family, but it has turned out to be so much more than I could have ever dreamed of.

Soarin Around The World Review

This video says it all… we traveled to 14 states, 4 countries and took 56 flights!

We grew so much by learning about different cultures and the history of the areas we visited, but the biggest change for us after all these adventures and travels was something totally unexpected. We started to appreciate home time more than we ever did before. After our longest trip, almost three weeks in Florida came to an end, I remember sitting in my bed on the morning after our arrival back at home and feeling lost. I looked around and I didn’t remember how I used to do the day to day here at home. I had a rough week transitioning back to home life and felt like I finally was back in my groove just in time to get back on the road.


When we returned after that much shorter trip to Arizona, my mind had shifted. Instead of feeling trapped at home, I was thankful for the down time to get caught up and recharged. I started to see our home as a sanctuary from the rest of the world instead of a prison to count the days to our next adventure. I fell in love with the sunset view from the balcony off our master bedroom and the warm glow that engulfs the family room each day around noon. The kids too found comfort in a regular schedule and from eating homemade food in their own kitchen. As a family, we realized what a great life we have at home and when we are off on an adventure. 

family pool

travel quotes

What have you learned by traveling more?

Heather Reese
the authorHeather Reese
Heather Delaney Reese is the storyteller and photographer behind the lifestyle and family travel blog, It's a Lovely Life®! For the past decade, she has vacationed over 150 days a year with her family. She is a vegan, and loves being by the water, spending time with her children, husband, 2 Shih Tzus and Cat.


  • One of my favorite parts of traveling together as a family is how many things you experience together and how much it can bond you. We have always taken family trips, and we always will.

    • I love family vacations because they are a time for creating precious memories that will last a lifetime. I hope we can continue to take these trips even after our sons become adults with their families.

  • It sounds like you have had an amazing year! I love when I am out and about traveling, but I also love to come home to my family. It helps me appreciate them more when I am gone.

  • It’s amazing that traveling had such a positive impact on you. I think it’s super cool that it allowed you to appreciate home even more.

  • There’s really no place like home, it’s where you find serenity and peace after all the traveling and the exploring. It’s nice though that you got to travel a lot more this year! There’s so much to learn when you travel, especially for the kids.

  • I honestly don’t travel as much as I would like. But I will say when I do, I always appreciated coming home. It is great to get away and experience other places and other cultures, but there really is no place like home.

  • Going on new adventures is always a lot of fun, especially as a family, but I seem to find a special joy each time I return home. Nothing beats that comfortable, relaxed feeling of familiarity.

  • My family and I travel all over the place and I wouldn’t change it for anything. No matter how stressful a packed car can be or traffic, weather , any of it, we always have a BLAST and make so many memories!

  • We love to travel! We have to traveled nearly a much as you have this year, but we did go to Michigan, California, and South Africa! I think what we learned is that kids learn even more when they experience it first hand!

  • I don’t get to travel as much as I would like to. With the school year about to start, it would have to wait until there is school break or long weekends. I know I am always happy to be home after a trip.

  • We love to travel too! My husband gets to travel more than me with his job but we try to go with him as much as possible . Our favorite thing to do as a family is cruising . I say you only have one life to live so travel every chance you can get

  • We love traveling although this year we sorta took a much needed break. WE made great memories though, those are always things I will treasure with the kids.

  • Some of my best memories of my family are from family trips! The experiences, the emotions, the adventures… that is good stuff for memory making!

  • We don’t get to travel very much. I wish we could travel a lot more though. It’s always fun making memories with your family.

  • I definitely believe that having those shared experiences with your kids, and for the kids having those experiences with their siblings , bonds you in a way that is hard to articulate and you carry those vacation memories with you for a lifetime.

  • I love traveling. For me it is all about just being with family and the ones I love and experiencing beautiful scenery and great food. Lots of good memories.

  • Wow, 14 states, 4 countries and 56 flights? that’s out of this world amazing! Sounds like a great dream. I can imagine how much it’s positively impacted everyone. All the memories and experiences shared as a family. I rarely ever travel but one day I sure would like to visit all the states by going on a road trip in an RV.

  • That’s awesome you guys have traveled so much! I love to travel but, like you all discovered, it’s always nice to come home 🙂

  • My husband and I are travelers. We too have traveled the world and have wanted to take our grandkids on trips but our daughter-in-law has a fear of flying and won’t let us take the kids on a plane. It’s totally awesome that your kids are experiencing different cultures!

  • I love this! I hope to be able to travel like this with my family someday. I recently returned home from a solo trip with my 3 kids (under 5) for six weeks. I learned that six weeks is way to long to be anywhere and I adore having my husband around.

  • Traveling this much had to make a big difference in how close the family got as well as how welcoming home became. I would have loved to travel like this with my kids when they were younger. You all have to know your are so lucky to have had all these experiences together. Thanks for sharing all your families travels and your thoughts.

  • Oh my goodness – you are living the life I dream of! We are so trapped here in school and routine and paying bills that I wonder when we will ever get to experience life. Good for you!

  • We don’t travel hardly ever. I wish we did I think it would be an amazing experience and would help my kids be closer. I think your family always looks so happy, and your girls seem to be very close. I’d love that!

  • Wow, that’s loads of fun! I love family travel, my son enjoyed so much when we travel with our loved ones.

  • I love traveling but sometimes our budget is so limited. As much as possible, I, hubby and my son travel at least once every quarter.

  • How blessed that you are able to have such wonderful experiences. I bet the kids have been learning a ton as well creating amazing memories. To more travels!

  • How very fortunate though, for you all to be able to do this. It is not something most people will ever get to experience. I know you already appreciate it. I love reading the posts!

  • What a great saying. We are very big on traveling and continue to bring our 4 college kids on trips when we travel because it brings us still closer as a family.

  • If I was not afraid to fly, I think we would do so much more as a family. I really need to overcome my fear to enjoy life.

  • I’m so totally the opposite. I’m not fond of traveling and a huge homebody. I think I take it after my mom. I want to like to travel, but just don’t. One family vacation a year is good for me. 🙂

  • It is so amazing your family has been able to travel so much together. I am sure it has created so many memories and connections for your family.

  • I love everything about family travel, no matter where we go. My kids have experienced so much at their young little ages than I have now as an adult. It’s truly an amazing thing!

  • We do travel a lot as a family and I am sure you had some wonderful memories that could stay for long. When you have kids around, such trips can be a good learning experience as well to them with a joy of having fun with the family.

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