Author Archives: Ashley

The Pan-Asian Experiment: With teens!  Without leaving home!

It was a rainy Saturday and we were stuck in Seattle. My teen says, let’s take one of those trips where we don’t go anywhere. Awesome!  And she’s going to bring friends.  I felt a bit of pressure to make this a fun adventure for her and for her friends so I decided against anything overtly educational, plus I was banned from saying “museum.” I dug into my research … hmmm, what country, what country??  But, as soon as I tried to focus on any one country, I got sucked into details that I was afraid wouldn’t appeal to teens. After all, I couldn’t exactly expect them to get excited about a coloring sheet or learning 10 words in another language. Finally I came on an idea – a pan-Asia tour!

Like most trips to Asia, we started with a layover in Taipei, home of bubble tea! Read more »

Oasis in Riverside CA?

Why would anyone ever go to Riverside California?  Well, obviously not by choice right?  I got stuck there for a work trip recently and discovered the most amazing oasis: The Mission Inn.

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In my airport taxi, I cruised across miles of highway and then through an unassuming and somewhat discouraging urban area.  I had no hopes of a travel adventure or even a comfy bed.  I was therefore a bit surprised when the taxi rounded a corner and and pulled into a valet loop surrounded by large old palm trees.  I had clearly landed someplace special.

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Passing under a glorious arch, I wandered toward the lobby somewhat stunned.  I even passed live parrots on my way.   Read more »

100 Tips for Traveling with Kids in Europe

What’s your best family travel tip?  What saved your last trip?  What makes your kids really have a good time on a family vacation?  What awesome kid-centric European destinations have you been to?  What fun kid-friendly European activities have you discovered?

Zand L at Hogwarts

OK, OK, OK – we’re adding a destination to our new book.  Everybody wants a travel destination with their travel tips so we’re going European this time – art museums, mountains, cultural icons, rural villages, bread and cheese, many languages, castles, history, beaches, music, famous rivers, East meets West, and more politics.

Share your suggestions for a great, educational, and fun European adventure with kids in the comments below! We’ll try to include it in our new book “100 Tips for Traveling with Kids in Europe.”  If we do, we’ll include your first name and location so please tell us that information with your tip.  You can also click “Read more” for a nifty giveaway!

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The Family Traveler’s Handbook – New book, New perspectives

When we leave our homes, we leave behind the web of possessions and accumulated to-do lists and focus on spending time together” – Mara Gorman

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There’s a new family travel book on the market!  Why would we review the competition?  Well, because it’s a great book with lots of new perspectives to offer.  I read it cover-to-cover, enjoyed it, learned from it, and smiled regularly.  It’s a quick read with no nonsense.  Mara’s inherent philosophy is that everything can be travel.  She describes her first trip with her son – a trip down the block to visit neighbors.  Mara’s vision of family travel encompasses all activities that get parents and kids out the door, exploring the world together.  Read more »

Meditation on Coconuts

And coconut trees …

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Traveling with Kids – Food and Candy from Around the World

IMG_9296MultiCulturalKids a group of writers excited about raising multicultural children is hosting a video discussion circle in which we ask and anwer each other’s questions about traveling with kids.  The circle starts off with Olga from European Mama asking about travel secrets and then Leanna at AllDoneMonkey wonders about fun travel detours.  Ours was definitely an unexpected overnight in Memphis TN on New Year’s Eve – yes you can get BBQ delivered in a pink Cadillac!.  Then Michelle at Mother Tongues asked us about food and candy – a favorite subject in our family.  Watch our video answer about traveling with kids – food and candy around the world.

The conversation goes on at BilingualkidsRock where Olen answers our question about travel “equipment” that saved the day.  TrilingualChildren, InspiredByFamily, MarocMama, MultilingualMama, JourneysOfTheFabulist, and ThePiriPiriLexicon all contribute.  Jump in anywhere to enjoy listening in, thinking about traveling with kids, and meeting these interesting folks.

American Toilet Candy

Click to watch our video answer about travel and candy

Thailand Finale – A Perfect Day

IMG_9111It’s hard to wake up to the last day of the trip.  We weren’t flying home until the next day but this was our last full dawn till dusk day of adventure in Thailand.  On the agenda were temples, ruins, shopping, and eating.  We already knew that the mid-afternoon would be too hot to accomplish much so we aimed for an early start.

Breakfast at Luang Chumni Village was easier today.  We had already discovered Read more »

Family on the Loose: The Art of Traveling with Kids

fotlcover-200x300Family on the Loose: The Art of Traveling with Kids by Bill Richards and E. Ashley Steel will inspire laughter, learning and endless adventure with your family.

Pack your bags, hop a plane, and take a trip! Embarking on a journey with your kids can be a thrilling and rewarding adventure.  Family travel is also a great way to expand your cultural horizons and help cultivate our next generation of global citizens.

Great reviews of this book are everywhere.  Go ahead and Look Inside!

This new title from Rumble Books is intended for well-seasoned travelers and newbies alike who enjoy being with their children, want to enrich their education, and are excited to discover, as a family, the vast and unique experiences this world has to offer.

Our book offers hundreds of easy-to-use ideas for:

  • Drumming up excitement for the journey ahead
  • Teaching your kids to pack themselves
  • Having fun at the airport and on the plane
  • Easing jetlag and schedule changes
  • Involving everyone in setting itineraries and expectations
  • Making museums and tourist stops engaging for everyone
  • Enriching your travel experience through journaling
  • Keeping the joy of the journey alive long after your return
  • Discovering cultural education in your own back yard

Enjoy an excerpt on ideas for keeping kids happy, active, and engaged at the airport!