Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Seattle, Germany, and Multi-Generational Travel

At the top of the Space Needle in Seattle last weekend.

Spent last weekend in Seattle with my mother and my daughter.  We had never been there before and went up to visit family.  Seattle is a beautiful city and we had a terrific time.

Wait.  This is a blog about Europe.  Can I work this in somehow?  Well, yes.  I'm going to post today about the joys and benefits of multi-generational travel.

I am very blessed to still have my mother, who is also healthy enough to travel and enjoys it.  And what an enriching gift it is to my children when we all travel together!

My mother lives here in the U.S. – near us, in fact – but was visiting her hometown in Würzburg, Germany, a few years ago when we joined her there.  I believe our time together traveling in Germany will be one of my children’s most cherished childhood memories when they grow up.  The experiences we shared strolling through palace gardens, walking across old bridges, and delighting in creme-filled pastries formed positive and lasting impressions.  Oma pointed out places she used to have lunch and where she used to work, and the kids developed a connection to her past as well as to history, since she told stories of how she remembered the city in ruins after the war.

Together, my husband, son, daughter, mother and I traveled on to Munich, where we met with more relatives and spent time touring around the big metropolis.  The endless opportunities for my children to interact with their Oma about new and interesting sites, foods, and experiences strengthened their bonds and emotional ties.  I think extended family, starting with grandparents, builds a child’s sense of identity and security. 

My mom's hometown in Germany.
The benefits and beauty of the relationship extend to the grandparents and parents as well, of course.  My mother treasures every moment with her grandchildren, but special times and travels with them bring her unforgettable joy.  Grandchildren also provide a healthy focus in life and keep the older generations' minds and bodies active.  As for me, every trip with my family, especially ones that include extended family, first and foremost fill me with gratitude.  I am very fortunate to have such opportunities.  Most of all, I value the continuity between the past and future that these opportunities provide my children and hope it builds pride and understanding in them.  And I look forward to traveling with my grandchildren one day!

What children need most are the essentials that grandparents
provide in abundance.  They give unconditional love, kindness, patience, humor, comfort, lessons in life.  And, most importantly, cookies.  
~ Rudolph Giuliani


  1. I love the thought of multi-generational travel, which I guess we do when we meet them to ski in New Mexico, but with a father who's now curtailed his traveling due to health reasons and a mom who at 77 is now cutting back on travel, I don't think my sons will have the benefit of that experience.

    How sad, but at least my traveling parents put the spark into me and my sons!

  2. Returning the follow!

  3. Wow, how lucky are your kids!

    Thanks for joining us on I ♥ Blogging Hop I am your newest follower.


  4. Hiya! Thanks for stopping by and following along -- happy to be followig back!


  5. Amazing blog! I hope to travel to Europe someday! It looks amazing there :)
    New follower hope you will follow back!

  6. Hello Thank u so much for stopping by. I am now following you back !!
    I'm dreaming to travel more in the next year and so :)

  7. Ahhhhhh, you're a lucky woman, I know you and the family enjoyed that trip. Hello, thanks for visiting my blog yesterday and following me. I'm here returning the follow and look forward to reading more of your european trips...and those bathrooms, smiles. Thanks and Happy Wednesday!

  8. Hi, thanks for following me at Henry Happened. Returning the follow! And glad to have found such a great site!

  9. What a blessing to be able to create those memories for your children!

  10. Thank you for visiting my blog. I am following you back!

    I visited Europe many times as a child with my grandmother. I miss her so much. You're right--those memories and experiences shaped me into who I am today. Thank you for sharing these experiences and reminding me of my own. I hope to be able to do this with my children too.



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