Guest post: With Bells On

Thursday, December 1, 2011

* While I'm getting my yoga on in Bali this week, I've asked some of my blog friends to share their favourite travel stories. Today's post is something that I can really relate to. Crystal from With Bells On writes beautifully on the importance of travel versus stuff, and how parenthood can change your priorities. I hope you're as inspired as I was, and when you're done reading, go say hi over at her blog! *

I've always had grand travel aspirations. Always been filled with the desire to see the world, experience different cultures, speak other languages, taste new foods. Unfortunately I've always had the desire but only occasionally the drive.

I've worked on the coast of Spain. hitchhiked across Europe to Morocco, walked the streets of Amsterdam's red light district, learnt to dive in the depths of the Mediterranean, sunned myself in St Tropez, climbed mountains and kayaked along side dolphins in Venezuela. All of which, through many series of unfortunate events (the hot Sahara sands, drunken night swimming, Venezuela having a horrific postal system to name a few), I have no personal pictures of.

I've been lucky to have done some truly amazing things. But not enough. I want more. I need more. I must have more.

The rite of passage gap year passed me by. I had no one to travel with and was afraid to travel alone. The round the world trip planned by my husband and I ruined by bankers (thanks guys) as we watched our travel savings reduced to rubble as the value of the dollar plummeted. And then I fell pregnant.

People expected that with the arrival of our beautiful little girl that our plans for travel were dashed. As a couple we had always been so focused on paying the mortgage, material things and going out partying that we never got round to taking holidays. We've managed only one in six years and that was our honeymoon! The money was there but we always had something better to spend it on, now more than ever, right?


Having Iris completely turned our world upside down, it made us reassess all of our values and priorities. It made us realise how unfulfilling many of the choices we had made were. So we have made a decision, a pledge, to choose experiences over stuff. Adventure over money. When we look back on our lives we won't remember the new car, the fancy lamp, the designer shoes. It will be the things we have done together as a family, the things we have experienced.

Our budget has been drawn, our belts tightened and material expectations lowered. But, most importantly the plans laid. We're saving a little at a time and in 11 or so years, as a family, we will see the world.

In the mean time we are off to Paris for my birthday in January, and this time I'll remember to pack the camera.



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