These videos and articles focus on things that fuel my energy- global experiences, loved ones, and life learnings.
For many people, life is about love, near and far. My reflection- This picture was taken just a month ago with some of my family in India. And, in just in one month, one family member is no more.
While mourning is part of the journey, reflection is important too. Often times, our lives and careers get so busy that we have limited time to invest in what/who matters most... loved ones . Sometimes we even channel stress to those we love. Hence, let’s take a moment to reflect and prioritize time + positive energy for the people we love. While I am so far from perfect, I know I try my best.
Before there was Travel Plus Them, there was him. So I share this marriage perspective.
While we are different in many ways, one thing Kailash and I have in common is our desire to explore the world. After parenthood- two individuals naturally evolve and often times, “give up” things they enjoyed before kids. Kailash and I made a commitment to continue our travel with kids. Through the roller coaster ride- I am grateful to my husband for being my partner in life. I am also thankful that the 33 year old me to took a leap of faith with him.
While the journey of life is about compromise, we define the boundaries of that.
Question- How do kids remember all the family visits at such a young age... why not wait until they older so they remember all their relatives?
Lakshmi’s Learning- People (even my parents) say I am crazy for the nonstop travel and for taking my kids to India. They even advise me against it... saying to wait. Of course I rarely listen. And, you know what... it is ALWAYS worth it for time with family- near and far. The relationships that my children have built with their great grandmother, aunts, uncles, extended grandparents, cousins, and friends are absolutely priceless. The reason they remember all of them is because of the effort we, as parents, have invested in those relationships.
And for me family is everything so even through the stomach sickness we all just experienced, I do not regret one moment! We saw all the elders- which is very important to me. They may not be around the next time.
So- don’t wait to visit your loved ones wherever...
So, how many parents can relate to the “moments of madness”? What do you do?
Question- What do I do when my child has a tantrums in public on our vacation?
Lakshmi’s Learning- Many people asked me if my kids cry and scream? Of course there have been many tantrums over the years while we travel (and more at home too)! I don’t always have time to capture on video as I am trying to calm the children... but this time I did!
So the answer is not a one size fits all approach, but here is one approach I started more recently and it has worked.—— In this situation, I forgot my daughter’s stroller in our Air BnB home. Oops! Nothing I can do! The irony is that she has not used it for one year at home. But it was her “comfort” while traveling - even though she doesn’t sit in it most of the time....she still just wants it.
What did I do? —- One piece of advice- Remain calm!!! Even when she was screaming and on the floor-...
Question- What are your experiences with guided tours?
Lakshmi’s Learning- We generally like guided tours— especially when you have a large group!!! In the recent years, we have booked our tours through Viator... and have had great experiences. Of course, some are better than others, but all have been memorable in some way!
This specific picture captures a funny moment.... So, after we requested our guide a few times to take a picture of our family alone... he gave our camera to someone else to take the picture and he stayed!!! We just laughed it off and thought “well, I guess we are important!” And we were- being a tour guide was his post retirement second career and we were one his first customers! Glad we helped boost his business- always a good feeling!
What are some of your memorable tour guide experiences???
My kids are not foodies and love their comfort food
Question- What do you do for food in all the countries you have traveled to? What if you have “picky” eaters?
Lakshmi’s Learning- I think that everyone falls in this spectrum…
1) Always eat the same thing wherever you are / can be picky
2) Sometimes willing to try new things
3) Advance experimental palate.
My kids fall mainly in 1, occasionally 2 (at home). When traveling- there are already a lot of “changes” in the environment for the kids (new time zone, new bed, new vacation schedule, etc). If they do not want to explore new cuisines, I say do not force it. Kids sometimes appreciate their “comfort food”. Of course, you should try new things while on vacation… But don’t get frustrated when it doesn’t happen. I get frustrated but realized that I have to be flexible too.
Hence- If your child is on the 1-2 spectrum, trying new food is more promising...
We were blessed to be safe with all the fires and experience the country’s beauty. We are helping through this specific organization that was one of the local recommendations- Wires, Australia’s largest wildlife rescue organization. Please click on this link to learn more. Note- While there are other organizations- I just wanted to provide a recommendation based the request I received from my followers. Thank you!
Question- I was asked by some of my followers to sum up Bali in one word. Is it worth visiting?
Lakshmi’s Learning- Answer is yes! But just one word is not possible- I say “Beautiful temples and people!” As for places of Worship- Bali has 20,000 puras (Hindu temples on every street)! It was amazing to see how Hinduism is practiced there. People from around the world come for this cultural experience. This is Gunung Kawi in Ubud- as you can see, three generations of Natarajan women climbed 350 steps each way to the temple in the river valley.
As for people- everyone we met was just so happy and helpful! Of course, nice people are everywhere... but when they are genuine, it holds a special place in your experience.
Thank you to IBali Tours for the amazing “Bali in a Day” private tour!
Question- How do you help your children prevent or overcome some fears?
Lakshmi’s Learning- Some of you may have kids that are fearless now! But as they become older, fears and dislikes can develop more. Basically- the answer is simple—- as the adult- you have to overcome your fears first! I realized that things I don’t like, my girls are starting not to like as well. And that’s not always a good thing!
So for example- my kids love all animals, they are not scared of spiders and snakes! On the other hand, I don’t like them. And so- here we are in Bali... one of the homes of the Burmese Python. Shyla and Shriya said they are not scared... and they asked me why I am and told me to be brave! That’s what I say to them about everything!!!
For those who know me— know I am adventurous- Sky diving, scuba diving, playing with tigers, etc. But snakes... ewwwwww! And so- my girls asked me to hold the snake because he is an innocent...
All I can say is wow! We are celebrating 2020 in Sydney, Australia with family and friends. This was the 9pm fireworks show that I was able to enjoy with my kids. Now they are sleeping!
Where are you bringing in 2020? My few pieces of advice... be the best you, treasure the people who genuinely love you, spread that love, and see the world! Wish you a wonderful new decade!!