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I can’t help but think about why travel is so important to us both professionally and personally.

walking on the beach in Santa Teresa Costa Rica
walking the beach in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica with my youngest daughter

School is about to start so for those of us in the Phoenix area with school age kids. For all intents and purposes, summer is coming to a close.

Not the summer temperatures of course. But our summer travels.

I have so much to say about our travels this summer. Thousands of photos to look through and just as many stories to tell.

Even though I was enjoying the heck out of everything we were doing, I couldn’t help to think about our next trip. I can think of a dozen places on my short list to review with the family for where we plan to go in the very near future.

Kids jumping off of rocks in Lake Tahoe
a beautiful weeks was spent in Lake Tahoe with a great group of friends / family

The world is huge and we want to see as much of it as we can.

There aren’t enough vacation days in my mind.  I think it was June when I read somewhere (I think it was something like this) that over half of American vacation days never get used. I just can’t wrap my head around this. 

Since we are self – employed photographers, we do not get paid time off, but I’m perfectly ok with that. It’s up to us to decide what we can afford, how to book our calendar and how to make sure we see as much of the world as we can as often as we can. 

Taking time off is good for so many reasons.

For me, I become more focused and more productive when I return home. I am inspired by everything around me and it makes me better. A better person, a better mom, wife, worker, traveler, photographer, world student, a better writer. It makes me grateful for all that I have, for my family and for the incredible world that we live in. But most of all travel is found knowledge.

Every time I return from being somewhere, anywhere, I know something new. I have learned something that I will carry with me forever. 

Keith about to get hit by a huge wave in Dominicalito, Costa Rica

Taking time off is different things to different people.

Maybe you prefer a staycation never leaving your home and catch up on all those books you have been wanting to read, visit museums in your city, camp in the next town over, drive across country, visit a National park, hike, sail, run, walk, sit on a beach, explore, learn. Whatever taking time off means to you, just do it!

As a public service message to all, use your vacation days!!!!

(You only have 18 summers with your kids….make the most of them!)

(visiting Mal Pais, Costa Rica)

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