Mom and I at the 2014 Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in L.A.
She grew up an “Air Force brat.” From the time my Mother was born until the day my grandfather retired from the Air Force, she, her brother, sister and my grandmother moved from place to place, following my grandfather wherever he was stationed. They lived everywhere from Guam (a tiny island off the coast of Japan), to Massachusetts to Arizona and places in between. They never lived anywhere for longer than a handful of years. My grandfather retired in when my Mom was in high school, and they moved back to East Tennessee, where my grandparents were from. I’ve asked my Mom before if it was hard moving around so much as a kid. She’s told me it was never easy every time she had to say goodbye to the friends she’d made, but that she wouldn’t trade her childhood with anyone else, because she got to see and experience so many different places. It was during those years that she grew to love and appreciate travel.
I’ll never forget the first time my brother and I got to fly on an airplane. We were heading to Disney World in Florida. My Mom came up to my room to pack my suitcase for me, and told me to pick out my “travel outfit.” I picked out my Beauty and the Beast wind suit and a hot pink straw hat that had a big flower on the side. I know I looked ridiculous, but it was the act of getting to pick out a special outfit for my first time on an airplane that made the experience feel so special. Still to this day, whenever my Mom and I are flying somewhere together, we’ll talk about our “travel outfits.” We’ve never been ones to wear workout clothes or leisure-wear to travel. I guess the thought behind it is that when we travel, we’re headed somewhere exciting and we should dress for the occasion. All I know is that since I was a little girl and still to this day, it adds another little layer of excitement to the fact that I’m flying off somewhere.
As we grew up, Mom was always planning trips for our family, usually to some warm, beachy island.
She’s who discovered what is now my family’s favorite getaway spot, which is where I am writing this from now. One morning, the Today Show was throwing a televised wedding for a lucky couple on the tiny island of Anguilla.
She thought it looked like paradise, and booked a trip for her and my Dad. They came home raving about the island, and the rest was history. That was over 15 years ago, and it has become our little slice of heaven where my family loves to come together, to get away and unwind. We have Mom to thank. It’s her favorite place in the world.
When I told Mom I wanted to start a travel blog, she was all for it. She helps me with my planning, is always giving me ideas and is my favorite travel companion. She taught me how important it is to be adventurous and how incredible it can be to see some of the world’s most amazing places with your own eyes. Traveling can create some of life’s most rewarding, invaluable experiences. That’s what she taught me, and that’s what I hope to inspire in others through The Hollyday.
So thanks, Mom, today and everyday for passing along your passion to me. Through this blog, although it’s still just the beginning, I’ve discovered that my passion isn’t just traveling, but it’s experiencing new places and writing about them so that others will be encouraged to experience them, too. It may have taken me 30 years, two degrees and various different jobs to figure out what it is I want to do with my life, but better late than never, I guess. And it wouldn’t have been if it weren’t for my Mom instilling in me that excitement for adventure.
And wearing cute travel outfits.
Happy Mother’s Day to mine, and to all the other mothers out there.
Thanks for your inspiration.