A Family Tradition To Remember Where We’ve Traveled

Our family is very lucky to be well-traveled.  We’ve been to Europe, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America as a family, with numerous trips to each.  Some of those trips blend into the background as we find new destinations we love.

Our family has a tradition that we started even before we had kids.  My wife and I took one of our first international trips together on our honeymoon 14 years ago.  It was the first time I can recall where we picked up a Christmas ornament we thought was cute.

Family Tradition

Without really knowing it, we had started a tradition.  Next up was a trip to Banff while Michelle was pregnant.

Family Tradition

Fast forward to present day and we have a lot of ornaments from trips.  So many that we’ve taken to moving some ornaments to the fake tree in the foyer to fit all the ornaments we’ve collected over the years.  Here’s a sampling of what’s hanging on our tree this year (with a few links to previous trip reports):

Family Tradition

An eventful day at Disneyland Paris.

Family Tradition

Our First Paris Trip

Our first Paris trip was a memorable whirlwind.

Family Tradition

Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia

We try to visit our family in Nova Scotia every year.  I really need to update this post with newer experiences, but Peggy’s is still a favorite.

Family Tradition

Family Tradition

Niagara Falls

Things to do and see at Niagara Falls.

Family Tradition

St. Thomas

Family Tradition

Cayman Islands

Family Tradition

Halloween at Disney World

Family Tradition

Disney World, yet Again

Check out Treehouse Villas, a great place to stay with kids at Disney World.

Family Tradition

60th Anniversary at Disneyland California

Family Tradition

Random New York Trip To See The Yankees

The most special night I’ll likely ever have at Yankee Stadium

Family Tradition

Charlie Picked This Out in NYC

Family Tradition

From our week in Greece last year.

Family Tradition

Taormina, A Beautiful City

On top of bringing home wacky gifts for my wife when I travel, our family has another tradition for remembering where we’ve been.  I hope you enjoyed a quick spin through our Christmas tree.  I’m way overdue writing up our late summer trip to Europe.  I’ll be working on that shortly.

Do You Collect Anything When You Travel?

14 Comments

  1. That’s a cool tradition! Especially nice as you can reflect on the places you’ve been at the close of another year.

    We used to collect the “known” liquor from places when we first visited… like Goslings Black Seal Rum from Bermuda (Honeymoon), Sam Sang Thai Whiskey from Thailand, Arak from Indonesia, Cachas from Brazil, Hibiki from Japan, Soju from South Korea… But we would only get the small bottles. Now a days we’ve scaled that back, just because its such a pain with just carry-ons (and I’ve had at least 1 carry-on turned checked bag get destroyed – luckily the bottles made it unscathed, unlike our honeymoon).

  2. We also have lots of christmas ornaments from our travels! Who knew you did the same thing. So much fun every year to remember the places we’ve been.

  3. We (or my wife) used to do magnets, but in the last 3-4 years also started getting Christmas ornaments instead. But the nice thing about magnets? Easily converted to Christmas ornaments 🙂 It seems like half the ornaments now are from places we’ve visited or marking other milestones (anniversary, births, etc.).

  4. I have a smallish Christmas tree in our game room that only has travel ornaments on it. But the ornaments are not all traditional ornaments. Some are items that are small and represent the place we went like a small Venetian mask from Venice, a miniature Eiffel Tower from Paris, etc…and I just wire them into the tree. If I can’t find an item, I just buy a magnet and hot glue a little ribbon or wire to the back. I’ve had to do that for places like the Cliffs of Moher as there are only a few souvenir stalls and beggars can’t be choosers in some places. It is my favorite tree and decoration in my whole house!

  5. We’ve also been doing this for years. It got to a point where we bought a second “travel” tree for all our trip ornaments. Problem is, we’ve already filled it up. We find that overseas it is harder to find ornaments so we get key chains or anything we can put a hook on. We have even laminated train tickets when we had nothing better to use.

  6. When we travel, my family also has been collecting things to hang on the Christmas tree. We try for something that is small and non-breakable, since we have only carry-ons. It also needs to show the name of the nation or city where we purchased it. You would think that souvenirs especially meant to hang on a tree would be easy to find, but that doesn’t seem to be the case in most vacation spots.

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