What memories are made of

By Suzanne Rent

I remember well the first time I took my daughter on a plane. She was almost six and we were heading to Saint Pierre and Miquelon, the small French archipelago off the south coast of Newfoundland. The plane was a tiny eight-seat Cessna—pretty much a small bus with wings and less legroom. I’d been on small planes before, so I was prepared for the bumps and cramped space. My daughter had no fear during the 1.5-hour flight. But as expected, less than half an hour into the flight, she asked the question asked by millions of kids everywhere in the history of travelling with their families: “Are we there yet?” 

In this issue, contributor Heidi Tattrie Rushton shares tips on how to make travelling with your kids easier for the entire family. She shares, too, details on what paperwork you will need when travelling internationally. This is all key information to have that will make your trip a more efficient and stress-free one. 

My daughter and I got to Saint Pierre safely, after a rough landing in heavy fog that covered the runway and the entire island like a thick blanket. She was no worse for the wear, however, and held my hand across the aisle of the plane. It was small enough for that.  

Of our trip, my daughter remembers falling on an uneven sidewalk and cutting her bottom lip. Once in a while she will point to the scar she still has. But still, we got to have crepes, take boat rides, and visit bakeries where we indulged in pastries and French bread. She remembers, too, the owner of the bed and breakfast where we stayed who said she was “très belle.” A lovely compliment is always a good memory.

My daughter is my adventure buddy and since that trip, we have travelled to other destinations, including New York City. We are constantly on road trips, especially during warmer months, and she still asks, “Are we there yet?” Some things never change. 

And if you’re not travelling this March Break, we have ideas for you too, including plenty of free and fun family activities taking place around the region. Families don’t have to go far to find adventure and fun and to create memories with their children. Be warned though, “Are we there yet?” knows no geographical boundaries. Kids’ understanding of time is limited but travelling is a good way for them (and parents) to learn patience and how to go with the flow.