The “Families on the Move” community of Mummy bloggers are responding to “ Take Your Child to Work Day!“
Before going further with this post, I want to make it clear that we’re not suggesting that every parent out there needs to do what we do. We are saying this is our lifestyle and we are making it work for us. We are also saying that traveling with a family can be done. Travel in itself can be quality bonding time and educational for all of us.
At the end of this post, you’ll see links to other families traveling long-term responding to “Take Your Child to Work Day!” It was a great idea generated by another Mum over at “Traveling with a 9 Year Old“
If you’ve been following us on Facebook, Twitter or here on our blog, you’d know that we don’t have a typical 9-5 work lifestyle anymore. So instead of taking our child, MGotPassport, to a specific work place on one particular day, she’s usually with us adventuring into the world (since she was an infant) that we prefer she considers as her playground, our playground.
Aside from all our previous travels as a family to various parts of the world, for the last nine months, Northern Thailand, specifically Chiang Mai, Thailand, and Laos have been our playground. We are quite happy to say, we not only had the opportunity to immerse ourselves in Thailand, we’ve had the opportunity to give back to the local people in need and serve as a family.
We’ve always thought of traveling as a way to give our child a sense of adventure and education that she would not receive in any classroom. If you ask M how she feels about our travel lifestyle and living in Thailand at the age of 7, she’d give you some honest answers. You can read more about it here.
Because we live in Thailand and took our jobs on the road, we’ve had the opportunity to expose our daughter to a coffee journey where she learned about Fair trade and how coffee is made from seed to cup with the Hilltribe people of Akha near Chiang Rai.
I’ll be real honest! As a Buddhist Mom, I’m glad we’ve had the opportunity to be in Thailand during Yee Peng Lantern Festival and Songkran (Thingyan) Water Festival where M can appreciate the values and customs of being in a Buddhist family.
Our time in Vientiane, Luang Prabang and traveling along the Mae Kong river in Laos have all proved to be quite a memorable and educational experiences for us as a family.
And for the first time in M’s life, she is being officially “home-schooled,” and of all places, here in Texas, now that we are back to spend time with family for the summer. I won’t lie, it is a task daunting to me as a Mother. However, J as the Head Teacher for M, we’re meeting the challenge. Though I’ve researched this topic before, we’re learning something new every day now.
Recently, after returning to Texas, we were at a Podiatrist’s office and he was amazed how we are able to live such a lifestyle. He was fascinated! His concern was more for our M and whether she is receiving good/quality education. On good days we find this type of amazement a good opportunity to educate someone who doesn’t travel avidly as we do as a family. And other days, we get tired of the general assumption that the only quality education parents can provide to a child is in a classroom. Considering the conditions and quality of some classrooms in public schools in the US , well we’re not so sure!
So yes, we’re bringing our child to work everyday. Whether we’re visiting family in Texas, visiting Laos, or living in Thailand we’re exploring Southeast Asia and serving the greater good and volunteering locally on our own terms. This is our version of Radical Sabbatical.
One of my favorite articles on the web: The Gift of Travel: Priceless
“You have to discard life’s trivialities, but in their place grows a rich archive of unique experiences you can always claim as your own.“
Oh and by the way, if you’re wondering what work we do as M’s parents while exploring our playground, here’s the low-down:
J continues to teach online for an American college and also works as an education consultant for textbook publishers. J also taught and will continue to teach volunteer English in Chiang Mai. He recently lunched CallingBubba and Bubbaisms sites as socially appropriate outlets to feed his inner geekiness. Amen to that!
As for me, I continue to help coordinate opportunities and recruit volunteers for Chiang Mai Community Based Organizations using Social Media. I work as a Social Media volunteer for another Community Based Organization in Mae Sot, Thailand. I’m teaching Burmese language on-line on a part-time basis. My other pride and joy is cooking and feeding others. Seriously! So recently, I launched Chili~ Lime~Garlic since eating and cooking are truly my hobbies among other things.
Other families traveling with their kid (s) and their life changing stories that may inspire you~!
We Say NO to Status Quo.
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Take Notice. Take Action.