Great books for young parents

I don't remember what I got for my 13th birthday or even if I had a party, but I do remember that summer we went to the east coast to visit my sister and I played in the ocean for the first time.  I learned to body surf and remember the smell of the salt air and the way sand got into every part of my body. I remember how it felt to have saltwater go up my nose.

With that in mind, I was thinking about what to give my daughter and her little family for Christmas.  I came across a couple of books that would be great for young families.  Both cost about $10 each and I found them at Amazon, but you might find them at your local book store.

The first book is by Frommer's, the company that does a lot of travel books.  I don't think anyone could find the time to go 500 places before a child moves out of your home, based on a 2 week annual vacation, and the amount it costs to travel.  You can browse the pages though and use it as an idea book.  I still haven't seen all the places they list, and I'm 50!  The great thing is that if you're a family that doesn't travel much and don't hear about great places to go, this will help you weed out the stuff that might not be as interesting.  There's nothing worse than taking your kids on a family vacation and having them complain the entire time.  We used to take road trips with my mom and sleep in a tent.  It was always an adventure.  Sometimes we'd stay with relatives, but we always found some sightseeing to do along the way.  If you make your kids visit relatives and all you do is sit around and talk, no one is going to have fun.

The second book is just a book of opportunities to make memories with your kids.  Most of these require only your time.  I can say that I have done most of these activities with my 2 older kids, and I imagine Omar would enjoy them too.  These are things like go to a garage sale, tell ghost stories, tell the story of how they were born, and take a walk together.  There are a few like visit a castle or rainforest that may be beyond your means right now, but don't let that stop you from dreaming.

Christmas has become so materialistic.  It's great to find something that doesn't cost a lot that may build memories and relationships.  I hope this will get them started on their set of adventures.


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