"A Ship Is Safe in Harbor, But That's Not What Ships Are For."
-William G.T. Shedd
Hello readers! So, you want to know a little about us? Where to start... well, I guess I'll start with the love and marriage part. Our family started in 2006, when two recent college graduates from Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey tied the knot and began a new life together. Our lives quickly became hectic, working in technology for major Wall Street firms in NYC and living in suburbia. Then after a few years came the baby in the baby carriage (Kian), and two years later another one (Hannah).
Between commuting 2-3 hours a day and working typical Wall Street hours, it was leaving very little time to spend with our now preschool aged children. An idea sprouted in our minds, to take a break from the hustle and bustle of this lifestyle, and travel the world with our two most prized possessions. Our main criteria for where we will travel: warm weather (and of course somewhere safe). After a year of planning and saving, we followed our dream, and chased summer around the world for seven amazing months. Now we're back, but the adventure is not over yet!
We hope that the contents of this website inspires families with young children to travel. You never know what life will bring you, so don't turn your kids into excuses for not seeing this wondrous world.
Meet the Summer Chasers
I love spontaneity and doing things differently. When it comes to traveling, I am very laid back and like to have a short itinerary with lots of surprises along the way. I was born in Tehran, Iran. My family traveled a decent amount when I was young, but generally stayed close to Iran, until we migrated to the United States when I was 14. Perhaps this was the initial spark of love for travel and seeing the world.
I am passionate about learning other cultures and I like to experience them like a local rather than a tourist. I am also a big foodie and generally not afraid of trying new delicacies.
At the start of our 'Big Adventure', I decided to keep a blog and record the story of every single day we were away to keep the memories alive for our now 3 and 5 year olds.
Ali (AKA Greg, depending on how you know me!)
I'm typically the more practical member of the family, so when Hoda first started to talk about quitting our jobs and traveling the world, I surprised myself as much as I did her when I thought it was a great idea. Sure it was a little crazy, but I could see that the lifestyle we were living was just not right for our family, and this trip would be a great way to kick off some serious life changes.
Unlike Hoda, I was born and raised in New Jersey, so I did not have a very international start to my life. As a kid we traveled a good amount around the US, though a day trip to Mexico before strict border control was as international as it got. Like more than 60% of US citizens, I didn't even have a passport! But thankfully after getting married I started to travel more, and have become pretty addicted ever since.
When it comes to the blog, most of my contributions are as an editor and a photographer. I'm also a programming geek that likes to learn new technologies, so keep your eyes out for some iOS apps that I write in my spare time.
Kian turned 5 during our world adventures in Southern Spain. He has a heart of gold and the kindest spirit. He loves to explore and he loves to build. Whether it is a craft or a set of legos, he diligently works on his projects and generally is not jazzed about imperfections.
He loves Superheroes, Zelda, and Star Wars, but will happily humor his little sister and play princess games with her.
He is off to kindergarten in August 2015 and is excited about learning how to read.
Hannah turned 3 in Madrid. She has more personality than the other 3 members of the family combined. She loves being dramatic and she says a lot of funny things.
She loves all things pink and purple, but she also knows all the Superheroes and Star Wars characters.
She will continue her pre-school 'career' at the end of August 2015 and is looking forward to making new friends.