Traveling With Grandma, 3 Generation Travel

January 23, 2011

3 generation travel & big Grandma hugs!

We have been blessed to do quite a lot of 3 generations travel with family on our open ended world tour. We think traveling with Grandpa, Grandma and auntie adds a special dimension to travel that you can not get any other way. Memories that will last forever and bonding that is unique because travel expands everyone's boundaries and adds an extraordinary "aliveness". My Mom had planned to visit us in Spain that first year after we left in 2006, but her husband was diagnosed with Stage IV Cancer just before she was going to leave and that changed every thing and all of our lives.

Grandma and her baby

We are sooo grateful that we had a special 80th birthday 3 generations tour in Spain with DaVinci's Dad ( and his sister) which was extra special because it was also their  first visit to their ancestral homeland. What a blessing for both Mozart and her Grandpa to share a language, culture and experience together through that trip.  Even more poignant because he passed over last June while we were traveling.

arriving at Penang airport from San Francisco

There's 83 year old Grandma ( my mom) arriving yesterday after 24 plus hour plane rides from San Francisco to Hong Kong, to Singapore and onto Penang. She left her house around 7:00 P.M. on Thursday and arrived at our house around 4:00 P.M. on Saturday... so an extremely long, grueling  "day" of flying. She didn't even know how to work the TV monitor on her seat ( and didn't ask of course) but still managed to have a very nice flight on Singapore Air in coach, despite the 17 hour time difference and distance between our homes.

83 year old grandma learning about ipod touch

Mozart was so excited that even just hearing Grandma's laughter on the phone as she arrived with dad in a taxi made her "tingle with excitement". My mom looked and felt great despite the long flight and Mozart was soon catching her up on all her news including showing her some videos she had made in Bora Bora and Sydney during our recent travels.


Mozart made a "welcome Grandma" sign filled with hearts and lots of other art work for her and loved helping Grandma unpack.  We all ended up with some treats from home including Mozart's Christmas presents, much to her delight.


Last night and this morning was the most wonderful pajama party with Grandma -  a gabfest, catch up and time to share things like card games, we ordered Pizza in last night and had her favorite breakfast of French Toast.

Six weeks of this sounds magnificent to all of us as this window of time with an 83 year old Mom and Grandmother with a ten year old child must be savored as the blessing it is. We hope this travel helps my mom with her healing transition after the recent death of her beloved husband.

showing grandma the resort pool

Mozart enjoyed showing Grandma around the pool area and the workout room as my Mother is looking forward to getting a little sun and she loves to work out. She is healthy and in fantastic shape because she has worked out every day since she was 50, plus she is an avid golfer.

That is not hair dye, she naturally still has most of her auburn brunette hair as her side of the family doesn't grey much and it's why I almost have no gray hair in my late 50's. ( My dad on the other hand was completely white headed in his 30's). We just have old genes and I grew up with four great grandparents which was very unusual for my generation with relatives that did not marry young.

83 year old is free webcam expert

That said, we don't take anything for granted and cherish the time we have together. Webcams help so much in our world travel lifestyle and we had fun talking to my sister and brother-in-law who were in my mom's house handling things there. We all work together to get her here as it is a good environment to help her heal. I wanted her to come for 3 months, she first thought she'd do it for two weeks, but then we compromised to a 6 week visit. Instead of "The Eagle has landed" that one hears with the handlers of presidents and kings, we jokingly used the code word "Pink Powder Puff" when we were communicating about my mom while she was on her looong flight.

lamp for chinese new year

It is interesting and coincidental that it is almost Chinese New Year, which is a traditonal time where families gather in Asia for a reunion. Mozart is so looking forward to her first Chinese New Year in Asia and thilled that Grandma is here sharing in her life. We plan to enjoy the festivals here in Penang and we taking a little trip together as the "Soultravlers4" to the beautiful island of Langkawi and Thailand while Mozart is off from school.  That should be a fabulous 3 generations travel tour!

sunset penang from our windows

My Mom loves the warm weather, our sea views and incredible sunsets  from every room in our Penang abode and Mozart is taking her to her favorite mall as I write this. I want to thank my darling sister and brother-in-law, amazingly helpful wise travel friends  @thetripchicks, @elliottng, EliteTravelGal, TravelingAnna, AlohaYaling and John Dekker from Surf City Travel who booked the flight, for their help.


Have you ever done 3 generations travel or had family visit you while you were traveling or living abroad? What were your favorite moments?



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What a lovely post Jeanne.
As I wrote you on facebook, we've done a lot of three generation travels, often a gang of around 20.

When I turned 50, almost three years ago, we invited our four kids, the boyfriend of our daughter and my parents to Italy for a week. Gave us memories for a lifetime.

Have a wonderful time with your mother.

wandering educators

wonderful - i love seeing grandma there, playing uno with mozart! it's life-affirming, to be together.


i'm so happy for you guys:)have a great time with Grandma,who by the way looks like she's 65 not 83!i was amazed by how young she looks!
As to your question,my mother's side of the family lives in Argentina.We live in Greece and are greeks.So,4 years ago we had that major reunion during the easter holidays,we all gathered in buenos aires for almost a month!
i really enjoy being with my family so i had a blast!and i hope we'll do it again soon!
Dearest soultravelers3 i hope you have a great chinese new year!All my love and support!

Sheila Penning

This was a wonderful post and I am so glad y'all get this time to spend together. I know Mozart will treasure it always. Take tons of pictures, you can never have to many memories!


So special. We're doing a three generation trip next month. Can't wait.


Beautiful post, copy and photos, your Mom looks like such a sweet person - not to mention the fact that she seems to share Mozart's love of pink ;-)
As they say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, and you are all 3 generations of smart, kind-hearted people (not excluding DV of course) !!! Cheers.


wow, your mum looks amazing after her very long flights. A lovely chance to catch up again, hope you all have a wonderful Chinese new year together :)

Jennifer Barry

That's so nice that Mozart is able to spend quality time with her grandmother. I'm impressed she would travel that far at her age. We have some great pictures of my niece (about Mozart's age) with her great-grandmother who is 94. One of my grandmothers supported my desire to travel internationally but unfortunately she wasn't well enough to come with me.


Have a wonderful time together!

We love multi-gen travel, and have done many trips with both sets of grand-parents and other extended family.

It's a super way to spend quality time together, visit new places, have adventures, and share truly special, lifelong memories.

Theodora (Travels with a Nine Year Old)

We've done quite a bit, and in fact my parents are coming out to meet us in Ubud, Bali.

In Australia, we did over 4000k driving to the Red Centre and back as 3 generations, which worked really well. Z loves having his grandparents around...

Dave and Deb

So glad that your mom made it safe and that you have 6 whole weeks together. Enjoy. Sorry we couldn't make Penang work. Things happen unfortunately in short windows of time.


Your mom is such a trooper, making an extended trip to spend time with her granddaughter. It's great that travel brought together 3 generations of your family!

Mikayla B

Awesome to read - very good details and pics A+


This is lovely. Your mom looks just fantastic. I love your blog and have been following your family on and off for years. We have done many trips with my mom as well as my husband's parents. It is such a wonderful experience for the kids to spend that kind of quality time with their grandparents.


Beautiful post. My mom just visited the three of us in Oaxaca, Mexico. It was wonderful to explore a new city together and for Petra to have special time with her grandmother. Family visits are so important when traveling long term.


Oh i love this! i would love to travel with my Gramma but I'm afraid I'll have to be the one traveling out to her - she doesn't seem interested in venturing out far from home.

Time spent like this truly is a gift! Thank you for sharing it with the travel community.


It's my first time here and i'm glad to read this one :) I go on roadtrips with my grandparents since i was a kid and my grandfather loves to drive long trips even at the age of 76! Wishing you all the happiness and more and more travels for the family. Ciao!

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