Kirsten Maxwell

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Kirsten is a freelance travel writer, photographer, and social media influencer based in Dallas. She is the owner of Kids Are A Trip, a travel website inspiring families to explore the world with their children and a Travelocity and Moon Travel Guides Ambassador. A bilingual teacher of Puerto Rican descent, she truly believes travel is an education and feels fortunate she can teach her three boys about different cultures as the family has traveled to 30 countries and counting. After traveling as a family for 15 years, she has learned to find those off-the-beaten path experiences while still finding time to explore the popular attractions. Her work has been featured in Lonely Planet, The Chicago Tribune, Bravo TV, and various national publications.

Location Dallas, Texas
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As the sun sets on 2020, we take a moment to reflect on all of the good times we had this year. Extremely grateful for the time spent with family, trips we were able to take, and new friends we made. Texas gets better each and every day and we are really looking forward to 2021! Happy new year everyone! 🎉 #2021willbebetter #puertovallarta #sunsetlovers #bringon2021 #farewell2020 #happynewyear2021 #sunsetonthebeach #mexico_maravilloso #wanderlust #takeyourkidseverywhere #satw #beachvacation #optimistic #puertovallartamexico #wearetravelmums

Heritage Tourism: Using Travel to Discover Your Family Roots

Here’s how to plan your own ancestry family trip using a genealogy DNA test, family records, and more. I think Ancestry provides a larger genetic data base with a US focus, and historical genealogy records to go along with it. Back then, there were very few options for genetic research: go to the library and comb through endless records, use (the LDS genealogy website), and If you take a genealogy DNA test, it’s a good starting point for connecting with others who have the same relatives.

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVE EVE! One of our favorite holiday traditions has been driving around to see holiday lights, and this year didn’t disappoint! I just wanted to wish all of you a wonderful holiday and a happy new year! How are you spending the holidays? Any favorite traditions? . . . #holidayseason #holidaydecor #christmaslights #grapevinetx #grapevinechristmas #christmascapitaloftexas #dfwblogger #dfwinfluencer #texasblogger #holidayhome #celebrateeveryday #merrychristmas🎄 #merryandbright

Unique Airbnbs in Texas You'll Love

This one bedroom, one bathroom safe haven takes glamorous camping to a whole new level with its outdoor kitchen, hot tub and outdoor shower. The Wallace Ranch Boxcar Bunkhouse located in Canyon, Texas is about 111 years old but has been restored into a glamorous but very rustic 2-bedroom, 1 bathroom Airbnb. If you’re looking for lake houses for rent in Texas, add the Treehouse on Lake Travis to your Airbnb bucket list. This 52 foot houseboat in Kemah (for those looking for a Houston area Airbnb) is essentially an RV docked in a natural bird sanctuary marina.

D is for Dallas And even though we don’t live in Dallas proper, we still consider Dallas our home. If you find yourself in Dallas with kids, make time for the following: 1) Perot Museum - amazing science and nature museum 2) George Bush Presidential library - currently not open, but worth a visit no matter your political views 3) Dallas Arboretum - beautiful gardens for exploring, great at Halloween and Christmas 4) Six Flags Over Texas - must visit for amusement park fans 5) Nasher Sculpture Center - young kids will love exploring the grounds, teens might not enjoy as much. 6) Sixth Floor museum - learn about the assassination of JFK 7) Dallas Zoo - one of the best zoos in the US 8) Dallas World aquarium - all the fish you could ever want to see and a cool cloud forest exhibit 9) Fort Worth stockyard (yes it’s in Fort Worth) - nothing beats a herd of cattle marching through town 10) National Soccer Hall of Fame and National Videogame Museum - both located in Frisco. These are perfect for kids! Tap the bookmark icon and save this for later! Have you been to Dallas with kids? What’s your favorite thing to do? . . . #dallastexas #dfw #visitdallas #visitfrisco #dfwinfluencer #texastravel #texas🇨🇱 #dallaswithkids #thingstodoindallas #adventurefamily #traveltuesday #gardensofinstagram #nashersculpturecenter #dallasmom

Philadelphia with Kids

While it’s a great destination for all ages, there are so many things to do in Philadelphia for kids that it’s gaining a reputation as a family travel hotspot. In Philadelphia, the best place to take your kids for ice cream (or non-dairy ice cream) is The Franklin Fountain. Philadelphia is one of America’s great sports cities, and if you’re lucky enough to visit during baseball season, take the kids to a Phillies game. Use this list of activities as a basis for your trip planning, and find out even more reasons why Philadelphia is the best American city to visit with your kids.

Since it’s been awhile since I introduced myself, I thought it would be fun to share a bit about our family and some of our favorite travel adventures (thanks @we3travel for the inspiration). I’m Kirsten. I grew up in Arizona, my husband is from Oklahoma. We lived in San Diego for 7 years, then spent 14 years in Chicago. We moved to the Dallas suburbs in August 2019 when my husband Jason took a new job as VP of litigation for a medical device company. We have three boys. The oldest is a HS senior, ready to head out and explore the world. Our middle son is a sophomore who loves reading and being with friends. The youngest loves soccer and basketball and Xbox of course. After earning degrees in Spanish and Elementary Ed, I was in education for over 10 years until I started Kids Are A Trip in 2014. I also co-manage the Facebook group, Luxe Family Trips with @solomomtakesflight and @luxerecess. In January I started my newest site, @multigenvacations , a place where families can find information for planning their large group gatherings. We have been traveling with all three kids from the time they were born. We love exploring new places, spending time outdoors, learning about other cultures, and just being together! As a family we’ve visited 25 countries, and our middle son is on a mission to visit all of the continents before he’s 18 (he’s been to 3 and I wish him all the best of luck)! 🌎 Here are some of our all time favorite family adventures: Mom’s choice: @germanytourism Christmas markets Dad’s choice: @tumblingriverranch Oldest: @visitportugal (which he explored in a walking cast) Middle: New Brunswick (@destinationnb) and PEI road trip Youngest: Adventures by Disney Costa Rica tour Mother-son trip: (and I really shouldn’t pick one because the others will see it as favoritism) In no particular order: @gadventures trip to Morocco, @experiencekissimmee, and @discoverpuertorico Favorite US Beach destination: @visitsandiego Mountain vacation: @discovervailco City escape: Chicago (@choosechicago) Countries: Croatia, France, and @tourismireland What are some of your favorite places to travel? What else do you want to know about us?

10 Awesome Day Trips from Chicago

For a day at the beach, head to Silver Beach County Park where families can build sand castles or play in the splash park. Those looking for outdoor adventures shouldn’t miss New Glarus Woods State Park with over 435 acres for camping, hiking, and picnics. Visitors to Delavan can take a selfie with life-sized statues of giraffes and elephants (at Tower Park), learn about the town’s circus history at the Delavan Historical Society, and even visit the graves of over 250 circus performers who are buried in town. Be sure to spend time fishing or boating on Delavan Lake, tour some of the local historical homes (we recommend the AH Allyn House), or visit the Dancing Horses theater.

Let’s talk about Croatia. It’s hard to choose one destination that starts with C because there are so many good ones! (California, Chicago, and Costa Rica were all possibilities). Croatia is one of my all time favorite destinations. The history, the people, the food, everything is amazing. We went for our 20th wedding anniversary, so it was a kid free trip, but I would love to return with them. Here is what I recommend: 1) Spend time in Dubrovnik, but stay outside the city walls. Do day trips during the day to avoid the crowds, and when you come back at night, enjoy the slower pace. 2) Be sure to visit one of the National Parks, Krka or Plitvice (that’s where this photo was taken). The majestic beauty of nature will take your breath away. 3) Visit the town of Trogir. It’s easy to access from Split and very charming. 4) Stay in the old town in Split. Diocletian’s Palace was built in 305AD and by staying nearby, you can visit it without the crowds. 5) Take a day trip to Ston. Here you will find the Great Wall of Europe which has 40 towers and 7 forts, spanning 5.5 kilometers. You can also visit the local salt pans to see how Croatian salt is made. These are only a few of our favorite things to do in Croatia. Save this pin for later to help you plan a future trip! Have you been to Croatia? . . . #croatiafulloflife #visitcroatia #dubrovnikcroatia #dubrovnikoldtown #splitcroatia #ston #trogir #trogircroatia #plitvicelakes #plitvicelakesnationalpark #croatia🇭🇷 #croatiatravel #satw #wearetravelmums #familytravel #familyholidays #adventurefamily

THIS IS BROKEN BOW OKLAHOMA The perfect choice for the letter B in my A to Z series. A year ago, I didn’t even know this place existed. Now, we have started building our first vacation rental here and have purchased a second piece of land. There’s just something about this place, and since my husband’s an Oklahoma native, this just feels right. Broken Bow is 3 hours from Dallas, OKC, and Little Rock, making it perfect for family get togethers away from the crowds. We are looking forward to enjoying it for many years to come. Have you stayed in a vacation rental lately? Where was it? . . . #travelchallenge #brokenbow #brokenbowoklahoma #mountainforkriver #hochatown #hochatime #oklahoma #visitoklahoma #riverview #hikingtrails #oklahomaphotography #satw #takeyourkidseverywhere #travelwithkids #wearetravelmums #dfwblogger #dallasblogger #dfwinfluencer

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