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Family vacationBy Joanna Wiebe

When he was 14 months old, in 1981, my son David took his first family vacation to Guatemala to visit his great-grandparents and see the sights.

With only a large red backpack, a hand-woven woolen Guatemalan bag, an aluminum-frame baby backpack and a cheap folding stroller, my husband and I took Dave all over Guatemala, on public buses, hitchhiking and walking.

Dave swam in the Pacific, hiked in the mountains, climbed the steps of Mayan ruins, and made friends everywhere. In our backpack we had two sleeping bags, a woven fiber mat which served as a clean area for Dave to play or sleep on, small Coleman stove, a set of nesting pots, six cloth diapers, all our clothes for hot and cool weather, and a little bag of miniature toys and books.

We bought food in the village markets and cooked it in our hotel rooms, or ate al fresco. On that family vacation we became an unstoppable traveling family. Here are some of my most precious memories.





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Joanna Wiebe is an information architect at Orbitz Worldwide, a homeschool parent, and a writer. But most of all, she’d rather be outdoors.

Tagged: Family time, Photo essay

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