Sponsored post in partnership with American Express®
Since starting A Mummy Too in 2011 I’ve been fortunate enough to have family, food and travel become integral parts of my working life. Almost overnight, my personal passions became by fulltime job!
Becoming a fulltime writer also led me to discover new interests, chief among them being photography. Taking a picture today still gives me the same feelings of excitement and wonder it did five years ago.
These days I know a lot more about how a camera works, but as my technical knowhow has grown the magic of the process hasn’t dulled at all.
A passion shared
I love that as my children get older, I’m able to share some of my passions with them, and getting them involved means an awful lot to me.
As they mature, it’s wonderful to hear how many opinions they have about the things they want to do, eat, see and places they want to go.
Jay and JD already love to travel, so that’s why I’m excited to be working with American Express to look at how we can share our love of travel with our children and explore a holiday through their eyes.
When kids take charge
According to recent research by American Express*, 68% of British parents say that a love of travel – their ‘travel-egacy’ – is the thing they most want to pass on to their children.* And I can see why. Memories gathered on our travels can be some of our most enduring, and experiencing different cultures and challenges along the way is wonderfully character forming. That passion for travel is certainly a legacy I want to pass on.
A survey of 1,000 parents also found that an impressive 66% of parents now consult their children on the family holiday choice.** Inspired by all this, I’m thrilled to say that JD and Jay have designed our next family trip themselves.
We’re a tiny bit nervous, but mostly really excited. We always do our best to give them a trip they’ll love, but this time, they’ll be getting exactly what they want.
After exploring several options and destinations for a whole afternoon, JD and Miss J finally settled on a holiday village in the UK. So, come February of next year, the kids have decided that we will be swimming, climbing, horse riding, biking in the forest and cooking together in our cabin. I have to say, I’m rather pleased with their choices – and I’m loving not having to make the decisions!
A kid’s eye view
But that’s not all. I’m really excited to share that during our trip, the kids will be in charge of documenting what we get up to!
That’s right, we’ll be taking a back seat and letting JD and Miss J loose with a GoPro and a VTech KidiZoom of their own, and the pics and videos that you see after our trip will be ones that they’ve generated themselves.
American Express has put together a Family Travel Hub, which includes inspiration on how to get the most out of your family holidays. As part of this there is the ‘Whipper Snapper‘ Activity Book, which is what JD and Miss J will be using when they capture their travel experiences. The Activity Book was put together by American Express in collaboration with photographer Aaron Huey and his young son, Hawkeye, who have both contributed to National Geographic. It includes activities for kids, as well as lots of useful tips for adults on what makes a good camera for children, and encourages children to document their travels.
I find to get a really great picture the subject has to be something you’re interested in, which is why the Activity Book is fab. I can’t think of many things that pique my kids’ interest or keep them engaged in the same way that a new location can.
Becoming mini-master photographers
I remember some of my earliest experiences with a camera were on family holidays.
My first trip armed with a simple disposable camera is firmly lodged in my memory, along with the inevitable stress of having only 27 exposures that had to last for the whole trip – no mean feat when you feel that absolutely everything has to be documented, from the lizard scuttling across the hotel balcony in Salou, to the ice creams eaten on a roof terrace in Barcelona, to the sun loungers we relaxed on by the pool at our campsite in Languedoc.
Some of my earliest memories are holiday ones – such as my sister teaching me to swim, or our first kids’ disco, which we even allowed to stay up late to attend. The photos of those holidays are almost as precious as the memories themselves.
These days, digital cameras take away the need to ration your photography, but for little hands looking to master this new skill, the GoPro (for video) and a VTech KidiZoom (for stills) are both great for– they’re simple to use and sturdy enough to survive being dropped. The GoPro is also waterproof which should make for some interesting shots!
I’m really looking forward working with American Express and encouraging the kids as they try out the ‘photo quest’ ideas in the activity book, such as taking five photos that show where you are, or finding five different objects that are the same colour as each other. It should keep them very busy.
Watch this space to find out how we get on, and be the first to see how the photographs and video turn out. I’m so excited to see how the kids decide to document everything, to witness what they feel is important enough to photograph, and to gain a new sense of their individual perspectives on the world. I can’t wait.
- The Whipper Snapper Guide, is designed to bring a new perspective to family holidays.
- American Express has also created a Family Travel Hub with inspiration to help parents pass on their passion for travel.
This article was written in association with American Express. A Mummy Too maintains full editorial control of the content published on this site.
*Research by American Express from 7th December to 9th December 2016 of a survey size of 1,000 adults and 1,000 children, aged between 6 -10 years old, who have been on holiday.
**Research commissioned by American Express of 1,000 parents with children under 10 in the UK were interviewed in November 2016 by independent research agency Censuswide. The survey was conducted from a random sample of UK parents via an online panel.
Promote: American Express Services Europe Limited has its registered office at Belgrave House, 76 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 9AX, United Kingdom. It is registered in England and Wales with Company Number 1833139 and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.