My Alamo Drive Happy Travel Resolutions

Alamo Travel Tips - Travel Resolutions: Keeping a Travel Journal - New Year’s resolutions can feel like a chore. Get inspired with a resolution idea you will not only keep for 2015, but for many years to come.

I’ve never been a big resolution-maker, but I think that’s because they just feel so exhausting, like a chore that, once completed, gets moved to the Outbox and never thought of again. Except resolutions don’t have to be a huge deal, a now-or-never checklist created on the morning of January 1st. They can be small decisions to live more thoughtfully, in a way more in line with both your priorities and your dreams.

The experiences we have coming up in the next few months are big ones, with lots of traveling both in anticipation of where we’re leaving and in preparation for where we’re headed, and I want to make sure that we don’t just “get through” these trips, but rather take the time to celebrate this opportunity that we’re getting to explore the world together….because it’s a gift; it really is.

travel journal

Meet one of my most precious possessions: my journal from when I studied abroad in London for a semester.

This may sound a little odd coming from someone who writes about her life every. single. day…but I didn’t always love diary-keeping. I kept a diary religiously when I was a kid, up through about sophomore year of high school, but then it started feeling like more “work” than “pleasure.” The journal sitting on my bedside table stopped being something I loved to escape into, and became a source of guilt: you didn’t write in me today. Or yesterday. Or last month at all. And so, after a while, I gave it up.

Until I went to London, and realized that the experience I was having was too special for me to let slip past without keeping some kind of commemoration. And so what I decided to do was abandon any notions of diary-keeping I’d held previously, and go free-form. If I felt like writing, I’d write. If I felt like drawing, I’d draw. If I felt like pasting in postcards or matchbooks or some tinsel that I found sitting on the sidewalk, that’s what I did.

It was everything I had loved about keeping a diary back in the day, minus everything that felt exhausting and tedious. More than that, it helped me to travel consciously, to pay attention to all those little pieces of a journey that don’t seem all that important at the time, but that add up to what memories are really made of. A scribbled phone number, a note from a friend, a ferry ticket, a cocktail recipe, a restaurant receipt. Nothing big, but taken all together it’s a picture of what the time I spent in Europe was really like.

I love having this reminder of where I’ve been, and it’s a gift I’d like to give to my children. Remember a couple of months ago, when I talked about “basic” family travel and how I’d like to push our family to reimagine the possibilities for how to go on journeys together? We have some big changes coming up in our life, and a whole lot of travel, including a flight to the Bay Area to check out houses in April and a bunch of bucket-list trips to various East Coast spots, and in the spirit of taking my family’s upcoming adventures beyond basic, this is my 2015 #AlamoDriveHappy resolution: To start a travel journal for each of my children that they can keep and add to in the years to come, in any way they want. I’ll take care of those first few entries while they figure out how to, you know, write…but the rest of the pages are just for them.

I’d love to hear if you have any fun ideas for how to improve family travel or resolutions of your own – just post them on Twitter or Instagram using #AlamoDriveHappy so I can check them out (and be sure to tag a friend who you think could use some inspiration for 2015)!

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About the Author

Jordan Reid

By: Jordan Reid, Alamo Chief Travel Mom and founder of

The Alamo Chief Travel Moms are a council of lifestyle bloggers and mothers who have partnered with Alamo Rent A Car to inspire and celebrate family travel while sharing their personal experiences and tips they’ve learned along the way