Today, we focus on Hanna from Tripsnkids, a blog about travelling with children and life in Dubai.
Where did you spend your childhood?
I spent my childhood in the middle of Finland, surrounded by lakes and big forests. We did not live on a farm, but it was in the countryside, our village had 6000 inhabitants. We spent our days with friends playing outside from dusk until dawn – occasionally we had to go to school, yes, we did not like it, but we did it.
What languages do you speak?
I speak Finnish, Swedish, Danish, English and Italian. I have studied French for many years, but I still don’t speak it very well. I studied Russian and Arabic, but both remain a mystery to me, unfortunately.
I want to get better at French one day and to be able to do that I probably need to live in France for a few months or a year (which I do not mind at all).
How did you decide on the name of your blog?
I wanted it to be something short and easy to remember. My passion is to travel and explore new places. Since I have kids and I do drag them around the world with me, the name is a combination of our life – Trips and Kids = tripsnkids (one could make it Trips NO Kids)
Who are you favourite bloggers?
Mitzie Mee was the first blogger I ever followed, another traveller, so many good tips. There was one blogger in Sweden who I also loved to follow, but unfortunately she stopped writing.
Happy Healthy Mama writes about things which are close to my heart; healthy living, posting recipes of healthy meals but she’s not hysterical about it. She is inspiring. Now I want to learn more about our XOXO Collective Bloggers, Waz from ‘Let’s Nom Nom’ has got my attention as I try to find good tips and recipes for vegetarian meals.
Do you prefer eating in or eating out?
Nothing beats homemade food! When a meal is made with love, there is nothing better. My husband performs miracles in the kitchen. He has an eye for detail and a good taste for wine.
We do eat out as well and we even get good discounts here in Dubai, but we do not always feel it has been worth paying that much money for a babysitter, expensive dinner and a taxi back home. Therefore dinner at our place is more tempting.
Do you remember the first time you flew in a plane?
Yes! I was 13 years old and we flew with Sterling Airlines from Helsinki to Kos Island. I don’t remember the aircraft type though, but I do recall sitting in the section where passengers were smoking (I was travelling with my Grandmother)
Where did you go on your last trip?
It was two weekends ago, we went to Doha, Qatar. I have been twice before, but not with kids until now. It is only a one hour flight from Dubai, but very different from Dubai and the UAE.
The city still remained a bit of a mystery for me, but Souk Waqif, like before, was still unique, with different folklore groups performing in the evening. Traditions that are kept alive through the generations are something that Qatari’s can be very proud of.
How do you spend your time when you’re not blogging?
I don’t have the luxury to “spend time” anymore. Two active kids, homework with them, house chores, errands, all that takes up my time, so my greatest challenge is to get my blog written.
We love outdoor activities the most; exploring and meeting our friends in the parks rather than meeting in someones house (especially now as the weather in Dubai allows us to be outside) I did not realise until I got my own kids, that it is actually all about multitasking and reminding yourself; soon the evening comes and you get a moment to sit down. When my other half is home, he takes care of the cooking and I maintain the chaos.
I take care of myself by exercising or running approximately 20 to 30 minutes each day. Never more; once your pulse is high enough your metabolism will take care of the rest. That kind of exercise gives me energy for the rest of the day.
What do you wish you had more time for?
I would love to do more Bikram Yoga, but as my life is at the moment, I do not have the time to sit in a car and drive to the studio. I was getting pretty good with postures, but as the minimum should be a 90 minute session, three times a week, it is impossible for me right now, but one day I’ll start again. Also friends, I wish I had more time for my friends.
What is the biggest fear you’ve faced so far?
Last year, just before Christmas I was told that I have melanoma. I knew I had a high risk of getting it, but when I got the news, I had to sit down for a moment. All my thoughts went back and forth; would I survive and what if I die?
I have never been afraid of dying, but that moment made me realise that we are not here forever, none of us. Everything went well in the end and as the saying goes; “What does not kill you makes you stronger” must be very true.