Eileen Ogintz is a leading national travel expert and syndicated columnist of the award-winning weekly column Taking the Kids and the creator of Takingthekids.com, which started with her son, a cat and a goldfish pond. In 1987, Ogintz was a national correspondent for the Chicago Tribune, when she took a trip with her family to a Wisconsin cottage. Her then 3-year-old son, Matt, pushed a hapless kitty into a pond thinking the kitty wanted to eat goldfish. The furious owner insisted they pack up and leave immediately. The embarrassed parents drove home three hours to Chicago in a downpour. The travel editor, hearing her tale of woe about the cat and the goldfish pond, encouraged her to write a story about the trials of traveling with young children. The rest is history. Since then, Taking the Kids has become a major and growing presence online, appearing on online news outlets such as www.msnbc.com, Smartertravel.com, and Frommers.com and in newspapers around the country through national syndication by Tribune Media Services.