Shhhh! They’re all asleep. Wiped out like a small pride of lions after a big day on the savannah. All 4 of us in this little apartment, 2 big beds, happy as can be. Chef has his first day off today, he can sleep in. Boo lost a tooth yesterday, he’ll wake to find 2 pounds under his pillow. D read ’till past midnight, lost in a world of Greek myths, all is right with the world as London sunshine streams in through our windows.
It’s been over 3 years now. We left our home in June 2013. So many adventures, so many memories, such amazing times.
If I were to write something about 3 years of being “normal” at home. I doubt I’d have much to say. A few special trips, birthdays, meals out, Christmases ( I’m struggling already here!) going out to the reef maybe? Walking in the rainforest? But those things would lose their shine because they’d be the same old things, over and over again. I can’t even begin to list the adventures we’ve had in the last 3 years. There are over 400 posts on this website, thousands more on social media. We document most things, good and bad, but it’s just too much to sum up in a short post.
I can tell you without doubt that we’ve never regretted our decision to try this peripatetic lifestyle for size, it’s brought us too many good things.
A close, joyful bond with our kids. We all know each other inside and out, good and bad.
Incredible global educational opportunities for all of us, not just the boys.
A new career and creative outlet for me. I love my job.
A shift in priorities, no more Better-Homes-and-Gardens type lifestyle. We focus on what’s really important now.
Greater financial freedom born out of needing less, enjoying more.
Spiritual freedom. I don’t feel trapped as I used to. My mind can be where it wants to be.
New friends and a new global community. People more in-line with our family philosophies.
It’s been amazing, thank you for joining us and we’re not stopping!
I know of few other family travellers who’ve lasted this long. Admittedly, our travels have brought us “home” to London for now. We are Londoners and it’s now clear to us that this is where we belong. That’s another of the beauties of travel, it allows you to see things and places more clearly. Our other “home” Breb, Romania, brings us all enormous joy, but, who knows what will happen in Europe now? Most of us, we travellers, seem to settle after a while. Sometimes in new countries, sometimes returning to the old ones. I think our family will continue to travel, but as usual, nothing is planned.
So, some highlights, my highlights, of the last 3 years.
A Few Highlights From a 3 Year Adventure
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Seeing Mount Everest as we topped the hill to Tangboche Monastery. Just my elder son and I. That was pure magic. A physical challenge completed, a mother-son bonding experience of monumental proportions and a spiritual joy.
As we struggled to the top, sucking in thin air, the clouds that had obscured the mountain parted and I just stopped, sat on the ground and took photo after photo with tears in my eyes. D, unimpressed, raced off to buy a Snickers. I haven’t yet written about that day ( I have now, here), I will, but you can revisit the white-knuckle flight to Lukla from Kathmandu here.
Just being a backpacker is a thrill for me too. I love the lifestyle and the mode of travel. I’m rarely happier than when I have a backpack on my back. The ultimate backpacker trail cliché destination has to be Bangkok’s Khao San Rd. When I first visited back in 1999 it was love at first sight. It’s a love affair that’s endured and sharing the fun and craziness with the kids has been wonderful. I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve been now. Read more about Thailand with kids here.
Professionally, I’ve grown in so many ways. I was a very bored scientist, not a writer or website creator. I had no clue about websites, social media and all the behind-the-scenes technical stuff that goes with it. Now I can hold my own and it means a lot to be able to help and encourage people through the websites and to be taken seriously as a travel professional.
Being approached for help, advice or to promote a travel business feels great. We’ve had some fabulous work opportunities this year, the Max Wadiya full-service villa in Sri Lanka was very much a highlight. Regular readers will know that we very rarely do these sorts of promotions. Personal travel usually comes first for us but Sri Lanka is special and we were happy to help in any way.
I’ve taught myself all of this stuff. Everything I do to run this site and support my family is self-taught. Tell me why we need to go to school again?
What else, well how about just seeing the kids grow from sweet 6 and 8-year-old kids to almost-young-men? I’m so proud of them. They’re smart, funny, kind, just all-round cool and the best bit? I haven’t missed a second of it.
It was beyond an honour to be able to take D to Greece for his last birthday. A trip for him because of his own interest born of hours and hours of reading and study.
They don’t go to school. That’s why they have time to do all that research for pleasure. Always learning, always living to the full, always enjoying.
They want to go back to Disney again soon. One of the most educational and fun places on earth. Don’t believe me about the educational? Well, you just need to see things differently. How can we not take them? As always, we’ll find a way to make it happen.
My husband isn’t getting much of a mention here but he has heaps of fun too.
He gets to be a dad more often, take care of us all, play with cars, climb mountains, drive all over the word, go scuba diving without us ( that bit’s not fair!), further his Chefly knowledge with global cuisines and just generally have a great time.
He holds this adventure together when I’m having menopausal anxiety attacks and is the muscle and a lot of the brains behind the whole thing. I do websites and kids, he does just about everything else. He’s awesome. He’s also an excellent Chef, still involved in an industry he loves and still furthering his career in one of the very best luxury hotels in the world. We don’t tell people which one 😉
So it’s been amazing, and that’s all I wanted to say. I get comments or emails thanking me ( us) for the encouragement we’ve given other families to live life to the max and that makes every second of unpaid work worthwhile. So thank you for reading and being here. We will continue for as long as we can.
As always, leave me a comment, it helps me to know who’s reading and what they need or want to know.
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