Goodbye 2017 Hello 2018

Road trip Western Australia
Life on the Road

Flashback to January 2017: after the champagne has popped, the fireworks have exploded, and you ate your last oliebol (a dutch treat for New Years ) you probably vowed 2017 will be your year.

You tell yourself and others to exercise more, eat healthier, quit smoking, travel more, take more time off and be more successful. Then all of a sudden it is August, and it still didn’t happen.

That’s why we don’t have particular things we want to do starting the first of January. We try to live our dreams every day. Plans will always go differently than planned and there will always be good and bad times in every year.

But big dreams and goals we always have. Without them, life would be boring. Another thing we do is reflecting on the previous year and we can pretty much say 2017 was an adventurous year for us.

Looking Back on 2017

We started 2017 in Cairns with (o)pa & (o)ma Jonkman, who stayed with us for 3 months. We loved exploring Cairns and surroundings and after living in Cairns for 7 months we decided it was time to move on and quit our jobs and rental apartment.

In April we took off with only a car full of our belongings. We drove down south and explored Magnetic Island, Townsville, and Mackay with friends.

We traveled to Brisbane, Hong Kong, and the Netherlands to catch up with our friends and family. Our little nephew was born, which made us an aunt, uncle, and big nephew ♥ Good friends of us got married, and we loved spending time with all our friends and family.

We stayed in Europe for 2 months. Five weeks in the Netherlands and 3 weeks traveling with a camper through Belgium, France, Spain, and Andorra. What a great trip we had, and it opened a lot of doors and gave us lots of inspiration for our future life on the road.

When we came back to Australia we bought a new car and a caravan, which we completely renovated into our home on wheels. Read all about our DIY Caravan renovation here

We stayed in Mackay, QLD for 3 weeks to sell our old car, renovate the caravan and look for work. Lion got a job offered in Airlie Beach, QLD on a Friday, we moved there the same weekend on Sunday and Lion started work on Monday.

5 Months of hard work, a bit of exploring and settling into life in our caravan followed. And although this lifestyle isn’t for the faint-hearted and certainly not for everyone, we love it. We only see benefits for our family.

We are outdoors as much as we can. Sem played with different kids from all over Australia and the world almost every day. We made new friends along the way. Sem is growing up being outdoors and surrounded by lots of different people, and we really did go back to basic and enjoy the little things in life which are most important.

Basically, in 2017 we were living our dreams but also worked very hard to achieve those dreams and the lifestyle we want. And we had to make sacrifices.

Lion worked 6 long days a week and was gone from 06.00 – 18.00. I was home with Sem without any family support and only 2 mornings of Daycare and worked full time on and freelance work.

At a certain point, a few weeks ago, we felt like we basically didn’t have a work-life balance anymore and were more cranky or tired, or both at the same time.

When we bought this caravan we wanted a simpler life. More freedom. More time with our family. Making priceless memories together. Travel and Live our dreams while we are young and fit.

Not to make shitloads of money as soon as possible. Money is easy and nice to have, and definitely needed to achieve some dreams, but Life is to short to only work, pay off debts and take the risk of doing all the good stuff when you retire. I mean it’s a bit of a gamble to wait till you are older or retire, isn’t it?

Unfortunately, 2017 showed us again, that life can be over within seconds, no matter how old you are. No guarantees. Life is a gamble, and as none of us will get out of here alive, you might as well live life to its fullest.

5 months in Airlie Beach brought us new friends, new experiences, and enough money to keep us going, we felt like our time has come to leave.

For now, spending quality time with each other, meeting lovely people, being active and outdoors and exploring new things is most important to us.

So after talking about it for the last few weeks, we decided at Boxing Day night that it was time for us to hit the road again. Starting the first of January 2018.

What do we have in mind for 2018?

Everything that will come to our mind, the road is open, we are free as birds.

Our first overseas destination in 2018 will be Bali, with departure on the 17th of January. We will spend a month working, relaxing, catching up with (o)pa and (o)ma Jonkman, eating, getting massages, shopping and indulging in all the other good things Bali has to offer.

New years day we packed up our caravan and left Airlie Beach after 5 months and hit the road down South. Destination unknown. The only thing we HAVE to do is catching a flight to Bali in 2 weeks time.

We hope everyone has a wonderful 2018 and you all follow us on our crazy adventures 😉

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Jo, Lion & Sem

What are your plans and goals for 2018?

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