After my last blog update on travelling I thought I would post as we come to the end of our US trip and answer some of the questions I get asked frequently.
Firstly our vegan diet. We started our vegan journey for health reasons and really enjoyed it, though since travelling it has been very difficult to stick to. We still haven’t eaten meat but diary has definitely crept back in, we have found it too hard to avoid foods containing diary with eating out so much of the time.
It wasn't so much about being vegan for us, more, eating a whole foods plant based healthier diet, cutting out meat and diary just seemed to make sense after looking into everything. We are feeling the affects of not eating as well and having our own kitchen to cook fresh meals in. We often grab less healthy options when we are on the move.
Eating well was a significant time commitment but we do feel it was worth it and when we are settled, we can’t wait to get back on it.
How is travelling with five boys?
I get so many questions on this topic, I’ll try and answer as many as possible.
The boys have all been really good, it’s really surprised us how much they are able to walk, even with a heavy back pack and often for miles and miles. They seem to enjoy the challenge and how strong they are getting. They have listened well and we have really enjoyed the adventure together.
The twins have surprised us the most, they get excited by most of what they see, they seem very stimulated most of the time and love exploring new environments. They are possibly more clingy but at the same time, so sociable, smiling at everyone and very comfortable with all the attention they receive.
They are out every day and they seem to love it, it’s quite noticeable how little they cry. The oldest two seem to have grown up significantly since being on the road and Hunter has coped much better than in Portugal.
Saying all this, as much as we have loved the experience, we knew after Portugal that we don’t want to travel long term. This was our reason for bringing forward our US trip, it has always been at the top of the older boys list.
Even though they have loved seeing so much of America, we almost knew at the start of the trip that full time travelling isn’t really for us. As we come to the end of our America trip, the boys are becoming more and more excited about going home.
Our plan is to buy a home in Cornwall and we will be looking at schools ready for September. I don’t think we would have realised how much we love Cornwall if we hadn’t started travelling, it really does feel like home when we are there. The rugged coastlines seem to provide endless adventure for these boys.
If anyone asks should they travel with kids, I would say definitely, it has been incredible and in many ways easier. For me it has been amazing, I have written previous posts about my struggle with anxiety and I would say it has helped massively. This seems really strange as there is so much more you could be anxious about, but for me, being so busy leaves little time for negative thoughts to take hold. I’m almost nervous to go back, but I know it is the best thing for our family as a whole and I can’t think of a better place to be going back to.
I get a lot of questions about the cost of travelling. We try and stick to £100 per night for accommodation, there has been a few resorts along the way that have been way more than this but also have been air bnbs that have been less. Living costs and entertainment have been a further £75-150 depending on where we have been.
For flights we always use sky scanner which is amazing if you can be flexible with when you fly.Flights to Portugal were £17 PP each way, flights to Orlando averaged £95 each for the 7 of us, I think the full adult fare was £165. Coming back from New York was £120 ish..
Car hire in America worked out to be £45 per day, Matt used comparison sites while we were here.
I often get asked how we managed to pay for our travels. We had a separate business that we set up years ago, an outdoor laser tag in Lincoln. We sold this last year and were able to separate the money from the sale of our house so we can buy again we when settle.
Finally work, in my last post I explained that it wasn’t possible to continue our mortgage business in the same way whilst abroad. Matt didn’t want to lose touch with helping people move home so his Instagram page is where he answers questions on mortgages, moving and finance in general.
We have set up a new business which concentrates on on life cover. It’s something a lot of people think has to be linked to their mortgage amount, whether that means paying more than you can comfortably afford or not having any family related protection above the amount of a mortgage. On Matts Instagram @ask_mortgage_matt we will go into more detail in the coming weeks about how much cover Matt and I have personally as we have different amounts which are based on what we would need if something happened to one of us. We are really excited to be working on this together and either of us will happily answer any questions.
Finally, will we continue to travel? Definitely, we have the travel bug now and there is so much we want to see but we will do it in shorter stretches and come home in between. My brother is in Japan and the big boys are Pokemon obsessed so that is definitely on our bucket list. As well as Australia where Matt has family and Iceland is number one on my bucket list.
We will be in France in two weeks which we actually had planned before we even started travelling and we are all really looking forward to it.
We have a full on week in Cornwall when we get back sorting out a school for the boys. Hunter will be starting reception, Judah is going into year 4 and Ralph year 6 the final year of Primary. The boys aren’t nervous at all if anything they are super excited to make new friends. We have also found a house, hopefully if all goes to plan we will have a renovation project in our favourite area. Something I’m really excited about because as I said whenever I’m full on busy I don’t have time for anxiety to take a hold.
Just wanted to say thank you so much for everyone’s messages and kind words. As always we so appreciate everyone’s support of our family. This experience has made us feel we can achieve anything we put our minds to and are really excited about the future. I’m so excited to see my crazy wild haired, shoeless Hunter in a cute school uniform in the best year there is at school, Reception.