Australia, our second stop on our adventure around the world has been a dream come true!
What an incredible two months, full of new experiences, meeting lots of new people, exploring new places and seeing many new animals! On a more personal level we have grown closer and closer as a family.
What has changed
During these two months our new nomadic lifestyle has taken more shape. We have realized that we are not on a vacation somewhere around the world and that at one point we will go home. Now are here for a while and then we will move on to the next country, our home is our family.
We are learning more and more about each other. Most of all we are learning to accept and overcome the many different moods that are part of our daily life.
Being in constant travel can be tiring, stressful, nerve-wracking, fascinating, magical, frustrating, joyful all in one! I feel like we have all gone through all these emotions during these 2 months here in Australia.
Australia was nothing we had imagined but so much more. Although as I’m writing this we are already in our next location, we often compare and miss many aspects of a land that we have grown to really enjoy. We miss checking the roads to see what wild animals might jump out in front of us. We miss the kindness and friendliness of the people, the constant change of environment but always breathtaking, we miss our favorite spots and foods. We miss Australia more then we thoughts possible!
In these month we have all changed a bit. We realized what a constant surprise our kids are to us and how well they have adapted to this new lifestyle. Spending 24/7 with them has taught us to really get to know who they are, how they think, what they feel but they are also getting to know us so much better. When we were at home we were all busy, between school and afternoon activities for them and work for us. We would be together full-time only on weekends, but we now see that there are so many aspects of them that we are discovering just now. Isn’t it unbelievable, you live and see your kids daily but then routine distracts you from getting to really know them?!
Don’t get me wrong everything isn’t always easy. We have had our fights, our low moments and our tired moments. However at the end of the day I would never go back to our comfort because the connection we are building between the five of us is unexplainable and marvelous.
Lets see more in detail what happened to us during our stay in Australia!
I have to say that he has absolutely been the best! He has driven us all around Australia, more then 6000 km for 2 straight months! He never complained, never got frustrated about it (well maybe a bit but it didn’t show too much). Oh and lets not forget that after driving for hours he would jump down from the car or camper van and set everything up…..we are so grateful to Mass for taking such good care of us always. He gave up some of his “me” time to make sure that we got in every place safely and happily!
Massy fell in love with Perth, he is absolutely not a city guy, but there is something about Perth that just makes his heart melt. He admits often that overall Australia really surprised him. It fascinated him more than he thought it would and he really enjoyed every moment of it, also the long drives and the wild animals on the side of the road!
What he has enjoyed the most? Without any doubt having more time to play with our kids. They all get wild together and there are a lot of giggles happening every moment!
At moments he also loves having some crazy fun himself too!
Nature is what makes him feel more at home though. Whether we are on the ocean, in the rainforest, around a monolith in the middle of the desert, on top of a mountain or in a valley, that is where he feels connected. That is where he feels the most alive. Australia gave him often the chance to be in a constant state of serenity because nature is so much part of the the everyday life.
It feels like he is 3 years older! When I look at him in our daily life it feels like he is made for this lifestyle. Constant changes don’t seem to bother him at all.
He loves taking notes of what we see and nicely writing it in his journal. Cosimo wants to make sure to have memories of this big adventure. He has no problem in interacting with anyone we meet and is curious to know more of what goes on in all the planning process of this trip. I love to ask him his opinion about the places we see.
He loves reading and is always excited when we stop in a bookstore to pick something out, he also loves the exchanges we do. Check out our The Book exchange experience post. At campsites we swap a book we read already with one someone left behind and in used bookstores we get credit that goes towards other books. He has fund some real gems in these bookstores! Cosimo has ventured in new genres and enjoys them all! He will find a peaceful spot away from his brother and sister and jump in his new story.
He is always trying to be helpful, by offering to wash the dishes, dry them or anything you will ask. In Perth he officially started making eggs for everyone in the morning! Through these 2 months his ability of making two perfect sunny side eggs has improved!
Now, our son who always hated vegetables, eats them and makes no drama when we ask him to try something new! I’m not sure how that happened! You will see him sitting at the table eating the whole bowl of peppers and carrots. For a couple of nights he also complained that I didn’t have any veggies…..this is pure joy for a mom that had to battle with him to just get a little bite of something in his mouth! He also eats much slower and enjoys his meal!
He is fascinated by EVERYTHING and will ask questions and talk about whatever we see for days. I feel that he has truly embraced this new life completely and truly enjoys it!
For sure one of his favorite moments of these two months was swimming with the Whale shark. He talks about it all the time!!! When we were in the water he would make sure to be always in front of everyone. He really wanted to see the mouth of the shark open so he would swim as fast as he could to get in front.
Emma loved Australia for a very particular reason, she had a chance to have a close up encounter with 2 of her favorite animals! Dolphins and Koalas!
I still remember how excited she was when she walked to the beach at Monkey Mia. Two dolphins were swimming up and down the shore, just a few feet away from her! We spent all day on that beach watching them and walking along the shore with them!
Holding the koala was another memorable moment. Of course Koalas don’t regularly hug you, these were in a the Koala sanctuary. They were born in this environment so they are used to humans, but their nails can really scratch! It is funny to see how excited Emma is in the moment she is living something very particular like these 2 events. When I look at the photos I can see her happiness, she can hardly speak, she is just taking it all in. If you ask her later she isn’t able to transmit that same emotion to the others. I think she likes to keep it to herself, her little treasure. I love to see how different my kids are in their reaction towards a moment of happiness!
She has had a bit of a harder time getting into the whole journal writing aspect of our learning, but she will lay in the camepervan and draw all kind of things. I believe everyone has their own way of learning and expressing theirselves. Initially she was a little lazy with reading too but I suggested a couple of books that I liked when I was her age. Strangely she listened to my suggestions and now she is hooked! When we were driving and she didn’t know what to do she would lay on her bed and read her book.
Emma is a super big sister and is always very careful to her little brother. She helps him with his food, makes him breakfast, plays with him at the playground and a few times she was also able to put him to sleep for his nap. She likes when we call her his second mommy!
When Emma gets to a playground, which I think is one of her favorite stops during our trip, she will hang in any possible way, twist her body amazingly well. I truly think that one day she should go work for the Cirque Du Soleil! In that moment she is extremely focused on what she is doing and completely in sync with her body.
Emma, like her dad, needs to spend time outside. Although I do feel that she has a preference for the beach. In fact she loves to sit on the sand and dig, build or simply create her own stories on the sand. That feels like her happy place!
Luca is speaking more and more, and the words are getting more understandable! He still goes off rambling for a while. I feel terrible when I have no clue of what he said. Specially because he is so serious about his message!
I often feel a bit sorry because due to his young age he cannot do all the cool stuff his older brother and sister get to do. However I realize that it is more of an issue for me then for him, he always finds a way to entertain himself anyway!
It is amazing to see how easily he adapts to all these continuous changes. He naps anywhere we go as long as he has his stroller. When we are in the camper he doesn’t mind the drive I actually think he loves the movement! But if there is something cool to do, there is no way he will sleep!
He walks, runs, jumps, is always on the move and will climb anything, he always wants to do what his brother and sister are doing. Luca often forgets that he is smaller and with shorter legs but very very brave! Needless to say my potential heart attacks are getting more and more frequent!
He loves to yell “playground, playground” as soon as he sees one and with his sister they will make us stop so they can go wild for a bit! He is fearless and will go down the highest slide with no worry!
Australia was a dream come true! When I was a child I always wished I could come to see this huge country. However I knew that it was a big trip and you could not come here only for a couple of days. It had to be well planned and you needed enough time to see as much as possible.
During our 2 months here we didn’t see everything of course. Australia has so much to offer, that I think you could travel around it for years always finding something new to see! But we explored a bit of everything and this gave us a better understanding of what this country is all about. We really appreciated every moment here.
Australia is where I officially turned 40!!! What a milestone, never would I have thought in a million years that I was going to be celebrating it on the Great Ocean Road with my favorite people in the whole world!
What we learned
Australia was also where we started our first camper van experience as family. We adjusted right away to the tight space, the continuous tiding up and the constant closeness, it was actually really cozy and every time we dropped off one camper and spent a few days in regular houses, we missed being so tight! Check out our post Tips on visiting Australia & NZ by camper van to see all we have learned from this amazing experience! This experience made us even closer and we learned to work as a team and to live well together. The only downfall is that Luca makes a mess and we have to clean up!
In these 2 months we have been constantly on the move. There is so much to see and the time never seems enough! We didn’t have much personal time, or rather we learned to find different ways of getting our personal space. Cosimo would hide somewhere with a book. Emma would lay on the bed and draw, read or listen to music. Luca would start driving his trains and cars all over the place, Mass and I would use the night as our personal time. I would do all my blogging and posting in the first part of the night and he would do his meditation in the second half.
We learned that you have to be flexible with the constant changes. If you learn to adapt and embrace them, this whole nomad life won’t be frustrating at all. Actually it will become an awesome way of living your life. You will be able to see the reality in front of you and not look back to the one you left behind. You will just take it in with what it is offering you. Live it in full until you move to the next place!
Once we left Australia we felt like we had completely immersed ourselves in this country and we truly enjoyed it. We still miss it. However we are also excited to see what New Zealand has to offer, as well as the next countries to come…….
What amazing 2 months in Australia: we biked across 1 island, visited 3 islands, visited every state of Australia. We drove more than 6000 km in 3 different campervans and 2 rented cars. We flew on 7 airplanes. We swam with shark whales, held a small crocodile, held a Koala and a wombat, interacted with many kangaroos. Our family had a chance to visit all the biggest cities in Australia. We enjoyed moving around Perth by bus and train, we didn’t enjoy it as much in the other cities though! Stopping by to see some friends along the way and making new ones was a very special moment. We witnessed some of the most amazing miracles of nature. The best of it all is that we did it all together as a family. All these moments are going to be ours to share forever….
Click here to see more of our posts from our travels in Australia!!!