Guys. We’re moving. And it’s not to a bigger apartment in the city or a single family home or out to the suburbs or even another state. We’re moving to Melbourne, Australia (apparently there’s a Melbourne, Florida - so I felt the need to clarify).
Then the questions start coming, “Oh, did Brandon get a job there?” and I respond with “No, this was my idea, we're just going.” [insert pow emoji]
Then I get, “So, why are you moving there?”
Lots of reasons, but here’s what I say to people:
Change - Brandon and I are different. Brandon could’ve gladly moved out to the suburbs eight years ago and stayed there for 50 years, and I could’ve had a full head of dreadlocks and be living in a hut in Fiji if we hadn’t met. With that being said, Chicago is an incredible city and for 10 years it has been great for us, up until now.
Adventure - Australia is a good middle ground. It’s a developed country, they speak English, and it’s comfortable enough for Brandon. If he wants to get a job there, he can, and his brother lives there. It feels adventurous enough for me, it’s really far (literally one of the longest flights from America), we can do weekend trips to southeast Asia on the cheap, and I really love what I see from the creative industry there!
And then the reasons I keep to myself:
The gypsy life is a part of my soul. When I went on study abroad to New Zealand at 19 and met so many travelers in hostels, I vowed to become a gypsy-nomad at some point in my life. I was a month away from moving to China, but then I met Brandon here in Chicago and totally had one of those “shit, I know you’re my soulmate” moments, so I felt the need to stay, and I'm so glad I did.
- Traveling is a part of who I am before and after kids. In the most amazing book Great with Child: Letters to a Young Mother (read it if you haven't), she talks about people with kids saying to people without kids “travel now, because you never will when you have kids,” and then she goes on to say something like, “those people didn’t travel before they had kids either.” Which is so true. Kids don't have to dictate how you live your life (for the most part, haha).
- It’s a huge priority for me. When Brandon and I were dating, we talked about how traveling would be a big priority for us after marriage. We’ve made it work on whatever amount of money we’ve had in the bank, and really I think anyone making more than $35k a year can take a yearly international trip if they really wanted to - it’s all about what you prioritize, and we highly value traveling.
If not now, when? There’s never going to be a good time. It feels very much like one of those things where if I don’t decide to do this now, then when are we going to do it? When we’re retired? Boring.
Why not me? When I saw families like Oh Happy Day and Design Mom taking their families for a year to France (they’re sisters, btw, and planned it at the same time = dream world) and other families like this, this, and this - I had this epiphany moment - what’s the difference between these families and other families that say they want to do it, but they don’t? I know what you’re thinking right? Money - every single one of them are millionaires and/or trust fund babies. But they’re not! Well, except for this one. The difference is - they just made the decision and committed to it. And really, isn’t that what makes the difference for everything in life? The difference between want and must.
The world is calling me. I just had one of those “click” moments, and it forever changed me. Before we had finally decided to go, I was expressing to a friend how much I wanted to do this but what about insurance and money and kids and yadayadayada, and she said “Nikki! The world is calling you!” It was so powerful and resonated on such a high vibration level. I couldn’t deny it.
Other questions we get...
Q: So yea, what are you going to do about health insurance?
We’re just going to get international insurance - where you’re covered everywhere in the world except the US and Singapore and it's insanely affordable, like $600 for all of us for a year.
Q: And your kids?
We’re really into the Waldorf method, a philosophy that’s essentially to never teach your kids anything and just live. (Just kidding!) But really, our kids are 1 and 4 years old. Sloane turns 5 in February, and honestly — I just Googled this now — this article indicates that she could start public school in January (they’re on the year-round system) but who knows if we're just on a visitors visa... I'm not worried about it. Can you tell?
But even living in the highest rated elementary school district in the city, we were still considering keeping Sloane in Waldorf. Jeez, I know that’s super controversial and sounds so privileged, and there’s a lot of feelings around public education… uhhhhh see this post.
Preschool, daycare, nanny, Brandon and I switching on and off. We’re going to figure it out when we get there.
Q: What are you going to do for work?
Keep doing what I’m doing.
For my 1:1 work, most of my clients meet with me virtually right now. For my clients who meet in person, I told them that come January we can try virtual, and if it’s not for them, we can go our separate ways.
For my in-person events, I probably won’t do anything for a while. I feel like I’ll need to build a rapport with the local community and go from there. And from what I've researched is looks amazing.
Next year’s Let’s Camp retreat is still in the works. We’re getting some feedback from people who went and trying to make adjustments to see if we can make it even better for 2018. So I'm planning on flying back for it. See my posts on that pre-retreat and post-retreat.
I’m planning on still doing online events, so stay tuned!
And my e-courses are good anywhere/anytime (shameless plug), Remember, the convenience of doing it in the comfort of your own home, “no bra, no judgement!”
Q: How long are you going to be gone?
I don’t know. It all depends on our finances, to be totally frank. I feel like things are always more expensive than what you plan for, so we’re trying to plan for that too, but you never know. We’re considering moving to Thailand/Vietnam/Bali if Melbourne is the worst decision, and if that’s the worst decision, then we’ll probably move back to America.
Q: Can I come visit?
Some of the places we’ve been and this isn't to do any face rubbing - it's just because I'm always curious in other peoples travels and thought you might be interested in ours!:
NIKKI - New Zealand (where all these pictures are from in 2005), Mexico, Vancouver BC, China, London + Costa Rica
BRANDON - Panama, England + Mexico
NIKKI + BRANDON - Israel, Barcelona, Paris, Rome, South Africa + Bali
NIKKI + BRANDON + SLOANE - Puerto Rico + Iceland
NIKKI + BRANDON + SLOANE + ROMY - Montreal, Melbourne (ASAP) + TBD
We are so excited! And if feels really surreal to be selling our house, car, and all the things but we're just doing it!
How important is travel in your life? Are you working towards location independence? Tell me in the comments!