When your pros list far out weighs your cons list, and there are no more excuses or reasons NOT to take the leap, it’s time for your Lap of Oz! This is exactly what happened to Laura & Sam. The timing was perfect and they are off…. Real stories from Real Families…
Hello! We’re Little Van Trip or as everyone else calls us Sam, Laura, Harry and Jack. We are from Renmark in South Australia; a beautiful, picturesque town of about 10,000 people on the River Murray. I am a primary school teacher and Sam is a plumber; and we’ve both taken a year off work to travel this beautiful country of ours. Sam worked for his Dad in their family business so they were very understanding of us taking the time off, luckily! We have two cheeky little boys, Harry (3.5 years old) who is cautious, clean and a thinker and Jack (18 months) who is the absolute opposite; wild, messy and fearless. I never would have imagined having two boys with such different personalities!
A lot of people have asked us why we are doing this and how we made the decision to sell up, pack up and go. Well, a few smaller events all added up and there just didn’t seem any good enough reasons NOT do it.
Sam had mentioned the idea of travelling around Australia a few times but the practical me thought it was ridiculous to pack up and leave our settled life, especially with two little kids (how wrong I was!). Anyway, we all know how big decisions must be run past the girlfriends, right? Well I mentioned the idea to the girls at coffee one day and their response was overwhelming positive that it made me rethink it. That night Sam and I talked about it and wrote a list of pros and cons. The pros list was endless and a big push was that it would give us some ‘thinking time’ to make decisions about our future. We wanted to sell our house and either build or renovate but we weren’t entirely sure. Sam was also considering some movement in his work but didn’t know which direction to go in. We really couldn’t think of any reasons not to go so the decision was made then and there – what have we got to loose? Within three months we had sold our home, moved out and bought a new car and caravan!
We set off in early January in our Holden Colorado Z71 with our Daydream Retreat caravan. Sam is a handyman and had kitted out our Ute with a few extras that we thought we’d need. We’ve got a Waeco fridge running off a second battery, Kings awning, slide out tool drawer, compressor, spot lights and 4×4 recovery gear. We purchased our van second hand from a lovely family who had also done their own Lap of Oz so we knew it would be a perfect family van. It contains three bunk beds, 4kg washing machine, ensuite, 220L fridge/freezer and ample amount of storage and cupboards. We only had to add a few 12v fans, bike rack and some personal touches.
As I write this, we are into our second week of our Big Lap and it has been incredible! We already feel so comfortable living out of the caravan and the boys have settled in really well. Every day we are learning something new or discovering something about the caravan that we didn’t know. But mostly we are loving the time together as a family. Sam is very much a hands on dad when he’s home; its equal nappies, feeding, getting to bed etc. when he’s around. It is definitely nice to have a second pair of hands around every day to help and it will be great for the boys to spend more than the weekends with Sam. The boys aren’t at school or kindy yet so we don’t need to worry about ‘schooling’ as such. However, this lifestyle and the things they will learn along the way will definitely shape their little personalities and outlook on life. I guess this is an experience of a lifetime and we are so grateful and fortunate that we’ve had to opportunity to do it.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my little introduction to our family and our journey. If you’d like to follow along on with our travels, please like our Instagram page; littlevantrip. Or if you see us on the road, come and say hi! And if course, if you have any questions about your trip or planning don’t be afraid to ask.
You can follow Little Van Trip on Instagram…