5 Questions: The Family Fulfillment Project
Have you ever daydreamed about selling everything to travel the world with your kids?
We're excited to share an interview with brave parents who have done just that! Last year, Ben, Becca and their four children hit the road for an epic coast-to-coast adventure. They are documenting everything on YouTube. They've learned a few things along the way. We caught up with this fun family to learn their tips and to find out where they will go next.
You quit your jobs, sold your house and decided to travel with your 4 kids. What inspired you to do this?
Ben and Becca: We always dreamed of a life traveling and spending quality time as a family. Over the years, we lost focus of our dreams as Ben pursued his career. We had achieved the so-called American Dream, yet the work, stress and home full of stuff completely consumed us. We were so focused on maintaining house and career that we were missing time with our kids.
We knew we needed to make a change. The time with kids is so short and we didn’t want to miss anything.
With that, we decided not to grow up and settle down! We sold most of our belongings, rented out the rest, and hit the road for an adventure to find fulfillment for our family.
We are now a full-time travel family! Every day is an adventure, discovering more about our kids, our happiness and priorities, and our relationship with each other. We started a YouTube channel to document our travels and to inspire others to pursue their passions and (more importantly) relationships.
Planning a trip for a family of six must be a bit overwhelming. What's your best advice for adventurous families?
Be flexible and bring a lot of snacks! Our kids are six and under, so we are pretty limited on the actives we can do. What helps us is maintaining the same basic routine wherever we are: meals, naps and exploring. We stay flexible about what we're doing and even where we’re staying each day. For us, over-planning creates expectations – and expectations create stress! We have learned to go with the flow, change plans last minute and be happy with just walking around a visitor center.
You've certainly been to a lot of places over the past year! From Washington to Florida, what was your favorite?
We really enjoyed the coasts, from the state parks in Oregon to the beaches in Florida. We’ve learned the ocean really feeds our soul. One of our favorite places is Key West. Our kids had never seen a clear blue ocean before. It was fun seeing them experience something for the first time. Watching kids discover something new gives us childlike joy: to live through their eyes, to run in the sand and jump off sand dunes in pure kid-bliss. The best part of traveling with kids is acting like one yourself!
You took a trip to Yosemite that was quite an adventure. What's the biggest thing you took away from that trip?
We learned to follow our kids cues! If they were having a rough day, we decided not to try to go on a long hike or to the top of a mountain. We would simply to go the Visitor Center and do the best we can. Being flexible with our expectations helps us keep a positive attitude. Traveling with young kids is all a part of the adventure.
We also learned to do our research! When we planned our trip, we kind of winged it. We didn’t ask questions when booking our campsite or researching the route. We ended up in a bit of hot water when our engine overheated and we had to camp alongside a busy road for two nights!
Y’all are all about living a fulfilling life. What's one tip you can give to families who are seeking fulfillment in their everyday lives?
Don’t settle. We’ve found that success for us isn’t a big paycheck, but to be present with our kids and each other; to have all the time in the world to play and explore together. Time with your kids is so fleeting and short, we have to consciously put down technology to engage fully with our kids. Fulfillment comes in all different shapes. Find what calls your heart and chase after it!
In addition, how many places have you been to since you started traveling as a family? Also, are there any other places you are planning on going to within these next few months?
Over the last year, we’ve explored from Washington to Florida. We go somewhere new every 3 to 6 days and make plans on a whim. We book out our camp sites when we’re driving…usually very last minute. We like to chase the good weather and go wherever we feel like that day. This year, we are planning on making it up to Maine and exploring the East Coast. After that, we are making plans to travel internationally!
You can follow Ben and Becca on Youtube at The Family Fulfillment Project to see where they go next.