Over the last 20 years, I had a successful international career in the resources industry, taking me and the family all over the world. Originally from South Africa, the family has lived in the UK (London), the USA (Houston) and Australia (Sydney and Brisbane) over the last 12 years. My beautiful wife and four lively kids are the treasures of my life and I value the time we spend together and the relationships that we are growing in. I love finding creative expression through experimenting with art but secretly wish to have been the creator of large scale artworks in hotel lobbies or a jeweller of intricate masterpieces. Mariza and I have turned shared creative vision into reality by transforming a number of homes from tired to inspiring, increasing in scale with every new project.
Although I started my career as an engineer in an industrial operational capacity, it soon grew into commercial and strategic management, providing me with opportunities to work across the world in interesting places and with fascinating people. This includes spending time with Inupiat Eskimo communities in Alaska, in wind swept Patagonia, in the rainforests of Borneo and large mining operations in Colombia. A management shuffle was turned into an opportunity to take a mid-career break and for an adventure for the family to build lifelong memories together. Being passionate about challenging boundaries and creating the context to develop and grow, I relished the prospect to see my family change with the excitement, trials and insights that long term travel could bring. We, as a family and as individuals, could expand our world to include people, cultures and countries that would shape how we think about ourselves and the future. Opportunities like these does not come often!
I am Mariza and I am the wife of an incredible man and the mother of four extraordinary children, two boys and two girls. I love my life and I am having the adventure of a lifetime with my precious family.
I was once a very serious career girl as an engineer and then as part of an international management consulting firm. I never envisaged being a stay at home mum and neither did anyone who knew me at the time. Today I homeschool my four children, because we love the flexibility and lifestyle it affords us. And I am totally happy and fulfilled.
At home I run every weekday morning with my kids, followed by a gym session in the garage. We all love food and we eat a lot. Mostly quite healthily. We have meals around the kitchen table and dinner is an important family affair. Every night is a good night for candle light in our home.
People are my passion. I love to meet and get to know people. I also love to see people live in the fullness of all they were made to be.
I love flowers and wine and leaf tea in a pot.
Life is a precious gift and I try to live fully in every moment and place. Home is where I am. I am settled, but I’m open to a new adventure anywhere at any time. Every place has fascinating people and holds the potential of new, precious relationships. My heart is ever expanding and my family ever increasing. I love it!
I am a 13 year old who simply loves all things active, exciting and filled with adventure and surprises. I have been looking forward to this trip. Some of the things I look forward to are: seeing all the new places, experiencing the different cultures, and tasting delicious traditional foods… yet, not so much the backpacking part.
Yes, I said backpacking, and what’s more: For eight months!
We are going with nothing but the bare essentials! My backpack is only 30 litres (not very big at all!). It weighs 5 ½ kg in total, which is still very light. Although I’m sure the weight will increase throughout the journey…
My siblings an I are all homeschooled. This makes it easy to just hit the road, without falling behind. We have downloaded all our books and work onto either 2 iPads, 3 Kindles and 2 mobile phones. This means we can do our work on the go. Plus, I believe this adventure will not only be of value to schooling, as in geography and all that, but to our character, values and perspective on life.
As I have said before, I love to do sport, music and other activities. But going traveling this year means missing out on all this. At first, this was a big disappointment to me. But then I realised… Sport and music will still be there when I get back, and also… what is a season of sport and activities against a year of exploring an unknown world?
I have many close, wonderful friends. At first, I could not imagine leaving them behind for so long. But now I know, when I get back, my wonderful friends will still be there. And we are going to make up for all the missing catch-ups. 🙂
I am quite excited about traveling this year. I will be shocked at stages… I will wish I was at home sometimes… I’ll always be missing my friends and family back home… but all in all, I will have the greatest experience that a 13 year old would ever have had! No doubt we’ll come home more grateful for everyday items, that before the trip, we had taken for granted. Not to mention the many weird and wonderful stories.
-See you along the way!
My name: Ruzow
My life: Blank
Education: Overrated. (I’d rather drink a beer and smoke a sigarette.)
Occupation: Master gambler.
Highlight of my life: Having you fall for this joke!!!!!!!!
[Ruzow is a self-motivated twelve year old who enjoys solving problems. He has a good sense of humour, poking fun at everyone around him. Kali and Ruzow both played representative hockey for Brisbane in 2016. They also started a neighbourhood business, successfully raising a considerable amount of money to support the education of the children in an underprivileged community.]
Hello my name is Eulain I am eight years old and turning nine in July 17 . I was born in America in Houston Texas. My favourite sport is hockey, the animal I most love is a horse, and I like the colour blue. Unlike other children I do not like too much sugar or pretty soon I get a tummy ache.
As you may know I am going backpacking with my family for eight months !!!!
I’m so excited about it, it’s going to be so cool, I can’t wait. I have a 3o litre backpack , I can barely fit all my clothes and traveling needs in.
[Eulain is a feisty nine year old girl with ideas and determination that could one day change the world. She also loves being active and enjoys reading and adventure.]