We are the Rush family. We have been on the road for 6 months (since April 2021) we are a family of 6, Mum - Mandi, Dad - Conon, and 4 kids, Sam - 14, Shaylea - 9, Sienna - 7 and Anita - 5. We have a Jayco Expanda. We also travel with Mandi's parents - Diane and Robert, they have their own caravan, a Jayco Starcraft.
Conon's best friend got sick with Cancer, and passed away shortly after. We decided that life is too short to be confined to a house doing the daily ritual. We decided that we wanted to give our kids great long-lasting memories and spend more time together.
We sold almost everything we own to buy our caravan. We kept the essential items needed to set up our house again, beds, couch, fridge etc, and these are stored in a storage facility for when we return. We will be going home in December, spending about 12 months or so sorting things out and saving some cash, then we will be selling the remaining junk, and then we'll be off again indefinitely.
We prepared by going on a few shorter trips; 2 weeks or so each, and sorted out what we need and what we don't need.
As it is, we still think we have too much. We'll be definitely downsizing for next time. And taking a boat and our dog. We didn't think we would be able to bring our dog, but there hasn't been anywhere yet where we couldn't take her.
The biggest joy has been spending more time together as a family. And getting to know our kids better.
Our biggest challenge was learning to be together when we first started our trip. We weren't used to being in each other's faces all the time, there was a few arguments, but as time has gone on, our marriage is the best it's been in years.
We have so far only done NSW and QLD. Because of a couple of car breakdowns, and Covid.
We enjoyed the Ayr region the most. It has a good vibe, and we spent a good couple of weeks visiting Groper Creek, we camped right on the edge of the river and had a line in the water day and night. We also love the area between Bowen and Proserpine. Conon's dad lives there so we spent a good few weeks there too.
Most disappointed place for Mandi was 1770, I guess I expected more, there's so much hype about the place, and I didn't enjoy it at all, it felt so.. touristy and over rated.
Most disappointing place for Conon, was Babinda Qld, it rained the whole time we were there and the people in the town were so rude.
We are registered for home schooling through Victoria. Our kids have a book for Maths, a book for English and a book for Science. For history and Geography we learn about the history of the area, and the geography of the area and if there's any waterfalls, shipwrecks etc. Visitor information centres are a wealth of knowledge with these things.
Every week Mandi makes the kids new spelling lists. The kids write journals. We do loads of swimming and walking trails.
Surprised us how cheap it actually is to live on the road. We've actually saved money.
Our 3 pieces of advice are:
This trip has changed us so much. We are together more, We are more chilled out, we know our kids better on a more personal level.