Australia is a sacred place to me, one that holds mystery and a chapter of self-discovery. I moved there when I was 24 to explore the world and lived there for half a year. It was the greatest expedition of my 20s next to marrying my husband, Gunnar Larson. I learned what love was — self-love, that is. I was alone and on my own with nothing but the elements to bring my true self to the surface.
So when my husband and I were gifted a pair of tickets to anywhere in the world as a wedding gift, Australia was our number one choice. He was 25 and I was 28. It had been just 4 years since I had lived there, but now, going with the love of my life, it all felt new with the same comforting embrace, and with new layers to discover. I grew up all over (Virginia, Florida, Alaska, Texas, California, and Missouri) so I’ve never really had a solid answer to “Where did you grow up?” Australia, for me, is a sense of home. On that second trip, I was able to show my husband my favorite spots, like chasing the sunrise on Dee Why, breakfast on Palm Beach, Glebe vintage shopping, and getting lost in the Rocks of Sydney. I always dreamed we would take our kids someday.
That opportunity presented itself when one of my dearest friends from Australia became engaged last December. Without hesitation, we booked our flights immediately. My husband and I are pretty spontaneous, but this was something we had dreamed of and now had the perfect excuse: a wedding! I was 8 months pregnant with our son Royal at the time, but knew it would be the trip of a lifetime. The question was, how do we prep for a 16-day trip across the world with two kids, one six-year-old and the other nine months?