This is the road trip family: Mom Juli, Dad Christian and their Supermagicalunicorntwins. They started their journey in Germany, drove north through Sweden and are now in Norway. The adventure continues next week, so stay tuned! Read part 2 here.
Wonder why they’re called Supermagicalunicorntwins? Read the info box at the end of the article to find out.
We’re a Swedish-German family who decided to go on a road trip in a camper van during our parental leave. Our family consists of Chris, photographer and pilot, Juli, psychologist, and our six-month-old twin daughters. We are living in a Volkswagen LT31 from 1991 and this is our story.
More quality time with the kids
After a difficult and uncertain pregnancy, and an even harder start for our babies, we felt we needed some recovery. We wanted more quality time with our children, and to slow down and reduce everyday hassle by being close to nature and enjoying the tranquility.
We needed recovery after a difficult pregnancy and a tough start for our babies.
After quite a lot of eye-rolling and misgivings from family and friends, we finally decided to go on this long trip with our kids.
The idea was to shake off as much modern-day stress as possible and create more space for quality time with the kids. And in a camper van, it takes less than five minutes to tidy or wash up. You can only bring what you need. Nothing else. It’s very liberating!
So we decided to leave our apartment in Berlin and most of our belongings to go on a road trip with our twin daughters, Lovisa and Matilda, during our parental leave.
A tiny home on wheels is still a castle to a child.
We felt that a camper van would be the easiest way to travel with kids. A tiny home on wheels with everything our little family could possibly need. Even though our surroundings would change, the idea would stay the same – to create a safe haven and explore the world at the same time.
It definitely feels rather small at dinner and bedtime, but we have nature as our living room. And it doesn’t matter to the kids. To them it’s still a castle to explore.
A road trip on the kids’ terms
Both during the preparations and during the trip, we’ve stuck to the motto “kids come first”. So we always prioritize health and safety during all planning and preparations. We want to create the best possible conditions for our children’s development even though we’re on the road.
Before we started, we planned to drive for a maximum of three hours a day. After a month of travelling, we know that it’s possible to drive for three hours if the kids are sleeping. But to avoid them getting too stressed, it’s best to settle for two hours and not to drive every day.
Maximum two hours’ drive and not every day.
In other words, this isn’t the kind of road trip you did in your twenties long before the kids arrived. This is a road trip in baby steps :) We want to share our experiences from this trip and hopefully inspire other families.
Don’t miss the next part, where we’ll tell you about our preparations for going on a road trip with children.
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Follow Juli and Christian and their twin daughters Lovisa and Matilda on their road trip: @supermagicalunicorntwins and @christiangoran
These are Juli’s and Christian’s words:
”Early in the pregnancy, in week 12, we got devastating news from our doctor. Our twins were suffering from TTTS (Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome). In short, this means that blood from the placenta does not get evenly distributed between the twins. Depending on how TTTS develops during pregnancy, the babies might die inside the uterus or survive with a high risk of fetal damage.
In week 18 we got the next shocking news. One of the babies had a lung cyst which shifted her heart to the left. Every week during the pregnancy, we went to the hospital to check up on both TTTS and the development of the lung cyst. This was a tough and scary period with lots of worrying, but we did our best to stay positive and keep our spirits up.
Family and friends supported us during these difficult times. One day, a close friend of ours told us that she was convinced our babies were super magical unicorn twins and started to sing about them. We burst out laughing, and it felt so wonderfully liberating! We’ll never forget that joyful and reassuring moment.
This short jingle stayed with us through the rest of the pregnancy, and helped us stay positive and believe that everything would turn out right. And it did.
That’s why we call our daughters the Supermagicalunicorntwins or Smuts. To us they really are our Super Magical Unicorn Twins.”