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Monday, May 25, 2020

Mum and dad use maternity leave to take children around the world

A mom and dad took their children on a lifetime trip after sharing maternity leave for their new born baby to travel the world.

Samantha Farr and her husband Jonathan decided that they would embark on their adventure with their family while she was pregnant with their son George, who is now one.

The teachers started the plans just two weeks after she was born in January 2019 and saved before dividing maternity leave among them and leaving in July.

Together with their older children Archie, seven and Teddy, three, they took a three-month backpacking and sleeping trip to eight countries across 12 cities.

The family has traveled to eight countries in three months

The Louth family traveled some parts of the Great Wall of China, rowed on the Great Barrier Reef, sailed on the Gold Coast and wandered through the deserts of Dubai.

The couple abandoned all hope of a neonatal routine, facing sleepless nights and changing diapers in 19 different places, from hotels to tents and campers.

Now in the UK, the adventurous family is already losing the freedom to travel the world and has encouraged others to follow in their footsteps.

Samantha, 31, said: “It was the most incredible experience and the children loved it, I don’t regret it for a minute and we are already talking about planning another adventure.

The family even rode camels in the desert

“Even though the kids are so young, they honestly threw themselves into every adventure and loved every minute.

“They were climbing mountains, riding on elephants, running for local markets, tuk tuk racing – it was an incredible experience and only the most rewarding.

“Our older son Archie started filming pieces of our travels – he said he now wants to be like David Attenborough when he grows up.

“We did a lot of backpacking and stayed in all the different types of accommodation, from a hotel one day, to a camper and then to sleep in tents.

Teddy, George and Archie

“We also wanted to check off some places on the bucket list in our travels, so we visited the Great Wall of China and showed the children the Great Barrier Reef which was amazing.”

The couple shared his passion for travel over the years and enjoyed many vacations before including Mexico, France and Mallorca before having children.

They got married in 2009 before welcoming son Archie in October 2012, son Teddy in June 2016 and son George in January 2019.

They also traveled through 12 cities

Mum Samantha said, “We talked about traveling with the family for years and using our maternity leave to do it seemed like the most logical decision.

“We saved money on traveling and actually thought about doing it with our second son Teddy, but he was pretty poor when he was born, so we decided not to.

“When I got pregnant with George, we discussed it again and thought that if we don’t do it now, we will never do it!

Despite their youngest being only five and a half months old when they left Stansted airport in July 2019, the parents were not worried.

Baby George in Dubai

The young family began their trips to Sri Lanka, then continued on to Beijing, Tokyo, Bali, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore and ended their three-month holidays in Dubai.

During their trip, the family traveled through eight different countries and took photographs on every occasion.

From surfing in Australia to roaming in the deserts of Dubai, the children of Samantha and Jonathan have certainly lived longer than the average British child.

Returning to the United Kingdom in October 2019 with precious memories and photographs to look back on, the family already lack the freedom and desire to return to travel.

The trip made it clear to the family that they are more suited to this way of life than to traditional life.

Dad Jonathan with Archie and Teddy

They are looking for ways to incorporate their love of travel into their daily lives and have just sold their home and are planning their next trip.

Samantha said: “It was strange to come back, I think we miss the trip and we are thinking of permanently giving up the suburbs for life on the road.

“We made Archie’s decision to miss the first year of the school year to travel, which is controversial as we are teachers ourselves, but we educated him as we traveled.

The family was photographed with a Koala

“We are trying to do it longer next time, perhaps traveling to North and South America.

“Our kids loved it and Archie in particular is absolutely up to it.

“We just wanted to show the children that you don’t have to follow the social norm of growing up, finding work, moving to a house, settling down – there is much more to do and see.

“We wanted our children to see that life is for the living and that you can venture out of your comfort zone, and I think we definitely did.”

Samantha shares her family’s adventures on her Instagram account @wildandthreekids.

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