A DARING couple have told how they converted a van after selling their family home to travel around Europe with their three young kids.
Adventure lover Keira Reid and her husband Richard, from Carlisle, Cumbria, made the bold decision to quit the rat race and spend a year exploring the Netherlands and Scandinavia.
The couple will be taking along their three kids – Piper, six, Jack, four, and Teddy, one – to live in the converted builders van full time.
They will even be "road schooling" the youngsters along the way.
Keira, 29, said living in the van as a family of five can be chaotic at times.
She added: "The best thing about van life is the freedom it gives us and the adventures it provides for us as a family.
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"It started as a throwaway comment about selling up and going travelling, but it all just spiralled from there.
"We love that it means we aren't tied down to anywhere and we are seeing and experiencing new places with our kids.
"They are mesmerised by all of the different countries.
"The van is quite small and you'd think it would be a challenge to have us all in such a small space, but it works perfectly for us.
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"The kids thrive off it and they love travelling as a family."
Keira and Richard, 34, previously sold their home in 2019 and travelled around Europe with their two eldest kids in a motor home.
The pair then returned to the UK in 2020 to welcome their youngest children.
Since then, they have enjoyed trips around the UK in their van – but the desire to get back on the road got the better of them.
They have yet again flogged their home and are preparing to move into their converted van.
Keira said: "We got bored being back home and in one place.
"We wanted to keep showing the kids the world and enjoyed it so much the first time we did it, we had to do it again.
"We converted the builders van into our travelling home ourselves, but we have recently ripped out the inside and we are redesigning it so it is perfect for us to move into full time.
"It can be tight for space, but it works for us."
Keira said the family try to do everything "on a budget" as they don't view their lengthy trip as a holiday,
'FEEL THE FREEDOM'
The mum-of-three added: "We can't buy all the kid's ice creams every single day or visit every attraction in every location.
"We prioritise what we want to do. It's mainly about getting out into nature for us.
"We make lots of one-pot meals, pasta dishes and barbeques. We will also be road schooling the kids along the way."
Keira said she is feeling confident about taking the reins on her children's education and will take inspiration from their surroundings to help lead their learning.
She added: "For our up and coming trip, we plan to spend a year travelling in our van. We will be starting in the Netherlands, heading up to Scandinavia and making our way back down through Finland.
"We have a rough plan, but we will mainly be deciding our route as we go along. The kids can't wait.
"We hope that our way of life teaches them that they don't have to have the standard9-5 way of life.
"We want them to feel the freedom to be able to do what they want and not feel the pressures of society.
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"As a family, we have formed such an amazing bond through travelling and living in such small spaces together.
"We wouldn't change it for the world."
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