We are Inge Hart, Tom Moester, Isis, and Thijs; also known as the Dutch Nomad Family.
We left the Netherlands five years ago to spend one year abroad with our three year old daughter, Isis and our one year old son, Thijs. Our first destination was Bali… Little did we know that this magical island would become our home base for our dream of a nomadic existence.
Many didn’t understand why we desired a life like this. Back in the Netherlands we had the picture perfect life. A beautiful house, flash cars, healthy kids, good jobs… The kind of life everyone strives for.
But we already knew what the next 15 years of our life would be… Finding ways to get the kids looked after while we’re at the office… Then asking the kids to entertain themselves while we get the chores done. Our precious weekends spent on all that is needed to run a household. Let’s not forget the occasional well deserved vacations!
Inside we heard a voice that was looking for new adventures and new horizons.
We have always been travellers. During our first date, the main thing we spoke about were our travel experiences. The many countries we had visited and the places we dreamt of going. After only a few months of being together we went on a one month holiday to Mexico/Guatemala. That trip marked the beginning of many of our travel adventures. No wonder when Isis was only five months she flew with us all the way from the Netherlands to Hawaii and a year after, we did it again.
We’ll never forget the day someone asked us, “Why are you going all the way to Hawaii? Isis won’t remember anything.” We replied, “She might not, but we most certainly will.” For us, taking Isis all the way to Hawaii was a confirmation of our philosophy that kids shouldn’t be a reason to postpone your life or give up on your dreams. Kids give an extra dimension to life and travel.
And so it happened that we, Tom and Inge (pregnant with Thijs at the time) had a two minute conversation in the car that would change our lives. It went a little something like this…
There really is a thousand reasons you can use as an excuse to not follow your dreams… But we didn’t let those excuses stop us.
This was our decision. This was our moment.
In 2011 we boarded a plane to Bali for a year of family time with our three year old, Isis and our one year old, Thijs who couldn’t walk or talk. We rented a full service villa for six months in Lovina and also lived in Ubud for six months. Our lifestyle had completely changed from our life back in the Netherlands. Everyday we were going to the beach, spending quality time together as a family, doing yoga, and enjoying the nature and local life surrounding us.
After experiencing this for a few months we had a strong desire to make this our lifestyle. We decided to build our own house in Bail. We had no firm plan yet on how to earn a living, just a strong desire to make this lifestyle happen. We calculated that we could survive for a while.
Again, there really is a thousand reasons you can use as an excuse to not follow your dreams… But we didn’t let those excuses stop us.
We jumped. We built our house, Villa Bloom, in accordance with the things that are important to us; being close to the water for paddle boarding and walking on the beach, yoga under the morning sun, organic food, family friendly, and a nice indoor/outdoor flow to feel a part of nature.
As a family we travelled a lot, not only covering every square metre of Bali, but also within Indonesia, and other countries in Asia like Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Hong Kong. Travelling is our passion; before we came to Asia as a family we had travelled to the United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, Belgium, France, and the USA. Our travels vary from weekend getaways, to two-five week holidays, or even up to a three month journey!
At this stage you might be wondering how we were able to make this kind of life sustainable for us and this is what we want to share with you. You see, after landing in Bali and realising we wanted to live here, we wondered the same thing. We had no plan, just a vision. In Bali we made a living with part time consultancy work in the Netherlands. But Tom felt it was time to move on and the universe provided him with an exciting job opportunity in Asia. He travels regularly through Asia with Bali being the family’s home base.
Inge was training the Villa Bloom staff, landscaping the garden, deepening her yoga practice, and studying healthy food. She spent more time with the children than ever before. We moved within Bali mainly for Isis and Thijs’ education. Inge volunteered for an NGO for a while but was soon back on the autopilot mode of ‘get the kids to school, go to the office, get home and cook for the family’. The very routine we tried to escape from.
Wanting to combine what’s important for her; yoga, healthy food, family, and earning an income, Inge started to look into earning an income online. Since we moved out of Villa Bloom it became available as a haven for like-minded travellers. One of the keys was learning how to use the internet to market the villa and also how to market our unique knowledge and experiences. This was something we were unfamiliar with until we came across the Freedom-Preneur Academy. It’s a place where entrepreneurs come together to learn and share for those wishing to start up a business online.
Today, Inge has turned Villa Bloom and her knowledge about yoga, food, and our passion for travel into an online business. Tom is building a business while working from home and travelling through Asia and we fully support each other on this great journey.
Steven Covey has always been an inspiration for us. Ever since we read his book ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’ back in Kenya in 2006, it’s been the basis for making our ‘family statement’ that still provides guidance to this day.
If it had only been us boarding that plane to Bali 5 years ago, it would have been on an around the world ticket. We can honestly say now that it’s because of Isis and Thijs that we took the time to explore what we really wanted out of that year and to invest in our dreams.
Our family is adventurous and we always seek new experiences. We are educated by more than academics, but also by life experiences, living within different cultures, and traveling the world. We see the world as our education playground for both our kids and for us as parents. Everyday we are meeting people, connecting with nature, stimulating our creativity and spirituality. We have our eyes wide open to see and do new things. All four of us are educated in the ‘art of living’.
We are able to live this life because we had the courage to jump and say goodbye to our ‘secure’ life in the Netherlands.
We understand how fortunate we are to be able to live a life like this, and now we want to pay it forward to those who wish to live a similar lifestyle.
On our blog ‘Dutch Nomad Family’ we share insight on our life, travel, yoga, food, earning an income, and how to create this for yourself. Our Awesome Blog
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If you’re interested in learning more about our Villa Bloom in Bali, visit our page here. Villa bloom
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Inge, Tom, Isis & Thijs aka Dutch Nomad Family
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