8 Inspiring Films to Watch – about families, couples and singles – living and vlogging in buses and exotic parts of the world

It’s silly late but it’s been a beautiful week of caring for and bonding with sick kids.

I feel so grateful for them. No, really i do. Seeing their vulnerability has reminded me how lucky i am to share a life with them. It’s shaken me up a bit and reminded me to SEE them, BE WITH them, LISTEN WITH them.

And i also, feel hungry to compile a blog post.

So i’m going to attempt to whip one up in 25 mins, and knock off at midnight.

Who thinks i can do it?

Who dreams of living in a bus, and travelling, especially with one’s kids?
New Zealand/Aotearoa
The States…

I don’t watch much TV or film in the grande scheme of things, but sometimes i crave it, like broccoli, baths and chocolate. I gotta get me some TV.

Here’s a few short and longer, blogs, vlogs and film which all revolve around travelling on buses, or living somewhere ‘exotic’ with a young family and sometimes vlogging the butt off of it! This late night blogging, brings out the ‘wild’ in me.

  1. Expedition Happiness
    Available on Netflix
    Husband choose it – high fives husband
    Self-made Documentary (filmmakers are the subjects)
    ^What is the name of this genre?
    Is about a young man and young woman (musician) and their young dog flying from Germany (yes they’re all young and they all fly, yes the dog flies too) to the States to travel from Alaska to Mexico. They buy and convert a bus in North America (into that something gorgeous and very Scando in style). The cinematography is beautiful. Their love (for each other, including, yes the dog) is beautiful. The music (soundtrack) made by the filmmaker is beautiful. We showed it to our kids, in ‘chapters’, they LOVED it. Can we watch the ‘bus one’ Mum? They haven’t comprehended there are no more ‘chapters’. I’m hoping our family will make the next chapter (secret squirrel). Maybe not to Alaska, but maybe somewhere deliciously New Zealand, even if it’s just in our Pathfinder and Coleman canvas tent.
  2. Into the Wild
    Available on Netflix
    Husband chose this also – husband is good chooser (he chose me after all tehehe)
    Film based on a true story, also a book
    This film still haunts me. I found it deeply tragic. Who wouldn’t? It’s about an inspired non-conforming ‘son’ and ‘brother’ who goes AWOL (or does he ‘runaway’ WITH an intent to ‘desert’)… Anyhow, as a young graduate he leaves his family and ‘identity’ and hits the road. He’s a philosopher. He’s looking perhaps for ‘the meaning of life’ he later finds it in a bus. He prepares for some months, for the trip he’s been planning, for a lifetime? To tramp alone through Alaska, and make it back alive. We come along for the ride to watch how his tale ends.
  3. Given
    Available on Netflix
    Sera-Bella Rocka-Fella shared this one with me, but I remembered to watch it.
    This film is one of my favourite of ALL TIMES. The stand out feature, is the fact the voice of a child narrates it, complete with their script/language. Melt. It opens with a Mama birthing her wee baby girl, and we then watch a family of 4 (Mum, Dad a very young boy ‘Given’ and his baby sister ‘True’) travel the world looking for ‘the big fish’. The Mum and Dad are professional surfers. We watch their waves. We travel to India, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand & end in Fiji. The cinematography is utterly edible. The Mama and Papa both very quiet, calm and gentle (yup inspiring). The little boy ‘Given’ enough to induce pro-creation. Watch it. With your whole family. Maybe you’ll be like me and think you can surely surf, after watching it, and certainly travel the world on a bus with a family and look as beautiful & calm in the process. Watch it. You’ll LOVE it.
  4. Lulastic & The Hippyshake
    Available on YouTube (and as a blog)
    I found Lucy through doing a parenting course with Robin Grille
    Technically Lucy, Tim, Ramona & Juno (with dog Zoe) don’t ‘live’ in a bus, they did however travel through Europe in a bus-thingy with their two young children/babies, and do currently own a small (stationary) bus, a caravan and live in two house YURTS! They get around too. They have to be included in this heart-felt wild list, because they are radical, they are change-makers, they follow their hearts, and they are super-sonically INSPIRATIONAL. Lucy introduces herself as such: “I am a cosleepingbabywearingbreastfeeding mama with a nappy free baby;  my parenting probably belongs in a cave with a tribe.” Lucy is my current go-to of getting a ‘TV fix’. She speaks mostly to camera about something thought-provoking, and her pieces are often laced with excerpts of their ‘unschooling’ ‘yurt-living’ ‘farm-and-bush-roaming’ existence. Hedonistically and hard-workingly and consciously and non-conformingly and we-are-here-to-question, amazing. Check her out. I’d watched all her eps, so one night i messaged and asked for some inspiration she put me on to the next three vlogging van-ilies (oh dear the Mum jokes have reached rock bottom and PS it’s 12.20am).
  5. Bus Life NZ
    Available on YouTube (and a website)
    Lucy told me about these cats
    Self-described as ‘A family living in a RV bus conversion full time. We travel and make youtube videos about buslife / vanlife’. Their story involves the Christchurch earthquakes and realising there is more to life than WORKING, or working to live. A kiwi husband and wife have created a living around vlogging their travels and life with two kids (who look somewhere between 4 years and 7 years) on their very large, charmingly decorated bus and adventures. Their entrepreneurship appeals to me. Their filming involves drones, and go pros and all things slick and is super ‘attractive’. I’ve watched a couple of series and one could watch them to get a sense of ‘where to travel to in New Zealand’ cos they feature a place really thoroughly and from interesting angles e.g. where to find a Paleo cafe. What i like about these two vloggers, is they both seem ‘into it’, rather than it being the ‘woman’s’ idea which the husband gets roped into it. Their enthusiasm is caaaute. Their kids are caaaute too.
  6. Jinti Fell
    Available on YouTube (and a blog)
    Lucy told me about these cats, too
    Vegan vloggers at that. With copious amounts of STYLE. Argh! The photos, yum, yum, yum. The baby. Argh! So many adorable humans everywhere. Her byline is ‘Meet Jinti Fell – Sells everything for van life’. I’ve only watched bits and bobs, but it has a lovely slow paced, contented glow to it. I’m sure there’s going to be ooey-gooey philosophy to discover. I’ll report back with whether i’m correct on this one. A very smiling family. I’m gonna watch more. PS They’re ‘stralian.
  7. Ellen Fisher
    Available on YouTube (and a blog)
    And, you guessed it, Lucy told me about these cats, too, too, too.
    VloggersVegan vloggers at that, times two. I’ll be honest (i get all self-conscious about being critical) but i’ve bonded less with this vlog. I think cos it’s North American. I need to watch more. I may have struck the wrong episode which talked about finding time to do one’s face even with a baby. Although i actually agree with her. There’s a strong invitation for us Mama-bears to LOOK after ourselves, CARE for ourselves, BEAUTIFY ourselves. I’ll get all personal here, but i went to sort of a counselling session with a wise woman in our community when our third born was under one years young. This wise woman sort of gave me permission, or encouraged me to ‘look as beautiful as i could’. She told a tale of an Italian friend of hers, and his wife – the tale told how beautiful his wife always looked, her hair done, floral dresses chosen, looking radiant, glorious and downright attractive. Some of us are scared of beauty. Scared of our feminine power (and i mean that in a strong, luscious, sensual sense of that word). So perhaps i’ll undo my critique and say ‘rock on sista’. So this family don’t appear to live out of a bus, but they do live in Hawaii, raising a ‘wild, crazy, connected NATURAL family’. There’s an overlap, like Lucy, Ellen too is committed to ‘breastfeeding, home birthing, and gentle parenting’. I love the line on her About me page: ‘Together we grow and learn from each other.’ Her blog is drenched in wellbeing, nature, and connection (both on a human or being level and with the environment). I’ll be watching more, will you? PS it’s 12.45am. Last but not least…
  8. Ocean Family Road Trip
    Available on YouTube (and a blog)
    Mutual friend Kim Cleland introduced Amy to me and me to Amy at a kids’ birthdayBloggers, occasional vloggers, unschoolers, roadschoolersAmy is a kiwi & Pat is American. They travelled with their three girls through the States for a little over a year. They write a blog about their adventures, mostly into the wild. It’s inspiring seeing the 5 year old still hike alongside the older members of the family. My favourite vlog was a tour of their van, and where everyone slept. Music is a big part of their life, and reading novels. I LOVE making music with this family, and ART, and FOOD and FUN. I’ll find out where they’ve put their vlogs and share the link soon.

It’s 1am. Time is not my strength. I see life in series of projects and i never ever know or care about how long it takes to ‘complete’ it. Those numbers and those hands on that face are some sort of game i’m not playing. Although i get caught out, cos ‘you can’t cheat time.’

Where would you most like to adventure to?

Have you ever dreamed of getting your bus license?

What stops you from ‘hitting the road’?

What are your top 5 favourite destinations to travel to with children?

What vlogs, blogs or film do you watch to get your ‘travel’ ‘family life’ ‘inspiration’ kick?

We’d love to hear your musings…


Written by Emily with wild & grace


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