Yesterday, I had a conversation with somebody who had a lot of questions about our life.

“You don’t send you kids to school??”

“You’re travellling where?”

“How do you make the money to fund this life?”

“If you’re looking after kids the whole day – how can you find time just to be yourself?”

I understand his curiosity.  I’m a naturally curious person myself – and I find the diversity of people fascinating!  

I love to take a peek into the daily lives of people from around the world… and I love browsing those big coffee table books which show photos of different families from around the planet… what their homes look like… what kind of food they enjoy… what life looks like for them.

I’ve also recently read a post from a friend about what a day in the life of her travelling family looks like… and I found the little details soooo interesting!

So… without further ado…  here’s a very Normal or Typical Day-in-the-Life of the Costaras family:

We usually wake up at around 7am… and it’s usually the kids who wake us.  They both come upstairs and join us in bed for a morning snuggle… which, inevitably… turns in to a morning wrestle!

Nick (who is very disciplined with his time)… has a shower and heads off to the cottage attached to our house (which is his studio).  Today – Nick has a 9am meeting with Josh… the director of a TV drama that Nick is currently editing.

In the meantime, I go downstairs and make myself a mug of coffee… which I drink while checking e-mails and browsing social media.

Everyone in the family makes their own breakfast… (when they feel like eating breakfast).  We don’t have a timed schedule for eating.  When somebody is hungry – they go and make themselves something to eat.  Nick likes muesli with yoghurt.  The kids like cornflakes or Weetbix with milk and sugar – and I’m never hungry in the morning (I have a coffee… and, if I remember, I’ll take a multi-vitamin too).

Today, the kids start their day with lego.  Morgan makes an Angel Fish and Joah builds a “Rainbow Fish”.  After lego play, they grab the iPad and access the Garage Band app.  They record an improv song – and create sound samples out of their voices.  This is followed by some piano time (Joah) and ballet moves (Morgan).

Morgan in her jammies... creating lego wonders...

Morgan in her jammies… creating lego wonders…

I have a few things on my plate too.

One of the toilets in our newly renovated bathrooms has sprung a leak – so I need to call the plumber to sort it out.  I also need to sort out US visas for the kids and buy a cool, cotton top for myself since the weather has turned hot (very quickly) and I don’t have much in the way of Summer clothes.

Tomorrow, I’m flying to Cape Town for 3 nights – as part of the Inspired Individuals initiative… so there’s a few things I need to pack – and I need to stock the kids and Nick up on groceries before I go.  I’m a bit worried about Nick – because he has a mountain of work on his plate… and will simultaneously need to care for the kids while I’m in Cape Town.

I’m busy working on “Mad Hatster’s Coffee Cabaret” and a “One-Month-Book”… so, to get the kids out of the house (and simultaneously get some work done)… I pack the kids (and a whole lot of art material) in the car and we drive to Pappachinos.

My little work nest at Pappachinos...

My little work nest at Pappachinos…

Pappachinos is my favourite Joburg restaurant.  They have an awesome play area for children (with child minders in attendance for small kidlets)… and they serve fabulous food and great coffee.  Unlike other restaurants, they don’t charge a fee for children to play in their (huge) play area.  I visit Pappachinos for these reasons:

  • I am able to work or draw (relatively undistracted).
  • Morgan and Joah get a lot of play-time, climb-time and exercise (and they enjoy the company of the other kids).
  • There’s great coffee (!)

Today, we spend about 3 hours at Pappachinos.  The kids eat a large brunch… and I quaff down 3 cappuccinos.

Morgan got a bit of art and writing in too...

Morgan got a bit of art and writing in too…

Sketching ideas for Mad Hatster's Coffee Cabaret... (at first it was going to be Tea-Party... but I changed my mind)...

Sketching ideas for Mad Hatster’s Coffee Cabaret… (at first it was going to be Tea-Party… but I changed my mind)…

Back at home,  Morgan builds a mini “aquarium” while Joah returns to his lego.  Then, the kids decide they want a cool bath (because it’s so hot).  I let them enjoy the occasion while I write out a grocery list.  Nick is still locked down in the edit suite with Josh.

That's my bedroom... if you look closely - you can see Morgan and Joah in the tub enjoying a cool bath on a hot day...

That’s my bedroom… if you look closely – you can see Morgan and Joah in the tub enjoying a cool bath on a hot day…

Morgan's "aquarium"...

Morgan’s “aquarium”…

After the kids’ mid-day cool-bath… we hop back in the car and drive to (dread!) Pick ‘n Pay… to stock up on food and groceries.  I really… really… REALLY… don’t like shopping.  I don’t like malls.  I don’t like supermarkets.  I don’t like shopping, in general.

But I shop anyway… because our fridge is empty and needs to be re-stocked.

At least there was some weird fruit for us to play with!

At least there was some weird fruit for us to play with!

We come home… and unpack the groceries.  Morgan plays with the big Leapfrog Interactive World Map… Joah plays with a set of magnets and asks me to explain why the magnets repel or attract (depending on how you turn them).

At 6pm – Nick comes in from his studio.  We catch up on the day’s events and chat about a few things while Nick eats supper (leftover chilli con carne from Mexican Fresh with hot seeded rolls from Pick ‘n Pay).  Then Nick plays with the kids (while I type this blog).  As I type… all 3 of them are crowded around the iPad… giggling at some kind of monster game and crunching on pretzels coated with sesame seeds.  Just now… I will tuck the kids in bed and read them a story.

Then I’ll pack my suitcase for tomorrow’s trip… soak in a hot bath… and maybe I’ll snuggle up on the couch with a book or a movie.  Nick – unfortunately – has deadlines coming out of his ears… so he’ll be working until late tonight.  He has another 9am meeting tomorrow morning and needs to finish a LOT of editing before then…

So – that was today.

But the thing is… there is never a day that is the same as the last in our household.  Just by virtue of the work Nick and I do… there is always something different happening at our home.

Here’s what our weekend looked like:

On Friday, we spent the day in a 4m deep dive pool – shooting a model who was swirling and spinning underwater in a big, floaty dress.  It’s been a while since I’ve been scuba-diving… but, as I kitted up (and fussed about a missing O-ring)… it felt like only yesterday since I was cruising the depths with whale sharks and moray eels.

Nick directing the shot at the top of the pool... the blob underneath... 4m down... is me.

Nick directing the shot at the top of the pool… the blob underneath… 4m down… is me.

Yellowy-greeny blob is the model swimming near the surface. Dark blob is me at the bottom - shooting upwards.

Yellowy-greeny blob is the model swimming near the surface. Dark blob is me at the bottom – shooting upwards.

On Saturday, we had more renovators at our home (repairing our driveway and finishing off the last of the painting in the bathrooms).  At 1pm, we drove to Braamfontein and fetched our Sri Lankan friend, Prabu, from his hotel… and enjoyed a lazy lunch at Tasha’s in Rosebank with Prabu (while the kids splashed in the nearby fountains and munched on chocolate croissants).

Prabu & Nick at Tashas in Rosebank...

Prabu & Nick at Tashas in Rosebank…

In the evening, Nick, Prabu, Joel (friend from DC) and Rogan  (good friend of many years)… went out to watch a movie while I curled up on the couch with chocolate and a DVD.

On Sunday, we went to our community debate/discussion group called Imagine (Prabu came too).  We had a fantastic conversation about what it means to live in “the NOW”.  Afterwards, we drove to Joburg’s Arts-on-Main where my friends Tracy and Bernice were launching their new range of up-cycled furniture called “Ternary” – (I’m very very proud of them!)… and I quaffed a yummy Lebanese schwarma (and Morgan ate 2 Nutella pancakes… and Prabu sampled chilli biltong).

Tracy and me. Tracy is a very dear friend. I've known her since the age of 12 and we were best friends throughout high school. I am SO proud of what she has accomplished...

Tracy and me. Tracy is a very dear friend. I’ve known her since the age of 12 and we were best friends throughout high school. I am SO proud of what she has accomplished…

Chatting to Tracy and Bernice (also a friend I have known forEVER!)... I so enjoy their company and definitely don't see them enough!!!

Chatting to Tracy and Bernice (also a friend I have known forEVER!)… I so enjoy their company and definitely don’t see them enough!!!

Joah pulling faces in a Ternary mirror...

Joah pulling faces in a Ternary mirror…

Yummy Lebanese lunch...

Yummy Lebanese lunch…

Then… back home… where we were met by our friends Joel & Megan (currently visiting from DC with their daughter, Juno)… and our good friends Rogan and Tracey (plus kids)… and, of course, Prabu… and we chatted… laughed… and ate Nick’s fried haloumi, coffee from Burundi (courtesy of Prabu), Greek baklava, chocolate croissants from Fournos, Tracy’s rice-crispy-marshmallow squares, chocolate (Prabu again), a huge bowl of fresh strawberries with cream.  Yummy-ness!

The food...

The food… (or rather – what was left of it!  Notice the lone piece of fried haloumi on the plate)…

The friends...

The friends…

More friends...

More friends…

So there you have it… this is sorta-kinda what our lives look like – depending on the day.

Obviously – all of this will change significantly once we’re more “nomadic” in and after November… but for now – this is what it is.

Anyone else care to share some links with me about what YOUR daily life looks like?  I’m sooo curious about this kind of thing….