Newsletter - July 2004
Inspiring families to live adventurously, promoting independent family adventure

The Family Adventure Project and Family on a Bike e-newsletter

Welcome to our July 2004 edition, the very first.

It's been just three months since Kirstie and I first discussed the Family on a Bike idea. To be honest we didn't really know what it meant then and I'm not sure we do now. We've tried to pin it down.. as an idea, a philosophy, a campaign, a project, a business, a holiday, a hobby, a nonsense. but that's got us nowhere. So, for now, it is what it is and we don't know exactly what that is, except a catchy kind of title and we're trying to be fine with that, although that's tricky when people say. 'what is it you're doing then?'

Anyway, here's a few things we have been doing in those three short months.

We've had and resolved an identity crisis. Obviously (now) a lot of people thought the Family on a Bike was only interested in cycling. Not true. Independent family adventure is our thing; what-ever, where-ever and who-ever is involved. So, at our big strategy meet over breakfast one morning, we devised a global re-branding initiative and decided to call ourselves The Family Adventure Project. But please don't ask us what that is. All we can tell you is we are the Family on a Bike and we run the project thingummy.

We've made contact with over 60 families. With the help of our researcher Imogen we've managed to track down and make contact with over 60 families around the world actively involved in different kinds of family adventure. There really are some amazing families out there doing extraordinary things together. The ones we know about are mostly from the USA, Europe and Australia at the moment so if you know of others perhaps in South America, Asia, Pacific or Africa do let us know or let them know of us.

We've had over 1000 visitors to the web site. Our webmaster told us while washing up that people from across the five continents have tried to figure out what we are about by looking at our web site. Those from the English speaking world have probably had most luck. It's anyone's guess how those from Japan, Indonesia, Russia, Oman or China got there or what they made of it. We'd love to reach beyond the limitations of our language but haven't figured out how we do that yet, other than a long period of language training or long nights with a pocket dictionary. Isn't language limiting? Anyway, the site continues to change and there's now a semblance of structure, so next step is to generate some original content and links to other related sites. If you'd like us to link to you we'd be happy to consider a reciprocal deal.

Our Family on a Bike expedition has evolved. Like we said, it's all shifting sands and our family cycling expedition to New Zealand is morphing as I write into a longer global jaunt to try and meet up with as many of the adventurous families we've made contact with as we can. It's going to be a kind of long term creative writing, research, educational, networking, holiday expedition if you know what I mean. So, if you're in Australia, New Zealand, USA or Canada we could be heading your way over the next year. Two adults, two children, two bikes, two trailers, in search of families in search of adventure. If you'd like to feature on our itinerary drop us an email.

We've developed an Adventuresome Families on-line survey. As part of our research efforts, we're trying to get a sense of who's doing what when it comes to family adventure, why they do it and what they get from it, so we designed and launched an online survey to help us gather data. It's at or without all that typing via our website. We'd love anyone with family adventure experience to tell us about it using the survey, so please encourage your friends and contacts or have a go yourself.

We continue to welcome your help and support. This Family Adventure Project thing depends upon the support, interest and involvement of others like yourselves. Your comments, ideas, feedback and contributions are a real source of encouragement and motivation for us. So if you want us to stop, stay silent. Otherwise, please continue to spread the word and let others who might be interested know about us.

If you know anyone else who would like to receive this newsletter, or you want to make sure you get future editions (if you're not already signed up), then get a subscription to our newsletter service. To prevent spam and for security we cannot subscribe for you so you have to do that for yourself. It's technology that puts you in charge or put another way makes you do the work. Anyway, it's free and easy, all you need to do is send an email to: and our regular updates will arrive effortlessly in your inbox, unless your spam filter blocks us or you unsubscribe.

You and your friends can support us financially, at no cost to yourselves, by purchasing goods from our affiliate partners through our website. So, if you want to buy anything from say Amazon, navigate to them via the links on our website and your purchases will help fund our project. Or you can send us a cheque directly!

We're going to keep on pedalling. Where are we heading for the next few months? Well there's no telling, thank goodness. We're getting into the planning phase for our expedition, although it would help to know where we're going first. We're generating some content and links for the website so you can read about other families and their adventure stories. We're starting to meet up with some families to help our research and preparations. And as always we're trying to figure out how to fund the whole venture through grants, sponsorship, donations, research funding, busking, borrowing and begging. The 3 b's seem most promising so far. All ideas welcome!

And life continues as normal. And around all this we try to get on with the everyday adventure of living. As Helen Keller once said "Life is an adventure or nothing at all" What will yours be?

Until next time,

Stuart, Kirstie, Matthew and Cameron
The Family on a Bike

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