HOW DO WE STILL LIKE EACH OTHER? (not just a road trip 3)

It’s hard to believe any two humans could still like each other after spending as much time together as we have.  We work together, cook together, cross oceans together.  I think the only thing we don’t do together is shower.  And that’s only because our shower isn’t big enough to fit both of us.

Yet somehow, even after 10 years of spending 24/7 together, we’re still happy being together.  Sometimes we’re accused of being too happy…of being fakes…because nobody smiles that much in real life.

Oh, but we do.

Charlie Chapman’s song Smile is pretty much our mantra for life.

Smile what’s the use of crying
You’ll find that life is still worthwhile
If you just smile

Speaking of worthwhile, we make our way to the Waipoua Forest here in New Zealand.  It’s my favorite part of this whole road trip!  Forests in general are my happy place but the Waipoua is home to the biggest, oldest living species in New Zealand.  And there aren’t many places in the world where you can stand in front of a 2000-year-old species!  Grandiose to say the least.

Plus, we couldn’t give back the van without sharing at least one dump station experience.  You’ll never look at a teapot the same.

It was the perfect end to our anniversary road trip.  It’s been a wonderfully wild 15 years together.  But now the question is, how, where and what shall we do over the next 15 years?

I really hope it includes space exploration.


The Story of Us

If you somehow missed part 1 or 2 of this series, you should go back and catch up. Because this is part 3 and we all know how it goes with a series. The first is usually the best and it just gets confusing if you start at the end.


Meet Sadi Brooke, My sister, and the teen we raised.


Anniversary Road Trip


Roadtrippers is a FREE app (and website) that came out right about the same time we hit the road full time in our RV circa 2011 (couldn’t have been more perfect timing).  We hit it off straight away and have been friends ever since.  It’s been our go-to road trip app for discovering weird roadside attractions (hello Cano’s Castle) and wild places to camp (Trona Pinnacles).

The free version is awesome and packed with all the important features. But, if you are a serious road tripper, or going on an extended trip, there is a paid “Plus” subscription. Plus gets rid of ads and unlocks features like live traffic and offline maps (very useful during the trip).

🚐 Camper Van Rental



  • Source – Artlist, Get 2 Months for FREE:
    • Artists – Paper Planes, Vic Davi, Low Light, Mountaintops, Sivan Talmor, Family Kush, Sajan Nauriyal, Phillip Vo, Hadar Sopher


Thanks for joining us, it wouldn’t be the same without you. 🤗

Ups, downs, and all arounds, we share it all. We’re able to do so because people like you show up each week, read, watch, comment, share, shop our gear, and toss a tip in our production jar. If you like what you see, there are lots of ways you can show your support.

Hello there! I honestly don’t know what to say, so I am going to tell you a bunch of random facts instead. I'm a fish eating vegetarian who hates spiders and loves snakes. I almost never took vacations growing up. I wanted to be Pippi Longstocking (still do). I misspell about every other word I write and still struggle with grammar. I love splurging on a good high tea (which is really hard to find these days). And whatever you do, don’t tell me I can’t do something, because then I'll HAVE to do it!

Comments (36)

  • Josh Solver

    We just found you guys online yesterday as I was shopping/researching for solar panels for our hybrid homestead. Y’all do a really good job w what you do. Only watched like 2 hours, 4 segments so far, really enjoyed it though. Its like the best of national geographic (same caliber) all the amazing photography, without that gloomy narration. Y’all also mix in a good amount of clean comedy and there is a good amount of “I just learned something” too! I appreciate that we can watch this with our kids too. Do y’all do any gardening on your floating house? I mean, I’m growing peas in buckets and they have 90 days cycle. I imagine you’d have to block a lot of the sun and winds are a factor too. Though 5 gallon buckets half full of damp soil is only about 15-20 lbs and u could recycle the gray water. Maybe even turn one or two of those compartments into a green house w a semi transparent polycarbonate panel, I say semi, because a lot of plants don’t actually like all day sun. Peas like 4-6 hours and even then at the longer point they start to wither.

  • Franci Jarrard

    Someone told me that if we skip the ads you don’t get your $.003. Do you know if that’s true?

    I’m about to support you on Patreon anyway. Just curious.

    We’re way behind and are currently bingeing on your site. I’m so impressed with your photography skills as well as your snorkeling and hiking skills. You guys are taking me places I’ll never get to go on my own. Thank you so much.

  • Jeanette Brennan

    Amazing video and great road trip. Thank you for taking us all to NZ – I have always wanted to go but probably never will now. Thank you for taking us to see the awesome Kauri forests and driving us around in your awesome van. Good luck with your upcoming repairs. Looking forward to following along. Stay awesome and Happy Trails. Stay safe and happy! 💖🚐🌲🌊🙏

  • Bhikkhu

    I am amazed on how you do the filming, video and audio, music, scriptwriting and editing, traveling and acting all by yourself in such a professional and entertaining way. I did some parts your route many years ago and I love New Zealand…and maybe check out Byron Bay, if that fits your route to Australia, thank you.

  • positecat

    Jealous of you getting to spend time in that forest with no one else around. I would of loved it. As far as settling down, why???? You are definitely in your zone. I would travel forever if possible. Please don’t let anyone try to tell you different. Looking forward to next week as always :):):)

  • Jeffrey Stenberg

    That was one of my favorite videos. Those forests looked so prehistoric, I was waiting for a Tridactyl dinosaur bird to swoop down and bring you up to its nest on top of one of those amazing trees. Your choice of music is great, sun shining though the trees, sounds of the birds etc. in the morning. Totally cool ! And the piece de resistance, the emptying of the poop and gray water. It is good for us to think about.
    As for this video and the island, Wow, Wow, and Wow ! 👍


    Oh my I see you are Locked down again in NZ.

  • Deborah Dvorak

    I’m visiting New Zealand via your videos. It is beautiful! Those trees are huge! Thank you for sharing your life story, so far! Many more great years to come.
    I eagerly wait for Sunday’s for the next video, going on 3 years now since I found your channel. Anyway, that’s all. Have fun, don’t work too hard! Can’t wait for the next adventure!

  • Michael

    My wife and I enjoyed the forest trails a great deal. Truly beautiful scenery. Maybe you can find a bird sanctuary and see all the native birds in one place. If the bird life is as good as the rest of NZ, they will be spectacular.

    As I mentioned before, enjoy the boat work. That can be a fun journey too.

    Thanks for the vlog.

  • Richard Fenters

    I really loved this 3 part series, gaining knowledge and visuals of NZ, all the while, gaining insight into your previous history as youngsters! Both stories were quite interesting and helped me to get to know you better by understanding more of your past! When did Cleo and SInga appear in that history and how? Thanks and Enjoy the Kiwi life as much as possible during your upcoming VRP (vessel rehabilitation phase)!

  • Angela

    Just awesome, thanks guys. So great seeing you in my backyard, loved seeing Auckland at the very end of this one, that used to be my view everyday driving to work in the city. Tip: Next time you’re out n about at night in the NZ bush, the kiwi can be identified because it calls its own name ‘key-wee’, it’s kinda screechy and high pitched, have a listen and see if you can hear it. Also, one for the to-do list … The Pinnacles as a day tramp (or an overnighter). It’s in the forest/hills behind Thames on the Coromandel Peninsular, there’s a DoC hut at the top which you need to book to say overnight but don’t have to cause it can be hiked in a day. The whole area used to have 1000’s of Kauri but most were felled for lumber back in the day. It’s all documented with old photos etc and the Ranger in charge of the DoC hut will (by request only) put on a slide show at night and do a show n tell about the area and how the men got those gigantic kauri trunks down the valley and out to sea. Highly recommend climbing The Pinnacles and staying a night just to hear the Ranger’s talk (go mid-week when it’s not booked out).

  • Michael Magill

    Another amazing video and love the 100- year old tree, I was in New Zealand long time ago but only as a stop over for my trip to Australia, where i went all over the place and loved every minute, and the People were just amazing, and so friendly , want to go back. Thanks you two for letting us tag along with you on your road trip loved every moment. Hope you get your boat back to ship shape without breaking the bank!! Take care stay safe !!

  • Alan Solomon

    Wow. Great story. Great footage and great entertainment. I watched it twice to make note of the parts I wanted to comment on.
    At the beginning, did you really say fugly? It must be a good Scrabble word.
    I am a lover of the Redwoods too Nicki. I like to visit them as often as I can. especially now with all the forest fires California is experiencing.
    The two of you in bed looking at the monitor and looking at the camera as you were laughing was funny and caused me to laugh too.
    The sounds that were coming out of that forest the next morning were incredible. It reminded me of Africa. Quite the adventure.
    In closing, I like the forest rather than the farmlands. I like the video of the buildings or houses in the middle of the forest.
    Thanks for another great video. Happy Boat repair.

  • Anne

    Nikki! When you spilled the coffee on your sweater I just about died… I do that ALL THE TIME. Where did you buy the sweater from? I’d love to have one like it but all I can find online looks to be not as comfy looking… I’d love to support true NZ artists but finding a hoodie like that seems impossible just “googling” it…

  • Mary Van

    I loved all of the wild crazy noises the morning after camping. Some of those crazy noises sounded familiar. Do they have the fruit bats in New Zealand?

    Your hike through the forest was beautiful! Wish I could’ve tagged along for that!

    I hate that your weather was not the best but like always, you guys make the most out of every situation!

  • Stefan DesRosiers

    Did I miss an update with what happened to Nikki’s allergies? Wasn’t that a reason to get to NZ as well? Hope you’re enjoying the landscape, moderately jealous of you two….;)

  • Ian

    Love you guys!! Thanks for the great update! That forest looked so beautiful! I hope to visit one day. Can’t wait for the next video. 🙂

  • Anne Q

    Fugly? LOL!!! You guys really make it feel like we are there with you. We have joined you on the road and across the sea. It has been so refreshing to see your good and bad experiences and the way you jump in to solve problems. Where ever life leads you, we are with you. Time for a donation $.
    Devoted Sunday Fans, Rich and Anne Quigley.

  • Katie

    My husband and I have been watching you for the last few years. You are now something we do together even though he is deployed and I am home. We love watching your adventures and planning our own. You even inspired us to get a composting toilet for our trailer! Good luck on your boat work!

  • Jean McBride

    So sorry we missed you as you past us by in Dargaville but great to see your footage of our big ‘dirt’ river from the top of the mountain. Like you Nicky I always wonder what NZ would have looked like before it was deforested to make way for farmland! We hope that you took the time to stop at the Kauri Museum ….. one not to be missed if the wonder of the Kauri is to be understood, an amazing step back in time which we still find amazing every time we visit ( which is often) otherwise we hope that you get to see more of NZ and hopefully in better weather….we do have some blue skies and sunshine …but not so much in winter…your timing was a little off.
    GOOD LUCK with the boat and we hope that we may just meet you two amazing people before you leave our shores.
    Regards Eric & Jean McBride. (Dargaville)

  • Kristi

    It strange to see that there, you are coming out of winter and here it’s baking heat waves, and fires here in the USA. Watching was a reprieve, beautiful to see such scenery. 💕
    Curious what you’re up to next !

  • Kristi

    It strange to see that there, you are coming out of winter and here it’s baking hear waves, and fires here in the USA. Watching was a reprieve, beautiful to see such scenery. 💕
    Curious what you’re up to next !

  • Randy Fuller

    This was one of your best videos. The photography is professional and beautiful. Of course I am a Forester in the United States, a sailor, and living vicariously through all of your adventures. Thank you.

  • Joanna

    Thank you!!! I always enjoy your vlogs! So cool to see New Zealand, through your eyes. With this plan evolving who knows when it will be open again. Uhgg! But vicariously through you, AMAZING!!! Absolutely LOVE your photography/shots. Sounds like you had the upfront taking care of someone (as did I, took care of me mum, when I was quite young). But then you choose to Fight for your life style, i.e., the whole lemon thing and keep having to change RV’s alot, etc. As I was just so drained afterwards and then started having health issues myself. I am so glad to virtually meet you (some what, ha 😁) Thanks for all of us out there that might not get there in person😘😍 Much Love n Light!!!

  • Pat Parker

    What an amazing trip and to be able to feel and see your connectivity to each other and the environment. That was a wonderful journey with you two

  • Deborah Kerr

    Your nature shots – close up and distant – are beautiful! I could almost smell the mossy ground and the rain. 🌿
    Sounded like Jurassic Park that morning in the forest!! 🦘🐉🦜🦖 Love your story!

  • Bernard Schaer

    another wonderful video! Thanks guys! Stay safe.

  • Greg



  • Robert Smith

    I so enjoy what the two of you are sharing. I know there are many time robbers, but what about the South Island. I wish to get on a boat but health prevents me from doing many things. Which do you enjoy more, land or sea.
    Peace n kindness,

  • Lisa

    BEAUTIFUL!! Ya’ll are so cute and ¨`*•:★: Happy Anniversary!! :★:•*`¨Thank you for sharing your adventures… we’ve been full time RVing for the last 7 years and totally relate to 24/7 in small spaces – wouldn’t want it any other way! Best wishes on the boat repairs and looking forward to many more adventures.

  • Marjorie Nehlsen

    Great trip. Wondered if the sun would ever come out. Thanks for taking us along.

  • Steve G

    Thank you for your travel video in New Zealand. I know I will never get to visit, but your description of the travels and scenery make me feel as if I actually visited.

  • Dick Carlson

    You have become amazing storytellers over the years I’ve followed you. I’d love to hear you talk about what you’ve learned about combining audio and video, planning out shots, visualizing what you want to put in (and not) in each of your tales.

  • Angelica

    Your posts have saved me. As I vicariously travel in my mind with you. First pandemic, then 3 months on the gulf of Mexico. Waiting to donate a kidney to my sister. Hopefully next week. At at top hospital. No worries. Way better than USA. So thanks for taking my mind away. Even when my body is tethered!

    • Steve G

      Angelica, Best wishes to you and your sister.

    • Michael

      Well done! What a wonderful gift, and a blessing to both.


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