2018 – Recap

Random list of things in 2018 so I don’t forget:

  • NYE – Gothenburg
  • Emily was born on 21st March, 2018 – perfectly healthy and amazing!
  • Continued to invest 50% of salary in index funds monthly.
  • Moved to Malmö.
  • Started making pizza at home with a stone.
  • Learnt how to make sourdough starter and bread – make every week.
  • Got a 1st-hand apartment in Malmö.
  • Joined the gym again and stayed under 80kg most of the year.
  • Created our 3rd vegan cookbook with an 8 month old baby!?
  • Traveled to Copenhagen for my 36th birthday.
  • Struggled to juggle work and a newborn baby – but so worth it.
  • Launched the Vegobox beauty box.
  • Hejpack AB – 2.600,000 rev.
  • Monthly Salary: (27k)
  • Tested Topbaby.se as a new business idea – will launch in 2019.
  • NYE – Malmö

2017 – Recap

Random list of things in 2017 so I don’t forget:

  • NYE – Norway
  • Moved back to Gothenburg.
  • Veganboxen changed names to Vegobox.
  • Vegobox now ships boxes to 17 countries in Europe
  • Hired by Vegobox AB – with monthly salary (24k)
  • Bought cryptocurrency in July – BTC, ETH, LTC
  • Learnt about Fi/Re – goal to retire by 48.
  • Saved 50% of monthly salary.
  • Started investing in index funds.
  • Sofia is pregnant – baby due March 18th, 2018 – Emily 😉
  • Changed company name to Hejpack AB
  • Traveled to Helsingborg – for work.
  • Traveled to Malmö twice – for work.
  • Launch gottbox – second sub box – healthier snacks.
  • Sold >20,000 cookbooks – offered a 3rd cookbook next year.
  • Paid back full NZ student loan in 1 year.
  • Started going to the gym 5 days a week again.
  • NYE – Gothenburg.

2016 – Recap

Random list of things in 2016 so I don’t forget:

  • NYE in Gothenburg.
  • Crzy 27th birthday for Sofia – anything more we could have done?
  • Veganboxen – Outsourced packing and shipping of boxes.
  • Sofia’s first cookbook (Vego för alla) sold out – over 12,000 copies.
  • Shutdown Lingonbox – shipping nightmare.
  • Stockholm 2 day visit – Sofia spoke @ veg-conference
  • 34th birthday – one word: FLOATING!
  • Created first t-shirt design – site on hold until 2017
  • Briar came to visit for a week – amazing sunsets.
  • Spent 6 weeks in Denmark – Odense & Copenhagen
  • Sofia’s second cookbook was published – Vardagsvego för alla
  • Spent 6 weeks in Norway  – Oslo & Bergen
  • Went on a fjord boat trip in Bergen – only sunny day!
  • NYE in Norway – 85kr a beer!?

2015 – Recap

Random list of things in 2015 so I don’t forget:

  • NYE – Gothenburg
  • Interned for Lee – food photographer
  • 2 day Spa b-day for Sofia – don’t do next year :p
  • Shut down VEGMAT magazine – not worth the effort anymore.
  • Sofia started blogging for Mitt Kök – featured my images.
  • Pitched cookbook companies – got 2 offers.
  • Hit a yeard (12 month beard growth) and kept it.
  • Veganboxen switched to Cratejoy – churn goes way down.
  • Missed the summer – shooting first cookbook.
  • Started doing yoga every day.
  • 33rd birthday – Ethiopian food & kiwi snackbox 😉
  • Recipes published in 3 issues of VEGO magazine.
  • Briar came to visit – before going to Zermatt for a season
  • First cookbook – Vego för alla – published in December.
  • NYE – Gothenburg – great view from the crown hill.

2014 – Recap

Random list of things in 2014 so I don’t forget:

  • NYE – Copenhagen – rained.
  • Back in Gothenburg – nowhere to live – used Airbnb for 6 months
  • Started VEGMAT magazine – never taken a photo of food before :p
  • Started Veganboxen – shipping out of our bedroom.
  • Decided to grow a beard – not going to shave for 12 months.
  • Got 1st hand contract with Sofia in central Gothenburg.
  • 32nd birthday – 32 of my fav. chocolates with 32 reasons why.
  • First year we haven’t traveled – feels weird.
  • First winter in Gothenburg in a while.
  • NYE – Gothenburg

32 Things Sofia Loves About Me

Yesterday it was my 32nd birthday and Sofia gave me the most amazing gift – she gave me a box of 32 of my favourite chocolates and next to each chocolate she wrote a reason why she loves me. #awww 😉

As you all know, it really is hard to get this kind of honesty, feedback and this kind of compliment from another person even after spending 7 years and nearly every day with each other. I had always hoped that she knew and understood me so to share those 32 things she loves about me really made me feel incredibly blessed to have such a person in my life.

Such a gift also serves as a wonderful reminder than your actions in life matter, the people close to you matter and there is nothing more important than adding value and happiness to this world.

It is so easy to forget all these things, which is why I decided to post all 32 things Sofia loves about me on here – to serve as a daily reminder to myself and others not to forget about all those important wonderful small things in life – those things which really matter in the end.

  1. … that there is always time to just “be” with you.
  2. … how you like to do crazy things just to see if it’s possible.
  3. … that you’re unafraid of showing weakness.
  4. … your love for life.
  5. … that you – just like me, prefer to collect memories & moments over things.
  6. … how sexy you look in a suit.
  7. … your positivity.
  8. … how you can be serious and funny at the same time.
  9. … that you are one big paradox to everyone else.
  10. … how much you believe in me.
  11. … that life is never boring with you.
  12. … your long arms that wrap around me.
  13. … how you love being “the handyman”.
  14. … that you either give all or nothing.
  15. … your asian accent when you see something cute.
  16. … your ability to stay strong no matter what.
  17. … your wise motivational words.
  18. … your dream of buying a lambo dressed like a hobo.
  19. … your light blub shower ideas.
  20. … the many ways you make me feel.
  21. … that you always compete with yourself.
  22. … your faith that everything will work out.
  23. … how you can’t keep an exciting secret from me.
  24. … your morning cuddles.
  25. … your passion to help others.
  26. … your mindset of figuring things out as you go.
  27. … your spontaneity.
  28. … your new beard obsession.
  29. … your skill to hack anything.
  30. … how you love to admire your long legs when sitting.
  31. … your schizophrenic taste in music.
  32. … how you will eat this chocolate box in 5 mins.

And now the chocolate box is empty :p Thanks you once again Sofia for the incredible birthday, it really means so much to me to have something like this in my life!

Now Life Gets Serious :p

Today we picked up the keys to our new apartment in Gothenburg, we have been here for the last 8 months, but were just renting places from airBnB month by month and always living out of our backpacks – however now our life is about to get real serious. :p

Last week Sofia and I signed the contract on a first-hand contract for a great apartment right in the centre of town so we now have to stay here for at least the next few years – for most people this is awesome news, but for us it freaks us the fuck out! We have to buy real furniture and everything :S :p

After traveling for the last 5+ years, and always living day to day from a suitcase, this adjustment to a “real life” has taken us so much longer than expected – our company now needs to be located in Sweden for the vegan snackboxes we send out each month and based on the amazing growth in the last 8 months this is a place we have to stay – we are super excited and are looking forward to having a permanent place to really REALLY focus on doing what we love #VEGMAT 😉

Learning To Live Again – After 9 Years Of Travel …

I feel like travel ruined everything … it took my life, it spun it around and left me hanging – dangling over a cliff of uncertainty with a hollow feeling of dread, confusion and a … SO NOW WHAT?!

It wasn’t meant to be this way, it wasn’t meant to feel this way – it was meant to be uplifting – it was meant to be inspiring – it was meant to be the greatest thing a person could do – to travel far and distant lands, explore the depth of unique cultures and come back with a new view on the world, ready to inspire and challenge the slaves of the system to stand up and fly …

But where is the welcome parade … where is the curiosity … where are the questions, where is … ?

Every best friend has moved on, every personal connection point broken, every aspect of my current life a gigantic circle struggling to fit into the square of societies expectations.

They all said: I was blessed, I was lucky, I was doing what they wished they could … but then where are they all now? It seems like they’re all locked up behind closed doors of conditioned bullshit afraid to let me in – what are they afraid of? the truth?

This feeling within scares, yet intrigues me, and of course I know it’s not their fault – I made this choice, I chose to leave and explore the world leaving everything behind – so for that I have to step up, take responsibility, and start again.

Travel is an high octane, turbo-charged experience, so imagine taking that experience and stretching it out over 9 years without stopping for a breath?

Yes I haven’t been “home” in over 9 years – the world became my home, it became my playground, it became my life, it became my EVERYTHING for 9 years – but then what do you think happens when you take that experience away from someone – do you expect them to carry on as though nothing changed? now we start to understand that feeling within.

While I am still not home, I have decided to settle down to try and make a new home in Sweden. I didn’t expect it would be like this – I didn’t expect it to be this empty – but thinking about it – how else could I expect it to feel?

The last time I was settled down was 9 years ago … and then I was a mental fucked little kid with no idea in the world – my reference experience for this situation is non-existent apart from using 9 year old conditioning, which is what I am feeling creeping up inside.

I have noticed so many old shitty thought patterns showing up again, ones which I thought were long gone, but are now been brought to the surface, teasing and tempting me to play – no thanks!

Traveling the world has taught me everything, yet it feels like nothing at the same time – I know I have to take one step at a time, peel back the layers of confusion and search for the answers to my current situation – a situation, I didn’t expect would end up feeling like this.

I know everything starts from within – my feeling, my thoughts, my life, my view on the world but that doesn’t make it any easier for me to wake up and go to sleep knowing that each day will look and be the same as the day before.

Basically, travel made me a stimulation junkie – a new city here, a new meal there, new friends here, a new country around the corner – poke, poke, poke – always distracting me from me – giving me everything while at the same time nothing at all.

Don’t get me wrong – I love loVE LOVE travel – travel helped me become everything I am today, and I LOVE the person I have become – still working from my bed, still free, still waking up next to the girl of my dreams, but that doesn’t mean this adjustment should be easy – that doesn’t mean that I am not allowed to feeling this way right?

I know this is part of the process, part of Life – taking my travel square and remoulding it into the circle of a settled life … well a new version of that settled life 😉

2013 – Recap

Random list of things in 2013 so I don’t forget:

  • NYE – Berlin – trust everyone next time – NEVER NYE in Berlin again!!!
  • Traveled to Prague for vegan food and Austria for skiing.
  • 6 weeks in Italy
  • Traveled to Monaco, France, Belgium
  • SOLD: all our travel websites in July.
  • 3 months in Gothenburg for summer
  • Back to Berlin and then Hamburg for research for new ideas.
  • Started & quit: veggiefocus, winterstays & myskiholiday
  • Tested a subscription box idea – will give it 2 months to see what happens.
  • NYE – Copenhagen

The Long Road To Freedom – Turning 31

Well – Happy Birthday to me :p Yup today I turn 31 … and YES, that’s a hard number to admit or say out loud  but every time I do I feel this pressure within which pushes me forward … it is now impossible for me to walk around pretending that I still have my whole life ahead of me anymore …

This doesn’t bring me down, or makes me feel bad – in fact it inspires me, it gets me excited to wake up at 6am AND it has finally forced me to step up and take my life “seriously”.

Yesterday, while contemplating the concept of getting older, I of course couldn’t help but to go back and think about the past.

I started thinking about the things I have or haven’t done, the people who have come and gone, and all the different paths I have chosen in the last 12 years – the good, the bad and how they all have affected my growth towards a freedom lifestyle.

Some Background.

When I left high school, unlike most 18 years olds who have no idea what they will do with their life – I had 9 different career paths planned out – my issue wasn’t which university to go to, but which PATH to pick …

Was I going to become a ski instructor like dad and travel the world skiing? Was I going to become a famous sports/news photographer and travel the world taking photos? Was I going to become a professional french horn player?

These were my top 3 choices and to be 100% honest every single one of them sounded PERFECT – I really could not decide – so what did I do?

I gave in to external pressure (from family, friends, music teachers, universities) and picked the one I was currently best at – playing French horn … this was my expected path in life – I was already earning money from the skill set, I was traveling around New Zealand playing with different orchestras and everyone was talking about my future in the industry – basically I HAD TO DO IT …

Was it the right choice? I don’t know, but 5 years later – after finally gathering up enough courage – I QUIT …

I was only 3 months away from graduating with a Masters in Performance Music from the Swedish National Orchestra Academy and everything was going amazingly: I was playing better than ever, I was confident, and I was really happy with my ability to play the French horn at a professional level … then one day I just woke up, realised this isn’t what I want to do with my life, sold my French horn and walked away … everyone I knew was devastated, they just couldn’t understand – why?! Why would he just throw this away?!?!

So What Happened?

I had finally been able to admit to myself something which I had felt creeping up within my core for many MANY years, I just never had the courage to admit it or act on it.

I was afraid of disappointing everyone who “believed in me” – but I knew this was a long time coming (why do you think I got into self-help/dating 2 years earlier) – I knew that I was destined to do bigger and better things than simply playing classical music.

I Finally Felt Free …

I finally felt free … I finally felt like I could do anything with my life … I finally had the core confidence to stand up for myself and not give in to other peoples expectations when it came to MY LIFE …

After I quit classical music and my masters degree I decided to travel the world with Sofia. We grabbed a camera, and started a travel blog not having any idea what would come from this decision … or what I would do with my life – but at least I knew I was doing what I really wanted to do – I had started to create my own path …

And Now …

6 years later I am sitting here on my 31st birthday WORKING … not because I have to, not because someone else told me to but simply because I WANT to:

My life has become my passion, my work has become my life and everything I do has become everything I want and everything I need.

I never expected to end up in this exact situation – working on 2 awesome projects and enjoying every stressful second of it, but if I look deeper – my current life choice gives me the foundations of everything I thought I needed and everything I wanted for a lifestyle of freedom.

At one time I thought classical music could give that to me, or becoming a ski instructor would, or a professional photographer … but I have finally realised that it doesn’t matter WHAT I DO, all it matters is that I am doing what I WANT TO DO …