Justine Dartienne, alias squirrels_love_trip, travel lover & Mom of 1
Can you introduce yourself in a few words?
My name is Justine, I'm 29. I've been in a relationship for 11 years and married for 5 years. For over a year now, I'm the Mom of an adorable little girl, Célestine. I'm a teacher in a specialised secondary school. I teach teenagers with a disability. Even though it's not always emotionally easy, I love my job and I wouldn't trade this feeling of being useful for those who need it for anything.
My job, punctuated by school holidays, allows me to live my passion to the full: travelling. With my husband, my little one and our dog, we travel through Europe in a van. We share our discoveries and adventures on Instagram (@squirrels_love_trip).
Can you name someone who inspired you and helped you evolve in some ways?
My Mom has always been my role model. She is an incredible woman, I have admired her since I was a little girl. I always wanted to be like her: an independent and strong woman. I grew up with the hope that a woman could accomplish herself, that she could be who she wanted to be and still be a wife and a Mom.
If you had to pass on one message to convey THE most important thing you've learned that has helped you get to your dream life, what would it be?
Love - Laugh - Dream! You have to enjoy every moment of life because it's so short, fragile and unpredictable. I feel privileged to have been in good health, loved and surrounded by my loved ones until now, but I see that life is not always so tender and that it only takes a spark to go through hell. My childbirth was a turning point in my thinking. I was minutes away from losing my baby and the thought that it could have happened to me and to others was overwhelming. So I promised myself that I would continue to dream and enjoy every moment I had.
What is your organization? Do you have any tips on how to get organized with your kid (nannies, activities, etc)?
It's important for me to form a good team with the partner. My husband and I talk a lot, especially about the programme and the agenda for the week or month. We keep a shared diary on our phone, which helps us to plan our activities and tasks well. We divide up the tasks as best we can according to our schedules so that we can make the most of our time together and be able to spend a good part of our free time travelling!
A good plan to share? What are the essentials you always take with you for yourself and your kid?
Our travel essential: the baby carrier! This allows us to travel everywhere with Célestine without asking ourselves (too many) practical questions. During my pregnancy, some people told me that my life would change when I became a mother and that I would have to put most of my passions on hold and sacrifice myself. I ignored their advice and trusted myself and my husband. Célestine celebrated her two-month anniversary on her first road trip. In one year, she travelled through 11 countries! And from all these moments spent on the road, we especially remember the incredible adaptation that babies and young children are capable of. It's amazing and so inspiring. It pushes us out of our comfort zone.