Meet: Amber, Sam, and her four boys…Sonny, Dusty, Rocky and Jetty
Originally from: Perth, Western Australia
Arrived in Bali: 2005
Home in Bail was: Beautiful, raw and surprising. Bringing up small babies was a bit of a challenge at the time as Bali was so untouched back then but it was also a very special time to be in Bali.
What made you move to Bali? I moved for my boyfriend (now my husband and father to my 4 boys) and of course the amazing waves!
How long did you plan to stay?
There was no plan, we just went with the flow and before we knew it, 15 years rolled on…
Where was home in Bali and why did you decide to live there?
We started in Padma Legian as it was close to our work. We then moved to Canggu before it was busy, then it got crazy so we moved back to Padma!
Was it difficult to find a villa?
No because my husband spoke fluent Bahasa and I learnt a bit too so it was actually really easy because we got in before the rush and there was plenty of villas when we were looking.
Financially, how did you manage to live in Bali? My husband worked for Quiksilver South East Asia and I started at Roxy South East Asia. Then the babies came and I was lucky enough to have a great friend who had fashion business in Bali called Bamboo Blonde where I could do part time mum hours and follow my real passion of starting my own business called the Throwdown.
Tells us more about the business you created in Bali called the Throwdown!
I was sick of bringing home sandy babies from the beach while hubby surfed so I invented the Throwdown – waterproof stain resistant picnic rugs. They are a mums dream, throw them in the wash, line dry and like new… plus they stop babies from getting so dirty on the ground. Well I’m now out of that stage so I now use them to watch my boys surf, take them to their footy games, skate parks – anywhere I can sit down! #mumlife
What was a typical Bali day for you and your four boys? It was pretty crazy between working two jobs, mum life and school life. Then on a daily basis you had to tackle the chaotic Bali traffic! Still it was lots of fun and such a life changing experience to go through day to day with my boys. We learnt patience, understanding and respect for the Balinese culture and their beautiful way of life.
What did you decide to do for education in Bali? We sent the boys to Australian International School as we knew the boys learning would continue one day in Australia so we wanted them to be on the Australian curriculum.
What did you enjoy most about living in Bali?
I would have to say meeting our Balinese family Wayan and Oka. We were very grateful they opened up their world to us and showed my boys their culture and their deep understanding of respect for family and friends and love for life.
The simplicity to Bali is bliss!
How was it being part of an expat community? It was great, very small when we were first there. What I loved about it the most was the culture shock so amazing! Toward the end of our time we met a lot of beautiful people which opened up a lot of amazing friendships we still have today.
How would you describe the Balinese? What were some of your most memorable experiences?
They are so kindhearted and have a willingness to help you and go out of their way. The Balinese take on life is so simple and they live with so much love!
What advice do you have for other families making the move to Bali? Do it and it will change your whole perspective. It’s a life changing move!
Is there anything else you would like to share that I haven’t asked? We moved from Bali back to Australia last year so our boys could go to school in Perth and so far it is all going smoothly. Happy to say the Throwdown is alive and pumping. We are lucky enough to get support from our local makers in Bali to keep it alive. We all miss Bali and can not wait to go back! Fingers crossed with all the crazy in the world we can get back to our normal routine which is spending school holidays up there in our little villa surrounded by our Bali family, surfing and living a part time Bali life.
Follow Amber’s ThrowDown Instagram here.