Back in elementary school I clearly remember that girl whose dad was a pilot and she told about all these wonderful places such as Bali, South Africa, and Asia. I was so jealous. If my parents could afford a week to the Canary Islands once a year, I was considered lucky.
When I became a teenager, I got more hooked on traveling and getting out to see the world. I was thrilled after landing a picoline job with one of the largest commercial travel agencies in Denmark. The travel experts selling the journeys talked of exotic destinations and exciting adventures.
I wanted to work just like them someday!
Going to New Zealand at the age of 16!
By the age of 16, I traveled alone to New Zealand to visit a pen pal, with whom I had only corresponded with by letter (I would NEVER let my daughter do that today!) and by the age of 17 I went to Bali with my friend.
Next phase of my life was like hitting a wall of relationships and parenting from the age of 19. I even moved 300 km away from all my friends and family to settle down with my own family – far far away…
For 7 years I raised my children – did not have any education, worked some odd jobs and dreamt about the travel ladies in the sales team, whom I truly wanted to join.
I made a move – I was stuck, and this was not what I wanted for my life.
After moving back to Copenhagen, to my friends and family I found my path – I hit the travel industry like I always dreamt of.
Along came a wedding, many different travel agencies, some small travels and… a divorce.
For three and a half year I was a single mom with two wonderful children.
I had my dream job, where I was able to show my kids the world. We had an adventurous summer in Cuba, had a relaxing cruise in the Caribbean, we explored wonderful Iceland and had a small, but cool road trip in Florida.
But then Kenneth came along…
As a kid, I was quite the loner. I was comfortable in my own company and imagination. I played soccer and Dungeons & Dragons – and still do!
My first adventures were a mix of heading out into the woods by myself with a backpack full of sandwiches and a bottle of lemonade.
Taking a nap under an old oak or strafing through a field of wheat.
Real travels came later with my mom and going on treks with my dad where we often got lost on purpose and had to find our way back.
Traveling with my mom, were primarily around Europe on road trips or camping trips. Summers were endless and school vacations felt like eternal freedom as I explored the nearby forests and lakes.
I struggled through high school but managed to get through it all in the end. I had plans and dreams to become a marine biologist, but things turned out differently as life intervened.
After high school, I had to serve in the army and after a couple of years went out and got a sales job. It really wasn’t me, but it provided food on the table and it supported my new life as a dad and husband.
Becoming an Entrepreneur
After a couple of years, I felt the desire to become an entrepreneur and went heads on into a new type of life around 2006. Unfortunately, the busy life left little time or priority for traveling and leisure.
A couple of years later, having built up a business and a comfortable lifestyle, the financial crisis came crashing down and like a tornado blew my life apart. My business collapsed, family life got torn apart and I had to find a new path forward through a divorce and the burden of business debt.
Getting back into the regular 9-5 race, I slowly clawed myself back to sanity and stability. I completed my university degree and slowly rebuilt my life. The first travel I could afford after the crash was for my kids and me to the Greek island of Kos. It was such a relief to provide them with that experience and I knew this was something I had to do more.
And that’s when I met my true soul mate Christina <3
One evening back in September 2015, we found ourselves both being single with a set of kids and a dream about finding our soul mates. We are both very introvert individuals. Getting out to mingle and socialize with a lot of people in search of love was overwhelming. Luckily for us, there are other ways to search for a partner.
Yep, we are clear evidence that you can in fact find your true soul mate on a dating app!
Fortunately, we lived rather close to each other and had our respective kids in different weeks. This enabled us to see each other frequently. Our relationship was in all ways healthy and the love between us only grew. We held back as we still had some kids to take into consideration. But we desired more… we wanted to wake up together every morning and go to sleep each night. We wanted to merge our lives.
After 1½ years we moved in together and it presented us with new challenges, as we now had to deal with the fact of being a mixed family. Today, most of the kids have grown up or moved to their other parent. This has definitely given us a whole new sense of freedom and possibility.
Do you want to hear some fun stuff about us?
Awesome! – here you have 25 fun, weird and maybe interesting facts about us…
- Combined, we have 4 kids aged 15-20 (2020)
- We both dreamt of becoming Marine Biologists – Jacques Cousteau really had some wild encounters.
- Christina has a tremendous affection for ocean animals, especially Whales and Orcas.
- Kenneth’s favorite animals are giraffes.
- We have NEVER had a serious fight.
- Kenneth was once a partner in a multi-million-dollar company that crashed in the 2008 Financial Crisis.
- Christina hates cooking – Kenneth loves it. Perfect!
- Christina is sometimes rather clumsy, and she often gets small cuts or bruises – she even manages to wound Kenneth sometimes.
- We are both very calm individuals.
- Kenneth is a huge fan of the TV-show “Alone” – both the Danish and the American version.
- We are both huge suckers for licorice (especially the salty ones) Yummy!
- We are a Taurus and a Virgo = perfect match according to the stars (and us!)
- In total, we have 9 siblings.
- Christina’s life as a travel agent has brought her to 5 out of the 7 continents.
- The first time Kenneth traveled overseas was after meeting Christina.
- We are considerate environmentalists, but not fanatics.
- Kenneth is extremely intelligent – Christina is more creative and empathic.
- We once had a car named ’AJ’ – she was 16 years old and then Kenneth crashed her (no injuries, fortunately!)
- Actually, we have a habit of naming our stuff, ex. our tripod is ‘Squitty’ and our only indoor plant is named ‘Oscar’
- Christina was once a competitive dancer; she is now trying to teach Kenneth some moves. It’s an uphill struggle…
- Once, we slept on an airport bench in Gatwick Airport, to avoid spending money on a hotel room for only 7 hours before the next flight. We looked like homeless people… and we sort of was!
- We got married on a tropical beach in the Maldives. Christina was the one who proposed.
- Kenneth suffers from a severe fear of heights.
- We moved from a rented house in late 2019 to a cheaper apartment but with a fantastic view from the 14th floor.
- We both embrace the simple life. Experiences are more important to us than material things.
(Updated March 2020)
Why a travel blog – and why Compass & Coconuts?
Back when we started dating, Christina told exciting adventures about her travel experiences and she told them with such a smile and shining eyes. One day, Kenneth asked why she didn’t start a travel blog to share her stories and not to mention her tips. That marked the beginning of our first blog.
We were perhaps not as creative back then and our blog name didn’t really match what we wanted to do. Perhaps it was primarily for our family and friends and their friends who were about to go for adventures. As the travel blog grew, we had to become more creative, we decided to change our name and strategy to be able to scale the blog.
That gave birth to Compass and Coconuts.
But why the name Compass and Coconuts??
Hehe, we are so glad you asked…
Every night for a whole week we brainstormed blog names. We had plenty of funny and creative suggestions but as Compass and Coconuts came out, it was like it had the right fit in all the right ways.
A Compass is the definition of hiking, getting lost, finding your way – both in travels and in life. It is also a reference to exploring – being a sort of antique GPS, leading to road trips… and WE LOVE ROAD TRIPS!
Coconuts are the definition of palms, sun, beaches, and nice drinks. And we can definitely relate to that. Can´t we all?
The definitions are two very different things, but both being very important to our lives.
Therefore, Compass and Coconuts was spot on!
We hope you got a little insight as to who is behind this blog and do please leave us a comment below if you any questions for us. We would love to hear from you.