Our travel, work and life story plays out… now as Empty Nesters.
Empty Nesting — that middle-aged nirvana, when your children fly the nest and you’re left home alone is happening a little in reverse for us. We still have two adult children at home and we are the ones leaving to travel, work remotely, and explore. Join us on our #EmptyNester story for the modern age.
With our eldest daughter (aka @theYachtStew) Gemma now happily married to Ben, and our youngest daughter Maddie (#YearofMads) turning 21. Even though she and her sister Ellen still live at home – we feel we have entered that much sought-after #EmptyNester season on life.
We’ve always had a love of travel. Our girls all flew transatlantic before they could walk! Maybe it’s in my seafaring genes from generations long since forgotten? (My family tree goes back to the year 1176 and the Vikings!) Funny enough, Debbie has more Scandinavian genes than I do — no wonder our girls are all white blond, blue eyes babes!
We always believed in #rootsandwings – ground your kids, let them know their true worth and let them go explore and discover their own destinies.
Who We Are: Our “Empty Nest”
We’ve always collectively called ourselves @JDGEM – Jonathan, Debbie, Gemma, Ellen & Maddie. Here’s how each of us has found our wings.
Jonathan — the J in @JDGEM
Jonathan (that’s me) born Summer of 1965 on the Isle of Man. I’m the 1st son of John & 2nd of Sheila. I ran our family business, worked for Fortune 100, was the GM of a Not for Profit, then turned Entrepreneur. These days you’ll find me speaking and teaching around the world with our trusted airlines, Alaska Airlines and the One World Alliance, and Marriott Hotels #Bonvoy and Infiniti. I’m also the co-founder and head of We Make Stuff Happen – One of the world’s leading boutique digital agencies.
Debbie — The Glue
Debbie – born Spring 1968, Isle of Man. The first daughter of Eric (Mac) & Lynn. Full-time Mom, homemaker, Yaya sister, friend to many and business partner at We Make Stuff Happen. Giving & entertaining are her love languages along with travel planning and discovering new places via her trusty iPad Pro.
Gemma — World Traveler
Then there’s Gemma – eldest daughter, born Spring 1993 – Isle of Man. Working around the world as The Yacht Stew. Chief Stewardess in the private Super Yacht Industry. Married to Ben Hulbert. Recently awarded Chief Stew of the Year.
Ellen — A Mission in Life
Ellen is the classic middle child, born Spring 1996 in Surrey, UK. After 4 years of missionary life with YWAM, based in Australia and serving the “least of these” across multiple continents. Ellen now is back at University studying Business and working in Youth Ministry at our local church.
Maddie — The Advocate
And then there’s Maddie, born Winter of 1998, Surrey, UK. A fierce advocate of mental health, gay rights, Supernatural & Shameless fan, avid animal lover & empath. Maddie started her own social media movement #Yearofmads. Maddie is studying to become a hypnotherapist, helping others find peace and confidence using her own journey and challenges.
And that’s us – JDGEM — and growing!
So what can you expect from our new Empty Nester blog?
Debbie and I travel extensively for work and pleasure. We’ve fallen in love with the whole #workation digital nomad lifestyle and thought you might be interested in what we learn and share along the way. Like how we get constant flight seat upgrades and the very best Hotel rooms yet spend less than most people do on a vacation.
We invite you to buckle up and join us on our Empty Nesting #agencylife journey as a couple, married 30+ years, social media influencers, Jesus freaks and very proud parents.
Follow us all on social media:
And our main agency site is https://wemakestuffhappen.com/