One thing we have learned quickly about blogging is that no milestone is ever too small! Starting our blog nearly two years back we never thought we would be able to meet the people we have met or experience all that we have so far. That being said, we have some big news! We were recently nominated for a Liebster Award and are extremely honored! We want to send a big shout out to our friends Bassam & Lena with Happily Ever Adventures for the nomination.
What is a Liebster Award? A Liebster Award is an award given to bloggers by other bloggers. It’s a way to get the name of other blogs out there and pay it forward! In German, Liebster means many things: welcome, endearing, lovely, valued, and kindest to name a few! We have come in contact with many amazing people that fit those words perfectly and are excited to keep spreading the love!
Q & A With Us:
1. Why did you start blogging?
The short version: After spending a time in Australia for mission work and honeymooning in Jamaica, we realized that we wanted to have a lifetime filled with experiences and visiting places we had never been. Our families have always been our biggest supporters and they encouraged us to create a travel blog. We decided to use this project to share our story and the stories of the places we visit, and the people we meet. Our goal is to inspire others to share their journey as well!
2. What is your favorite thing about blogging? Least favorite?
Most favorite: Getting to share our perspective and learning from others. We spend a lot of time planning our trips and it’s been nice to have a community to ask for advice and resources.
Least favorite: The time! Currently I’m in medical school and I am pretty busy with classes, clinics, etc. I have a lot of ideas that I’d like to put on our blog but it tends to be pushed aside at times.
Most favorite: The people we’ve been able to meet! We have an extremely supportive group of friends that we’ve met through social media and our blog. It’s nice to have a “blogging community” to share ideas with and those who also understand the chronic feeling of wanderlust.
Least favorite: My never ending “to do” list. I have a serious problem of starting something and then getting another “brilliant idea” and starting on that one, and thus the cycle continues. I am always half finishing projects and currently have a running total of 20ish I’m trying to finish up.
3. What book do you recommend for easing wanderlust cravings?
Into Thin Air and Into The Wild by: Jon Krakauer. Not only is he a fabulous writer, these two books have long been two of our absolute favorites and are thrilling and humbling.
-Into Thin Air is Krakauer’s first hand account of the Mt. Everest Disaster in 1996 where he, and several others were stranded during an unexpected storm.
-Into The Wild is another true story, but this time about Christopher McCandless; a young man who gave away his college fund, belongings, and cut communication with family then set out on an independent journey to hike the Stampede Trail in Alaska.
4. Where is your favorite place you’ve visited and your favorite things to do there?
Logan: I would have to say Kyoto, Japan. My grandmother is Japanese and grew up in Hokkaido. While we didn’t make it that far north on this trip to Japan, I loved visiting all of the historical, cultural sites and temples in Kyoto because my Japanese heritage is something I’m really passionate about.
Kallsy: To not sound too repetitive (we both LOVE Japan so much), I’m going to say our recent trip to Colorado. I’m always blown away by the beauty of mountain ranges and visiting Rocky Mountain National Park was breathtaking. Camping, hiking, and Jeep trailing were three of my favorites from our time in Colorado.
5. What is your favorite food you’ve eaten while traveling?
Oodles of noodles. We couldn’t stop ourselves from eating bowl after bowl of udon, soba, and ramen while in Japan! Pictured above is an amazing set of soba (hot and cold) and tempura from Sobanomi Yoshimura in Kyoto, Japan. Below is us at Menbakaichidai, also known as “Fire Ramen” where we met part-owner and good friend Shin Miyazawa. Menbakaichidai definitely is quite a show and makes for a delicious, filling meal!
6. What does your perfect day look like?
This is tough! As of right now we’d say: sleeping in (who doesn’t love that!?) and either reading a book outside at a park, road tripping, camping, or hiking with our dog Bentley and some perfect 70 degree weather! (find our happy place ↓) 🙂
7. How do you keep fit while traveling?
Eating cookies doesn’t count? OOPS! We both have a huge love for trying local foods so we try to keep a good workout routine to offset our chow downs. Keyword: TRY. We tend to opt for quick fitness routines that we can do in our hotel rooms that consist of both strength building, cardio, and yoga. Another awesome thing? Walking. Most of the places we visit overseas we have walked anywhere between 10-25 miles a day!
8. What annoys you most about your partner when traveling?
Logan: Kallsy has a horrible time making decisions (she’ll vouch for me) and isn’t very effective at planning out our destinations. She does try but it usually ends up being under planned and I take over. I definitely need her Type B personality to balance me out though! 😉
Kallsy: Logan is a “backseat” driver. Typically he spends more time driving than I do nowadays because I can’t handle the pressure! It just works better for us this way!
9. What do you get most homesick for when traveling?
Logan: Our comfortable bed. Kallsy can sleep just about anywhere but after a few nights I really start to miss being in my own bed. Usually the experiences we have help me get over it. 🙂
Kallsy: Snuggling with our pup, Bentley. Most of the time he is traveling with us, but when we are overseas he isn’t able to go. He’s such a cuddle bug and there is something just so comforting about having your dog around!
10. What are your best travel hacks or travel gadgets you can’t live without?
-GoPro: We can’t say enough about our GoPro. It’s compact, takes amazing photos, and is perfect for our on the go lifestyle. In fact, we love our GoPro so much we’ve bought two!
-BioLite BaseCamp: We recently bought a BioLite BaseCamp Stove that makes cooking while camping efficient, fast, and effective. Not only that, it also charges your electronic devices with a power reserve.
-Lumsing Portable Power Bank: Perfect for tech savvy travelers on a budget. These portable power banks will keep your gadgets running for multiple recharges.
-GoTenna: Being avid campers and hikers we are always looking for technology that will make our lives easier. GoTenna is awesome because it allows you pair with your smartphone via Bluetooth and communicate by text message and GPS location to others, without cell signal. It also allows you to download maps to any country and use GPS without service. It allows for distances of 0.5-1 mile in congested areas (urban, etc.) and 4-5 mile range in open areas (outdoor fields, etc.) we believe this is a must have for going off grid!
-Superfeet Insoles: This may not be a “gadget” but we had to give a quick shout out to Superfeet because they have quite literally saved our adventures. Raise your hand if you’ve ever had foot pain so bad from walking miles on miles that you quite literally could hardly move one food in front of the other?… okay us too. Tried and true by yours truly, these puppies have been our saving grace and have allowed us to walk with ease.
-Airline Credit Cards: These have saved us so much money over the years! Look for great sign up bonuses, shop through their e-shopping rewards programs, and invite friends and family members to sign up for extra rewards. Another tip? Staying loyal to an airline will also help maximize rewards. We usually fly Southwest for U.S. travel and American Airlines + partners for international travel.
-Travel Insurance: Seriously, life is unexpected. Be prepared for the worst and spend the extra money on travel insurance and avoid costly bills due to a medical emergency, flight cancellation, delay, lost luggage, etc. We usually book ours through World Nomads.
-CleverLayover: Not on a time constraint? Consider using CleverLayover to find flights that allow you to spend 24 hours or more in a place you’ve been wanting to visit!
11. What are the top 3 hotels you’ve stayed at?
- Nishimuraya Honkan | Kinosaki Onsen, Japan
With a history over 150 years old, Nishimuraya is a luxurious ryokan with private onsen, exquisite dining, beautiful gardens, and an onsite museum. We wanted to spend some time relaxing between all of our days of heavy travel in Japan, so we booked the Hatsune Room with open-air bath and private garden. We also enjoyed a few kaiseki style meals, where a series of small dishes are presented rather than one large portion.
Location: 469 Kinosakicho Yushima, Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan 669-6101
- Hotel Mume | Kyoto, Japan
Voted as one of the most luxurious hotels and best service in the entire country, Hotel Mume is a hidden gem. From the second you enter this boutique hotel the staff absolutely pampers you. Trained with the mindset of European maids/butlers, blended with traditional Japanese ryokan characteristics, Mume’s crowning jewel is their customer service. In the evenings before we left out, the staff was sure to ask us where we were going or if we needed any suggestions on places to eat or visit. The staff would make calls and reservations that allowed us to spend less time planning and more time enjoying ourselves. Another greatly appreciated effort made by the staff was when they printed a map with directions to a desired destination, and provided a picture of what it looked like. Mume also offers a complimentary happy hour with beverages and snacks every afternoon and a delicious breakfast each morning.
Location: 261, Shinmonzen St. Umemoto-cho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto 6050064
- Big Cedar Lodge | Ridgedale, Missouri, USA
Tucked away in Southwest Missouri is Big Cedar, a beautiful and romantic resort full of outdoor activities such as hiking, horseback riding, golfing, boating, fishing, walking/hiking trails, kayaking, canoeing, and much more! They also have a gorgeous new spa and terrific restaurants and bars on site. We love spending week or weekend getaways here.
Location: 190 Top of the Rock Rd, Ridgedale, MO 65739
Colleen, Travel Meets Happy
A small world moment happened when Colleen and I (Kallsy) randomly connected on Instagram. When I clicked on her bio I recognized her name and then it dawned on me that we went to high school together! Talk about random connections… well we instantly started catching up and realized that we were passionate about the many of the same things, traveling (duh), hiking, camping, and experiencing life differently. Her blog has terrific stories, in-depth travel tips, and she has visited so many amazing places people are sure to connect!
Bertaut & Alexis, World Travel Adventurers
Ever wanted to “Travel Like A Millionaire?” Well we have loved learning how to do so from Bertaut and Alexis’ blog! They have some truly amazing travel tips, guides, and not to mention the most adorable kiddos that join them on a lot of their journeys!
Thomas & Sheena, Chasing a Plate
This couple is dope! We love their motto of living life to the fullest as they are embarking on the journey of a lifetime and not to mention the endless amount of mouth watering street food that they find on their travels. I mean what more could you want?
Sarah & Brigette, Hair to There
These are easily two of the coolest BFFs you’ll ever meet that are on a mission to visit all seven continents. Not only are their travel blog posts informational, they’re super fun to read! Their blog is also unique because Brigette is a hair stylist (hence the name Hair to There) so they also have some awesome posts regarding hair tutorials.
Terrence & Victoria, Follow Me Away
Prepare to be blown away by some of the most beautiful photography that you’ll ever see. We love following Terrence and Victoria’s work because it is unique and incredibly inspiring. Their photos bring a whole new meaning to the word wanderlust, not to mention they’re one of the coolest and sweetest couples we’ve had the pleasure of meeting!
Mike & Amy, A Nomadic Existence
We’ve first fell in love with Mike and Amy’s blog when we noticed all of their beautiful photos on Instagram! No matter what their destination might be we are always intrigued by the perspectives they use in their photography because they’re far from typical shots! We love their unique style and know others will too.
Sean & Kelly, A Pair of Passports
These two, like us, balance full-time jobs and travel! Based in the U.K., we love following their weekend trips and always are inspired to get out and explore more! We also both have mutual “puppy fever” for our furry friends so we’ve enjoyed finding out how they manage to travel with their dog, Giorgio (my gosh is he handsome!) around the U.K.!
Our Questions For Nominees:
1. Who is the most interesting person you’ve met while traveling (or most interesting experience you’ve had)?
2. What has been the scariest/ most intimidating thing that’s happened to you while traveling?
3. Have you ever been disappointed by a place that you thought would be amazing, but really turned out to be a dud?
4. What is your favorite way to make it through a long flight?
5. If you could only visit one country for the rest of your life (other than your home country) what would it be and why?
6. What is your favorite money saving tip?
7. What has been the best/worst food you’ve tried while traveling?
8. If you could only pack five items in your suitcase what would you pick and why?
9. What is your favorite travel app/website that you can’t live without?
10. What is your favorite outdoor activity?
11. Where are you off to next and what are you most looking forward to at your next destination?
(We used the rules that were provided by Bassam & Lena)
- Thank and link to the blogger who nominated you
- Create a post on your blog, displaying the Liebster Award logo
- Answer the 11 questions assigned by the blogger who nominated you
- Provide rules/instructions for accepting the award
- Nominate 5-11 new favorite bloggers for the Liebster Award
- Come up with a list of 11 new questions for your nominees
- Notify the nominees
- Post your Liebster Award blog post link in the comments of your nominator’s Liebster Award Post
Thank you again Bassam & Lena for the nomination! Be sure to check out their blog, Happily Ever Adventures, to find out how you can find adventure in everyday life!