The Versatile Blogger Award

What a great life we lead! We slept in a bit this morning after the fun of the 2nd annual La Ventana hot dog crawl and a few too many cocktails. The sun was peeking its way over the horizon on the Sea of Cortez and it was just chilly enough to really enjoy our cup of brew as we meandered the beach watching Aspen chase her coconut. The wander home culminated in the wonderful surprise of seeing Kato & George from 2born2travel had nominated us for the Versatile Blogger Award!


This award is by bloggers for bloggers and seeks to acknowledge those out there living the good life while searching for more than just what society deems the norm. In keeping with the rules of the game~ here are seven random things about us.

~I didn’t know how to cook when we got married. Yep, many of you are now accustomed to my ever changing food photos, dutch oven baking, and ethnic cuisine attempts, but we didn’t always eat like this!

~Aspen was not the dog we planned to drive the Pan Am with. Our beloved Maddy was originally the inspiration for driving, rather than taking public transport and backpacking as we’d done in the past. Sadly, Maddy moved on to doggie heaven, along with our dear Porter, but The Black Dog Chronicles is still fully represented in the form of our ever enthusiastic black lab.


~We don’t really like driving. I mean, it’s ironic isn’t it, that we are nearly 14 months into a journey to drive to the tip of South America? But what this time has taught us is that, although we LOVE having our own wheels , by four hours in we’re ready to be there, when fix hours rolls around we are cranky and tired and even Aspen is sighing from the back seat. Thank goodness for slooooooow travel.

~We love the beach and assumed we would spend most of our time exploring remote beaches and quaint villages. Instead, in 14 months we have spent 6 of those months high in the mountains of Central Mexico and Guatemala. As much as we are currently embracing sand between our toes and the sounds of the waves, we have come to truly appreciate the culture, history and architecture far removed from the tourist hustle of the surf.


~It is a little bit amazing that Jim and I are both fully committed to this crazy nomadic lifestyle. His parents have lived in the exact same house for nearly 50 years. Mine, while slightly more adventurous, never felt much need to explore further than their own country. I guess the apple sometimes does fall far from the tree.

~We are NOT on vacation. As every blogger and full time traveler knows, long-term travel, even if not working along the way as we do, is not a vacation. Travel days are exhausting, border crossings confusing, and having to constantly “learn” a new town and country challenging. And yet this is exactly why we love it.

~We love Netflix. We love meeting other travelers and locals but we are not what you’d call party animals. A great dinner with drinks and a movie before bed, snuggled into our cozy camper with Aspen, and we are truly happy campers.

These are the basic rules of the Versatile Blogger Award:

  • If nominated, write and publish a post on your blog thanking and linking back to your nominator.
  • Share seven random facts about yourself.
  • Nominate seven other bloggers who you think deserve recognition for their work.

Here are the blogs of 7 other bloggers who constantly inspire us. Some we know and some we simply admire from afar, but they endlessly inspire us.

  1. Flightless Kiwis

We just love Ben & Emma. We met them originally at Overland Expo and then they stayed with us for a bit when they began their PanAm journey. Hysterical Kiwis, they have inspired us with their enthusiasm and kept us laughing as we followed along.

2. Here Until There

We became online friends with Pete, Natasha and their pup Malta long before we ever met up. After free camping with them on the beaches of Baja we ended up meeting up once again on the shores of Lake Atitlan. Their laid back personalities make them lovely to spend time with and they somehow always know the best SIM card plan for each country!

3. Our Big Fat Travel Adventure

Amy is my freelancer soulmate! She and Andrew have been wandering the world for nearly four years now and are recently settled in for a bit in Chiang Mai, one of our favorite cities. We exchange emails frequently with tips on making money in this mad-cap world of being a digital nomad. We can’t wait to actually meet them in person one day.

4. So-Many-Places

I feel as though I knew Kim long before we ever met. She and her husband, Brian, called Portland home for a bit and we were lucky enough to become close before they headed off on their RTW trip.Currently back in the US with baby in tow and a book coming out in April, Kim is a continuing inspiration to me with her amazing writing, while Brian has his own entertaining blog, the unique Wandering Sasquatch.

5. Down the Line

We were lucky the day a white van with NY plates pulled into the camp site across from our cottage at Pasajcap. An invite from us for the couple to come for a drink culminated in a friendship formed with some of our favorite people! Matty & Ingrid, originally from Peru, are doing their own sort of journey down the PanAm surfing, playing music and embracing the vegan lifestyle. We spent many, many hours with these two and miss them even while delighting in Ingrid’s amazing photography. And we have her to thank for our family photos at the lake!

6. John and Mandi

We have spent more time with John and Mandi than anyone else, except eachother, in the last year! We had originally meant to meet these two back in October 2015 in Portland but illness and other commitments got in the way. Fast forward to September 2016 in Guatemala and that meeting finally took place. Sundays spent at Joe’s BBQ, more than one indulgent lunch at Cafe el Artesano, and many, many hours hiking, eating, and exploring Lake Atitlan. They are FAR more organized than we, so we know we can always depend on them to research the next locale.

7. Long Haul Trekkers

Now this pack is truly inspiring. Dave & Jen are originally from Portland but have been BIKING around the world, and now north up the PanAm with their dog Sora. We are always impressed by anyone leaving it all behind to travel the world, but to do so from the seat of a bike with a dog in tow is extraordinary. We are currently off course, but truly hope to meet up with this crew somewhere down the way.

I am adding one additional site because I think they have something important to say. Patti & Abi from One Road at a Time have experienced the world of teaching, inn-keeping, and now blogging, all while exploring the world and, in the current political climate, getting out there and fighting the good fight!

So that is it. The travel world is enormous, and yet smaller than you think. We feel that we have a network of like-minded souls all around this big planet…. old friends, new friends, and those friends we just haven’t met yet.


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8 thoughts on “The Versatile Blogger Award

  1. Wow! Thank you so much for the nomination! Guess I need to go write a blog post now. 🙂

    I’m so glad we met on Animal Travelers and you guys are well-deserving of the nomination. We’re headed back to Portland in April for a few months and then back on the road…in Asia this time. I know we’ll find each other one day!

  2. Aw shucks, thanks guys 😉 Thank god. There is hope that I will learn to cook an edible meal yet. (Ben says ‘no’ because I have too short an attention span and tend to wander off while things are on the stove. But perhaps if we work as a team he can turn the element off before anything catches fire 😀

    • lol well you did manage (together of course) to cook us dinner once so I have great faith 🙂

  3. Ahhhh….thanks for this!!!!! We feel the same way about you guys!! I will add writing this to our blog post list. We’re only 4 months behind:/ Miss you three!!

    • Love seeing your tales further south. We’ll get our compass figured out one of these days! Miss you three too.

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