It’s a rainy cold Friday afternoon, and I’m sitting here covered in blankets drinking spiked coffee; just your normal afternoon if you asked me. Some readers may get tricked into thinking I’m living back in the Northern Hemisphere where it is, indeed, almost winter. But nope, I’m sitting here in Spring/Summer New Zealand (which does not at all feel like Christmas) watching the rain change from water to ice…to back to water again. Apparently we had this weather in for us after making the choice to live so far down south, but honestly we weren’t even thinking about the weather when we chose this location. My only hope is that it’s just the rainy season here and that sunshine and rainbows soon take over this cold mess of a month.
We’ve had awesome …hours… of sunshine, but the clouds quickly took over and we have yet to have a full day of warmth in the past few weeks. Derik and I are eagerly awaiting the day we can venture out on the weekends and do a little camping (in the tent we’re buying this weekend), but until then we’ll enjoy cuddling by the fireplace, eating hot soups, and watching a crazy amount of netflix. I’ve also taken the soggy weather as an opportunity to catch up in the blogging world and get to where I need to be with my design business, so there’s nothing wrong with that (you’ll be seeing a lot of the results next week)!
Rainy weather does make a person go a little stir crazy though, and I have to admit I’ve been looking at flights and cruises nonstop the past few days. If only vacations came once a month. Since wanderlust has overtaken my head and my heart lately, I’ve been thinking about this whole travel blogging business.
I’ve come to realize that it’s a lot easier being a full blown travel blogger (more about travel blogging definitions here) when you’re flying solo. I’ve been blogging for the last couple years, and though I feel like I’m getting a good grasp on things, I do realize there are some things that just different with travel bloggers that have a partner than those that don’t.
1. Media opportunities: I was recently given the opportunity to go on a 3 week tour (fully covered by a travel company), but I turned it down. Before you scream at me like I’m crazy, here’s my argument: I started traveling with Derik, and I would feel absolutely horrible if I went off and traveled all over the place without him. Leaving him here, stuck at work, coming home to an empty house, while I was out experiencing new and exciting things would not only be a bummer for Derik, but I would feel like I left half my soul at home with him. My blog is about our adventures, our travels, our life. Without him, I wouldn’t be in New Zealand, most likely not traveling, and sure as heck wouldn’t have this blog.
The travel company was more than amazing; they fully understood my hesitation to go by myself, and they even offered him a spot…we’d just have to pay a hotel fee. How wonderful is that?! Unfortunately he doesn’t get much time off with work, so we can’t just up and leave for 21 days. It would be nice in the future to be able to take a few media trips…but I want to make sure my husband and I do them together.
2. Vacations: Part of travel blogging is actually traveling to different places. Derik and I tend to be very unconventional world travelers, as we usually pick a spot and stay there for a few years…and then travel on our work holidays. Korea was so nice because we got a gazillion vacations due to their school holidays. However, now that Derik has a job outside the education industry, he gets 4 weeks vacation after he’s worked a year. He has an amazing boss who just might let us take a vaca in December, but really we’re at the mercy of his company.
I on the other hand work at home, so I can take vacations whenever I want to, which can be an advantage over other couples who travel and work full time. We don’t have to juggle two work schedules trying to find time for vacation,we really only have to deal with Derik’s.
3. Priorities: When you’re married or with someone, clearly your priorities are different than when you’re single. Although Derik and I love to travel and I love travel blogging, they aren’t our first priorities. Living in New Zealand is awesome, and has given us greater opportunities than we could have ever expected…especially with Derik’s job! He’s actually doing something in his field of education, Health and Safety management, and through this job he’ll gain experience to help him get to where he wants to go in the future. It’s important to me that he succeeds and fulfills his career dreams. While he’s doing that, I’m perfectly content in being his cheerleader and doing my best at growing my blog and design business. He’s been a great supporter of me as well…especially when helping me make the decision to stay at home and be a freelancer or if I should find work somewhere else.
4. The future: Although I would love to, clearly we won’t travel full time the rest of our lives. We’d love to OWN a house, buy pretty things, and eventually have a family. This is clearly far in the future, but it is part of ours (hopefully). As a married couple we have to plan ahead and make sure we’re doing things now to help our future selves. We will always travel, and would love to make traveling with the family a tradition. I guess this point coincides somewhat with the last point in being that our priorities are what fuel us for our future.
5. Dreams: As a couple, Derik and I have so many shared dreams. We also have individual dreams (such as myself being a successful travel blogger and freelance designer) that we do our best encouraging each other on. However, the closer we get in our marriage and the longer we are together, we have begun to realize our dreams work better if the other person is in them. Yes, I dream to have a successful travel blog…and would love to get out there and work with companies, write reviews, and get paid to travel, but that’s going to have to happen with my husband.
Before you rock my boat on this, there actually are successful full-time ‘couple’ travel bloggers out there. Although it’s something we may never have the opportunity to do, a girl can dream right? Even if the opportunity did present itself for Derik and I to travel full time, I think it would take a lot of thought to decide if we actually wanted to do it or not for a while (referencing the priorities and future paragraphs above).
I’m not really what the point of this post is…except for the fact that travel blogging has a different meaning when you want to have a partner-in-crime by your side each step of the way.
I love what I do and I hope to continue sharing, challenging, encouraging, and teaching those that choose to read along. For now I feel like that’s my purpose as a travel blogger. It may not ever be my career job, but I’m ok with that. :)
*photos courtesy of www.cadenciaphotography.com