The Symphony of the Seas - You'll Have to "Sea" it to Believe it

The largest cruise ship in the world.

18 decks.

24 guest elevators.

20 restaurants.

6,680 passengers.

2,200 crew.

The Symphony of the seas is a floating mechanical marvel. It’s so beyond any other ship we’ve ever set foot on, and it’s hard to describe how truly amazing it really is. We’re still processing everything about it - from the attention to detail, to the food, to the friendly and fun-loving staff. When it comes to the Symphony of the Seas, nothing is typical or ordinary. Here’s some highlights:


With 20 restaurants onboard, the dining options are seemingly endless. Craving sushi? They’ve got it. Fresh pasta made from scratch? Done deal! Steak and lobster? Easy! No matter what your tastebuds are telling you, or what kind of food restrictions you have, there’s something for everyone. Some of stand out places to dine are:

150 Central Park

This sleek and modern fine dining restaurant serves everything with class and elegance. From the martinis made table-side to our delicious seafood dishes, it was all high quality and mouthwateringly good.

Jamie’s Italian

We’re big fans of Jamie Oliver, so to be able to dine in one of his restaurants was truly a dream come true. Our pasta dishes and plethora of appetizers were some of the best things we ate on the entire cruise. Make this restaurant a priority. (And make a reservation weeks in advance - it fills up quick!)

Hooked Seafood

We could eat seafood everyday - especially the seafood at Hooked! From their “Messy Fish Sandwich” to their famous Surf and Turf, everything is fresh and delicious. Plus as style and design goes, this was hands-down our favorite restaurant. We like to refer to the style as “Nautical Hip”.

Izumi Hibachi and Sushi

Who doesn’t love a good Hibachi show?! We left this specialty restaurant with full bellies and sore smiles - we laughed the entire night! Everything we had was awesome (make sure you ask for the “Yum Yum Sauce”) and the people we sat with were a blast too. Definitely one of the highlights of our cruise!


You know you’re in vacation mode when the hardest decision you have to make that day is which bar to go to first. This process was overwhelming as there were simply too many cool ones to choose!! We’d usually hit up a couple before (and after) dinner (we were responsible mom, promise!) Our two favorites:

The Bionic Bar

This is where robots make your drinks. For real. It felt like we were living in some futuristic sci-fi movie, in the best kind of way. And heck, if that’s where the future is headed, we’re totally fine with it. These robots know how to make tasty drinks!

The Rising Tide Bar

This bar rises and falls with the tide… Ok, not really - but pretty close! This moving “wet elevator” takes guests from The Royal Promenade up to Central Park. It was our favorite spot to sit and people watch - and they also made some of the best chocolate martini’s we ever had!


WOW. To say we were entertained on this cruise doesn’t even begin to cut it. Throughout numerous shows we’d turn to each other and go, “HOW DID THEY DO THAT?!” Their ability to not only deliver such high quality performances while at SEA is unbelievable. Bravo, Royal Caribbean, bravo. When on board, make sure not to miss:


This “AquaTheater”  show was by far the most jaw-dropping, as it featured acrobats performing stunts in the air and in the water that are both unexpected and mesmerizing.


Performed on ice (yes, ICE!), this mystical and eye-catching show had us in total amazement. Go early and grab a seat closest to the rink, as being so close to the ice skaters was one of our favorite parts.


We’re big musical buffs, so we were real excited when we saw that they were performing Hairspray on board. Little did we know just how epic the show would be - from the sets, to the songs, to the broadway talent - it’s phenomenal. We’re still singing the songs!


This musical chronicles aviation milestones throughout the years, and they do so in an energetic and inspiring way. The sets and the dance moves will have you in awe.


The Slides

Bobby’s a self-proclaimed waterslide aficionado. From the tall ones to the really loopy ones, he tries them all. From the moment we boarded The Symphony of the Seas he had his eyes on the slides. And they did not disappoint!! We went on the waterslides at LEAST a dozen times. But that’s not all…

This ship also had something called “The Ultimate Abyss” - a dry slide that happens to be the tallest (and in our opinion scariest) ride at sea. It plummets riders 10 stories down… and it’s an absolute blast. Ride it at night for the ultimate thrill.


They have a flowrider. Actually 2! So you can surf while you’re out on the open seas. Unless you have done it before, it can be difficult to figure out how to stay balanced. So take it slow. It may be a good idea to start with bodyboarding before attempting to surf. Bobby could’ve spent most of the day pretending he was back at home surfing his local spot!

Escape The Rubicon

We love a good Escape Room, and the one aboard the Symphony of the Seas will definitely have you scratching your head and scrambling to figure out clues. In this adventure game you have 50 minutes to “escape” and solve the problem. We won’t give too much away, but we WILL say teamwork and communication is key.

Silent Disco

Yes. A silent disco. Where you show up and are given a pair of headphones, and walk out on the dance floor and dance your face off. When you need a break (and a laugh), take off your headphones and listen to the awkward world of a silent disco sans-headphones.

Zip Line

No big deal… just the world’s tallest zip line at sea. Nine floors above the Boardwalk, it’s definitely high enough to get the adrenaline pumping. Definitely a must-do!

While this is a small snapshot of the Symphony of the Seas, we hope it gives you a glimpse as to how phenomenal this ship really is. Yes, it’s the largest cruise ship in the world - but it’s so much more than just a big ship. It’s fun, it’s inspiring, it’s a visual masterpiece, the staff feels like family, the food is top-notch, and the experience and memories onboard are priceless.

Book a trip. And pack us in your suitcase.

Tempe-ted To Never Leave!

Tempe, AZ is a city we knew relatively little about. We knew it was a college town, and had heard from friends that it’s a “foodie” city (reason enough to plan a visit) - but that’s about it! As we started planning our road trip up to Colorado, we figured this was the perfect opportunity to explore Tempe… and we LOVED IT!

Here’s why:


Tempe is STUNNING - just look at the view from our room! The rolling hills, the colorful foliage, the rustic, desert terrain… photos don’t do this place justice. Our first morning in Tempe, we hiked the Kiwani’s trail to Dobbins Lookout in South Mountain Park - and the views were jaw-dropping. Even our dog Sally was in awe!! At least, she looked like it ;)

While we’re on the topic of jaw dropping-beauty, let’s talk about the sunsets in Tempe. They’re unreal. Both nights we were there we witnessed some of the most vibrantly colorful sunsets our eyes have seen in a long time. We recommend heading to the Mill Avenue Bridge and catching the sunset over the Tempe Town Lake. Only way it could get better if you’re on a boat during the sunset. We’ll make that a goal for next time.


You can tell a lot about a destination by the food. What we learned from Tempe’s foodie scene is that it’s just getting started. There are so many new, unique and notable restaurants popping up in Tempe that it honestly overwhelmed us. We needed to stay at least five more days to eat at all the spots we read about! A few of the places we DID get to check out are:

  • Pedal Haus Brewery: If you love a good brewery, you’ll love this spot. Solid beers, a killer happy hour, and a hummus plate we’re STILL raving about. (If anyone knows their recipe, please share.)

  • Postino Annex: A hip wine bar with incredible bruschetta, paninis, and (of course) wine. You’ll likely find us here!

  • Culinary Dropout: Creative cocktails, delicious gastro-pub fare (get the pretzel bites!), and a variety of lawn games. Culinary Dropout is a great spot to not only dine, but hang out for the whole afternoon!

  • Morning Squeeze: Fresh, hearty and delicious breakfast spot. Their menu is extensive (almost too much to choose from!!) and their servers are SO friendly. Plus they have a dog menu. Any place that has a dog menu is basically a winner to us.

  • Cartel Coffee Lab: Some of the best coffee we’ve had in awhile. Get an oat milk latte with a little honey and your life will be changed. (Or be like Bobby and get a pour over - simple and smooth.)

  • First Watch: This breakfast and lunch spot has it all - but what we really love there is their green juice. It’s so tasty you’ll forget just how healthy and packed with nutrients it really is!



We thought we had lucky timing when we planned our trip to Tempe. There was a plethora of events and things going on in and around the city - but we later learned that’s normal here! No matter the time of year, there’s something fun to do, see, and explore. There’s great shopping, headlining shows, beautiful trails… However - if you’re planning on coming next November/December, here are two things you need to make sure are on your list:

  • Desert Botanical Garden: Open year-round, this is a botanical garden that is thoughtfully curated with a spectacular living art collection. If you happen to be there between now and mid-2019, you MUST come at night to visit the ‘Electric Desert’. The light show uses three-dimensional projection mapping to wrap animations around the cacti and other plants, simulating motion. It is mind-blowing! It feels as if you are walking in a dream, or hallucinating. Go, and thank us later!

  • Tempe Festival of the Arts: This is only the largest craft show in the nation (no big deal). There are over 375 vendors, live music, and all kinds of food and drink options. This festival is an all-day affair, and takes place along Mill Avenue, one of the main streets in Tempe. It’s a HOOT! It’s the perfect place to Christmas shop, make new friends, and sip on small-batch peppermint hot cocoa. 


(Sally approves this message) We were honestly so impressed by how dog friendly Tempe is. Whether we were walking to coffee, hiking up South Mountain, or grabbing breakfast at Morning Squeeze, Sally was welcomed with open arms. Literally - everyone wanted to pet her!! Since we can’t always take Sally with us on our adventures, we really appreciate when we can. And we really appreciate a hotel that goes above and beyond for their four-footed friends. The Graduate Hotel Tempe did just that. She even got a Bark Box when we checked in!


Something that’s really important to us, especially when we’re planning weekend getaways, is the affordability factor. We don’t want to spend an arm and a leg for a 48-hour trip. We’re happy to report that Tempe is as easy on the wallet as it is on the eyes! There are a lot of activities you can do that are FREE, hotel rooms are moderately priced, and there are a ton of fun, casual restaurants that won’t break the bank. 

All in all, go to Tempe. You’re bound to have a blast. You might even be Tempe-ted to move. ;) (And keep your eyes peeled for a Tempe guide - we’ll have it up soon!)


Anchors Away!

Our First (and Definitely not our Last) Experience Cruising with Royal Caribbean

We’re writing this from the Miami airport - an hour after getting off the Symphony of the Seas, and we’re ALREADY having withdrawals.

Now that’s when you know it’s been a good trip.

A few months back we got an e-mail from Royal Caribbean International (RCI), asking us to join them on the inaugural sailing of the brand new Symphony of the Seas. We’d recently read about it - how it’s the largest cruise ship in the world, with everything from zip-lining to a 10-story slide. (Say what??)

Obviously we accepted the invitation, and the Symphony of the Seas completely exceeded every expectation we had. Not only because of its size and grandeur, but also because of RCI’s staff and attention to detail. Here’s a little recap of our experience with RCI, and how they take cruising to the next level:

1. IT’S A FAMILY: We boarded the ship with a bunch of strangers, and we left feeling like family. We bonded with everyone from our hibachi server, to the ship’s captain (You’re the man, Captain Rob!!), to the people we met in the waterside line. It is truly mind blowing how on such a large ship, you can quickly feel known. The RCI crew does a stellar job not only making sure every need is met - but also fostering a warm and fun-loving community.

2. ENTERTAINMENT: We could dedicate a whole blog just to the quality of entertainment aboard the Symphony of the Seas. We saw a broadway production of Hairspray, Hiro (an “aquatheater” style acrobatic adventure show), 1977 (an ice skating show with incredible drone technology), and Flight (a Broadway style show on the history of flight) … How they do all of these shows at sea is crazy in and of itself, and then paired with the quality and talent of the performers it’s absolutely astounding.  

3. TOP-NOTCH FOOD: Anyone that gives “cruise food” a bad rap has obviously never sailed with RCI. There are 20 different restaurants on The Symphony of the Seas, allowing your taste buds to give into any and every kind of craving. We had the opportunity to take a behind-the-scenes tour of the galley and see just how seriously RCI takes food. Every fruit and vegetable is checked for quality and every dish is prepared and presented with care and precision. We were so inspired by the handful of chefs we got to meet, as every one of them is genuinely passionate about what they do. And it shows.

4. EFFICIENCY: Being such a large ship, one of our concerns was the crowds. We were bracing ourselves for long waits and long lines. How do thousands of people get on and off the boat efficiently, get their food served efficiently, or even find a seat at the bar? Well, we can gladly say that we NEVER had an issue with any of the above. From boarding the ship until disembarking, everything was done quick and orderly and pain-free. We’re not sure how the RCI crew handles all the logistics, but they do so flawlessly.

5. DESIGN: It goes without saying that The Symphony of the Seas is beautiful. From the moment we stepped onboard, into the glistening Royal Promenade, we were in awe. (I think our jaws may have hit the floor.) Every room, restaurant, bar, and activity area is perfectly decorated in a sleek, modern, and welcoming way. Every theme was executed tastefully - from the serenity of Central Park to the hustle and bustle of Boardwalk.


This is RCI’s tagline - and we absolutely love it. “Come Seek” embodies their very essence - adventure and discovery. Cruising with RCI isn’t simply a week at sea, it’s a week of discovery and exploration - both on and off the ship. No matter your age or your interests, there’s something for everyone. Take our (and RCI’s) advice and COME SEEK. We’re so glad we did.

The Symphony of the Seas is currently sailing out of Miami, with week-long Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries. Starting in May, you can experience “Coco Cay”, the exclusive Royal Caribbean Island in the Bahamas! Learn more and shop for your next cruise here.

Our Favorite Gifts for Travel (and Everything in Between)

It’s officially Christmas time - YAY!! Bring on the Christmas lights, Christmas songs, Christmas cookies, Christmas movies, Christmas jammies… we could go on and on. It’s hands down our favorite time of the year. We get to spend quality time with our loved ones (and our pup!), rest, eat a lot, and anticipate the new year.

Oh, and we get to give GIFTS!

Now, we pride ourselves on being good gift-givers. It’s both of our love-languages. Bobby’s more of a crafter (it’s true) - he loves making personalized mugs, tee-shirts, anything paper maché, the list goes on. (And I don’t want to embarass him too much.) I (Alli) am not a crafter - but I am thoughtful. Depending on the person, I like to find gifts that not only fit their likes and style, but that are also unique and special. Some people are harder to shop for than others (DAD!), but it gives me great joy to try.

This year we’ve compiled some of our favorite gifts - most of which are travel related, and others that we just genuinely love (Sally too!). We’re convinced you’ll find something for everyone on here - and you can trust that they have all been tested and approved by yours truly... Here we go!


Hook & Albert Leather Weekender Bag: Do yourself a favor and watch this 40 second YouTube video on this game-changing piece of luggage. When the bag is deconstructed, there is a garment bag portion that you can store your pressed suit in. And then there are side pockets for your shoes. Zip the bag back together and you still have a roomy duffel for all of your other essentials. It’s durable with high quality leather and zippers that will only get better with age.

Aloha Travel Bags: These little waterproof travel bags have changed the way we pack. We use them for our toiletries, swimsuits, active wear, you name it! (Alli will even use them as a clutch from time to time.) It’s a fun and sleek way to take your suitcase organization to the next level.

American Tourister Moonlight Spinner: We’ve been using American Tourister luggage for a few years now, and it’s our favorite. Lightweight, durable, and extremely affordable. Plus they’re good looking, too!

Alli’s FAVORITE Cozy Fluffy Jacket: THE BEST $30 YOU’LL EVER SPEND. (Thank you @truelane for the recommendation on this one.) It’s the definition of cozy. It’s like wrapping yourself up in the softest, most plush blankie - and perfect for brisk morning walks and chilly nights. And for only $30, you might as well get a few colors! (The camel color is next on my list!)

Bobby’s Nano Puff Jacket: You probably already have a Patagonia jacket, or a version of it. But if you don’t, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! The hype is real, folks. They’re lightweight, easy to pack, and incredibly warm, and beyond durable. You’ll live in it - just like Bobby lives in his. Join the cult.

Master Dynamic Headphones: There are a few travel items we’ll splurge on - good headphones are one of them. These not only look cool, they’re extremely high quality. We get compliments on them everywhere we go! The MW60’s are insanely comfortable and high quality (but pricey), while the MW50’s bring the same amazing sound quality, are a little more affordable, and can be either on-ear or over-ear (they have interchangeable earpieces).

Fuji X-T2 or Fuji X-E3: Have you gone mirrorless yet? We’re big fans of the Fuji system, and currently use these two cameras on all of our trips. Both the camera body and many lenses are built well and are weather proof, so they can endure a variety of conditions. The X-T2 is the higher end model of the two, and they are both excellent cameras for travel!

DJI Mavic Pro Platinum with Fly More Package: Bobby’s favorite drone, and what we like to refer to as the fourth member of our family (after Sally, our dog). If you’ve been researching drones, you’ll know that DJI makes the best of the best - and this one is no exception. If you’re serious about capturing incredible aerial photo/video, get yourself a Mavic. Extremely portable, great flight time, and amazing image quality!

Lowepro Fastpack BP 150 AW II: Bobby bought this backpack off Craigslist nearly 4 years ago (an older version, but it looks nearly identical), and has since purchased 2 other backpacks. While he’s gotten rid of the 2 newer bags, the Lowepro continues to be everything he needs. Plenty of storage for 2 cameras, 2 lenses, a 15 inch laptop, magazines, headphones, and all the other essential carry-on items.

Priority Pass: They have lounges in nearly every airport. Especially when you’re flying internationally, it’s a game-changer. If you know a frequent traveler that does not have Priority Pass - this is the PERFECT gift for them!

Joby GorillaPod: Besides our camera, our Joby GorillaPod is hands down our most-used travel accessory. We’ve gotten some of our best shots because of this little flexible mini-tripod. It’s incredibly easy to use and maneuver, and can latch onto and around just about anything and everything. It’s a must. (Unless you hire a personal photographer - then you probably don’t need it.)

Movi Freefly Cinema Robot Smartphone Stabilizer: This smartphone stabilizer gives us the ability to film cinema-worthy video - on our iPhones!! Whether you’re shooting for Instagram, Youtube, or just for your personal enjoyment - your shots will be stable and smooth… and you’ll probably consider enrolling in film school shortly after.

Polarpro FiftyFifty Lens for GoPro: One of our favorite tools… the PolarPro FiftyFity lets you capture epic split level shots, like this one below of Alli and Sally in the pool. The optical dome pushes water away from the GoPro lens allowing it to capture both over and under the surface. Get one!

MONQ Portable Essential Oil Diffuser: Portable essential oil diffusers… how cool is that?! They come in a variety of blends - some of our favorites being Forest, Zen, and Pumpkin Spice. They make a perfect stocking stuffer!

Biocol Labs Travel Kit: Our new favorite plant-based remedies that are doctor approved and ideal for travellers like us. Their Travel Kit has a cure for everything: jet lag, flight distress, poor digestion, weakened immune system - and even something to help a hangover! We don’t leave home without it! FOR 15% OFF YOUR ORDER, ENTER CODE: Newlyweds

Sun Bum Sunscreen: No matter where we go, we always have sunscreen and chapstick close at hand. And it’s always Sun Bum. (You might say we’re sunscreen snobs.) They make Alli’s favorite dry shampoo, too!


Winc Wine: We just recently discovered Winc wines and can’t believe more people don’t do this. It’s the only wine club we’re a part of, and in our opinion, it’s the best. Winc delivers 4 bottles of wine (you can choose or leave it to the experts - they make hundreds of wines) to your door every month (with NO SHIPPING FEES), and it doesn’t cost anything to be a member. Wines start at $13, so they’re super affordable and the branding is on point (very important). Oh - and the wine is insanely good. Sorry Trader Joes wines, we’ve happily moved on.

YETI Wine Rambler: Everything Yeti makes is gold. From their outdoor coolers to tumblers, we’re fans of it all. We’ve recently started bringing our Yeti Rambler Wine Tumblers with us on trips - and they’ve been a game-changer. Especially for Alli. Who enjoys warm Savignon Blanc?! (We love the Brick Red color - perfect for the holidays!)

Minted Holiday Cards: Christmas cards are a big thing over here. Just choosing the photo (or the compilation of photos) can be stress-inducing. Thankfully with Minted, that’s the only stressful part! They make the whole process SO incredibly easy, and their quality and design are unmatched. They’re also some of the most affordable options we’ve seen - so it’s truly a win/win!

Daily Harvest: We make sure we eat as many fruits and veggies as we can while we’re traveling, and while we’re at home. Daily Harvest has become a huge part of our morning routine, as their smoothies are packed with healthy ingredients, are easy to make, and are incredibly filling. It’s super cost-effective too!

31 Bits: Alli helped found this company over ten years ago, and so obviously we HAD to include it! 31 Bits employs artisans in Uganda and Bali that make incredible jewelry, bags, home goods, and more. The cause, the style, the heart - it’s our go-to for gift giving, and this year is no exception. If you’ve been eyeing the mirror above our couch, get it fast. There’s only a few left!

Burrow: Speaking of our couch, we love it. We did a TON of research on couches (it’s an investment!!) and everything we read and reviewed brought us back to Burrow. Their couches are affordable, stylish, and high quality. Plus they have a phone charger built in… YES PLEASE!

Caséta by Lutron: We’ve been talking a lot about Lutron lately, and for good reason. Caséta by Lutron keeps our home secure through a feature they have called “Smart Away”. It randomly turns our lights on and off when we’re not at home, making our house appear lived-in - even when we’re across the globe! Plus - we control it all with an app on our phone. It’s amazing.

Ring: Speaking of home security, Ring is the other feature we can’t live without. This Ring Video Doorbell 2 alerts our phones anytime there’s movement/activity around our home. We’re able to keep an eye on our packages, our visitors, even our outdoor furniture - all in real time! We also have the Ring Spotlight Cam for the side of our home, and the Ring Alarm System to protect the inside. Let’s be real, Sally isn’t a guard dog :)

iRobot Roomba 980: Wood floors and a big fluffy dog are not the best combo. Dust, dirt, hair, you name it - it’s on our floors. And we used to sweep them almost daily. Not anymore, friends!! Our iRobot Roomba is like our live-in maid (we like to refer to him as “Norman”), as Norman vacuums it all up quickly and efficiently - even when we’re not home! Why didn’t we get him sooner?!

Zazzle: Being the thoughtful gifter that he is, Zazzle is Bobby’s favorite gift-giving site this time of year. You name it - he’s made it. Customized mugs, magnets, t-shirts, even snowglobes!! They’re quick, easy to work with, and bound to be a hit with the whole family.


Pet Plate: We’re the couple that refers to our dog as our “first born”. We’re obsessed with her. (Can you blame us? She’s SO CUTE!) Because of said obsession, we try to feed her the healthiest and best food for dogs - that fits in our budget. Pet Plate is just that. Sally loves it, we love the ingredients, and they deliver it straight to our doorstep. Boom.

Farmer’s Dog - This is another great healthy and high-quality food delivery service for dogs. We like to change up Sally’s meals from time to time, so we usually switch back and forth between Farmer’s Dog and Pet Plate. Both of which are cost-effective and Sally-approved. (We’re also big suckers for their marketing - every meal has Sally’s name on it!)

Kurgo: We go on at least one roadtrip a month, and 99% of the time Sally comes too. Her safety in the car is really important to us, and we absolutely love Kurgo for just that. They make a variety of car accessories for keeping your four-legged friends safe on the road - from the Kurgo Dog Hammock to the Auto Zip Line, Kurgo allows us to drive knowing that Sally is as safe!

Kong Products (specifically the squeaky balls): We just had to throw these in because they’re Sally’s FAVORITE THING EVER. (Not ours - hence the fancy headphones we mentioned earlier.) She could chew and play with them until the cows come home (or until we take them away), and they’ll for sure be in her stocking this year. Yes our dog has a stocking. Doesn’t yours?!

Do You Guys Ever Fight? Behind the Scenes with Alli & Bobby

It seems as though the more we share our lives through our travels, the more fascinated our audience is with the “behind the scenes”. If we had a dollar for every time someone asks us, “Don’t you get sick of each other?” - well, we’d have a lot of dollars. We get it all the time! Questions about our relationship, how we live, work, travel together - even people wondering where our dog goes when we’re not home! (Valid question.)

So, we decided to devote a blog post to just that.

The Traveling Newlyweds as you’ve never seen them before… (lol!)

How do you guys do it? 24 hours a day, 7 days a week together?

Alli: It honestly isn’t as much - or as hard - as some people think. Maybe that’s due to our easy going personalities, or maybe it’s luck… but we really haven’t had many issues with spending so much time together. Sure we get on each other’s nerves every once and awhile, but it’s never anything that lasts very long.

We’ve definitely learned patience. For me, that means lingering a little (sometimes a lot) longer at certain spots so Bobby can get the “perfect” shot. My intuition is always to go go go - and that’s not always conducive to content creating. It’s something I’m still working on. For Bobby, it’s patience when we’re (well, mostly me) deciding where to eat. I need to research, look on Instagram, survey my surroundings and compare menus before I land on a decision. Bobby’s “hanger” used to show itself a lot more than it does now!

One thing that I think we do really well is support each other. We’re each other’s biggest cheerleaders. Whether Bobby’s working on a new photography project or I’m writing content for a tourism board, we’re the first to encourage each other. We have to daily remind ourselves that we’re on the same team - and with that kind of mentality, you can do anything.

Bobby: It’s challenging to follow Alli on this, because I would say most of the same things.

Our personalities mesh together in a way that compliment each other, and we don’t get sick of each other. But don’t be fooled... we also work hard to keep a strong marriage. We listen to each other, have date nights, we’re intentional about spending quality time together, we’re quick to apologize and forgive, we laugh often and our inside jokes get weirder by the year, and we are each other’s biggest fan. As Alli said… patience is really important in our world. I get pretty neurotic and particular about photography sometimes, and Alli can just go with the flow. And instead of getting upset when I’m hungry, or “hangry”, I’m getting better at being grateful that my wife is going to find us the most epic spot to eat. See, I’m saying the same things as Alli.

With all that in mind, Traveling Newlyweds is so much fun for us - we see it as a season of life that is uncertain, so we’re cherishing every moment!

You guys look like you’re living the DREAM. Do you even work?

Alli: Believe us when we say that content creating and travel blogging is hard work. It’s extremely long days when we’re in-destination, it’s late-night editing and early morning hustling. It’s a lot of writing, it’s a lot of planning, it’s a lot of busy work, and it’s a lot of being “on”. Being on a “press trip” may sound cool and exclusive, but typically it means red-eye flights, full days packed with meetings, gathering content, interviewing tourism boards and brand agents, and experiencing hosted activities that we’re capturing content for. You may see a snapshot of us laying out at the beach, but the times where we’re actually laying out are few and far between. 98% of the time we’re running around from dawn to dusk!

That being said, we’ll be the first to say that we ARE living the dream, because we LOVE what we do.

We love the destinations we travel to and the clients we work for. We thrive on new experiences and new locations, and learning more about this magical world we live in is truly our favorite pastime. We feel SO BLESSED to call this our job, and we’ll never take it for granted!

Bobby: What she said. We work hard.

How do you work, and who does what? What’s a day in the life of the Traveling Newlyweds?

Bobby: Every day is different. For the most part here is what I do: pursue new opportunities, cook good scrambled eggs, plan out logistics, edit photos, pick up Sally’s poop, take photos, and manage our website.

Alli: Just like Bobby said - no day is the same. Our travels and projects are so seasonal, that it’s constantly changing and evolving. It’s usually a pretty even mix of emails, travel research, phone meetings, picture taking, and editing. It’s incredibly easy for us to spend an entire day looking at a screen - so we try to break it up with evening walks, dinners with friends, and an occasional card game. I always win. ;)

How do you balance work life/personal life?

Alli: It definitely gets tricky when your work life is so personal. We try to be intentional about having date nights where our phones are put away and we make time during the week to hang out with family and friends. Having a dog also helps, as we try to take her on nightly walks where there’s no “business talk” allowed. We’re still figuring out the balance - but so far so good.

Bobby: This was really hard for me when I was teaching (I taught high school math). All of my students would dig into our personal life and it drove me crazy for the first year or two. But then, like an older brother that teases their sibling to get a reaction, as soon as I got over it, they mellowed out. Now that I’m not teaching, the new struggle is finding balance… I sometimes feel like a work-a-holic even though all of our friends would say, “You work?” Alli and Sally force me to slow down a bit, and I’m grateful.

What kind of camera do you use, and who takes your pictures?

Bobby: Alli uses her iPhone Xs, and I use a Fuji XT-1. Not sponsored, I just love the feel of all the dials and the quality of the glass. But if you work for Fuji and want to sponsor me, let’s talk.

What’s been your favorite destination so far?

Alli:  I LOVED Japan. The people, the food, culture, the pride in their culture and country. It’s by far the cleanest country I’ve ever been to - even the subway in Tokyo is pristine! It’s hilariously quirky too - hedgehog cafes, robot shows, teeny tiny bars that hold only eight people… And don’t even get me started on Kyoto. One of the most magical, truly “zen” places I’ve ever been. Japan is otherworldly.

Bobby: South Africa. We’re definitely spoiled living in California, and South Africa reminded me the most of home. When in Cape Town, you can be at the beach in the morning, playing with penguins in the early afternoon, and sipping wine in a spectacular wine region in the early evening. There is so much to see and do… and whiskey is really cheap :)

What have you learned from working together?

Bobby: Alli isn’t afraid to dream big. She loves thinking of the next destination, strategy, or campaign that we’re going to go after, and nothing is out of reach. She also tries really hard to hear me out when she doesn’t like one of my far-fetched ideas. She’ll let me go on and on about why I think an idea or product is what our next move should be, and then will gently (most of the time) let me know that it’s not a good idea.

Alli: Bobby is SO driven. He’s the first to wake up and start working in the morning, and he’s usually hustling on projects and emails until he falls asleep. He’s always coming up with new ideas for TN, and for having zero marketing/social media experience - he’s really caught on quick!

Is it hard having a dog and traveling as much as you do? Where does she go when you’re gone?

Alli: It’s only hard because we miss her so much!!! We try to take her on as many trips as we can, but most of the time she stays with my parents. She’s the closest thing they have to a granddaughter, and they love her just as much (if not more) than we do! Shout out to Mama and Papa Swan for being the best puppysitters EVER!!

Bobby: Yeah, it’s not that hard. We love Sally so as long as we know she’s being taken care of and getting lots of love, it’s not that big of a deal. We’re super blessed to have Alli’s parents, as well as an amazing doggie-daycare right down the street.

What’s one thing you can’t travel without?

Alli: I don’t go anywhere without my Aloha bags. I’ve been traveling with them for nearly four years now, and they’ve completely changed the way I pack. They’re waterproof, machine washable, durable, incredibly lightweight - and even make cute clutches when you’re on the go! I LOVE THEM. (not sponsored.)   

Bobby: I can’t travel without my earplugs. Nothing special, just the squishy ones you get at a Rite Aid. Whether it’s crying babies on a plane, or Alli talking in her sleep, I am always thankful when I have a pair of earplugs in my backpack.

What’s your dream destination?

Alli:  Samoa. It’s perfectly underrated - and I’ve wanted to go for years… Turquoise waters, rugged rainforest, friendly locals.. It’s going to happen.  

Bobby: Tahiti was a destination that caused us to start Traveling Newlyweds, thinking it was a place we could never afford on a teacher’s salary. So I think if/when we go there, it will be pretty special.