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.