The Liebster Award: A Slice of Encouragement


One thing I can tell you for certain is that being a newbie travel blogger is tough. It’s not the writing or the traveling that’s tough – that’s the fun part. It’s getting noticed. It’s trying to keep from being discouraged when you pour your heart and soul into writing a good blog post and nobody sees it because nobody knows who you are. That’s the tough part.

There are days I feel like Google Analytics is sending me a message loud and clear: you suck! And trust me, I start to believe it. But then…something happens. I get an alert that tells me I have one new subscriber, or Twitter notifies me that someone retweeted or favorited one of my posts.

That’s all it takes to realize that maybe this can actually work and maybe, despite what Google Analytics tells me, I don’t suck.

Thanks to Puerto Rico Revealed, a fellow travel blogger, I’ve got an extra bounce in my step today and I’m feeling a little more encouraged – or, a little less ‘sucky’ – than I felt yesterday.

It’s called the Liebster Award and it was created to bring much-needed recognition to new-ish bloggers so that people like me don’t give up when they look at their daily traffic statistics.

The rules have changed and evolved since its inception, but in a nutshell, one blogger nominates a handful of other bloggers and asks them a series of questions that they must answer on their blog. Those bloggers must then nominate a handful of other bloggers and create a new series of questions. And so on.

The hope is that the blogger nobody knows becomes the blogger everybody knows.

Today, I’m one of the lucky ones, thanks to my friend Shawn from Puerto Rico Revealed. On his blog you will find riveting stories about his adventures in Puerto Rico as well as practical travel tips for making the most out of your next visit. So please go check him out and follow him on Twitter and on Facebook. Be sure to check out his book, which will hit the market soon. He’s been working on it for two long years!

So here are my answers to Shawn’s questions.

What is your ultimate aim of all the work you do on your website?

That’s easy: to share and to inform. I remember planning my first few trips to the Caribbean and feeling completely overwhelmed by all the tough decisions I was faced with – choosing a destination, a resort, a room category, excursions, etc. Now that I’m a seasoned tropical traveler with loads of travel tips, advice, knowledge, and stories stuck in my head, I’m here to share all that information with people about to embark on a tropical trip.

Do you prefer destinations that are off the beaten path or ones that are easy to get to?

While I’m always researching destinations and on the hunt for serene and idyllic places to visit, I tend to gravitate toward the well-known, high traffic destinations. When I choose excursions, though, I look to get off the beaten path a bit.

What is your greatest travel experience?

Getting married on the 7-mile beach in Negril, Jamaica. I still get butterflies when I think of the entire experience, from start to finish.

Which destination is at the top of your travel bucket list?

I’d love to visit some of the renowned beaches in Australia.

Do you pack light or take a full range of kit just in case?

Well, like many travelers, I always plan to pack lightly but somehow the suitcase ends up jam packed with lots of stuff I probably won’t use. I like to think my packing skills get a bit better with each passing trip, though.

What’s the most unusual souvenir you’ve picked up on your travels?

Good question. I’m always on the hunt for quirky and rare pieces of art and hand-crafted items. Maybe the most unusual is a cutout of an African woman. At first glance, it just looks like it’s made of construction paper but in fact it’s actually made out of dried banana peels. It’s really cool and funky.

Do you prefer traveling alone or with loved ones?

I always travel with my husband. We have traveled with friends on occasion, which can be a lot of fun, but for the most part, it’s usually just the two of us!

What’s the most daring dish you’ve sampled on the road?

I guess that would be curried goat. That probably sounds boring but I like to keep my meat eating to a minimum, sticking to what I grew up on, so it was a big deal for me to try goat. It was okay.

When you travel, what do you miss the most about home?

Franklin, our amazing golden retriever. It’s always hard to leave him, even for a day or two, so taking off for a week or two at a time can be hard. On our way home, we count down the hours until Franklin time!

Who is your favorite travel companion?

My husband. We travel really well together. We always agree on the destinations, the excursions, the restaurants, and pretty much everything else. Lucky for us, we’re great travel partners!

What/who inspires you to travel most?

My fellow travelers. I love reading their travel stories and reviews and watching their travel videos. They’re always so happy and making every moment of their travels count. I just love it. I really do.


Now, I will turn it over to these fine travel bloggers:

Laura Albritton: @islandrunaways
Creatives in Transit @creativesintran
Beau @exploretheocean
Sarah Vedomske @coffeeeeinsulin
Nina Travels @ninatravels1
Emily Bylund (Breezing Through) @embylund
Kate Weissing @the_kateland
Tianna Gratta @tiannagratta

Here are your questions. When you have finished, please read the rules below and then choose your nominees.

Your Questions

Why did you start traveling?

Why did you start writing about it?

What has been your favorite travel destination?

How do you choose your next destination?

Do you always travel to new destinations or do you like to revisit your favorite ones over and over?

Do you ever get nervous before you go to a new destination?

What type of accommodation do you prefer when you travel?

What’s your favorite time of year to travel?

Do you spend the Christmas holidays on the road or do you celebrate at home with family?

What has been your scariest travel moment?

Do you think your travels will ever stop or slow down?


The Liebster Award rules are:
1) Thank the blogger who nominated you, with a link back to his/her blog
2) Answer the 11 questions your nominator asks you
3) Nominate 5–11 bloggers with under 500 Twitter followers
4) Create 11 questions for your nominees
5) Display the Liebster Award logo on your page
6) List these 6 rules in your blog post


Your Friend,


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