Thank you, Eleanor

Upon getting home from Turkey, I was really excited to see that I had been nominated by Safia from the blog Top of the Tent for the Liebster Award! This award from bloggers and for bloggers so I was glad to know that someone had me in mind : ) Thanks Safia! This award is for ‘up and coming’ bloggers that have 200 or fewer followers. In order to accept I answer some questions about my blog and then I get to nominate 3 more bloggers! Before I do that I just need to say that you need to check out Safia’s blog. She does a lot over at Top of the Tent and I really admire her creativity and honest in her posts. I love her blog too because she is from Ras al Khaimah, UAE which is only about 2-3 hours from where I live in Al Ain! And if Safia had not nominated me I surely would have nominated her. Here are some of my favorites for you to check out:

1) Her wonderful tribute to those who work the hardest in the UAE

2) Her amazing post about how the UAE is not like Saudi and stands on its own here on the Arabian Peninsula. She addresses the stereotypes people have of the middle east really well.

3) And last you have to explore her amazing writing ability. She is so creative. From her poetry, to her novel, to her gorgeously narrative posts.

Ok, now to the part about this award where I answer questions about myself and what I’m doing with my blog:

What does blogging do for you? Personally I love blogging because it acts as a creative outlet. Because I have my blog I’m thinking of ways to capture my life here, moments while traveling, and experiences I’m having in a way that is both memorable for me and enjoyable for others to read about. I find I try to take better pictures and be more descriptive in my writing. Without having my blog I don’t think I’d be as reflective.

Arthur's seat 3What blogger(s) feed your soul? I think one of my favorite blogs is Ink & Adventure. Jamie is living in Taiwan and I really feel like I can connect with how she views the world (she’s a very reflective person). I love the photography on her blog and she always finds a way to keep things simple and  inspiring.

What is your favorite subject (category) to blog about? I love getting home from a trip or a new experience and sitting down to blog about it. Going through the pictures, organizing my thoughts, and writing about our travels is what makes me excited when I blog. I am always trying to make the person at the other end of my blog experience what we have just experienced.

Ferry to AmsterdamWhat post of yours means the most to you and why? The two I have picked I picked because I found them really therapeutic for me. The first one I wrote when we were getting ready to leave the UAE to spend the summer in the US. I was finally able to articulate how I was feeling and my struggle with what the word ‘home’ now meant to me. The second was my one year reflection. It was great to finally reconcile my unemployment and look back on a year full of adventure and change.

Why did you first start your blog? I mainly started it because I wanted to keep my family informed but also because I wanted to document what it’s like to move overseas. When I was deciding to move to the UAE I did not find many blogs about the UAE (or at least one that wasn’t a UAE food blog or about Dubai). Which leads to the next question . . .

What do you hope your blog will someday become? I hope that my family enjoys this blog and can see what we are doing, especially because communication is more difficult when you are across the world. I really look at my blog as a kind of documentation. But on another level, I hope that my blog inspires others to travel and I hope people can use my blog as a guide when they are considering visiting new places.

DSCN1296What are you most passionate about? Wow, I’m finding the question to be very hard to answer. I’d like to say travel but honestly most of the stuff that I end up doing and the places we end up going are because of Scott. He pushes me to experience new things that otherwise I wouldn’t bother with! I am so thankful I have him to challenge me. Lately I’ve been finding that my passions revolve around my husband, our families, and my faith.

If your writing were discovered a hundred years from now, what would people learn about you, today’s world, and your interests? Instead of writing I’d like to say pictures. Because the UAE has developed so quickly I am fascinated when I see old pictures of this country – it truly is unrecognizable compared to what it has become today. We’re talking no sky scrapers and a lot more sand just 30 years ago. I hope that my pictures can act as part of that documentation – not just of the UAE but of all the places we’ve traveled. I like to think of my pictures as being a part of a sequence of life’s ever changing layers. I hope one day our future children look at our pictures and say, wow you went there? OR what? it doesn’t look like that anymore!

Who do you most want to read your blog? You mom? The president? Honestly, and this may sound super lame to some, but I blog for my mother. I know how worried she gets about me and knowing that she is waiting for the next post motivates me to write when I do. I know how much she loves the pictures and the stories. I the only people who ever read my blog are my mother and my family that I would have to call my blog a success.

DSCN4006Describe your writing process: When I write about our travels my writing really revolves around my pictures. I try to make things sequential so my posts don’t seem too disconnected. Usually I make some kind of outline in my blogging journal (haha yes I have one!) and help guide my thoughts. I always keep that journal with me so that when I think of how I want to phrase something or a moment I don’t want to forget to mention I can jot it down right away.

Now for my three nominees!!

1) The incredibly sweet Megan from Neither Here Nor There. I have previously blogged about her here.

2) The always positive Reima from Love a Traveler. Remember, I posted about her too – click here.

3) And our dear friends the Rands over at Vantage Points. I so admire their honesty about life here in the UAE!

If you choose to accept the only thing that is required is to post the button onto your blog, answer the questions, and nominate 3-6 others! Be sure to let them know by commenting on their page! I like this award because it’s nominated by others and it’s a great way to share about your blog. I think it might be a WordPress blog but if you’re on blogspot I say whatever! Hope you enjoyed getting to know a little bit more about me and my blog and be sure to check out those other bloggers : )