Versatile Blogger Award

~Carmen & Joe

Yay!  Another chance to tell you guys more about us (read Liebster Award for more random facts).  First of all we’d like to thank Sarah at Wayfaring Sarah for our nomination.  Check out her blog!  She suffers from chronic illness, but that doesn’t stop her from traveling the globe.  She writes all about travel, health, and wellness.

Versatile Blogger Award

 Versatile Blogger Award

What exactly is the Versatile Blogger Award?

Given by bloggers to more bloggers, the Versatile Blogger Award is given to bloggers who display uniqueness and love for what they do through quality writing on throughout their blog.

So it’s just like the Academy Awards without the fanfare, money, or beautiful gowns!  

It gives bloggers a chance to give each other a high five and introduce their readers to other good blogs to sample.

What’s the criteria?

The quality of the bloggers writing, photograph quality, uniqueness in the subjects covered and a strong level of love shining through their work for what they do!

The Rules:

  • Thank your nominator on social media and in your post
  • Post 7 random facts
  • Nominate up to 10 others
  • Share your nominations on social media for all to see

Joe and Carmen’s 7 Random Facts

Since there are two of us, we decided to give one fact about us, and then split up the other six.

About Us- 

We met almost ten years ago on eharmony.  So if you have been skeptical about online dating, it does work!  At the time of our “matching”  we lived 300 miles apart, Carmen in Memphis, TN and Joe in Belleville, IL.  Joe commuted every other weekend for four years until we married in March 2011.

Versatile Blogger Award

After four years of a long distance relationship, we tied the knot!


Carmen’s Random Facts-

  • History Nerd:  I love watching random documentaries on things like the origin of General Tso’s chicken.  That’s one reason I’m not ready to give up my day job and blog full-time.  I love my job teaching 6th graders ancient world history everyday!
Versatile Blogger Award

I love visiting ancient places that I teach!

  • Fashion Merchandising Degree:  Yes, my first love is clothes!  I still love shopping, I just don’t shop for department stores merchandise anymore.  It only took about four years to decide that it was not the kind of life I wanted for my family.  I had grown up a teacher’s kid and wanted that for my children, too.  I went back to school and earned my master’s degree in elementary education and have been a teacher for the last eighteen years.  Being a teacher is a perfect job for someone who loves to learn and likes to travel!
Versatile Blogger Award

My college years as a fashion merchandising major (with my friend Jennifer). Yes, I was an 80s girl!

  • University of Arkansas Drumline:  I played the drums in junior high and high school.  When I went to college, I wanted to continue marching in the band.  I played the cymbals which meant I developed some muscle tone on my skinny arms and very thick calluses on my hands.  It was a ton of work, but so much fun!  When the movie Drumline came out, I tried to convince my daughters that I did that, but I don’t think they ever believed me!
Versatile Blogger Award

That’s me in this grainy, old picture!

Joe’s Random Facts-

  • Just another G.I. Joe:  I served in the U.S. Army for 10 years and the Army allowed me the opportunity to not only travel, but live in countries most people visit (see A Mother’s Legacy for reasons behind why I joined the Army).  I lived in Bad Kreuznach Germany for 3 years from 1990-1993 where I took to the adventures of skiing the  Zugspitze at Garmisch Partenkirchen Germany’s highest mountain peak, white water rafting in Austria, and drinking steins of beer during Octoberfest in Munich.  While living in Camp Zama Japan I climbed Mount Fuji and skied at various ski resorts.
Versatile Blogger Award

GI Joe in Germany!


  • Is that your dad?  My kids get that question a lot when they,  either through pictures or in person, introduce me to their friends.  I adopted four kids, three from foster care at ages 2, 4, 14 and one through a relative adoption as a newborn.  So unfortunately, the kids didn’t inherit their dad’s Filipino tan but inherited an appetite for Asian cuisine and the universal eye roll for their dad’s puns and jokes.  Sushi anyone?  Say what’s high in the middle and round on both ends?  Ohio!  Ta da dum.
Versatile Blogger Award

Me with three of my kiddos when they were just little guys!

  • Hey Tiger!  Can we get your photo?  Prior to Tiger Woods reaching the twilight of his golfing career I was often mistaken as Tiger Woods.  Especially during Tiger Woods hey day in the 1990’s while stationed in Japan I had many Japanese folks ask for photos with me, and I never have golfed.  I couldn’t imagine if I was on a golf course in Japan.  When Carmen and I dressed at Tiger and Elin Woods, we stopped a lot of traffic!
Versatile Blogger Award

The best Halloween costumes EVER!

Our Nominations

Please show our nominations some love by checking out their blogs!

1. Escape Reno–  Caitlin lives in Reno, Nevada.  She loves highlighting wonderful travel adventures in the United States.  We share her philosophy of travel, in that you don’t need to fly all the way to the other side of the world to discover new places and things.  You can find wonderful experiences in your own backyard.

Find Caitlin at


2. Roving Jo  Joella is a wife and mom of two sweet girls.  Her blog covers her family’s travel both in the United States and abroad.  She firmly believes that no family is too busy to travel!

The Versatile Blogger

See Joelle’s amazing photography at


3. A Cupful of Carters Mandy went from working a 60+ hour job to reevaluating her and her family’s priorities.  Now the family focuses on health, purposeful living, and adventure.  Mandy started writing her blog to chronicle their new priorities and to inspire other families to do the same.

The Versatile Blogger Award

Check out the adorable Carter family at


4LuxuryBackpacking  Emma and Yannick are a couple from England and Germany.  They met two years ago in Thailand and have been traveling together ever since.  Visiting 25+ countries since meeting each other, this couple may be young but have more travel experience than most people double their age.

The Versatile Blogger Award is a gorgeous, gorgeous, GORGEOUS blog. We are slightly jealous of how pretty their blog is!


5. Can Travel Will Travel Tanya and Andy are a British couple who live and work abroad.  Their blog is a wealth of information for those who want to be able to travel longterm.  There blog posts are very honest and they don’t gloss over the hiccups along the way.

The Versatile Blogger Award

Currently in Cambodia, see what Tanya and Andy are up to now at!


6. Well-Caffeinated Traveller–  We’ve been following Lynne’s travel blog for about six months.  Not only are her pictures amazing, but she’s a lot like us in that she still works a regular job.  Lynne not only writes about her travels both in the US and abroad, but she’s a big time foodie and coffee drinker, so a lot of her posts highlight the quant little cafes she finds along the way.

The Versatile Blogger Award

We love coffee, too! Check out Lynne’s blog at


7. Wanderdolls Ashley is a twenty-something year old who caught the travel bug while still in college.    Her goal is to see 25 countries before her 25th birthday, and she’s almost to her goal.  Her blog is beautiful and easy to navigate.  We just wish we had the techno skills to make our blog as pretty as hers!


The Versatile Blogger Award

See all Ashley’s gorgeous travel photo’s at!


8. Vacations Begin–  The Jains are a couple that have been traveling together for the last ten years.  They use to plan every detail of their trips, but now find more adventure by just booking a flight and seeing what life brings them once they arrive at their destination.  Since they have been traveling extensively for so long, there blog is a wealth of tips and stories.

The Versatile Blogger Award

Learn more about this fun couple at


9. A Revolving Compass Abhishek and Neha are a couple from India who have been blogging since 2013.  We love their detailed assessments of cities, attractions, and accommodations.  They have a toddler that travels with them, so their blog posts help other families needing tips on how to travel with a youngster.  Show them some love by checking out their blog!

The Versatile Blogger Award

The Revolving Compass


10. Dreams and Dives–  Mike and Natalie (Lie) are an techie couple from Belgium.  They have been together for eleven years and are still loving all of the spontaneity that their life on the road holds.  Check out their recent post 20 Months, 20 Selfies!

The Versatile Blogger Award

Love this fun, adventuresome couple!


So there you have it!  Please click on the links of each of these blogs and subscribe to one or two.  You may not realize how much it means to bloggers to know that someone actually appreciates what we put out there for the world to see.

Nominees-  Don’t forget to follow the rules and pay it forward to some other blogs!

What do you think of our random facts about ourselves?  Did any of them surprise you?  How about our list of nominees?  Please share by commenting below!  

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