Skip to content

End of year wrap-up

December 29, 2011

I had all of the best intentions to blog about our travels at least once a month on this blog, but as it turns out blogging on the travel blog is enough work as it is! So for way more details about our travels, I suggest that you pop on over to my travel blog and / or my Flickr page.

Since this the New Year though, I thought it would be fun to do a little recap. I had done one back in December 2010, but that was, well, a year ago! Back then we hadn’t been on the road so much, but since then we have had a full year of moving around non-stop.

So, where have we been over the last year? We finished-up Asia with Laos, Thailand, Bangladesh and India. Since we were not able to get visas for Iran, we decided to visit Eastern Europe instead. There we traveled through Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Montenegro, Albania and Greece. We also did a side trip to Turkey, where we met up with my mom. After Europe we went to Africa, and there we were back onto our original plan. We visited Egypt, where my friend got married, flew to Morocco and then to South Africa. We traveled through Zimbabwe and Tanzania with Travis’ family before flying to South America to meet mine. Thus far, we have visited Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. 24 countries in 365 days, that’s quite a lot!

Overall it was a great year. We got to see so many things and hang out with family and friends. We visited Chernobyl (here and here) and hiked Mt Sinai under a full moon. We marveled at the pyramids, Hagia Sophia and lions eating a fresh kill. We rode buses, trains, ferries, hot air balloons. We stared at volcanoes and hiked through Patagonian winds. We observed three different kinds of penguins. My husband grew a crazy beard and I shaved my head. We drank so much wine, ate so much good food. There were so many great moments that it’s hard to believe that it really all happened, and even harder to pick what our favourite moments were.

Next year will be just as big, but in different ways. We still have some traveling left to do in South America, but afterwards will be the next chapter in our lives: settling down, getting jobs, and planning the way for starting a family. I am excited for next year, and am really looking forward to it!

To make this little recap more interesting, here is one or two pictures of all of the countries we’ve visited over the past year. A lot more will be getting posted over the next year, as I edit more pictures and catch up on our blog posts.


trimming tea plants


at peace

being silly

school's cafeteria


the infamous bridge

the old city

church islands

coming home


camel and city

blue door

sunset & wine

lone tree

volcán villarrica

heading towards the mighty fitz roy

fennel flowers


How cool is this?

November 11, 2011

Our wedding photographer Amber Hughes has updated the look of her blog, and a picture of me now features in the (multi-image) header. It may be a little narcissistic, but I think it both looks awesome and is pretty cool.

Vancouver sculptures

June 9, 2011

For our civil ceremony in Vancouver, we opted to shoot the portraits close to our home. Not having much time, and living a block away from the Sea Wall, this seemed like the best idea. Vancouver had recently put up a few sculptures in time for the Olympics, so we decided to include these in our pictures.

The sculptures were part of a project called the Vancouver Biennale, where the temporary pieces stay up for two years. Since the pieces will be coming down this month, I decided to post two images from our civil ceremony, in honour of them.


We, 2008 by Jaume Plensa of Spain.

217.5 Arc x 13′ by Bernar Venet of France.

[All pictures copyright of Amber Hughes]

One year ago | Day 5

May 18, 2011

We spent the morning of our last day walking around the old town of Puerto Vallarta and getting wet on the beach for our trash-the-dress shoot. It was loads of fun, and I really like the pictures that we got out of it.

Afterward we rewarded ourselves with the “taco for two” platter (still to this day the best Mexican food I’ve ever had) while enjoying our last few hours of our vacation. Sadly it was time to get back home and back to work!

[All pictures copyright of Amber Hughes]

One year ago | Day 4

May 17, 2011

The fourth day was supposed to be used for the “trash the dress” session, but it was way too hot and we were tired from the wedding. We decided to schedule it for the next morning, and spent the day hanging out by the pool instead.

play ball

travis being silly - 2

Amber was kind enough to take a few family & friends group photos that didn’t happen at the wedding:

In the evening we hosted our goodbye dinner, as the next day friends and family were set to head back home.

[All group pictures are copyright of Amber Hughes]

One year ago | Day 3

May 16, 2011

The third day was the big day: our wedding day.

While the day was started pretty quietly, and I didn’t have to worry about much since Playa Fiesta‘s staff was doing such a great job running the show, I still concerned myself with some last minute DIY. I was getting stressed about getting everything done in time, but Lisa came to the rescue. She did my nails and steamed my dress: without her I would have been a mess. Thank you so much Lisa!

Here are pictures of me getting ready. I really enjoyed having my hair and makeup done: it was the first time ever (aside from the trial run)! As I sat there getting pretty, I tried to just relax and enjoy myself.

Meanwhile the boys were getting ready… or sort of!

Travis and I decided to do portraits before the ceremony. While it made logistical sense, we also felt that it would help us to relax during the ceremony.

The ceremony was quick and sweet. I wrote the entire ceremony, so it was especially meaningful to us. We had two readers.

We got a few more portraits taken during the cocktail hour, after relaxing with everyone for a little bit:

Then it was time for dinner and dancing!

Amber, I couldn’t resist posting this one. You (and Michael too!) totally rocked my world 🙂

[All pictures copyright of Amber Hughes]

One year ago | Day 2

May 15, 2011

The second day had two main events: the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner.

The rehearsal itself was really just for us and a few others since we had decided to keep everything super easy. I love that Travis was wearing the board shorts he bought a few days earlier at the Wal-Mart in Puerto Vallarta – they are just about the funkiest thing ever!

The theme for the rehearsal dinner (which was just called out of convenience) was “Mexican fiesta”. I didn’t choose it because of the name, but because of the menu: it was a food orgy of deliciousness. To this day Travis and I will still remissness about that meal (that and Playa Fiesta’s “tacos for two”), and we usually bring up the memory of it to torture the other when food is especially bad on the road (as it can happen traveling the world!).

Dinner was followed by cigars, and almost everyone joined in for that. I think it made for some really cool shots!

[All pictures a copyright of Amber Hughes]