This is the next HC Humanize interview. Let me introduce Alyssa, who just very very recently launched her blog, Aly May. She is a very talented photographer, as you can tell from the photos included in this post. Go take a look at her blog and give her some support!
Name: Alyssa Zuiderveen
Blog: Aly May
Aly May is about embracing the adventure of life as a homemaker as much as time spent traveling.
About Alyssa and her Blog
- When did you start blogging and why?
I am actually just about to launch my blog! By the time this interview goes live, and if I don’t procrastinate, it should be in its first week up and running. I have always loved writing, and I’ve toyed with the idea of blogging for years, but I didn’t want to just write without a clear purpose. After my first year of marriage, and launching my photography business, I feel that I now have valuable experiences to share with people.
- What topics does your blog cover (in as much detail as you want)?
I absolutely love to travel. Wherever I’m at, I’m always thinking and dreaming of the next adventure so my travel experiences will be a big part of the blog. I’ve realized though, that as I get older and plant more roots, it gets tougher to just pick up and go. I have struggled with meshing my wanderlusty side, with my desire to settle and be a great wife. I treasure my time spent building a life with my husband, and I endeavor daily to grow in my womanhood and to be the best wife and friend to him that I possibly can. Since I was a kid, my greatest dream was to be a wife and mother. I realize that that very traditional dream is not every woman’s goal or passion, but to others who share that calling, I want to be an encouragement that creating a happy home life does not have to equate to giving up adventure. The main focus of my blog will be “adventures in home life,” and what it looks like to bring your own lively, adventurous spirit into the realm of creating a comfortable and happy home.
- What advice would you give someone who may want to start a blog?
Stop waiting and just go for it! Ask yourself what passion burns in your soul that you want to share with people, for me, that was photography. Once I launched my photography business, I finally had the reason I needed to start my blog: share my photography with a wider audience. Once I started running with it, the purpose became more and more clear.
- What is the thing that you have achieved in your life that you’re the proudest of?
This is going to sound SO cheesy, but honestly, it has to be creating a family with my husband. For a hopeless romantic girl who wanted to start a family young, I waited longer than average to meet and marry him. I am so thankful that I didn’t settle for someone who wasn’t absolutely right for me, though. The journey we both had to go on in order to be ready for each other was not easy or simple, but it made us the people we needed to be for each other, and now we get to build an epic life and future together, which is seriously such a dream come true. I’m proud to be his wife and adventure buddy, and I’m proud of the person I’ve become since I met him, because he really does encourage me to be my best self.
- What’s your all-time favourite quote?
Jack Kerouac is one of my favorite authors and the quote that has possibly inspired me most in my creative journey is from On the Road: “The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.” It reminds me that being “normal” and having it all together is not what I need to be striving toward, but that I need to lean into my eccentricities and the passions and spirit that make me uniquely me.
- Why do you travel?
I travel to explore other cultures and to get outside my own box. I love exploring other environments and experiencing things that I can’t at home. As a photographer, I’m most inspired when I travel and can see beyond my typical surroundings.
- What destinations are on your travel bucket list and why?
England: I have English heritage and have been obsessed with english history since I read a book about Elizabeth I when I was 10, she was an original boss babe and inspired me to lean into my independent nature. I want to see all the places where that epic history went down.
Ireland: Like England, I’ve always been fascinated by Irish history and culture. Recently I’ve learned that I am a descendant of one of the original seven founding clan rulers of Ireland, which is crazy and so exciting as a history nerd, so I NEED to get there and explore the country that my ancestors helped tame.
Jordan: Lost cultures fascinate me, and I want to explore Petra so badly. There is so much ancient history in that area that I would love to take in. As a Christian, it is also an area with a ton of ties to the history of my faith so I would love to go and walk some of the paths and terrain that my spiritual heroes walked.
Vancouver/Whistler, British Columbia: I ski and snowboard, and my heart cries for a chance to take on the mountains of Whistler. A dream trip would be to spend a few days taking in the arts culture of Vancouver, and a few days bombing the powder of Whistler.
- What’s the funniest thing that’s ever happened to you while you were traveling?
I was in Los Angeles visiting my cousin and touched base with a local friend about grabbing coffee while I was in town. She responded that she was working on a film set all week so coffee wouldn’t work, but I was welcome to come by the set and visit while she worked. I wound up getting asked to jump into a scene as an extra, then given a line in the scene because they needed some extra filler. Well, I and my impromptu line made it into the final cut of the movie!
- What are the 5 things you HAVE to bring with you on a trip?
1) My camera! I’m a photographer, so my camera goes with me everywhere; I love capturing my experiences on the go.
2) Hydrating face mist for the airplane, because my skin gets so dried out.
3) A playlist loaded for feeling sassy and on top of the world. I like to listen to music when I walk through airports to put me in the zone for adventure.
4) A fun dress. I’m a girly girl, so I always travel prepared for an opportunity to dress up.
5) An over-ambitious book collection. I love to read, but do I ever read on trips? Almost always, no. That never stops me from bringing at least 2-3 books with me at all times.
- What 3 things has traveling taught you?
1) Try new things. This might sound basic, but I really learned to appreciate it by traveling. I discovered a love of previously hated seafood while traveling through the Florida Keys, and I try to always accept an offer of something different from my norm.
2) Be low maintenance. I used to be a pretty high-maintenance girl; my full makeup kit and hair straightener went with me everywhere, but the need to be perfectly coifed totally took away from the valuable time I had to be out adventuring. Nowadays, I put on the bare minimum makeup, throw my hair up, and go find the coolest local breakfast joint or hiking ridge.
3) Take chances. Maybe I woke up thinking I wanted brunch and a mild stroll but got the chance to hike seven miles up a mountain to a waterfall, I say “let’s go” to the waterfall. That actually happened on my honeymoon, and that way-more-challenging-than-expected hike with my husband is one of my favorite memories from our whole trip.
Blog URL: www.alymay.com
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/alymayphoto