Hey y’all! I am SO excited to welcome you to The Curious Cowgirl Podcast! We are talking all things Travel! My best tips, my best stories, and awesome guests! Tune in often for travel tips, hacks, and information that will make your travels less stressful, more interesting, and more fulfilling!
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The Curious Cowgirl Podcast: Episode 1
What You Will Learn
- My background, and how I got started as a Travel Blogger
- What inspired me to start my own Podcast
- What you can look forward to in future episodes of The Curious Cowgirl Podcast
Episode 1 Show Notes, Links and Resources
Episode 1 Transcript
It’s podcast episode number one and you know what that means. It’s time for some introductions. Welcome to The Curious Cowgirl Podcast where we’re talking about all things travel. Let’s jump into today’s episode.
Okay. Hey, y’all, Welcome to The Curious Cowgirl Podcast. I’m your host, Mary The Curious Cowgirl. And I am delighted that you’re here with me today. Now be sure and stay with me until the end of this episode because I’ve got a travel tip that really could possibly change the way you travel forever.
All right, so I am a travel blogger primarily, and I get asked a lot how in the world and I get started doing that, you know, how do I get to travel so much and kind of what inspired me to start writing and sharing my travels and all my travel tips with with my reader? So here’s kind of how how that all happened.
My very first career, you all I was a teacher. I was a high school teacher for five years and you know, you get to a certain age and you’re able to look back and and see a lot of kind of commonalities or themes. or threads that are running through your life. Well, that has definitely happened for me. Teaching is really a part of my DNA, and everything I’ve done in life professionally has really had a strong threat of teaching running through it.
Um, I also really love to travel. Travel has always been really interesting to me, even in the periods of my life where I didn’t have the time, I didn’t have the funds. My Children were young. I was always the person he was reading, you know, travel magazines or buying guidebooks at the discount bookstore and and looking at places I’d like to go someday. And so I’ve really always had an itch to travel and you see new places and meet new people.
All right, so fast forward to my 50th birthday and my husband, who is wonderful. His name is Will. You’ll hear me talk a lot about him on the podcast, but Will is always described it as my biggest cheerleader, but also my biggest enabler. And what I mean by that is will loves to travel as much as I do. In fact, that’s one of the things that really brought us together is how much we love to pack her suitcases and and go somewhere.
So my 50th birthday was kind of looming in the, you know, in the near distance and will said, Okay, so that’s a big birthday. I think we should take a big trip that year. My daughter was a senior in high school, and she was involved in a dance group that performed during halftime at the football games. And so, you know, everybody out there whose is a parent knows if your kid is performing during halftime, you do not miss that moment. And so we really didn’t have a good window to go to, say, Europe, which would have been our first choice. We, you know, only had about six days in between football games. My birthday is in October, right smack dab in the middle of football season in Texas.
So I said, Okay, well, there’s a ton of places in the United States I haven’t visited, and, you know, October is really a great time to get New England and see the leaves change. And you know, all my friends up in New England, you know, laugh at that a little bit because, you know leaf changing season is just like any day of the week for y’all. But for those of us that live in, you know certain parts of Texas in the South, we just don’t get to enjoy a lot of times really beautiful fall color. So Will said, that sounds great. Let’s do it! Plan the trip.
So I was describing kind of my itinerary and what we were going to do to a very dear friend of mine. Her name is Tanya Foster, and she is a blogger as well. Her blog is primarily beauty and fashion, but she does cover travel from time to time. And so I just was sharing with her being kind of this trip we have planned. And she said, You know what, Mary? That’s a trip that a lot of people would like to take. She said, Why don’t you write a guest blogger post for me when you get back and describe where you all went, where you stayed, you know, all the all the obvious things because, she said, I think that would be a great resource for my readers of my blog.
So I did and, um, a few days later, after she published that Blog post, she called me and said, Okay, so I just want to let you know that I have gotten really good feedback from your blog post. People really enjoyed how you wrote it and the tips you offered and kind of your personality and your style. And she said, You know what, Mary. As much as you and Will are traveling, and as much as you enjoy writing, you really ought to start your own travel blog. And I thought, Huh. That’s maybe not a bad idea. So credit and props to my friend Tanya Foster for inspiring me to start my own travel blog.
The Curious Cowgirl was born in 2017. Technically, I really call 2018 my first year blogging because my blog was really not up and running until December of 2017. And even though I did publish a few posts and 17 really, 18 was the true year that I started, my travel blog and it’s been so fun.
I really I really enjoy my travel blog, The Curious Cowgirl almost more than anything I’ve done in life to date. So that’s how that got started
Um, I referenced in my introduction to you all that I may talk a little bit about antiquing and needlepoint. And here’s the tie in to travel with that. My husband and I are both really big collectors. Have all kinds of different things. Will collects mainly Folk Art and Militaria. And he collects toy soldiers and he collects. You know, all kinds of things. I would say his primary collection is Folk Art, and that means you know, old signs, cigar store Indians, weathervanes, totem poles, that kind of thing.
I also am a really big collector. I my biggest, I guess you know, point of interest or thing that I like to collect the most is vintage Christmas like it’s kind of an addiction, maybe more than a collection. But I also love to collect linens. I love any kind of needlework. I used to collect a lot of furniture, but at a certain point you kind of run out of room for that kind of thing. But anyway, my point is, Will and I are both really big collectors, and so a lot of our decision making regarding travel has to do with attending art shows and antique shows and big flea markets really all over the world.
We’ve made a lot of friends in those industries in those worlds, and so antiquing and collecting and flea marketing. That kind of thing is a real big part of our lives, so that will definitely become a part of this podcast, for sure.
And then my other personal passion is needle point. I learned how to needlepoint in my twenties, and I really enjoy it. I’m the kind of personality that I have a really hard time sitting still. And so when I am on an airplane or in the evening, watching the news or I used to actually do this when I would sit in carpool line, because everybody out there who’s ever done that knows that that’s just, it like feels like a moment in life that will never end, as you’re waiting for the carpool lined up move forward. But I learned how to needlepoint in my twenties, and it has become a hobby of mine that I love, and I needlepoint a lot.
And so the tie in to travel there is in 2019 I organized several needlepoint retreats around the country, which was a lot of fun. And so I was able to gather fellow needle pointers from really across the country to join me in New York. We went to the Hill country in Texas. And then I organized some local needlepoint retreats as well.
And, you know, kind of like travel in general. I love that a hobby can bring different people together under one common interest. Kind of the same thing as antiquing. I’ve just met some really nice people in the needlework world. And so I’ll definitely be talking about about needlepoint to certain degree on this podcast as well.
The other, I guess, part about me, that the ties into The Curious Cowgirl is the fact that I’m an empty nester. Will and I have four kids between the two of us, and all of them are either out of college and working or they’re in college. And so we really are, you know, during the school year, for sure, empty nesters. They are still coming home in the summer. But you know, formally empty nesters because they’re all out of the house. And that really changed the landscape of our lives and allowed us to travel a lot more and pursue a lot of the things that we find interesting a lot more.
And so when I write for my travel blog, and as I record these podcasts for you all, my perspective is as an empty nester. I’m not writing from the perspective of taking young kids on trips, or necessarily solo travel, but really, from the perspective of folks who are in their late forties and, uh, who have their kids out of the house and find themselves with a little more time to travel.
Because, you know, let’s be honest, you travel a lot differently without kids in tow than you do with kids in tow. And so that is my perspective. So if you’re an empty nester, I think you’ll find a lot of what I write about on my blog and talk about in this podcast will apply very specifically to you and what I think a lot of empty nesters are looking for.
All right, so how did I get started with this podcast? So my travel blog is my full time work. It is what I do you know, 40, 50, sometimes 60 hours a week. And I started listening to podcasts, and I had never listened to podcasts before. I know there’s a lot of people out there who listen to all kinds of different podcast. But that was a world new world to me. And I started listening to podcasts because I was taking some digital courses from teachers who worked closely with the travel community, travel writing community or blogging community. Or, you know, kind of the online marketing community. And they started talking about their podcasts. And so I was learning so much from them in the classes I was taking from them that I wanted to, see if there was more information that they were sharing on their podcast.
So I subscribed to two or three and started listening to the podcast. You know, in mainly in the mornings when I would go walk, I try to walk every morning. When I was getting dressed, I would play a podcast and I found myself with a note pad in hand, taking notes all the time. I was learning so much and hearing so many things that were kind of blowing my mind that I really became very addicted to listen to podcasts.
And then it became, you know, when I was in the house, I don’t know, folding laundry or, you know, whatever I was doing, I wanted to have a podcast playing. Remember like I told you, I’m not a person who could just kind of sit still and not have something else going on. So podcasts have become a, you know, a form of media that I really, really enjoy and get a lot out of.
And so I thought, You know what? I think The Curious Cowgirl needs to have a podcast because I know there’s a lot of people, I have a lot of people who are reading my blogs. But just like me with the podcast I listen to, there is a lot of content and great information that I am consuming, that I wouldn’t have time to read. But I can listen to it while I’m doing other things. And I thought, you know what? That, that I think, is a great idea for The Curious Cowgirl. I know there’s a lot of people who would like travel information tips and and really, you know, drilled down deep information about specific places that I’ll be talking about in future episodes. But they don’t have time to sit down and read a blog post. You know, they would rather listen to the information as they’re driving to work or, you know, exercising or, you know, folding laundry or whatever the thing is. So that’s why I started this podcast is to deliver the same great content that I am delivering on my blog to my podcast listeners.
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Okay, so enough about me. Let’s talk about y’all and let me answer a question that a really good friend of mine asked me when I shared with her that I was going to start this travel podcast. And her question was: Okay, so what are you gonna be sharing on your podcast that is different from what you’re writing about on your blog. I thought, Golly, that’s a great question. So here’s the answer.
You all, there are so many amazing things that happen to me when I travel. I’ve got a million stories. So many people that I’ve met. Really amazing conversations I’ve had with them. Insights and thoughts that I have when I’m traveling. And not all of that really translates well into a blog post. You know, kind of like how I talked about at the beginning of this episode. We all have a limited amount of time, and what you can provide to folks in a written format sometimes is very different than what you can provide to them in a format like a podcast.
So I’m really excited about going a lot deeper on this podcast with experiences that I’ve had traveling. I’ve got a lot of really great stories that I haven’t been able to share in a written format, so that’s one fundamental difference. And then I think the other difference is you know, this is kinda feels like a conversation to me. I hope it does to you, too. And I think there’s a lot of tips and, and, I don’t know, wisdom and insights that I can offer to you all verbally that might resonate better with you than in the written format.
You know, I wish when I was growing up, and here’s, you know, me as a teacher saying this, but I wish when I was growing up that educators realized that all of us learn differently and that you need to teach a topic in a lot of different ways because everybody learns differently. And thank goodness educators know that now. But back when I was in school, you know, there was only one way. And so I guess I’m really approaching this podcast with that same philosophy. Writing blog posts is one way of communicating information to y’all. But a podcast is a different way. And because all of us learn differently and can absorb things differently, I think the podcast is a great companion to my blog.
So having said all that, what’s in store? Well, I you know, I am really, really excited about several episodes that I have already recorded, that are really deep dives into some of the places that I love to travel to frequently. New York, Paris and Rome are at the very top of my list. And I’ve got some great episodes recorded for you all with some very great on deep information that I think you’ll enjoy and some great stories that I think you’ll enjoy.
And then I also have several interviews planned that I’m really excited about! Friends that are in the antiques and vintage industries. They might be museum curators. They might be dealers. They might be people that I’ve met during my travels. I’ve got some wonderful interviews lined up. Also, some travel industry experts, travel agents, some tour guides, some folks that really work in the travel industry that have some incredible insights about how you can travel better and some ways to make travel easier on yourself. So I think those will be great interviews as well.
So my point is, a mix of me sharing with you all some great stories and some great insights as a result of my travels, and then also conversations with other folks that I think you will find fascinating and also very helpful to your travels. So that’s what you can expect going forward.
So how can you make sure that you don’t miss a single podcast episode? Well, I’m certainly glad you asked. All right, so however, you are listening to this podcast, I want to make sure that you’re subscribed. So my podcast can always be found on my website, TheCuriousCowgirl.com and you can listen to any episode there, and that’s great. I hope you’ll go to my website and find the podcast that interests you. Another way that you can listen to my podcast is through whatever service provider you’re using to listen to podcasts. It could be iTunes. It could be Google Play. It could be Spotify. Wherever you normally listen to podcasts, you will be able to find The Curious Cowgirl there, and I hope that you will subscribe to this podcast. And that way, you’ll receive notifications about my latest episodes, and you won’t miss any of them.
I will put links in the show notes to everything that I’ve talked about in this episode. And please, always, you all. If you have any questions or want to make a comment, I would love to hear from you. You can email me at Marythecuriouscowgirl@gmail.com. I’m happy to answer questions. Receive your feedback. All of that is is definitely very welcome.
All right. So, finally, as promised at the beginning of this podcast, what is this big tip I have for you that could possibly change your travel experience forever already. Ready? Here it is. You have to be organized and you have to plan ahead. And that may sound really simplistic and silly. And I know that there is, you know, some magic in letting things unfold and seeing what happens and kind of going with the flow. And I don’t disagree with that on, you know, kind of a philosophical level, but a practical level. You cannot travel these days without really thinking through what you’re doing and having a good plan. And so hopefully my podcast and my blog posts are going to help you plan and organize yourself so that you can really enjoy your travel. I mean, we all want more vacation days during the year, right? And we don’t want any of those days to be kind of epic fails. So let’s plan ahead. Let’s get organized. Let’s make sure we know what we’re doing ahead of time. And then the likelihood of having a wonderful travel experience is a whole lot greater.
All right, that wraps up episode number one. I hope you all enjoyed the conversation. I know I did. And I look forward to talking to you all again soon. Bye.