About Us

About us

Hi there, Stranger!

We’re Jess & Justin. Adventure junkies and travel enthusiasts.

But we haven’t always been world travelers! We grew up in proper meat-and-potato lovin’ families from the Midwestern United States that took the occasional road trip- but neither of us left the country until we were older (Jess when she was 18, Justin when he was 27!). After scrimping and saving for our wedding in 2017, we went on our first big trip for our honeymoon to Japan- and our wanderlusty hearts have been totally hooked ever since.

Since our fateful honeymoon, we’ve worked hard to incorporate travel into our busy lives as working professionals- figuring out how to travel in budget-friendly ways (and when it’s okay to splurge), how to have adventure travel experiences even though we aren’t REI models, how to immerse ourselves in a different culture if we’re visiting within a compact timeline, and oh so much more. And we started learning so many tips and tricks about travel, that we decided to start this blog, Uprooted Traveler, about it!

In late 2019, we moved after a lifetime in St. Louis, Missouri (that place with that big shiny Arch) to Seattle (that place with the building that looks like a spaceship on a stick from the intro to Frasier) for Jess’ job as a corporate attorney. This turned out to be such a blessing- our weekends have been busy exploring the gorgeous Pacific Northwest, from the stunning Northern Cascades Mountains to the craggy beaches of the Olympic peninsula to the cideries of Oregon. And in The Year That Must Not Be Named… er, I mean, 2020, our love for all things hiking and camping kicked up a notch. Our busy international travel schedule was, at the drop of a hat, replaced with road trips to national parks, sleeping on mountaintops, and lowkey backcountry meals- and it’s been kinda awesome.

And that aligns with the mission of Uprooted Traveler- to share practical tips and advice on how to roll with the highs and lows that travel may bring; to inspire you to get out there and explore this big, beautiful world, no matter what kind of budget or constraints you’re working with; and to be a mindful traveler, choosing our actions to ensure we’re leaving the world in a better place than how we found it.

Now that we’ve officially met, let’s be friends! You can follow our adventures in real time over on our Instagram.

Countries Traveled:

22

U.S. National Parks Visited:

37

Pizzas Consumed:

Countless

Wanna know more?

Well, shucks, we’re flattered!
Meet Jess

My favorite hike…

Heather Maple Pass Loop in the Northern Cascades of Washington state.

On a road trip you’ll find me rocking out to

CHVRCHES, Otis Redding, San Holo, and Francis and the Lights.

Place I can’t wait to travel to…

Patagonia… er, I mean, Italy… and New Zealand. Do I have to pick?

My favorite U.S. travel experience…

seeing Sleep No More (a very quirky/sexy/spooky interactive theater experience where actors, performing a loose film noir version of Macbeth, chase you around an old warehouse for three hours… I PROMISE it’s amazing!) in New York City.

My favorite international travel experience…

go-karting through the streets of Tokyo dressed up like Toad from the Mario video games.

My favorite things

  • Travel (duh)
  • All the dogs
  • Cocktails which have, like, organic bitters and rosemary and other hipster nonsense in them
  • Podcasts
  • Feminism and social responsibility
  • Dancing at weddings
  • NPR
  • Hot springs
  • The Bachelor (it’s dumpster fire trash, I know, I know)
  • Justin’s Randy Newman impression
Meet Justin

My favorite hike…

Reykjadalur Hot Spring in southwestern Iceland.

On a road trip you’ll find me rocking out to

Bon Iver, Kishi Bashi, and Alabama Shakes.

Place I can’t wait to travel to…

Egypt, South Korea, and Australia

My favorite U.S. travel experience…

hiking to Grinnell Glacier Overlook in Glacier National Park.

My favorite international travel experience…

eating grilled mochi and drinking amazake (a sweet non alcoholic drink made from fermented rice) at the 300 year old Amazake-chaya Tea House in Hakone, Japan.

My favorite things

  • Nice people
  • Displays of solidarity
  • Barrel-aged sours
  • Fluffy puppy tummies
  • YouTube videos of handy people building things
  • A good solution to a problem (see job description above)
  • Being blown away about a new fact
  • Japanese cuisine
  • Driving in a beautiful place
  • Jess’ face when she laughs
It’s a Big World!

See where we’re headed next…

Let’s Get Personal
Couple sitting in a tent in Wedgemount Lake in Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

2023 Recap: The Year Everything Changed

For the past three years, we’ve written end-of-the-year recaps here at Uprooted Traveler, documenting the highest highs and the lowest lows of our adventures around the world and running this business. I actually really look forward to writing these annual recaps as a means to reflect on the year past and our hopes and dreams for the upcoming year—and, man oh man, 2023 was an absolute DOOZY of a year. 
Couple holding hands along the Waimea Canyon in Hawaii

We Just Quit Our Corporate Jobs to be Digital Nomads

I’ve been thinking about typing out these incredibly exciting, yet seriously terrifying words for literally YEARS now, so here goes- my husband, Justin, and I have officially quit our six-figure corporate jobs to travel the world. Well, more specifically, we quit our corporate jobs to be digital nomads and focus our time and energy on growing our business full-time. Years of planning, saving, and working on our website until the wee hours of each morning have gone into making this decision and yet, it’s still the scariest thing I’ve ever done by SEVERAL factors. Nevertheless, I truly couldn’t be more giddy for the road ahead.
Couple sitting overlooking Cascade Mountains in Cutthroat Pass in North Cascades National Park, Washington

2022 Travel Recap: The Year of Growing and Showing

2022 has come and gone, leaving behind a flurry of memories and some big personal changes. Each year, I write an end-of-the-year recap, all about our highest highs and lowest lows with our adventures. I really enjoy putting these recaps together, as a reflection on the past year as well as a means of evaluating my hopes and goals for the year ahead. So, without further adieu, here’s our 2022 travel recap.

2021 Recap: A Year of Learning

2021 has come to a close- from the highest highs (getting a COVID vaccine, hallelujah!) to the lowest lows (so… turns out that vaccines didn’t end the pandemic quite like I hoped), 2021 was a roller coaster. Last year, I started the tradition of recapping my husband, Justin’s and my past year in travel. And since I’m a lady who loves her traditions, I’m sticking to it- here’s my 2021 recap.

We bought a travel trailer!

If you would’ve told me a year ago that I would be the proud new owner of an RV, I would’ve promptly responded that you were off your damn rocker. And yet, here I am, with a shiny new Safari Condo Alto trailer to call my own. Here’s the behind-the-scenes story of why and how we bought a travel trailer.

2020 Recap: A Year of Grounding

2020 came in like a wrecking ball, the year that no one anticipated. This year has felt like a blur- somehow dragging on forever and also whirring by incredibly fast. I have changed a LOT this year, in a variety of ways, and while parts of 2020 have been extraordinarily painful and sad, I don’t want to forget my experiences any time soon. Here’s my 2020 recap.

5 Things I’m Grateful for in 2020

In 2020, I think we all need a reason, more than ever, to rally around some central positive idea. So, while Thanksgiving may have problematic historical origins, I’m all about focusing on gratitude, on spending times with friends and family (albeit mostly virtually this year), and on consuming just mass amounts of carbs. In the spirit of the day, here’s five things I’m grateful for in 2020…

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