Road Trippin’

OKAY SO – Y’all know that in March I quit my desk job and decided to go on a road trip to help me gain some perspective on my life. Totally cliche – I know I know, bear with me. (I brought my really cute dog along)

Anyway, I’m starting to go through my photos and want to document the trip on here! I’m not sure what the best format for this will be? So you guys comment if you have any recommendations πŸ™‚ I know my site is not very user friendly BUT I’m working on my business website right now, I promise I’ll put more effort into this bby in a little bit.

so anyway

B is living in Oregon right now opening a dispensary so I strapped a 500lb steel sign on to the top of my car to drive out to him! He has a friend who is a metalworker in Colorado so his friend made this super dope sign for their business and I was already planning my trip so it made sense I would drive it out for them. That was really the only plan going into this adventure… To take my time and see places I’d never seen.

I started out heading west across Colorado on Highway 50, then south on 550. My first destination? The National Park at the Black Canyon in Gunnison Colorado. Our first night on the road we made it to Durango, CO where we spent the night in the car in a Walmart parking lot. *living my best life*

Love you guys!

-Em

 

 

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Questions I ask myself every day..

I hate the idea of having ‘rules’ or even too much of a routine when it comes to eating healthy/exercising because it just absolutely bores me to tears! You know those people with the fridge full of beautiful Pyrex containers with all their meal prep for the week?

I am not that person.

To be clear – I do care quite a bit about leading a healthy, holistic lifestyle and so I’ve come up with some questions I try to ask myself periodically throughout the day. These questions serve as a guideline for my consumption/behavior habits:

  1. Have you eaten something green today?
  2. Have you drank a gallon of water today?
  3. Have you enjoyed a pre/pro-biotic today?
  4. Have you moved your body for one continuous hour today?
  5. Have you spent any time outside today?

That’s it! Those are the only habits I try to maintain daily. My suggestion to all of you (if you struggle with eating health/motivating yourself to work out) is to not be too rigid with yourself! My favorite quote I’ve ever heard is: “I hate having my life interrupted by routine.” (anyone know the source of this??)
But just because you’re bad at (or choose to avoid) consistency is NO EXCUSE to not take care of your body.

Introspective moment at Emerald Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park

Standing at the edge of Emerald Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Love you guyyyys ❀

-Em

Homemade beeswax salves

Hey y’all! I’ve been using Burt’s Bees products forever and I think I’m finally ready to kick my expensive habit and just make them myself πŸ€—

Now’s the time as I’m about to have lots of fresh herbs from my garden to dry and use in them!

Anyway- I got a couple pounds of beeswax from my bee guy and have been playing around with ingredients and textures. Here’s some of what I’ve done so far:

homemade beeswax hand salves

The first two types of beeswax hand salves I made; lilac and lavender scents

Recipe #1 (right side):
* 1 part beeswax
* 1 part organic olive oil
* 2 parts organic coconut oil
* 5 drops of liquid vitamin E
* 20 drops lavender essential oil

Recipe #2 (left side):
* 1 part beeswax
* 1 part organic coconut oil
* 1 part organic avocado oil
* 5 drops of liquid vitamin E
* 2 splashes of lilac essential oil

 

Anyway – here’s some photos of my super rigged up double boiler and the straining process I used… Basically just a plastic funnel (now coated in wax…) with some cheesecloth as a filter. The beeswax is way dirtier than I expected and I definitely plan on melting down the beeswax and filtering it before I even start combining the oils next time.

Hopefully I’ll have a consistency perfected soon, and then B can start buying them from me, mixing them with CBD oils and selling them at his dispensary ~~

Okay , I know I never posted about my road trip and I PROMISE I will shortly. Love you all ❀
_Em_

Quit my job, took a road trip, started my own business

Hey y’all!
Life has definitely been interesting since I posted last…

I decided to quit my job. I packed up my car with my pup and set out to traverse the pacific northwest. I put 6,000 miles on my car and I learned a lot about myself and my goals. When I got back, I started my own Marketing Consulting LLC.

More details to come, but let me just tell you – CHASE YOUR DREAMS! Never again will I bust my ass day in and day out to accomplish someone else’s dreams.

Can’t wait to share with you the details of traveling this great big beautiful earth ❀

-Em

Quitters never win?

So, I’ve been working in promotions and public relations for a mid-size newspaper for over two years. Before that, it was a different newspaper in a different state. I HATE being stuck in an office guys. I truly love being outside, especially now that I live in Colorado.

For months I’ve been thinking about how I can transition to a different job or how I can improve my general sense of well-being, and I finally came up with the answer! #JustQuit

I’ve spent so much of my young adult life stressing about money. Am I saving enough? Will I be able to retire? How will I pay my student loan bills and my car payment and my rent and my utilities this month? But somehow, I’ve always paid them, I’ve managed to save some money and I’m healthy! If anything, stressing and worrying about money is ruining my health.

So I decided today to tell my boss that as much as I appreciate my job here, I’m retiring as of March 30th. I’ve enough money saved up to travel for a month or two, so I’m taking a tour of the American Pacific Northwest! Here’s my route as of right now. I’m thinking that it will take me most of April.

Here’s the *TENTATIVE* plan so far:

Colorado Springs -> Las Vegas
* By way of the Grand Staircase Monument. My auntie lives in Vegas & I can stay for free with her.

Las Vegas -> Medford
* By way of Yosemite National Park

Medford
* The gentleman I’m seeing now is working in Medford OR, and living in Ashland. So I’m going to visit him, we’re going to load up his Scooby van and head down the OR coast into Northern Cali. We’re going to visit a friend of mine in Crescent City, and camp a week or so in the Redwoods.Β 

Medford -> Seattle
* One of my favorite couple-friends from high school live in Seattle and will let me crash with them for free.

Seattle -> Bozeman
* One of my old college roommates and her husband live in Bozeman and will let me crash with them for free

Bozeman -> Colorado Springs
* Home Sweet Home

Screenshot of my google map route across the north west states of north america

Google Map Version of my April Road Trip

To quit my job or to not quit my job….

Lately I’ve been wrestling with some ~what is the meaning of it all~ life questions …

And I keep coming back to the same realization – my job is not allowing me to live the life I want. When I make a list of things that are important to me:

  • Sustainable living
  • Spending time with my loved ones
  • Being outdoors
  • Being physically active
  • Traveling both regionally and internationally

it’s becoming more and more apparent that working an 8am-5pm job with a 45 minute commute (Β‘one way!) isn’t allowing me to spend my time the ways that I really want.

But what’s the solution to this? Unfortunately I’m not independently wealthy, and need to work to live. And the job that I have now is a huge source of income : $40,560 annually before taxes. After taxes it works out to be about $1,100 every two weeks. Granted I have a personal loan I took out to pay off my high interest credit cards, rent, utilities, student loans, commute gas $, and my car loan that I pay on monthly. So once all these bills are taken care of, add in food and I’m basically living paycheck to paycheck.

I’ve started working a side job on the weekends as a parking attendant at a local events center, but that only pays $12/hour and has no viable options for benefits like health insurance. The schedule is extremely flexible tho, and I could realistically make about half what I make now if I worked every possible opportunity at the parking gig.

I’m starting to work on resale and consignment hustles, finding sporting goods items for cheap and consigning items at outdoors stores up in Denver, but that’s more so that I can pad my savings, it’s definitely not enough money to survive.

My goal is to be able to quit my main, full time job soon, and not have to suffer financially in my personal life. I’d like to start working as a freelance marketing and social media consultant, and I think I’m about ready to start making the effort to truly make that happen!

Every journey needs to start somewhere and I think that I’m ready to make the plunge (and possibly be very busy and extremely miserable for a couple months) to ultimately start setting my own work schedule!! What is the point in living in this beautiful state full of recreation activities if I can’t enjoy them when and how I want?! I refuse to subscribe to the notion that we have to grind away, working for the man until we can ‘retire and begin living our lives’.

Do any of my followers support themselves entirely by freelancing? I’d love to ask you some questions about how you got started!

 

Thanks for tuning in πŸ™‚
-Em

Sand Dunes National Park

Sand Dunes National Park is probably my favorite park I’ve been to, so far in Colorado. The sand dunes themselves are a monstrous, incredible geological formation. If you ever go to the park (admission was always super cheap, like $7 I want to say?), I highly recommend hitting up the visitors center. Not only do they have an awesome gift shop, but they have a huge interactive museum that informs you about the science and history of the area.

Just recently I went back to the dunes with my friend Becca and we had a great time. My goal is to make it all the way from the parking lot, to the far side of the dunes that reach the mountains; however, it’s quite a hike and you definitely need to pack food/water. This trip with Becca we packed mostly mason jars of wine πŸ™ƒ I’m definitely not so sure if that’s legal but ~shhhh~ if you don’t tell, I wont.

We went in early December and I kid you not, I was wearing leggings and a thin hoodie for most of the journey. You do have to cross a very shallow, but very wide stream to get from the parking lot to the dunes, so I’d recommend wearing sandals/waterproof shoes, or just taking them off. I’m a barefoot babe so I always tend to kick my shoes off as soon as I have the opportunity.

Relaxing in the sun on a dune at Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado.

Enjoying some December sunshine

Becca getting super excited to be playing in the sand in the middle of December.

Jumping for joy! (Becca loves sand)

We had a seriously great time, even though her clutch was basically on it’s last life on this trip. Since then, Becca’s had her car repaired and we’ve already made plans to go back this summer πŸ™‚

I highly recommend this trip if you’re looking to experience something fun and outdoors with small children. The river is a great spot to bring a cooler and lunch and stay cool on a hot summer day, and the open dunes are a great place to let kids run wild and let out their energy but stay within eyesight.

Walking along the crest of a dune on the way back to the car at Sand Dunes National Park.

This was on our way back down from the highest peak we climbed that day.

View of the Spanish Peaks at Sunset as seen from the highway

View of the Spanish Peaks at sunset

Skiing in Colorado

So many ski days, so little time! (money…)

So far this season I’ve only been able to get out skiing twice!! It’s a travesty I know.
The first trip I took was on December 8th with my dad and brother in and we went out to Keystone Resort for the day. It was cold cold cold and conditions were poor. The mountains hadn’t received very much snow yet which is a huge bummer. Actually, thus far, we’ve had the worst snow pack in about 30 years...

I have high hopes that the season will just extend further into the spring but who really knows…

So we hit Keystone up in early December and then on January 21st I headed up to Breckenridge where my family and some friends had rented a lovely little house for a couple nights. The snow was much better now, as they got about 6 inches the night before we headed up. Y’all Rocky Mountain natives may have called the conditions ‘icy’, but growing up skiing in Michigan, I have a high tolerance for ‘icy’.

The new guy I’m seeing has an epic pass so hopefully I’ll snag some buddy passes and we’ll get out a few more times at least this year… I’m really beginning to feel comfortable on the big hills out here and would love to start skiing black diamonds with some confidence.

#PracticePracticePractice

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First day of the season out at Keystone.

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Views on the drive out to Keystone from Denver

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On my way out to hit the slopes in Breck. Got my Salomon Lux skis new last year, what a difference it makes skiing on fat skis vs. the thin, way tooooo long, hand-me-down race skis I’d always gotten from my sister….

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Definitely driving safe, eating my smothered burrito on the drive home from Breck….

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Climbing Noob

Hey all-
So one of my 3 year goals is to be climbing V5s!
I mention this because I’m going to (hopefully!) be posting a lot more about my climbing experiences, lame and beginner as they may be πŸ™‚

If you don’t know how bouldering ratings work, basically a V0 is the very easiest rating, V17 ( I think ) is the hardest rating.

I’m currently climbing V2s, and struggling on some of them. So, you’ve gotta start somewhere right?
I’ve started seeing someone (B) and he’s just a smidge better climber than I am, so it’s fun to go together. I also took my sister with me to the gym for her first time ever and we had a blast!

So, here’s to more practice, stronger hands and a happy, healthy 2018.

-Em

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Sara, killin it on her first V1

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LOL look at how far away from the wall my body is – oops!

 

Camping at Lake Pueblo

Lake Pueblo State Park is one of the biggest hidden gems of Colorado

There. I said it. Someone had to!

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Camping there is HELLA cheap. Like $15/night. For a state park, in Colorado, with access to a HUGE recreation lake? #cheap
I’ve camped there a few times and have loved every second of it. If you ever have a chance to take a quick weekend getaway, I would highly recommend Lake Pueblo State Park.

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yours truly, terrorizing Dooey with fruit stickers

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I am eternally sad that Dooey was my ex’s dog, I miss him so SO much.

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