Goodbye Dallas

It’s my last week in Dallas. I’m not sad about that. Texas is not my cup of tea. I really tried at some points to make it an enjoyable 6 months here, but it’s been a struggle and the lack of easy access to being outside has been very trying on my psyche.  But I’m trying to stay positive as things are wrapping up. Next up is southern california. I will say that I’m not sad to do my weekly long runs along the sunny ocean rather than in the rainy pacific northwest.  However, I do have to be realistic in that it will likely be cold and rainy on race day and I’ll need to be mentally able to push through that.

In other news, I am still missing being nosey and seeing what everyone is doing on Facebook. I will admit to 5 minutes of weakness today in which I got super lonely being in Dallas and reactivated it for a few minutes and scrolled through super quick and then deactivated it again. I am weak, but I shall persevere.

I have a lot more time now that I’m not constantly face booking. I’m using it to shop for funny/punny running shirts. I will likely be getting one that states “will run for beer.”

I will likely being seeing a sloth in real life for the first time this week. I really hope it actually happens. I’m super stoked and I plan to selfie with it. Don’t worry that selfie with be here. I’m also questioning if a sloth should be incorporated into my animal totem leg tattoo due to my love of them, but I’m thinking I’ll do a separate sloth tattoo and stick with the bear, wolf, and jackalope for my totem. Decisions, decisions.

Half Marathon Training Again

I’m back at the half marathon training. Someday I’ll just keep running instead of stopping and starting again. I believe it’ll make life much easier when I decide to inevitably do another half marathon. However, some of the past training I have done has stuck with me. The first time I decided to take up running, I never thought I’d be able to run that 5k and then I did. This time I’m starting my training at 3 miles and it doesn’t seem so bad.

Of course this time I have my training buddy, Josey. He’s not quite ready for running more than a few miles at a time, but we’ll work up to it. He has a lot more stamina for running when we’re on trail in the woods.  The woods are his jam. However, there are some abrupt moments when he sees a squirrel or a bird and turns on a dime and takes off in a different direction. We’re still learning to run with each other.


This half marathon is in December, a couple of days before my birthday.  I’ve done the 5k portion of this half marathon before. It’s not really the most beautiful area of Portland, but it’s fun because it’s holiday themed. The first year I ran it, we had just moved from Wisconsin and it was rainy and “cold.” I ran it in a tank top while others ran it in a parka. This year, I think I’d be in the parka or at least something more than a tank top. I have acclimated to the PNW and have spent a good portion of the last 6 months in Dallas and am about to spend a good portion of time in Southern California. I am not a truly cold weather girl at this point anymore.

In other news, I am still not on Facebook and I’m still constantly wondering what everyone else is doing. I have been like what if I just log on for a minute? Just to get a taste. But so far I have held fairly strong. I had to reactive for a few minutes earlier this week to see if I could disassociate my Facebook account from my Spotify account. But then I deactivated again.  I have really increased my productivity at home and gotten a lot of stuff done without the time suck of Facebook. I think it’s going to be a positive change for sure, but I’m still suffering from the addiction.

Time to get in some miles. Run on.

The book of faces

I’m giving Facebook a break. So far it’s been about 30 hours. It’s a pretty intense breaking of an addiction. So far I’ve had the following thoughts:

  • I wonder what everyone else is doing
  • Why does it matter what everyone else is doing
  • How do I still know when my favorite bands are playing
  • How do I keep up with what events I’m going to plan to go to
  • I wonder what everyone else is doing
  • What’s everyone else doing
  • How am I supposed to know what everyone else is doing?!?!?!?!

Ultimately at the end of the day, the question is why does it matter what everyone is doing every second of the day? I’m not saying that I’m quitting the Facebook for forever but I’m certainly looking forward to asking my friends what they have been up to lately and getting to hear their stories first hand.

I’m also being a little antisocial right now so I’m pretty happy to be kind of ignorant to the fact that everyone else is still going to be having fun without me. I’m taking a social break right now from the big group of folks. I don’t want to harbor harsh feelings towards them because they decided to continue having fun and lives while I’m taking a much needed rest from the scene. I hope to come back to the social world refreshed and ready and in a better place to not let it take over my life again.

Also, I’m excited to write things of more substance here instead of putting small bits on the book of faces and feeling like this space is duplicative.

a weekend shit show in missoula

Sometimes I’m very fortunate to have opportunities to go to amazing places with amazing people and see amazing things. And actually, sometimes isn’t the best way to describe it because it’s rather often that I find myself in those situations. This weekend presented itself as such an opportunity.

I spent the weekend over in Missoula with some friends. We were there to celebrate a friend’s birthday and see one of our favorite bands (Fruition) on Friday. My friend who I stayed with asked me what I wanted to do for the rest of the weekend since we weren’t coming home until Monday and I said all I really want to do is make sure that i get to see the super moon and the eclipse. Then the question became where we wanted to watch it.

We spent Friday in Missoula and it was an intense shit show. People were almost arrested. People were lost and stranded. I walked 7 miles after 1 AM. Just no good all around and not a night I wish to relive. Despite the fun that was had, it doesn’t seem entirely worth it for the mess that could have and nearly did happen. So it was quite a nice thing that on Sunday we had planned to go up to Flathead lake and watch the eclipse. My friend’s family has a condo there and we climbed up to the top of a hill to overlook the lake on one side and the mountains on another.

I’m still not awesome at night time photography, but below are the best two photos I captured of the evening. We then went back to the condo, which is on a golf course and I wandered out onto the green to take in the stars in such little light pollution.  All very beautiful. All very good. A strangely good weekend and a strangely bad weekend. Overall many important conclusions were drawn that I think will lead to more happiness.DSC01337 DSC01344

Summer into Fall

Well, this summer turned out a little bit differently than I originally planned as often life does. It left me with little time and space in my brain to focus on writing. Life required survival mode there for a bit, but it’s all good now. As the air changes towards fall so life changes as well.

I love change. I crave it.

So a few changes for the season.

We moved out of Portland and over to the Washington side of the river. We’re further out in the columbia river gorge and in a quiet little town. You can hear the crickets so loud at night and the coyotes yipping on occasion. I know us well enough to know that this isn’t where we’ll live forever and that while we’re enjoying the break from the city right now doesn’t mean we won’t go back. There’s a great big world and I don’t think I’ll ever settle on a place that I want to live “forever.”

We also added a member to the family. An amazing pup named The Outlaw Josey Wales. Josey for short. He’s a fantastic dog. Super chill and a couch potato at home, active and happy outside as well. Don’t worry, he’ll be written about plenty more here.

And next up, my current contract is coming to an end. I am in Dallas this week, next week I work offsite, and then the first week in October will be my last week here. This project has been intense. I’ve learned a lot about myself, work, other people, remembering what makes me happy, dealing with stress, how my ability to be social with people outside of work is impacted by stress at work. I am ready to move on and get back to a less stressed life that includes more fun. I have to get back to consciously not letting work find it’s way into my mind on the weekends. Next up, I go to southern california for the winter. I won’t complain too much about sunshine for the winter months and I feel a trip to Joshua Tree for my birthday will be in order!

Here’s looking forward to fall and the refresher in life that the change of seasons brings to us. A chance to start over a bit and clear our minds! Let’s get ready for more adventures!

Let there be songs to fill the air

I’m so behind on posts so I’m combining day 2 and 3 of the San Fran trip with my mom!

Day 2 included a trip up north to Santa Rosa to Russian River Brewery!

Originally the first order of business was a stop at Muir woods. I didn’t quite believe it would be as crowded as the interwebs told me it would be, but I should have believed the interwebs as it was crowded and impossible to park. So we improvised and hit up Muir Beach.

Then I remember that ah ha! Petaluma is on the way to Santa Rosa and you know what’s in Petaluma? Lagunitas Brewing!

It was a day of delicious beer!

Finally Day 3, it was back to Santa Clara.  My mom and I have been counting down the days to this show. We tried to get Chicago tickets and no luck so when the Santa Clara shows came around, I was like I’m just going to put my name in for two and we’ll just see what happens. And I got tickets! They were shitty tickets and we didn’t really have a view, but that wasn’t about to stop us from having the best time ever!

We did decide to go with tickets to the parking area so we could tailgate and be part of the scene and that was definitely worth it! We were way out in the blue lot 1 and the scene was solid. We had some beers and walked around to see the sites.

We happened to be by all the RVs so it was hippie bus galore! So awesome!

And then we saw the show and it was glorious. I could go on and on and on and on and on about the show, but I’m simply going to say that I had a fantastic time sharing that with my mom and it’s an incredible special memory I will never forget! Also, the rainbow was real.

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The sky was yellow and the sun was blue

windmill at Golden Gate Park

This past weekend I met my mom is San Jose with one purpose, to see The Grateful Dead and we accomplished that purpose, along with a bunch of other stuff! So, I decided to break the trip into 3 parts to do it justice and because otherwise it would be one really long post.

I flew in from working in Dallas on Wednesday night and met up with a friend I randomly made at the San Jose airport a few months ago on a layover. Seriously. This is how I make friends hence I have only 1 or 2 friends in Portland and the rest live scattered about the country due to work, bluegrass shows/festivals, and randomly making travel friends. I guess since I’m rarely in Portland, it works itself out. So, we had a few beers and caught up and had some good conversations and listened to some Grateful Dead and other music. Music is one of my favorite things to talk about.

the pacific ocean

Thursday I picked up mom and the fun began! We had reservations at AsiaSF Thursday night and determined we didn’t want to deal with the rush hour traffic on the 101 so we went a head to the Golden Gate Park and Haight/Ashbury area earlier in the day.

Hippie Hill at Golden Gate Park

We checked out Golden Gate Park and had lunch overlooking the Pacific Ocean.  I was determined to find the carousel to ride in the park only sometimes I’m not good with details like that perhaps the horses on the map didn’t indicate that there were many carousels for my enjoyment. We finally found it after we took a little stop at Hippie Hill only to discover that they had just literally started the last ride of the day. But we shall persevere and decided it was time for our next stop at the Grateful Dead house.

the house!!!!

We met a few other dead heads at the house and all took turns getting pictures of each other there.  We enjoyed the Haight/Ashbury area, although parking was a bit of a bitch. The atmosphere and many different kinds of folks there were quite fun. Funnily enough I got many compliments on my octopus tattoo on my thigh and people were generally nice. Which I was surprised by because I may have a bad opinion of San Fran thanks to all the tech companies there. But the folks in the Haight/Ashbury area seemed like the solid sort of either chill hippies or maybe dangerous street people. Regardless, those are my people so I enjoyed it. And even though I’d never want to live there and I really don’t ever want to have to drive there again, I would go back especially to take Eric to visit and to make Indie stand in front of the Grateful Dead house with me.

DSC00498We also met this super rad cat named Butters.  His owner was super sweet and kind enough to let us take a picture of Pete with Butters. Indie sends a stuffy with me on every trip and I send him pictures every day. This helps us stay connected since I travel so much for work. Pete is my favourite to bring with so I was quite happy when he said I could take Pete on this trip and Pete was quite happy to meet Butters.

Then we went to AsiaSF. AsiaSF is an experience all in itself. It’s dinner and a show and the show is put on by very beautiful transgendered women. It’s a little like a drag show with lip syncing and dancing, but it’s more than that as well. It’s a super fun time and I definitely recommend you take your mom there too! The food is absolutely phenomenal and the ladies are downright beautiful and really talented dancers!

All in all, the first day was fun. I only freaked out about driving in the city a few times. I’m not a good city driver. I get overwhelmed easily.  Off to bed we went, ready for adventures with breweries the next day!

2 Days in Bend


Oh did we have quite the fun Friday and Saturday in Bend.  I’ve been over to the Bend area quite a number of times. Last year I was out that way often for climbing at Smith Rock so needless to say despite having been over there often, I haven’t explored much.  I didn’t even make it to Smith this time as I’m not really climbing right now for a variety of reasons so no one had to suffer through me trying to figure out how to shoehorn that into the trip, which made for quite a relaxing time.

We left early on Friday because we wanted to camp at Skull Hollow and it’s first come first serve and well, there wasn’t a reason for us to wait around Portland so over the mountain we went.  Skull Hollow has turned into one of our favorite camping spots although I will say this time was the least dramatic time we’ve been there and boy was that a nice change! It’s in the high desert and the space is quite open, there’s no light pollution so the stars are amazing, and you always get to hear coyotes at night. We are not light weight campers, we car camp and we bring many of the comforts of home and we don’t apologize for it!

At Crux. Playing. The Sisters, Broken Top, and Mt. Bachelor are in the background

After a quick camp set up we were off!  We went over to Crux brewery, which is by far one of my favourite breweries not only for their excellent beer, but also because they have a huge lawn with some lawn games set up and you can bring a blanket or chairs and just chill. They have good food there, but even more importantly is that they have a couple of food trucks and the El Sancho truck makes some of the most legit street tacos ever. The tongue taco is to die for! DSC00287 DSC00289 DSC00290

Then we were back to the campground for the evening. It was windy. Soooooooo windy! But we managed to batten down the hatches and had no tent blowing away issues, which we were honestly a bit concerned about.  As noted before, the stars were amazing, but the wind was cold and the daylight was lengthy so we retired after looking at the stars for just a bit.

The setting sun

Morning found us with quite a conundrum, the gas stove was not working. Luckily we hadn’t used up all our firewood the night before (we nearly did and decided eh, we’ll save a few for a small fire in the morning). So, Eric saved us all and made bacon and eggs over the fire. The bear and I hung out and enjoyed the morning.

Morning sunshine
There’s a bear in that tree!

Then we were off for the main event of the weekend, which was checking out the Lava River caves in the Newberry Volcanic National Monument. I was pretty excited because my parents got us the National Parks annual pass and I thought I would get to use it earlier this year at Glacier, but it was off season so no need to pay so this was going to be the first use. However, it was the 25th anniversary so it was free. No real complaints, but I just laughed and noted that with all our plans to go to parks this year it would be hilarious if we hit them all on special days and didn’t need to pay at all.

Indie was a bit nervous, as was I, when we first went into the cave, but he warmed up quite quickly. He even was on board for and enjoyed turning out all the lights to be in the total darkness. He noted several times that this was his favorite part of the day.


Then because the boys humor me, we did another unplanned hike along the Deschutes to and it was AMAZING!!! I haven’t spent much time by the Deschutes and this particular section of it was so beautiful!DSC00426

Eric was not a fan of taking this picture as I’m sitting on the edge over some raging rapids.


Indie was also not pleased with the heights and I picked him up for a picture. This is not him smiling, he’s yelling “AAAAAAHHHHH!”DSC00475

Then back home over this beautiful mountain we went. The bear got into the car and fell asleep immediately.DSC00483It was an amazing weekend and we had so much fun. It was then off to Dallas for me today and I don’t get home until July 3. I’m meeting my mom in San Fransisco this weekend for the Grateful Dead show. This means that I won’t see the little bear until the end of July because my mom is traveling up to Portland to pick him up and take him to stay with them for a month. So we had many snuggles this morning before I left. Eric and I are going to enjoy some adventures on our own for the month of July!


Even More Weekending

I believe highly in weekends and I believe in doing as much as possible in each and every weekend even if that sometimes means laying about in a hammock.

DSC00074This weekend was kind of full of randomness and a lot of thai food.

DSC00077We’ve recently gotten into disc golf because it’s a great reason to walk around the park. We don’t really take it that seriously and we’re by no means good and we don’t care so really we have a good time. This weekend we decided to hit up the course at Rooster Rock and have a picnic and river day. DSC00080This is my insane disc that I like to call my disco disc. Look how it just naturally found that little mushroom grove to go chill in. I took a regular distance driver and modge podged it with glitter because I really wanted a crazy glitter disc. Pretty sure I totally fucked up the aerodynamics, but lucky for me that I’m a shitty player and I can’t tell the difference so I get to use my disco disc.

DSC00081But we decided to skip going to the Columbia River while at Rooster Rock and after a round of disc golf and a picnic of spring rolls (which I’m getting rather good at making), we headed over to the Sandy River. I discovered my favorite spot along the Sandy River last year after a day of climbing at Broughton’s Bluff. It’s not the most reclusive spot on the Sandy and occasionally a train goes by, but it’s super convenient and fun and I like the little island that is about 2/3 of the way across the river there. It’s not a really pretentious place to be and it’s a little whiskey tango, but I guess that’s kind of where I’m most comfortable. We had a good time. The bear had such a blast playing in the river and he and Eric made me go out to the little island with them. Personally I was happy to soak up the sun on the shore and not get in the freezing water but freezing my lady bits was worth it because Indie was extremely stoked to show me the little island. DSC00095Eric and I spent most of the day talking about pad thai after we had our spring rolls so that was a must for dinner and turned out to be extra advantageous because we found a thai place close to us that delivers. We don’t really do delivery food often at all and in fact before that, it had been probably since we lived in Wisconsin that I’ve had any delivery food, but now I have a fix for lazy days when I just really want some pad thai.

DSC00105Sunday we had big plans for the Belmont Goats! It was an urban goat meet up so we got to see the Belmont goats and a couple of other herds of goats. Super fun. I did discover that I have a little leftover fear of goats from childhood. Thanks to my parents thinking it was hilarious that our goat, Diamond Lil, would butt me and my sister with her horns! As an “adult” I realize that this is ridiculous and I’d like to pretend that I’m not still like ah goats! But I am. It’s no worries though. I just consider going to visit the Belmont goats to be good immersion therapy. By the end I was only mildly concerned that one of those sweet cutie goats was going to turn on me!
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