July 2019: Here Comes the Sun

When I started the weekly update experiment, I knew in my heart it wasn’t going to last. Going from one post every six months to one a week? We can all agree that’s not realistic.

I did it anyway, because I needed to jump-start my writing, and setting goals has always worked for me. But when the Lateral Movements home page turned into one weekly update after another, I realized I needed breathing room to write about other things.

But! These updates still keep me on task, so they’re not gone for good. I’ve scaled them back to a much more reasonable monthly schedule.

Here’s what I got up to in the long, hot month of July.

Booking Travel Like a Maniac

My new Chase Sapphire Reserve is on fire. We booked flights to the Yucatán for the first week in November and Austin in October for my sister’s birthday.

Next came a couple of work trips—a December retreat in Orlando and a September trip to TBEX in Billings, Montana. After the conference, Jared’s flying in for the weekend and we’ll squeeze in a Yellowstone road trip.

We went ahead and locked in our Thanksgiving plans, too; this year we’ll be forgoing the turkey dinner and driving west to Moab for the long weekend. And, to cap it all off, we snagged a great deal on flights to Australia for February: just under $1K each for return flights from Denver to Brisbane. Thanks, Delta!

I’m so excited for all of these trips! Also, we definitely hit the minimum spend required to get our credit card bonus points…and have already started plotting ways to spend them. Alaska in 2020 is the current frontrunner.

Preparing to Hike a 14er

When we moved to Colorado, my sister warned me that people here were obsessed with elevation. “Every town has its elevation listed on a sign,” she said. “And everyone always seems to know how high up they are.”

It’s true, and I’m fully on the bandwagon. This weekend Jared and I are hiking our first fourteener, one of the state’s 50+ hikes that ascends over 14,000 feet above sea level.

We’ve amassed a little collection of gear in preparation: hiking boots, sticks, hydration backpacks, and snacks.

Hiker at lake
Pretty sure this is the moment I reached my fashion peak.

I even spent $18 on a pair of hiking socks. Yes, a single pair.

We’re heading to Breckenridge tomorrow after work and will be hitting the Mt. Quandary trail at the crack of dawn on Saturday. Fingers crossed I’m not butted off the edge by a mountain goat.

Working One Job and One Job Only

I have been freelancing for a loooong time. Whether it’s pitching stories, writing regular marketing content, or editing other people’s work, it’s been a part of my professional life since 2008. For the last three years, I’ve worked a mix of part-time, full-time, and freelance; never just one job.

When I accepted my new position, part of me panicked. Would I regret giving up flexibility and being my own boss? But logic kicked in. There was a reason I’d applied for this job—I was ready for a change. I have not regretted the decision for a second.

I can’t begin to explain how liberating it is to have one job and one job only; it’s freed me up mentally. I’ve started studying Spanish, coloring, watching shows (hi, Orange Is The New Black, season one); I’m even playing with the idea of taking piano lessons. IT IS AWESOME.

group picnic sunset
More free time = more mountain sunsets.

Hail Damage

The famously fickle Colorado hail got us at the beginning of the month, leaving our new-to-us Forester pockmarked in a matter of minutes. The hail repair companies instantly swarmed Louisville, dropping cards on windshields, even flying banners from planes.

We’ve been working with someone who has promised to cover our full deductible and the cost of a rental car—in theory, we should incur no out-of-pocket costs. It’s been over two weeks and we’re due to get our car back tomorrow, so I’ll reserve judgement until then.

Seeing a Physical Therapist

In the ongoing saga of “I’m old and my back hurts,” I’ve started seeing a physio. If you’ve ever dealt with chronic, unspecified pain, you know how frustrating it can be. On one hand, you’re willing to try anything. On the other, it feels like nothing is going to make any difference. She’s got me doing core exercises, so watch this space.

Parents Visit

Family farm
We like to line up in height order for photos.

It already seems like months ago, but my parents came to visit. They’re scoping out Colorado as a potential place to live after Retirement: Round 2, so this was in part a fact-finding mission. It’s early days, so they’re still weighing up the pros and cons of different locations.

We hit some local favorites, like Ras Kassa’s Ethiopian in Lafayette, 63rd Street Farm (where our veggies come from), and the unmatched mountain views at Acreage by Stem Ciders. It’s always the best to show friends and family your neck of the woods, and I haven’t had many chances to do that over the years. In fact, this is the first time since college that my entire family has set foot in my home!

That wraps it up for July. Now it’s on to August—a month I will always associate with back-to-school and new starts. Nothing’s in the cards yet, but it already feels like an opportunity waiting to happen.

How was your July? What’s coming up in August?

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *