I have realized that it has been over 1 year since “firing the job”…full time job, that is. Last July (2015), I left my state job to travel with my freshly healed, adventurer husband. How time flies. I hadn’t updated the blog in some time, and this morning I woke with this sense of meaninglessness. I have been home from my last trip about a month now and haven’t had a regular routine; no appointments, no meetup plans with friends, no part time teaching gig (due to summer break). Now, almost August, it is blazing hot here in Reno…supposedly hitting 104 degrees today. My motivation for doing anything during the day is low and I feel kind of useless at the moment. To cheer myself up, I felt led to review what an awesome summer I have had so far, in pictures.
Late May, early June. My 4th year of garden experimentation. For some reason, I felt I needed to utilize free pallets from my friend’s company to try out raised beds. This was a lot more work than I had imagined, but it was a learning experiment. This was taken at the beginning of summer. Herbs and lettuces grace the pallets while squash and tomatoes are spaced on the other side. Nevada has a short growing season and almost no rain, but my superstar husband built new automated sprinklers to help water while on our travels. I came back to more weeds than veg. ha ha. There is something about growing a garden that calms the soul, so I am not complaining.
JUNE 2016- ST. AUGUSTINE, FL
To help celebrate me and my friend’s 40th birthdays, we decided to meetup and take a trip together after almost 5 years. Jen had always wanted to explore St. Augustine and I was on board for that adventure too.
After 3 glorious days of sight seeing this wonderful history-filled town in northeastern Florida, Jen and I traveled south to visit her mother in Port Charlotte. We spend the next several days being “adulty” and assisting her mother with downsizing her home in preparation for a future move. I offered my assistance by posting large furniture items on Craigslist and helping Jen clean out and organize closets. At the end of a long, dusty week…we held a yard sale and made her mom a little extra cash and got rid of a few big items. During the yard sale, Jen and I remembered why we don’t live in Florida anymore. The oppressive humidity and heat during the summer, combined with the plethora of biting insects, make staying dry and sane an issue. During the yard sale hours…sitting in the driveway while sweating and swatting mosquitoes, Jen and I would look at each other and say, “I hate Florida”. Too bad almost all of my dad’s family lives here…my Florida adventure was not finished yet.
After saying goodbyes to my friend and her mother, I rented a car and traveled north again to Marion county to visit my kinfolk. My ‘mamaw’, (now 80 yrs. old and living alone) who had recently had shoulder surgery, was awaiting my visit, spare bedroom ready. My dad, stepmother, aunt, uncle and cousins were also texting to see when I would come and visit them. Thankfully, most of my kinfolk all live within an hour radius of each other…most living within a couple of miles (which is wonderful to be able to check on mamaw). Definitely convenient for the visiting rounds. This trip to Florida was rare for me. First, it was summer…I vowed not to visit in summer, ever. But, with most vows, there are circumstances that bend them. Secondly, Alex and I had just visited Florida 5 months earlier on a Christmas tour of the south…visiting his family in Texas and Louisiana, then traveling all the way to Florida to see my family. In any case, I felt blessed to have the extra time with family that I rarely get to spend time with. To make things just a bit sweeter, I was able to be with my dad on Father’s Day…this was definitely a rarity as well. It was a special time and I planned on making the most of it.
I stayed with Mamaw for a week, then I flew to Pittsburg to meet up with Alex. During my trip to Florida, Alex had volunteered to drive his company vehicle and trailer to New Jersey for a drone demonstration. The rest of the drone crew flew to meet him for the flight. Alex and I were able to coordinate a meet up after the demonstration so I could help him drive the company vehicle back to Reno from the east coast. (Did we know we would be driving across country twice in one year? I think not. It’s just how we roll, I guess.) So, I flew to Pittsburg and he picked me up with no issues!
Alex informed me that he was not on a crunched timeline to get the company vehicle back, so we planned to stop in Toledo, OH to visit his grandparents, both in their 90’s and living by themselves! We knew that we would not be this way again for awhile, so we took advantage of getting in a visit with these angels.
After a short visit, we got on the road and planned to make another stop outside of Chicago to attend an ERE (Early Retirement Extreme) meetup and Alex’s friend’s house.
After a surprisingly hot afternoon of frugal conversations, we hit the road again to make our way home. It took us about 6 days to get home as we took our time and stayed in hotels and enjoyed the feeling of living on the road on a company card. ha ha. Actually, Alex is not one to take full advantage of other’s money (another reason he is so awesome), he would have been fine parking on the side of the road and sleeping in the Volvo. Being the woman that I am, I brought out the “diva” requirements of at least a 2-star hotel and two meals a day. lol. Some hotels had breakfast included, so that saved a few dollars as well. I am not that “diva”. lol.
We made it back to Reno safely and washed/returned the company vehicle without incident. We were able to get back before July 4th and spend some time with friends at Lake Tahoe and enjoy some fireworks and BBQ.
Now, that the fun times have simmered down. The house chores are starting up. Alex finally was able to find a roofer who could replace our roof. The responsibilities are always waiting…
Well, life is never boring around here, but I am getting the itch to travel again. In response to this, I have booked a trip to Israel in November of this year. This international trip will be the first solo one in many years for me. I look forward to posting more about this trip.
Until then…thanks for checking in!