Currently: March

Currently: March

Currently living/working in: This last 2 months has been a whirlwind, as we’ve “lived” in 6 different states! Not only are we living and working on the road as Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers (contract ends April 8!), we are simultaneously juggling 6 Backpacker projects. Plus, I have 3 other writing project on top of that!

Current mood: Scatterbrained and always playing catch up. But every time I stress out, I remember the alternative of traditional work/schedule is just not our jam. 

Currently excited about: SO.MANY.THINGS.

#1 – We have a few weeks off after our Leave No Trace contract ends and will be living in our van for a bit! Taking it on a maiden voyage across the US to Florida where … 

#2 – we are meeting our niece, Sarah, and taking her on an Eastern Caribbean cruise!! Our goal is to take our nephews and niece on a trip with us once they turn 13/graduate 8th grade. We took our oldest nephew to Alaska in 2016, and our niece said she wanted to see “clear waters and white sand beaches,” so on a cruise ship we are going! Not our typical vacay, but I have to admit I am looking forward to unplugging and being kissed by the sun. 

#3 – After the cruise, we’ll bum around in the van for a bit and hopefully enjoy a few of Florida’s National Parks!! 

#4 – There’s more, but that’s enough to talk about for now. 

Currently not excited about: The van is getting a 50-point check over and maintenance as I write this. We are half expecting them to call & give a long list of things that DON’T work and need fixing, so fingers crossed we can pick it up and it can make it across the US to Florida. 

Currently worried about: After worrying about my dad’s health for so long and then saying goodbye to him, it feels like a relief to not jump every time the phone rings and wonder what could go wrong next. Instead though, I get to worry about my mom, who is living alone after nearly 50 years of living with my dad and thinks it is okay to climb up on rocking chairs to change the drapes and light bulbs! (EDIT: My mom reminded me she also climbs onto the 5 swivel chairs she has in the house.)

Currently amazed by: The freaking aftermath that comes with someone dying. You literally do not have energy to grieve because there is SO MUCH PAPERWORK AND IT IS ALL SO CONFUSING. My dad was extremely organized and left explicit instructions to tidy up his affairs, but there were things he couldn’t even predict. There are still so many more places we have to notify about his death … not sure that ever ends? 

Currently proud of: Backpacker’s Spring Gear Guide is out on the shelves! Here are our pages!!

Current confession: I’ve been a freelancer for 8 years now. Usually, this has meant weekdays and weekends blend together. It still does, but I absolutely have appreciated weekends more lately because our jobs require SO MANY E-MAILS. PR reps for calling in Backpacker product samples, edits by editors, setting up events for Leave No Trace … The weekends are the only time these e-mails slow down! 

Currently regretting: Not mapping every single road we’ve driven on. We try to take side roads and scenic routes as much as possible. But after at least 30 around-the-country road trips, we often both look at each other and say, haven’t we been here before??? 

Currently thankful for: Our Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer gig took us back to northern New Mexico! We did some Leave No Trace programming in our old neck of the woods and inevitably got to see our friends from that chapter in our life, including Mrs. Gibbles. She is doing FANTASTIC! We were happy to snuggle a bit with the Mrs. G, but even happier the new caretaker at Fenton Ranch admitted she couldn’t have gotten through the winter without Gibby and they are the best of friends. I sure do miss that cat; she’s so awesome!  

Current guilty pleasure: We’ve religiously attended the Banff  Mountain Film Festival US Tour every year since 2010 and because of our nomadic life, we’ve seen it in different places. This year, it happened to be going on while we were in UT, so that showing made our 7th location to watch Banff. 

Currently reading: We have been listening to “The Outsider” by Stephen King, which is nearly NINETEEN hours long. It’s good, but not my favorite King book by far. We have 3 hours left, and I am ready to move on.

I’m also slowly reading the physical books “Seventy Summits” by Vern Tejas and “A Sand County Almanac” by Aldo Leopold. 

Currently watching on Netflix: Life on the road means occasional streaming when Internet is good, or we download movies from Netflix in advance onto the iPad to have while we are off the grid. But I can’t remember anything that stood out!

3 responses to “Currently: March”

  1. Jamie says:

    Great picture of you and Mrs. Gibbles. I was impressed with your write ups in backpacker magazine! It was a great read!

  2. Misti says:

    A Sand County Almanac is on my list to read this year. I have it on my bookshelf—for years!

    Before you do Florida, email me! I can tell you places that would be good to go, to camp, and maybe even some folks willing to meet up with you if you are looking for hiking. Marc and Eliana are in Alaska right now and I’m not sure when they will get back but I know they wouldn’t mind taking Valentina out for a spin with your van!

    Sounds like life is good right now! Not long and then Denali!

  3. Mary says:

    It’s funny, for most of my twenties and thirties I didn’t think a traditional work schedule was my jam but I really ended up being tired of bunkhouse life and storage units. I think you can make life into what you want, mostly. I’m not gonna lie though, I do look forward to retirement. So glad you had an update on the kitty! I had been wondering about her.

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