Currently: February

Currently: February

Oh hey faithful blog readers! I am THREE whole days late with my CURRENTLY post!! Did you notice???? I did, and I HATE being late, but we started going 90mph in life this past week, so all I can do is ask for forgiveness!

Currently living/working in: This month was full of professional development (and more pet-sitting). It started with attending Outdoor Retailer in Denver (mainly covering our gear categories—trekking poles, knives/tools & food/nutrition, online gift guides—for Backpacker). Then, we gave a presentation in San Francisco about our Leave No Trace work for Subaru. And then Justin was on a press trip with Gore-Tex on Backpacker’s behalf. So a mix of moving around half the month, with the other half hanging in Healy and enjoying the return of the sun! 

A 36-hour stop in San Francisco!
Justin tests out the rain chamber at Gore-Tex! (Thanks Jake for the photo!)
I think we’ve got this pet-sitting thing down.

Current mood: I still feel balanced, but we’ve acquired a few more writing projects and things are getting very busy (case in point, late Currently post) … 

Currently worried about: Major time management will be necessary during these next several months. We had a considerably lazy January, but it’s back to consistent project management, which is good for the pocketbook, but bad for the leisurely morning scroll on social media while drinking coffee. Also, we haven’t quite “announced” our plans for beyond the spring, mainly because we are awaiting details. It’s definitely getting down to the wire now and we’re anxious to have a contract and plans in place. 

Current confession: I have been wanting to expand my outdoor writing portfolio beyond gear reviews (although Justin & I still covet our many gear guru categories). However, I cannot move into more feature writing without mastering the art of pitching. I’ve always known it is my weakness. I’m actually terrified of pitching magazine articles. Pitching my book was a little different, and I seemed to have no problem with it—albeit the pitches were pretty unsuccessful. But I digress. There are so many different outdoor media outlets and you really need to dial in your hook & angle to sell your idea to magazines. My colleague Heather started offering a pitching course, and I knew I needed to jump on board. Heather has created a very successful outdoor freelancing career; in 2019 alone she landed 100 assignments, and has authored 3 books over the years (with a 4th one in the works). I’m a few weeks in and eating up every bit of advice. Will I lose my fear of pitching? TBD. But at least I’m trying to build a new skill set.

I participated in Healy’s Tundra Tales Night at the bar this month. It was fun to get creative again and share (I compiled a few excerpts from my New Zealand manuscript for the reading). 

Currently amazed by: While I am trying to master my art of pitching and break outside the gear reviews, gear coverage projects have recently come our way, thanks to lots of connections we’ve leveraged in the outdoor world. The editor of The Voice, an industry trade magazine, reached out to us with one new project and we are honored. We’re taking entries for the 50 hottest new products that will be coming out Spring/Summer 2021. So if anyone is a PR rep reading this, and has a cool outdoor product forthcoming, pitch it here! (And don’t email us, cause there’s a whole form with explicit instructions to fill out via the link.)

Currently excited about: People rave about March in Alaska. The days are getting longer and things are warming up. I use warming up loosely, because we still have to dress like the kid in the Christmas Story. But still, I’m excited to experience another season change in Alaska.    

Currently not excited about: We haven’t seen Denali yet … We definitely have beautiful mountains around us in our town, and even visible from our cabin, which we love. But in order to see Denali, we have to drive at least 30 min or so. I was expecting we’d see it more, and we’ve made an effort, but we just haven’t timed our drives right … yet. 

Denali is out there … hiding!

Currently proud of: Well folks, I didn’t win the “Best of the Rockies” blogger for Elevation Outdoors. I would have never entered, but Justin is my biggest blog fan and insisted. And of course I got my hopes up high. But it is okay. I know I have faithful followers and it warms my heart.

Currently thankful for: Awhile ago, we put our new Alaska PO Box on the blog, as we were excited to have a permanent address for at least awhile. People sent us postcards!!!! And another friend sent a package of books! It’s the little things in life, like having a permanent address, even if it’s temporary. 

Currently regretting: Warning: potentially vomit-inducing content ahead. Our precise meal planning in January left 2 things leftover in our freezer when we left for 2 weeks: a bag of raw chicken wings & a bag of raw shrimp. We returned to find the fridge working fine, but those 2 things were defrosted in the freezer. There was no power outage, so it sort of remains a mystery why our brand-new freezer failed (best guess: blocked vent or we left the freezer slightly ajar). Anyway, we started noticing a foul smell in the cabin. Justin investigated everywhere thinking it was a dead vole or rabbit. Finally, we pulled the fridge out from the wall. Low and behold, the drip pan at the bottom of the fridge—which catches condensation from the freezer’s defrost drain and lets this condensation evaporate thanks to the condenser—was FULL of chicken juice. And even a few guts. Barf. Justin turned vegetarian for a few days, then realized he can only really eat chicken thanks to his limited diet, so he has no choice. 

Current guilty pleasure: Dare I say, our backyard? We are so lucky to be surrounded by amazing scenery, and if there is one thing we learned this winter, it’s that you can’t let the cold hold you back from having fun. We especially love discovering all the wildlife prints telling us stories in the snow (even right outside our cabin while we sleep)! I’ll do a whole blog post about wildlife in the “Arctic Adventures” series, so stay tuned.

Currently reading: I finally finished Seventy Summits by Vern Tejas. For whatever reason, I have picked up and put down this book a dozen times over the past year. Justin read it quickly, but I just felt like Vern sounded a little egotistical and couldn’t move past that. Anyway, I forced myself to finally finish. I’ve moved on to Small Fry by Lisa Brennan-Jobs, the daughter of Steve Jobs. It’s one of the ones our friend sent us. It’s a large one, so I’m sure it will take a bit to get through. Justin is reading An American Caddie, about a college kid’s experience as a caddy in St. Andrew’s golf course in Scotland. Justin’s dad saw the author (Oliver Horovitz) speak & gifted Justin the book (FYI, if anyone wants to read it, Justin will mail it to you!).

Currently watching on Netflix: We watched Season 1 of The Stranger and are almost through Season 4 of Better Call Saul! Really liked both!  

3 responses to “Currently: February”

  1. Misti says:

    Ack, it ate my post!

    Sounds like I’ll have to take the pitching class next time it is offered!

    And season 5 of Better Call Saul just started!

    Oh, and I noticed you were late in posting but figured you were very busy!

  2. Jamie L says:

    You do have the pet sitting down! Nice postcard collection!

  3. mary says:

    That cat is adorable!

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