UPDATE: My first time hunting, a wilderness retreat + everything in-between
If you follow my Instagram, you’re probably pretty familiar with my weekly (sometimes daily) “updates.” Sometimes they’re a joke and only meant to make you laugh. But in all seriousness, these updates are meant to give you an inside look at to what’s currently going on in my life.
Lately, there has been a lot going on in my life, and if you haven't noticed, I'm a pretty open person. So I want to start giving y’all a monthly “update” as to what the past 30 days of my life have looked like.
Let’s say "goodbye" to September with a look inside my first-ever hunting experience, a Montana wilderness retreat, and what two months of self-employment really looks like…
This past month was crazy.
I thought Labor Day meant that it would slow down after school started back up and the excitement of summer drifted away. In reality, it was actually quite the opposite.
September was one of the busiest months I’ve had all year, packed with some really exciting things.
For starters, I finally launched the #GIRLGETAFTERIT Shop! After a couple of weeks trying to figure out this whole e-commerce thing, the gear is finally up; complete with Dad Hats, Crop Tops, and Crewnecks!
I decided right off the bat that I did not want to store any inventory whatsoever, so I ended up testing out a few sites that do one-item orders as well as shipping and finally found one that I loved (stay tuned for a post on setting up an online shop coming soon!).
Then, one of my besties got married to the love of her life. It was probably the most fun I've ever had at a wedding, I mean it ended with the bride doing karaoke and crowd-surfing into her friends!
In some not so fun news, I got rear-ended in a nasty car accident the beginning of September. This was my first time (knock on wood) getting into an accident, and thank goodness it wasn’t my fault.
It was a huge learning curve for me as I dealt with insurance, rental cars, auto body shops, and driving around with a busted car. But, as of this week, myself and the ‘yota are officially back in business!
In some better news, this past month I started training one-on-one clients again after taking a little hiatus from my days as a personal trainer.
I admit that my love for training dimmed a bit after I felt emotionally drained from the previous clientele I was working with. Of course, I had some absolutely amazing clients, but I definitely put too much pressure on myself in trying to fix everyone else’s problems, and in turn, left my own on the backburner.
Now, I approach my clients with much more ease and functionality instead of focusing on weight-loss and results; making the experience a whole lot better for everyone involved. I’m currently only training a limited number of women out of a private gym, and can happily say the spark is back in full force.
Then, came my first-ever hunting experience…
Oh, boy. I could probably write a whole book on my first time hunting, but for the sake of your attention span, I’ll keep it to a minimum.
Having grown up in Montana, you would think that I would be a big hunter, fisherwomen, and all things outdoors. In actuality, I grew up working at our family restaurant and spent my free time learning how to make a margarita, so hunting was last on my list.
This past summer, my boyfriend who is an avid hunter, mentioned that he wanted to take me hunting, and of course, I nervously agreed.
So during a hot September day after scrubbing myself with Dead Down Wind, I went up to the mountains and met him for a one-night hunting excursion. To begin, he outfitted me in head to toe camo, complete with a pair of binoculars and an elk bugle that I had no idea how to use. Then, after a little pep talk on how I needed to stay close, be quiet, and keep my eyes open, we started up the hill.
The first evening was well over 90 degrees, which made me question the decision of wearing any clothes at all (elk can’t see nudity, right?). As we were hiking up and down the hills, we would stop every so often to wipe the sweat from our foreheads, glass along the hillside (look through the binoculars), and send out a bugle or two.
That evening we heard a couple of far off cries, but didn’t see anything. As we headed back empty-handed, the sunset, Mountain House dinner, and the Double-IPA waiting for us at the camp made the evening totally worth it.
Then, came the 5 AM wakeup call. It was time to hike up in the dark; something that I was secretly dreading for weeks.
As we hiked up the hill to an almost full moon, we spooked some cows that almost gave me a heart attack. And if you know me, you know I hate cows and the noise probably wasn’t good for stalking elk.
After getting over that little adrenaline rush, we slowly made it to the top of a ridgeline. After glassing for not even five minutes, we heard a humongous elk bugle from behind us. We both turned our heads and saw a bull elk with two cows on the opposite ridgeline. It was standing right in front of the rising pink sun, then, disappeared just as fast as it came. The whole experience was like something out of a movie.
Later that morning, we ended up calling in a bull elk. Once it got to be about 50-yards away, it caught wind of our scent and bolted the other way.
Even though my boyfriend didn’t get his elk while I was with him, it was still an experience that I will remember for the rest of my life.
This past month, I also was a part of the first-ever Dare to Detour Retreat in the heart of Southwest Montana where 22 women came together at the 9 Quarter Circle Ranch and took a dare to detour from their every day routines.
I got the privilege of leading these women through mindful movement sessions as well as providing them with an evening of healthy cocktails, a workshop where I’ve been teaching people how to get a better-for-you buzz. It was a weekend filled with connection, inspiration, and a surprising 8-inches of snow!
The next weekend, my good friend Nicole of Ebb and Flow Wellness Events hosted Bozeman’s first-ever Wellness Weekend. I got to be a part of her event with another Healthy Cocktail Workshop as well as handing out some #GIRLGETAFTERIT stickers (YAS) to the attendees.
The event was called EDGE and was all about highlighting the Bozeman wellness community by providing free classes at different studios, discounts at various restaurants, and having a pop-up shop complete with a Lululemon trunk show and various vendor booths. I’m really excited to see next year’s event come back to town!
That same weekend, a big concert came to town with one of my childhood idols...NELLY! Yes, thee Country Grammer, Hot in Herre Nelly. It was one of those concerts where you end up losing your voice the next day because you knew every word.
Then, there was a fundraiser put on by a local women's business foundation during the following week. Can ya tell we loved all the wine?
And finally, my sister and niece came to visit from sunny Arizona! We spent the weekend exploring the Lewis and Clark Caverns and a nearby natural hot springs. It's always amazing to discover what's in your backyard.
No doubt this month was a great one, but I can confidently say I’m ready for fall to step in and for things to slow down. I’m ready to zero in and focus on The Wellness Rookie full-time and keep bringing you great events, content, and the resources you need.
What did you do this past month? Any trips? Big projects? New job? Comment below and let me know!