July Goals and Highlights

Welcome to the second half of the year! 2022 has been flying by and has already been such a busy year, filled with lots of highs and lows. The same goes for June- I had two really fun weekend trips (to the beach and to a Getaway House in the middle of the woods), but also had a car break down on the beach trip (which is still down there unfortunately) and have been mentally processing the overturn of Roe v. Wade and even more shootings in the country with expanded gun rights. It's been a lot and I'm trying to deal with it in the ways that make me feel better- donating to causes I think will help, talking with people to get more perspectives, and prepping to vote!

On a positive note before getting to my goals- my highlight of the month was visiting Bald Head Island for the day while we were at the beach. I had so much fun biking around the island and it was the escape that I needed! I definitely want to go back and maybe stay on the island for a day or two. It was perfection!  Now let's get onto the goals-

Spend More Time Outdoors

  • 1000 Hours Outside -
    • January - 54 total hours, breaking down to 41 hours running/walking/hiking, 5 hours reading, and 8 hours socializing/misc. 
    • February - 52 total hours, breaking down to 31 hours running/walking/hiking, 7 hours reading, 13 hours socializing/misc, and 1 hour biking. 
    • March - 97 total hours, breaking down to 47 hours running/walking/hiking, 17 hours reading, 32 hours socializing/misc, and 1 hour biking.
    • April - 103 total hours, breaking down to 41 hours running/walking/hiking, 20 hours reading, 37 hours socializing/misc, and 5 hours biking.
    • May - 94 hours total, breaking down to 26 hours running/walking/hiking, 19 hours reading, 35 hours socializing/misc, 13 hours biking/kayaking/SUPing, and 1 hour swimming.
    • June - 103 hours total, breaking down to 22 hours running/walking/hiking, 11 hours reading, 47 hours socializing/misc, 12 hours biking/kayaking/SUPing, and 11 hours swimming. I officially hit the halfway mark this month so I'm right on track!
  • 2,022 Outdoor Miles - 898 total so far. A bit behind but that's ok!
    • January Running - 106 miles, Walking - 25.97 miles, Biking - 0 miles
    • February Running - 101 miles, Walking - 22.4 miles, Biking - 10.7 miles
    • March Running - 106 miles, Walking - 37.82 miles, Biking - 10 miles
    • April Running - 65.15 miles, Walking - 41.43 miles, Biking - 32 miles
    • May Running - 64.62 miles, Walking - 40.72 miles, Biking - 52.9 miles, Kayak/Paddling - 10 miles. 
    • June Running - 45.82 miles, Walking- 28.22 miles, Biking- 72.44 miles, Kayak/Paddling - 19 miles. 
  • Visit all the gardens and free museums in the Triangle

    • In June I visited the Raleigh Rose Garden, which is located at the Raleigh Little Theatre. It's a small park with tons of different varieties of roses and some other flowers, bushes, and trees. It was really relaxing to visit and walk around!
    • Check-in on what I have left to visit- JC Raulston Arboretum, Juniper Level Botanical Garden, and Coker Arboretum. For museums, I have the History Museum and the CAM (Contemporary Art Museum). Almost there!

Donate to a Different Charity Every Month

January - Autism Center of North Carolina - improves the lives of individuals with autism, supports their families, and educates communities. 

February - Black Girls CODE - builds pathways for young women of color to embrace the current tech marketplace as builders and creators by introducing them to skills in computer programming and technology.

March - GlobalGiving Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund - supports humanitarian assistance in impacted communities in Ukraine and surrounding regions where Ukrainian refugees have fled.

April - Amputee Blade Runners - I heard about Jacky Hunt-Broersma's attempt to break a world record by running 102 marathons in 102 days in order to raise money for other amputees. Her story is so inspiring and it's been a lot of fun following along with her journey (which included the Boston Marathon!)  

May - Everytown for Gun Safety - the largest gun violence prevention organization in America. 

June - Carolina Abortion Fund - operates a confidential, toll free helpline that provides financial, practical, and emotional support to callers in North and South Carolina trying to access abortion care.

Read all the Goodreads Best Books of 2021

This month-

Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe - Best History or Biography - 3/5. Very in-depth book detailing the history of OxyContin and the family who started the opioid crisis.

I have 6 to go! (Memoirs and Autobiography, Fantasy, Nonfiction, Graphic Novels and Comics, YA Fiction and YA Fantasy).

Previous months-

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid - Best Historical Fiction - 5/5. Fun story told in flashbacks and culminating in a disastrous star-studded party in a Malibu beach house.

Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir - Best Science Fiction - 4/5. Good starter sci-fi book for people who want to get in the genre! Gets a little tedious in the middle but fascinating book about a scientist who tries to save the earth from extinction.

The Hill We Climb by Amanda Gorman - Best Poetry - 5/5. The inauguration poem for President Biden. Beautiful words but even better to watch Amanda perform! Makes me want to get more into poetry.

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry - Best Romance - 5/5. Lovely, sweet book to satisfy your wanderlust and just enough cheese for any rom-com lover out there.

Broken (in the best possible way) by Jenny Lawson - Best Humor - 3/5. Some parts were laugh out loud funny and it was an engrossing (and sad at times) story- I just didn't enjoy the stream-of-conscious writing style or the disjointed chapters.

The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas  - Best Debut Novel - 4.5/5. This book seems to be very hit or miss (according to Goodreads) but I really enjoyed it!  A little slow and repetitive at the beginning, but once it got going I absolutely loved it and couldn't put it down.

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave  - Best Mystery and Thriller - 2.5/5. Great, twisty start that had a disappointing and weird ending.

The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix - Best Horror - 3/5. Slasher-style horror book that felt like a fast paced movie. A little too much going on and too many characters for me to keep up with.

Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney - Best Fiction - 1/5. Not a fan of the writing style and was not an interesting story line for me.

Re-launch Etsy!

Still have not been able to re-commit to this goal with all of my personal projects going on. I keep pulling out my paints to do something, but end up feeling creatively burnt-out by the time I can actually paint! My outlet lately has been reading instead, but maybe July will be the month to pull me out of my slump?

Here's how my monthly goals went in June-

Trail Run and Swim 4 times

I did half of this goal- I swam well over 4 times (I think I ended up going 7 times and visited the pool for fun many more times than that). I only did a trail run once at the start of the month. Part of that was being away on the weekends and losing one car, so my options to run in the morning were really limited to my neighborhood. I also ended up falling on my one and only trail run so maybe it's a good thing I didn't go more?

House Projects

Updates on how each goal went!
  • Hang art in each room - I made a gallery wall in my office, and hung up a piece in the living room. I have 3 pieces I need to hang in the dining room but they aren't as easy as just nailing a hole so I've been putting that off (and I also want to wait until our table gets in to place them!) so this is about halfway done.
  • Wallpaper and add wood trim in powder room (really excited for this project!) - DONE - see pic above!! The powder room is complete- would anyone be interested in a full post about this?
  • Get furniture for spare bedroom and living room - we got a bed and lamp for the spare room, but I would still like some kind of side table or small set of drawers. In the living room we got a coffee table and record player but could use another chair and rug.
  • Mural in the bonus room - Not yet, but I ordered the paint and just have to complete it!
  • Finish unpacking boxes and put them away in storage - Done!!

And now- goals for July!

Triathlon Training
Kicking off my triathlon training is one of the most important things I need to focus on this month- particularly making sure I stay consistent with my swimming. I actually decided to document my training on TikTok to help me stay on track, so you can follow me there if you're interested in seeing more of the day to day work!

Update Spare Bathroom
Since we finished the powder room last month, this month I want to make some minor changes to our spare bathroom. A few of the pieces of hardware we got came in a multi-pack, so luckily I'll be able to use those, and the light fixture we originally got for that room didn't work out so we'll move it here. Hopefully these small changes will make a big improvement.

Host a Housewarming! 
We're having a house warming party this month! I'm very excited for it and for all my friends, neighbors, and family to see our new house. This will be the first major party I've ever hosted so I'm a little nervous but hopefully it will go well. I'll be sure to share how it goes and any tips that I learn along the way!


  1. Love that powder room update! I always read full posts on random topics, even though I rent and cannot make similar changes. :) And, here's hoping the housewarming went well - I always got soooo nervous hosting people, so I can sympathize.

    1. Unfortunately we had to cancel the party since Dan got covid :( We've had a few smaller get togethers to make up for it though!


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