October Goals and Highlights

Happy Fall, Y'all! Ok, even though I've lived in North Carolina over a year I don't think I'll ever naturally say y'all. Even typing it out felt weird! But it is indeed fall time, which is quickly becoming my favorite season. I'm typing this outside on a day with zero clouds, enough wind to make my windchimes move around, and the perfect temperature for a light sweater and hot coffee. BLISS!

September was a really great month, mostly because the race that I was preparing for (and became very anxious about) happened and ended up being one of my favorite races ever, as well as one of the most fun weekends I've had this year! I love living so close to the beach, and going with friends both old and new was so great. I'm already planning on racing again next year!

Here is a look at my annual goals, and then we'll talk about monthly goals- 

Spend More Time Outside

  • 1000 Hours Outside - 746 hours so far.
    • January - 54 total hours
    • February - 52 total hours
    • March - 97 total hours
    • April - 103 total hours
    • May - 94 hours total
    • June - 103 hours total
    • July  - 80 hours total
    • August - 85 hours total
    • September - 78 hours total, breaking down to 24 hours running/walking/hiking, 11 hours reading, 27 hours socializing/misc, 8 hours biking/kayaking/SUPing, and 7 hours swimming/pool time.
  • 2,022 Outdoor Miles - 1,330 total miles so far. 
    • 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. 
    • July Running - 25.91 miles, Walking - 27.09 miles, Biking - 62.83 miles, Kayak/Paddling - 15 miles, Swimming - 6.2 miles 
    • August Running - 24.5 miles, Walking - 37.4 miles, Biking - 73.2 miles, Kayak/Paddling - 9 miles, Swimming - 8 miles
    • September Running - 23.34 miles, Walking - 30.7 miles, Biking - 58.93 miles, Kayak / Paddling - 16 miles, Swimming - 6 miles
  • Visit all the gardens and free museums in the Triangle
    • None this month! Big plans to cross off quite a few in October

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.

July - Make a Wish Wheels for Wishes - operates car donation programs that benefit a variety of important causes including children’s charities and hospitals, and veterans programs. (This is where we donated our car once we decided to not keep it. The process was so easy so I would highly recommend if you need to get rid of one as well).

August - SPCA of Wake County - is an animal welfare agency headquartered in Raleigh, NC. Donations keep families together, make frontline rescue work possible, and save pets and people in crisis across NC.  

September - Habitat for Humanity - brings people together to build homes, communities and hope.

Read all the Goodreads Best Books of 2021

This month-

None! I'm waiting for a few books to come in to the library so I didn't get to check any off this month.

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.

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.

Crying in H Mart by Michelle Zauner - Best Memoir or Autobiography - 5/5. Such a beautiful story talking through grief of losing a parent and the memories that food can give us.

Lore Olympus by Rachel Smythe  - Best Graphic Novel - 3/5. Beautiful graphic novel chronicling the forbidden relationship between Hades and Persephone and featuring many Greek Gods gone wild.

Now let's get to monthly goals, starting with how my goals went in September.

Finish Tri Training

I did and also finished my race! You can read more about that here. Long story short- it was amazing and now I'm thinking of signing up for way more races next year..including a potential half Ironman....

Decorate for Halloween

We decorated inside and have done some decorations for outside, but I was waiting for the hurricane to pass before adding more things. I'm planning on finishing our decorations this weekend!

Finish a Crochet Project

I finished a few different things, including my first hat which is above! I technically finished in October, but I'm counting it since I ran out of yarn and that's why I didn't get to finish it this month. I also worked on a sweater and a blanket. I have some more projects planned and I can't wait to keep going, or even try knitting this month.

Start GBBO Bake Alongs

Yes! It's been so much fun to make these again this year. I'll be sharing monthly recaps on here (first post going up on Friday) and also weekly bake along videos on Instagram if you want to follow there.

Here are my October goals:

Fun Fall Activities

I want to try to do more festive things this time of year before it starts getting too cold out, so here are a few fun things that I want to do to celebrate fall-
  • Leaf peeping hike
  • Visit a pumpkin patch
  • Make a fall-themed dinner
  • Read fall books
  • Bake something fall related (pie, pumpkin bread, etc)
  • Try out a festive cocktail
  • Watch a movie outside under a blanket
  • Pumpkin beer taste test

Deep Clean

It's that time of year- time for a deep clean of the house! I try to do these every few months but have been distracted with moving in and getting our house set up. Now that we feel more settled I think it's about time to go room by room and deep clean. Kind of like spring cleaning but fall?

Plan a Garden

One of my favorite things about our old house was our amazing garden. I definitely miss it! We don't have the room for that now, but I would still like to make some raised beds and start to plan for some winter crops. Now's the time when it's not so hot out!

What are your goals for October?


  1. I've always thought Fall Cleaning should be more of a thing....it makes so much more sense to deep clean this time of year because we're about to start nesting for the winter! "The Secret History" by Donna Tartt and "Rebecca" by Daphne du Morier are on my "Fall vibes" book list this year after they have been recommended on a zillion "best books to read in fall" lists. I'm also eyeing up "Night Film" by Marisa Pessl...I heard it is a good spooky noir read! A caramel-apple crisp or crumble sounds like a perfect thing to bake this season!

    1. Ohh I haven't read any of those- thanks for the suggestions!

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. If you are considering a half Ironman they just announced the Inaugural Ironman Happy Valley to be held in July, 2023! Finish line is on the 50 in Beaver Stadium...

    1. That's the potential one I was thinking of! Although I decided to do one more year of shorter distance and try for that in 2024. Seems more reasonable!

  3. Awesome job on the goals - particularly the tri! Can't wait to read about the next training cycle. Go, you! (Also, more than a year in NC? Really?)

    1. Thank you!! And I know..it's hard to believe! Time is flying :)


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