Life Lately

As I write this I'm in a hotel room about to attend an Analyst Relations conference. Yesterday I spoke on a panel about B2B influencers and how they intersect with analysts. I'm thoroughly enjoying my role and feel blessed to use my marketing and relationship building skills daily. I had the pleasure of flying to San Jose/Santa Clara to meet up with my team in person and visit the AMD headquarters. It was wild to see Silicon Valley and all the tech headquarters in one area. It's an exciting time in the semiconductor space because of AI. 

If you're new here I challenged myself at the beginning of 2024 to only purchase 24 items of clothing for the year. This includes shoes but does not include accessories like purses or jewelry. I also count gifted items in my challenge, because I don't think it's fair to anyone joining me to not count them. 

So far the challenge has been fun but tough as expected! I am forced to be very intentional with each purchase, but the hardest part is passing up on items that are more whimsical. For example, I found a second hand denim skirt that is definitely an occasion piece, and would likely only be worn once a year. It pained me to walk away, because it was a one-of-a-kind item that I couldn't go back and find later.

I'm keeping an excel spreadsheet of all the items I've purchased including the total cost. To date I've purchased 11 items and the cost has totaled $1,266 (a few items were gifted). 

- 2 jackets (Free People Puffer, Free People Denim)
- 3 tops (Madewell Sweater, 2 Sezane Button-Ups)
- 1 pair of shorts (Sezane Rome shorts)
- 1 dress (Banana Republic)
- 1 pair of jeans (Citizens of Humanity)

I've definitely bought more items than I would have liked in April simply because I'm about to go to Europe for a week and needed some comfy walking shoes and a few other pieces. I'm freaking out that I can't buy more but that's where the challenge comes ; ). I will definitely need to slow down my purchases this summer once I return if I want to stick with only 24 purchases. P.S. If I buy a few things in Italy I'm not counting them as part of the challenge. Say what you want about that, but I make my own rules! 

It's also a weird time because I really want to experiment with wearing more color, but color is harder to mix and match. For my Italy trip you will see me in mostly neutrals simply because I need to pack light. I've learned malls are not my friend and shopping in person in general is not a good idea because I easily fall in love with too many things. Online shopping is much easier when doing this challenge.

The end of the school year always feels like the busiest time. End of year projects, field day, fundraisers...oh and not to mention planning an entire summer of camp when both parents work full-time. I would likely let my kids stay home if I had a role where I could batch my work in the morning or evening, but most of my days are spent on calls where I need to be on camera, and many of those are facing analysts so I can't be taking the call from a playground. If I was parenting in the 90's I would be sending Turner to the summer pool by himself, but unfortunately the Karens on Facebook won't allow us to do that anymore. 

I had an excel spreadsheet with each week of summer almost planned out in early February. I had to do that because our local day camp opens up for registration in early March and sells out almost immediately. The planning of all these weeks is exhausting and EXPENSIVE! However, I feel grateful I have the means to send my kids to multiple camps through the summer. Here are a few we're excited about:

- Celebration kids camp: Our local church in Georgetown
- Pine Cove: Christian overnight summer camp in Columbus, TX
- Southwestern soccer camp
- X-Stream H2O adventure camp: This is an older camp for Turner organized through our city. Each day they will do a water sport including kayaking, snorkeling, rappelling and visit a water park. 
Camp Eagle: Turner will be staying here for two weeks in the TX Hill Country focused on learning how to wilderness camp, backpack, kayak and more! 
- Tennis camp: organized through our local rec center

My twins are currently playing on the same rec soccer team, and Turner is playing his first season of lacrosse! I don't think he expected the amount of times he would get slashed by a stick so that's an adjustment 🤣. He's been to a few basketball camps and really enjoying that, and in the fall he'll play rec soccer. I encourage my kids to try new sports and I'm thankful I'm not stuck in club sports...although I'm sure it's coming. I can't wait until Whitney gets a bit older for volleyball. 

Italy: I've been anticipating this trip to Italy for a year and it's finally here! It feels almost surreal as we know how much fun planning a trip is, and then when it comes it's filled with mix emotions. High emotions when you're there and the come down when it's sadly over. I feel extremely blessed to have my mom, sister, sis-in-law and a few friends join me on this trip. We will be staying in Sorrento for 5 nights and exploring the islands of Capri, Ischia and Procida! I'm the most excited for the thermal baths in Ischia, taking a cooking class, and honestly just eating pasta EVERY dang day and not feeling bloated! 

Utah: I'm also planning a kidless trip for Alex and I in early June to Utah. I thought about doing a family summer vacation, but to be honest last year's was hard. Cape Cod was absolutely amazing, but didn't come without its stresses with my little ones. This year we're sending kids to Pine Cove for a week and then Alex and I are hopping on a plane to Salt Lake City. Honestly, I've dreamed of the day when I could do this, and it's awesome! The kids LOVE camp and Alex and I get quality time together. What more could I ask for? The cost of camp is insanely expensive which I pay monthly throughout the year, but it would be the same cost if they came with us (food, activities, lodging, souvenirs). Right now we have the plane tickets, rental car booked but haven't finalized on the hotel or activities. I want to go white water rafting and I think we're going to play a round of golf. Golf is definitely not a priority for me, but Alex enjoys it and it's a fun way to hang out in beautiful scenery. I would love to spend more time playing golf but there's not a lot of free time around here. When our kids leave the nest our plan is to spend more time golfing together and then taking trips to play at beautiful courses across the country. 

New Mexico: Our last big trip of the year will be to Red River, New Mexico. We try to go skiing every other year because we all love it so much. We've skied Red River, Breckenridge, Angel Fire, and Red Lodge, Montana. This year we are trying to avoid the cost of flying so driving to New Mexico is our closest option for quality skiing. The condo, lift passes and ski rentals are much cheaper in Red River than in your major Colorado or Utah ski towns as well. Y'all know I LOATHE road trips with my kids so we'll see how it goes. Hoping to break the trip up on the way home and stay in Amarillo or Lubbock. 

We'll be taking a few long weekend trips this summer. We like to take a trip to the beach so we'll be going back to Port Royal in Port Aransas. They were running a great special back in the winter, and I don't have to rent a golf cart which saves a ton of money. It's no where near as nice as Cinnamon Shore or Palmilla, but it does the job. The kids just want to play on the beach and they couldn't care less about a fancy room. We will also take our annual trip to Mo-Ranch in the hill country with friends. 

Check out my guide to family-friendly vacations in Texas! 

I've been struggling with chronic back pain since June of 2023. I can count on one hand the days I haven't gotten out of bed completely stiff and unable to bend over and wash my face at my sink. I have spent thousands of dollars on physical therapy, MRIs, x-rays, ortho appointments, deep tissue massages and more trying to find relief. I recently found a therapist who has really helped me pinpoint the root cause of my pain, but it's going to take months of rehabilitation to feel like my normal self. Honestly I don't know what normal feels like anymore. With all that I've struggled with exercise therefore I gained weight and that has been hard. Just recently I hit a point where I had enough. I knew I was going to have to seriously start eating better, which is hard considering I eat like a college kid most of the time. 

I finally caved and bought an Apple watch after all these years of Alex trying to get me one, and I'm enjoying the encouragement to work out at least 30 minutes a day. I'm lifting weights at Orange Theory, working out at my neighborhood gym and I'm about to join a new yoga studio in Georgetown. Exercise keeps me sane!

Photos by Amy Wilborn 

Thank you for following along my journey, and catch me on Instagram where I definitely post more than my blog! 

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