December ’18: A Year in Review

posted in: Boise, Thoughts | 0

Time is a constant in life. Tick, tick, tick—The seconds go by, day in-day out, efficient and uninterrupted. Despite my understanding of how time works, I have a theory that there are miniature ornery creatures with deranged eyes, purple fur, and grinch-like smiles that man the hands of time. I call them—Lootins. They slow life down when I’m doing the tasks I dread most (ie: work) and they make up for lost time by speeding up the activities I enjoy (ie: playing outside). Surely I’m not the only one acquainted with these mischievous little tricksters! 

2018 at a Glance

December’s blog is going to be a trip down memory lane. To those of you who know me, thank you for adding to the joy that is life. To Eric, you are my best friend. Thank you for loving me, always, no matter what. To those of you who may not know me, I hope you enjoy the photos and stories anyway! Maybe our paths will someday cross. 


A group of gals got together, rented a cabin in McCall, and partied like it was 1999. Adult slumber parties are SO much fun! There was laughing, mischief, and well timed farting (haha Gaby and Marie). Let’s just say it pays not to be the flexible one! This photo was actually the neighbors, but I liked the lighting!

It was in McCall that I fell in love with snowshoeing and gained a whole new appreciation for winter. Ponderosa State Park was a paradise of fresh smells, tall, snow-filled trees and gentle rolling hills. Marie, Trinity, and I enjoyed the entire park practically to ourselves!

Here are a few photos from the trip. 

Our cabin <3

Snow gracefully falls from the treetops as the temperatures rise

The fog settles in on the ride home.

Snowshoeing ON the lake!

My heart belongs to the mountains.

Downtown Boise at night.

Oh yeah, and RIP Frank. You will be missed.
* If you are interested in reading more about January, click here



In February, I discovered the amazing world of hot springing and “Hot Thursday” was born. It was always a perfect way to warm our cold bones in the dead of winter. The smile on my face below says it all—Jenni LOVES hot springs. This month, I also met Sam, the pup available for adoption at the Idaho Humane Society and learned how to curl.

*There are hundreds of photos this month. If you want to read more or see additional photos on the hot springs, click here (it is one of my favorite blog posts of the year!) If you want to check out the other things that went on in February, click here



Illumbrate event at JUMP.

Shooting range with friends

Yay, my very own snowshoes! Had to wait for SALE.

Just outside of Idaho City.

Exploring the burnt forest

Ok, truth. By March I was a little exhausted from adventuring, work, and cold weather. It’s funny to look back on my thoughts and mindset throughout the year to see how much I’ve changed and grown. What my now self is telling my past self…”Don’t sweat the small stuff”.

*Click here to read more about March. 



“Owning your story is the bravest thing you will ever do” -Brene Brown 

This month I talked a bit about depression, something I battle with from time to time (like most). It’s fun to write the exciting adventure blogs, but sometimes life is hard and feelings (irrational as they may be) can get you down. 

Thankfully, the sun came out to play and I almost instantly started feeling better! Winter can be a blast but I welcome the warmer months with open arms. 

*Click here to read more about April.



Three words. 





*Click here to read more about May.


Mom’s visit was super fun and we had a lot of adventures together from exploring Boise by bike to ziplining near the mountains and everything in between! Here are just a few memories to share. 

*Click here to read more about June


I loved looking back through this blog post and you will too if you click here! 🙂 Eric and I spent a lot of time exploring Boise this summer, maybe too much time frequenting our two favorite hangouts (Double Tap Pub and The Handlebar), and thinking about our upcoming vacation. This month is where plans changed and dreams were born. 

Enjoying a cold beverage on a hot day

It was worth the effort to find this little hideaway away from the crowds!

Once our vacation destination was set…it was time to practice hills with a fully loaded bike!

We also enjoyed some night rides downtown to beat the heat.

Best. Date. Ever. 10 mile ride to the Shakespeare Festival to see Misery and a 10 mile night ride home. <3 I love my husband.

Watched and cheered on thousands of cyclists from all over the world in the Twilight Criterium.
 *If you want to read all about July, click here


“I am well again. I came to life in the cool winds and the crystal waters of the mountains”. -John Muir

This quote sums up August. We had a wonderful, 4-day micro adventure up in northern Idaho. It was breathtakingly beautiful and a wonderful place to escape the hustle and bustle of daily life. Below are just a few photos of the trip. I hope to someday return to this magical place. August was also full of training rides for our upcoming trip—our proposed 500+ mile bike tour through Idaho. The trip (as shown below), we would soon discover, was just a glimpse into the remote wilderness that Idaho has to offer!

*There are several other photos and some stories I’ve shared on August’s blog. If you’d like to check them out, click here



September was full of highs and lows, literally and figuratively. We conquered 300 miles of our proposed 500-700 bike touring trip when we got stopped by a fire in Stanley with inconsistent winds and no hopes for rain in the upcoming days. 

Here are some photos from the trip.

A cloud-speckled sky and fantastic weather to start out our trip.

While we did our best to avoid as much of HWY 21 as we could, we still had to ride up the hill about 1.5 miles, then weeeeeee….down the hill another mile or two. 

Most of the first few days looked like what you see above as we followed along the Boise River past Arrowrock dam and beyond.

There were countless options for dispersed camping along the way. This place looks calm now, but just prior to putting up the tent, a storm appeared to be blowing in. You’ll have to check out the blog for the story about how we almost lost our chairs to the river. I will post a link below. 

Nothing beats watching the morning sun rise above the hills as your body yearns for the sun’s touch. 

While waiting for the sun to come out, there was always the Eric’s special. Warm, yummy goodness.

Ah yes, and then there were all the climbs! A for sure way to warm up, no sun needed. This was me hauling all my goods up Steel Mountain. Ah, a great memory. It was hard, but I did it. Amazing experience.

Well, an amazing experience that sometimes warranted a quick look at the map to see how much further it was to the top! Eric and I took turns with the frowny face. It was hard, but it was worth it. We did 3 major climbs above 7,000 feet before eventually reaching Stanley.

The rest are just some photos for you to enjoy. I will post the links below if you are interested in the full 4-part series about our trip. 

Bone Road! 

S-M-O-K-E from a nearby fire rolling into Stanley, Idaho. Nature wins…but we’ll be back. 

*If you’d like to read about our trip or see more great photos, click here (part 1), here (part 2), and here (part 3). I left a lot out on the re-cap! 



If one word could be used to describe this month it would be: Indulgence. 

After getting shut down by the fires north of Stanley cutting off our trek to Yellow Pine, we went back home with our heads down and our hearts heavy. We jokingly set out to Bend, Oregon to do the Bend Ale Trail (“the trail we knew we could complete”). Oh, and did we? Yes. To the fullest. I think we consumed beer and spent money at a higher rate than in the entire previous year—all in 3 days. Our “bender” as we called it, went against everything we believed in and it made our hearts (and our bellies) even heavier. 

We did hit Smith’s Rock on the way home but it was sort of a bust. Our hearts weren’t in it. Looking back with a new mindset (see November’s post here if you have no idea what I’m talking about), this would have been a perfect time to be practicing living in the now and enjoying what we had. Smith’s Rock is a beautiful place and despite the heavy foot traffic, we had a majority of it to ourselves. 

We also had the opportunity to host a passing cyclist from Mexico City through the Warm Showers website. Meet Javier, an interesting guy who impressively carried at least 10 hard covered books with him on all of his journeys! We ate, drank, explored Boise, and soaked in the hot springs. An eventful 5 day stay I would say. 

*To read more about October, click here.



Many of you just read my blog on, The Pit. If you haven’t, click here.  It is basically a glimpse into my mind, thoughts about depression, outlook on life, and striving to be the best version of ourselves we can be. An interesting read with some great feedback and commentary from friends. Thank you all for participating! 

In addition to my insights, I spent a lot of time reconnecting with my love for drawing. It was fun to get the materials out and practice creating again.

An unfinished piece. I’m hoping to draw a bike leaning against the seats and a person sitting on the train.

Here is some of the detail. It’s quite unfinished, hoping to add better lines and lots of color. Feeling inspired to go to Japan as part of our bike touring adventure!

I’m also thinking about putting this artwork on a postcard as a way to raise funds for our upcoming bicycle tour into the great unknown. 

I’m thinking about printing a statement on the line that goes across the page. 

Cast your vote here!

1. Be WHO you were meant to be. 

2. Dream big. Live free. Be happy.

3. Live your dreams.


I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

(Feel free to add your own ideas too)

 *Again, click here if you’d like to read November’s blog: The Pit. And, please, write in the comment section to share your thoughts! I love hearing from you all. 



WOW! You made it to the end. Congratulations and THANKS for reading. I hope you enjoyed 2018 in review.

It was a wonderful year full of experiences. Thank you all for being a part of my life.

I wish the best for you all in everything that you do.

Until next time….

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