Playing catchup. This past year really shifted my perspective on life while also being a big year of growth and opportunities. Here’s more of that story.

 

It is easy to get behind on Sunshine Ink blogs. I visit beautiful places and want to share photos and stories, but when I get home, I get busy and don’t prioritize it. I doubt many read this blog, but someday, there may be more. And I enjoy writing and sharing, so need to start making more time for this.  

 

Speaking of Sunshine Ink, this past year has been a huge success. I spent much of my work life writing and managing grants for nonprofits. I provide services to six northern Colorado nonprofits. I continue working remotely, either from my office at home or on the road when traveling. I am grateful to have found my niche in the nonprofit world, supporting my remote work lifestyle needs and providing income stability that funds my adventure trips. 

 

2023 was also the year I finally connected with a therapist. I went into it on the verge of losing hope and went out feeling excited for the future. I turned a huge corner with my mental health and continue working through complex ptsd alongside a therapist. 

 

Work and adventure keep life busy and balanced. ‘Work hard and play hard’ is still my jam, with so many places to see and experience on this beautiful planet. 

 

This past year was filled with adventures, with many stories to share in future blogs (when I get caught up on blogs!). Not all listed here, as a bonus to living in Colorado is having easy access to all sorts of weekend adventures.

 

  • Kicked off the year with a family ski trip in January. 
  • March brought a weekend trip to Moab (with a friend), a week-long road trip with the dog, truck, and Scamp to New Mexico, and another family ski trip.
  • In June, I took a solo two-week summer road trip to Lake Tahoe and Yosemite. I camped in a car and tent, except for three nights in an Airbnb when I met up with a friend for the Yosemite leg of the adventure. I brought my paddle board with me, so I paddle-boarded Lake Tahoe and three lakes in the June Lake area. 
  • In July, I went on my ‘first bike tour, ‘ camping and riding a 350-mile route through the Big Horn mountains in Wyoming. Tour de Wyoming was a blast with friends, and I signed up again for this year. 
  • I returned to Wyoming in August, backpacking Cirque of Tours in the Wind River Range with two lady friends. It was a challenging but absolutely beautiful route. 
  • Fall was all about Colorado adventures. I did a Labor Day weekend road trip with a friend and Maverick, camping and paddle boarding lakes near Taylor Park and down the Gunnison River. There were other trips to 13er summits and bicycle rides up Old Fall River road to the Visitors Center after the road closed for the season. 
  • Made a quick trip out to Missouri to spend holiday time with family there.
  • On December 20, I left for Iceland and Belgium and returned on January 4. It was a successful solo trip, and I met up with friends in Belgium for all the holidays. Spent 6 nights in Iceland’s countryside and 10 in Antwerp, Belgium. Decided this is my new favorite way to spend the holiday season. 

 

I also still need to share the stories of 2022, including climbing volcanoes in Ecuador and successfully summiting all 58 of Colorado’s 14ers (mountains above 14,000ft elevation). 

 

The winter months are good for playing catch-up. I will certainly share more about many of the above trips. 

 

This year (2024), I am heading to Hawaii in March for two weeks and then on a family ski trip when I return. I have plans for another bike tour this summer, backpacking in the Grand Tetons and Mount Whitney. Will see what other fun I find! 

Hoping to have more blogs out for ya’ll to see soon. 

 

Happy trails,

Annie