I think I speak for everyone in the eastern half of the U.S. when I say, “sayonara, April!” and “never come back again!” This winter weather lasting through nearly May just isn’t jiving with me, and I’ll all for having one long, hot, humid summer.
Luckily, it finally warmed up this past weekend, though it’s still sweater weather here in Tennessee in the morning and evening. Still, after the year we’ve had, I’ll take what we can get!
In April, I only went on one trip, and that’s because SVV and I actively turned down a number of assignments and campaigns (including one in Europe!) in favor of getting this investment property done that we began in late January. And, well, it’s been a challenge. Working all day from sun up doing physical labor till sun down then working all night long writing, editing and tending to client work just isn’t something I have a desire to do ever again (you hear that, SVV?).
The good news is that we’re one month out from our deadline and making good progress. Hopefully, by the time you read this, we’ll have the whole bathroom tiled, leaving just the cabinetry and sheet rock to put up, as well as the kitchenette to install and various bits of finish work to tackle throughout the coming weeks. The bathroom was the source of a lot of my anxiety with this project, so I’m pleased with how far we’ve come! (And if this project is new to you, check out my Instagram Stories—I’ve been recapping it all via the “At Home” highlights album.)
Before I give you a rundown of my past month, I want to tell you about a couple exciting meet-ups this month. If you’re in Virginia Beach, SVV and I will be there this weekend (May 4-6) for an InstaMeet that’s open to the public; full details are available here. If you’re in or near South Dakota, I’ll be in Rapid City the following weekend (May 11-13) for a Badlands/Rushmore/Rapid City smorgasbord, and you can also join me on that adventure. Role call: Who’s in?
Without further ado, my April highlights….
We went to Bloomington, Indiana! Previously, I’d only been to French Lick to ski and Terra Haute for our conference tennis tournament, so seeing Indiana’s coolest city was a treat. I had no idea how much I’d fall in love with it, but let’s just say: I’m obsessed. We’re going back in the fall, and I cannot wait to see Bloomington during a different season. Stay tuned for plenty of blog content from there coming soon!
I spoke at Alabama’s state PR conference, PRCA Distilled, with my pals Matt and Heath. My topic was influencer marketing and I delved into the fakeness of this culture, largely thanks to Instagram, and how to sift out the real deals from the phonies. Our panel was very well-received, so much so that we were asked to repeat it at another conference this summer. I love speaking on subjects that revolve around the media and the ever-changing landscape, and it was a treat to do so in Huntsville with friends. (Bonus: We found beer afterward! You know we did.)
My new AAA Living page came out. I started writing the bimonthly Tennessee pages for AAA Living (non-bylined), and it’s been a fun and different way for me to showcase my home state. This is my fourth piece for the magazine this year, and I’m currently working on the first fall issue (how weird is that to already be thinking about fall when spring has barely peeked its head out?!).
I wrote three stories about Lexington for Marriott Traveler. As we ramp up our work as an agency, I’ve been scaling back on my editorial work for a lot of reasons (mostly: the time factor and the reality that print pays a fraction of what it used to), but I’ve enjoyed writing regular travel pieces for my long-time editor who now spearheads Marriott’s editorial arm. If you’re heading to Lexington, you can read those stories here and here (the third hasn’t gone live yet).
I got to play tour guide to a couple of bad-ass travel bloggers. First, Oneika came to Nashville and we bopped all over the city together; then, Christie came in for four days, and we did a little bit of a rooftop bar hop and even some acro. You should follow both of these traveling ladies if you don’t already. This also gave me a chance to get some content for upcoming Nashville posts as it’s been a hot minute since I blogged about my own city.
We have some seriously cool passion projects on the horizon. One thing I don’t talk about on here is our community involvement, but we’re in with several different boards and commissions where we live, and two projects we have spearheaded the past 18 months are coming to fruition in May. Sorry to be vague, but I hope to talk about them here when they’re officially out in the public for the world to enjoy! Our free time is so minimal these days because when we’re not working on writing and tourism marketing or our investment properties, we’re volunteering our time and marketing background for a bevy of community projects, and it feels good to get involved at that level (particularly, dare I say, during an election year!).
My niece is still the cutest. Any opportunity to show a picture of Charlotte Rose, I’m in! Though she turns two months this week. Time, where do you go? Josh was out of town this past weekend, so I got to spend the night with Kari and Charlotte, and it was the therapy I needed as I haven’t seen this little gal nearly enough this past crazy month.
I’ve really fallen off the Paleo wagon—like, hard. After four years of being mostly Paleo, SVV and I have gone to a tacos-or-takeout kind of routine every night. But when you’re doing construction work from sun up to sun down, then doing computer work well into the wee hours of the morning, things like food prep and grocery shopping fall by the wayside. I can’t wait until mid-June when the current rental house project is complete and we get back into a more regular routine.
I haven’t had time to train for my half marathon in May—like, at all. I’ve run plenty of races without proper training (I was younger then…), but dang, I’ve maybe done a cumulative 10 runs all year and none more than seven miles, and my race is in two-and-a-half weeks (again, see: decided to renovate an entire house in three months!). Fellow runners, what would you do: Admit defeat and scale back to the 10K or bite the bullet and do the full 13 with scheduled walk breaks (I’ve never done this before)? I can’t decide!
What was new and awesome for you in the month of April?
All of my past monthly highlights can be found here.