Don’t Call It a Comeback

I’ve been here before, actually a few times.

So many things have happened since I started this blog and even since I wrote my last post so I guess I’ll just dive right in!

As of October 1st I was officially furloughed from my airline, as mentioned in the last post it’s a very hard situation because while nobody could have imagined this pandemic would turn out to be the way it has it’s tough emotionally to lose your dream job at no fault of your own- just a junior person in a world where seniority is key. That’s probably the least fun part of this new life I’ve been adjusting to but I’m learning to enjoy the new adventure I’m on.

Without a doubt the most fun thing that has happened is definitely that the fella and I moved into a brand new apartment a little over two months ago in the cute little city of Longmont, Colorado. We picked it because we were both in the process of finding new jobs and thought it was a great location between Denver, Fort Collins & Boulder. I feel very fortunate to have this new place and have been working really hard at making it our own space. With flight attendant life I was moving so often and with so many roommates it was hard to ever feel settled in.

I started a new job that I feel lucky to have gotten with such uncertain times and I’m even working from home which has actually been a really nice treat. The job itself doesn’t allow for much creativity so I’ve been looking forward to getting back to blogging and having that outlet.

Settling into a new routine has actually not been my strong suit lately but I’m definitely getting there. I’ve been so happy to decorate the new apartment and make it truly feel like a home. Blending styles and doing everything on a budget has been a process but one that I’m so enjoying and hoping to share with you all. Add in moving tips because let’s face it- I’m a professional mover. I’ve also been meal prepping and actually able to cook regularly which has been amazing so I’m excited to share some of the recipes I’ve been working on and trying. Crafting has really helped take my mind off of some of the craziness of late so you’ll for sure be seeing some DIY projects. Working out has essentially fallen by the wayside but maybe this blog will help me be more accountable with getting back into shape.

Even though we are in a pandemic and travel isn’t exactly “booming” we have loved getting to explore this new city and the surrounding area so stay tuned for more Colorado specific travel guides and tips for how to make the most of staycation life.

Like so many in the world this has been a pretty intense time for transitions, uncertainty and adjusting to our own new normal. This is my new normal and I hope it makes for a fun read, a creative space and as always I’ll just be winging it over here.

Cheers,

Kari

A Dream Job On Hold

Hello there beautiful people!

I’d like to preface this post by saying I know that pretty much everyone is getting their ass handed to them in one way or another lately so believe me when I say I know everyone is having a hard time and I in no way want this to seem like an oh poor me post because it isn’t but it is something on my mind and a big piece of my life currently that I feel like sharing.

In the very beginning of COVID-19 hitting the states and before the government money was given to airlines my employer offered what we call a special leave of 1, 3 or 6 months to try to reduce the work force but allowed people to keep health and flight benefits but have a return to work date.  It was a hard decision because at that time there wasn’t even talks of full blown shut downs it was so early in the pandemic. I chose the 6 month option and very thankfully qualified for unemployment.

Then the government stepped in and gave money but required no employees be laid off/furloughed til October 1st. Obviously travel has not returned to anywhere near where it would be for the airlines to return to a “normal” need for the same number of  employees as we had pre-pandemic so come October big cuts will happen.

When my company announced how many furloughs they expect to hand out to flight attendants last week it was a big number- a really big number. Even if that number is the worst case scenario and changes by a few thousand it’s still a big number. While nothing is official yet and won’t be for probably another month or so I’m in the last 3,000 flight attendants hired so if they furlough 15,000 or even 10,000 it will more than likely take years for my seniority to be recalled. Thankfully I work for a union which means that I have to be recalled back to work within 6 years. Even weirder than waiting I could be called back to any base not just where I was based when I got furloughed in the first place so that’ll be an interesting hurdle to get over.

It’s a lot for me to take in. How the airlines work is already weird as hell to talk about but trying to read through our 300+ page contract to try and figure out what happens when one gets furloughed/when do the benefits stop etc. how does it work when I do get recalled is a total mind F#$k.

I knew it was going to happen but hearing it out loud is still a punch to the gut.

I think the hardest part is that this is my dream job.

I absolutely love being a flight attendant.

I call it my fake job because even though I sacrificed a lot to get it, trained hard to graduate, moved 3,000 miles away to live in a bunk bed with an insane number of humans, and answered the phone no matter what time it was to go anywhere in the world at a moment’s notice, it rarely felt like “work.”

I got to adventure for a living.

Every senior person I talk to always says the same thing, you will go back because there is no better lifestyle than being a flight attendant. You may have ups and downs with it, take time away and come back but once flying gets into your blood, it just doesn’t leave.

It’s still my dream job, it’ll be my dream job the moment they invite me to come back even if that takes a few years to get to. I know that and I can look forward to this little break in life to accomplish other goals of mine but man, the moment that phone rings I will happily throw the pantyhose back on, rush to the airport, hop on that jump seat and spill my soul to the first crew I meet in true flight attendant fashion.

I’ll even be nice to the passengers 😉

In the meantime I’ll be working on my resume, sweating over cover letters and dreaming of the day I get to return to my life in the sky.

And now I’ll spam you with pictures from some of my favorite layovers…

Anytime I got to go to a baseball stadium,

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That one time Alex and I flew to Eugene, Oregon for lunch and then I picked up a trip for a long Vegas layover that night so we had to rush back to San Francisco,

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Anytime crew scheduling gave me a resort layover (this happened very rarely for me)

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That one time I got sent to South Korea in the dead of winter and had not packed appropriately (because I didn’t know I was going) so I wore every single layer I had on top of each other,

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That time I met a T-Rex in Kansas City,

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Any new state I got to cross off like Montana below and all of the layovers (not pictured because it’s not their blog 😉 ) that I got to see family and friends. Between Boston, Burlington, Orlando, Nashville, Newark, New Orleans, Baltimore, San Diego, Austin, Eugene and so many more those layovers are always so special to me.

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Cheers & All my love,

Kari

My Favorite Hikes in Idaho

Heyyyyyy youuuuu guyyyyyssssss (said like Sloth from the Goonies obviously).

Ah what a great movie, it’s actually my favorite of all time fun fact. If you haven’t seen it you must stop what you are doing and go watch it because honestly we can’t even be friends if you haven’t.

Okay today’s post is another Idaho adventure planning one for you guys because well it’s my blog and I’ll post whatever I want to… and because it’s basically the only place I’ve been outside of my bedroom since March.

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I’m one of those people who both loves and loathes hiking. I like the idea of it, I like when I’m done and can say woah I did that but the whole middle of actually doing it is quite hard for me. I love using AllTrails because I can get a better idea of all the levels of hikers using the different trails I research. Plus it’s great that nearly every time the map takes you right to the trail heads. I actually may like researching hikes on AllTrails more than I like the hiking… kidding, but not really.  I promise my reviews are always brutally honest so without further ado let me present some of my favorite hikes in the Boise/McCall area…

Cervidae Peak: Boise, Idaho

4.5 Miles Out/Back

“Alex asked “have you come up with your AllTrails review yet?

And I said “Yes, they say there are rattlesnakes on the trial. At first you’re scared but eventually you start hoping one comes along and puts you out of your misery.”

Just kidding. Kind of.”

Woof. This b#$%@. This is the hardest hike I’ve done in Boise and maybe one of the toughest I’ve done ever. You gain a little less than 2,000 feet of elevation and follow a ridge up and down a pretty narrow path overlooking Lucky Peak Reservoir and multiple other mountains in the distance. Every single step is more gorgeous than the last and no matter what direction you look there is a beautiful view that makes it hard to believe the trail head is less than 20 miles from downtown Boise. It is incredibly steep and much of it is loose gravel which makes for a tough hike up but what makes it truly one of the hardest I’ve done is going back down. I highly recommend trekking poles for balance and to maintain footing. There is literally NO shade so if you’re going in the summer go early and bring lots of water! I wouldn’t do this hike if it was more than 80 degrees out because you truly are exposed. It does get windy up there though so bring an extra layer! We did it on a week day so I don’t know how busy it gets on the weekends but the parking lot is not very big so keep that in mind.

It was the first hike in a long time where I finished it and literally couldn’t believe I got to the top, it was incredibly rewarding! I would highly recommend but I would probably go on a few hikes before you do this one to prepare haha

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Adelmann Mine Trail: Boise, Idaho

4.7 Miles Out/Back

“It was 90 degrees and everyone else was boating but we don’t have a boat so we had to go hiking (not my logic).

The crickets and beetles were bigger than my hands which swelled up so bad I couldn’t get my rings off for hours. 

Absolutely no shade so if fine Irish skin is involved, beware! 

Would only recommend if you are promised ice cream after.”

I started with the hard but now we move onto a more moderate option for hiking in the Boise area. This hike is in the same Lucky Peak Reservoir area about 20 miles from downtown but it’s trail head is very deceiving. It looks like a private driveway with a big gate and everything but that’s the parking lot. Maybe only 5 spaces so not many people on the trail at any given time which is nice. There isn’t much shade so I wouldn’t go on a 90 degree day like we did nor would I go past 10/11 am on a summer day but we are dumb. The first mile isn’t too steep but it definitely starts getting steep after that. This hike has 1,4000 feet of elevation gain so I’d put it on the harder side of moderate. I will admit I didn’t make it all the way to the mine because I was overheating but it did look really cool over that way and starts to be more of a tree-lined forest the closer you get. The views are pretty spectacular but not nearly as beautiful as Cervidae Peak if I’m being honest.

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Table Rock Trail: Boise, Idaho

3.7 Miles Out/Back

“I don’t really like this one.” 

Table Rock Trail is okay. I’m keeping it on the list because it’s the only one that’s truly not far from downtown Boise and I think it’s the most accessible for different levels of hikers that could be visiting. The reason I don’t love it is I think it’s super crowded, no shade but also not enough views to feel worth it. It takes a little over an hour to get to the top and is still a moderately steep trail but it isn’t terribly hard with less than 1,000 feet of elevation gain. If you want to hike in Boise to say you did, do this one. If you’ve got a car and time- do one of the first two I mentioned.

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Box Lake Trail: McCall, Idaho

7.1 Miles Out/Back

“At one point I thought I was having a heart attack and then I found out I had only hiked a single mile.”

Once again starting with the hardest one I’ve done in the McCall area of Idaho but man was Box Lake beautiful. At 2,247 feet of elevation gain this beast is not an easy hike by any means. It’s actually listed as “hard” on AllTrails which you know means they aren’t lying. I swear some people are out here reviewing hikes like “17 miles, 90 degrees of steepness and no shade- easy 20 minute hike that I do every morning while carrying my 3 children and cooking a lasagna.” But I digress…

Box Lake is a tough first couple of miles of steep and then it flattens out a bit into this gorgeous meadow that makes you want to Julie Andrews on through it. Tons of wild flowers and beautiful mountain peaks to view along the way but once you see Box Lake itself the whole hike is worth it. We went last July and there wasn’t any snow but I do know they got a shit ton of snow this season so I’ve read the meadow is a big snowfield currently. Bring lots of water and a few snacks, we wish we would have brought a picnic lunch to have at the top so next time that’s definitely our plan. Trekking poles wouldn’t hurt but I didn’t personally use them so I don’t think you’d need them. The road up to the trail head is quite bendy and filled with pot holes, my little Civic would have been murdered so just keep that in mind when you go. I absolutely recommend this hike, it’s hard but it is beyond worth it when you get to the top.

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Louie Lake Trail: McCall, Idaho

2.6 Miles Out/Back

“Louie, Louie, oh no, you take me where you gotta go, yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah, baby”

Ah Louie Lake, such a fun little hike. This one is definitely used for lots of different activities like fishing and camping because you can drive up part of it to cut some of the hike off of if you’re carrying a bunch of stuff but we started at the first trail head each time we’ve done it. It’s not a very difficult hike at 813 feet of elevation gain though there are some parts more steep than others. It’s a wide trail in most places so it’s good for a larger group with mixed levels of ability. Once you get up to the lake it’s the most gorgeous clear blue water you’ve ever seen. We’ve done the hike in the dead of summer and in October when the snow started to fall and both were absolutely beautiful. If you want to do a shorter hike and are visiting the McCall area I would give this a 10/10 every single time. It’s one of my favorites of anywhere I’ve been!

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I plan on updating this post as I complete more hikes in Idaho but I truly hope you add a few of these should your travels take you to the Boise/McCall area.

Hiking has been such a difficult, rewarding, and most importantly fun hobby for me to get into over the last few years. Especially now when we all could use a little getting out of the house safely it’s been amazing for me to be able to hop on the trails and forget about how hard these last few months have been.

I’m also in the market for new hiking boots because I don’t love mine, not enough ankle support for these gams of mine so if you have any suggestions let me know in the comments!

Happy Trails, Friends!

Love, Kari