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Wandering Yellowstone

You know when you hear so much about a place that it loses your interest? Well, that’s what I thought about Yellowstone… until I step foot there and let me tell you… it is other worldly!

Yellowstone is America’s First National Park, sitting on top of the world’s most active volcanic platform! As soon as you enter this massive park, it’s not uncommon to have slow traffic due to herds of elk, bison on the road or other wildlife surprises. When the park opens up, you immediately see steam seeping from the ground and it’s hard to make the decision as to which direction to head first.

What I love about this park is that it is very spacious and spread out. There isn’t much of an issue finding parking or hitting any form of traffic like you may in some other National Parks and you can get around very easily. So, don’t stress that you wont have enough time to see the whole park, as you could easily do so in about 3-4 days.

Keep your eyes out and ears open for wildlife at all times. We were fortunate enough to see a National Geographic status bull amongst 100+ elk during the rut season! As well as a bull chasing a female that was something that no one else got to catch, because we stopped and heard the bull’s call.

We also a heard of bison (not uncommon if you look ) and spotted a mountain goat and her two babies, which started a massive crowd of people to come in and observe as well!

On top of wildlife and volcanic action, there are several GORGEOUS waterfalls in this park as well, so if you have the chance to do a short hike to one, don’t hesitate.

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Something I wish we would have paid attention to is what eruptions may happen each day, as some geysers will go off every week, every month, once a year, once every ten years… whatever it is, it’s good to know and try to catch! Old Faithful is popular for it’s consistency, but their are plenty of other AMAZING geysers in the park.

Everywhere you visit in this park is mind boggling, so although you may want to rush towards the most popular Old Faithful and Mammoth Springs, I honestly think these are not the most beautiful in this park. Just take every turn you can to see something and it will not disappoint!


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Working And Traveling Is Easier Than You Think

Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of programs all over the media that allow you to travel in groups and work while traveling. These programs are amazing and make the process very simple; they put you with a group, allow you to share rooms so that the prices are cheaper and overall it seems like an incredible experience.

There are also other ways that you can work and travel, like work on a cruise line, be a flight attendant, teach English abroad and a few others. But I think the perspective that you must join a program in able to work and travel needs to be rethought.

None of these programs ever stuck out to me because I wanted to travel for many different reasons but personally never wanted to stay in a group and have a set-up group schedule. Hopefully, I’m not the only one that feels this way.

You can work and travel in many other ways besides these, here are some that have worked for me.

Use Craigslist In The Area You’re Traveling

This seems so simple, and it is, but also very effective! My boyfriend and I traveled the coast for six months and every city we went to, we browsed Craigslist for available jobs, from one day gigs to temporary jobs. And we found many, from loading up boxes to photo shoots!

You can also post up a resume on Craigslist, offering your skills. For me, I offered writing and photography and I actually booked some autobiography and resume gigs for decent pay!

Talk to the businesses in your city

Yes, I’m aware this seems very different than what most travelers would do, but we found our best travel job on the road by simply asking around!

We went from one business to the next, told them our story and asked if they needed any miscellaneous help. We scored ourselves some jobs at a restaurant for two months, made over minimum wage, plus tips and made some amazing friends and memories! We got so many responses by sharing our stories that not only did people need help, but they wanted to find ways to help.

People offered simple yard work or clean up jobs. It got to the point that we had to start turning jobs down because we already had a few and needed time to still explore the area and enjoy our travel.

We did not have trouble finding a job anywhere that we went. Yes, I’m serious… anywhere! We were even honest about the short amounts of time we were willing to work.

Here are some things I did not do during my travels, but would consider for the future that are more based from a computer.

A virtual assistant

Online Marketer

Freelancer websites (UpWork, Writers.work)

The reason I never brought myself to try these things may have subconsciously been because I like to meet new people and work physically, but these jobs can give you more flexibility and even better pay. Being a digital nomad is worth looking into!

If you would like me to write something about places you can make a bit of money with writing/social media posting, please let me know in the comment section.

Something I want to say as well, is that online surveys are not worth your time and should not be considered a source of income. I have tried nearly every online survey platform out there and it takes aggravated, boring decades to make a simple ten dollars.

Making money while seeing the world does not have to be through a program and it does not need to be made in one spot. We made a decent amount of money with these simple strategies while traveling five different states and experienced so much more than we could in one city.  It may seem intimidating, but it is so exhilarating and really allows you to grow and become a more independent person.

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Best Waterfalls in Washington

Panther Creek Falls

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I love the location of this waterfall, I saw it in the middle of winter. It was snowing and everything was covered in white as this waterfall trickles down a rock wall high up in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. This waterfall is located near the Washington side of the Columbia River Gorge and the whole area is gorgeous!

You can also hike to the bottom of this, it’s not difficult, it was just too slippery for us at that time but I recommend it!

Snoqualmie Falls

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Snoqualmie Falls in located in the small city of Snoqualmie, clearly, but it is quiet the sight. I’ve heard there are ways to get to the bottom, which would be amazing.

Rocky Brook Falls

This is my second favorite waterfall in Washington. Located on the Hood Canal near the Olympic National Forest, an area full of beautiful waterfalls, but this one is well hidden and contains only a small sign you couldn’t see from the road. It’s about a quarter mile, easy hike to the waterfall and you can get right up to it and even climb up it a bit!

There is also a small pool at the bottom that we were pleased to jump off rocks into 🙂

Marymere Falls

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The area of which this waterfall is, is spectacular. Near the Olympic National Forest and the ever-so-blue Lake Crecent, you’ll find a short half-mile hike to find this waterfall. I think it’s the location that makes this waterfall stand out to me

Lower Lewis Falls

This is my favorite waterfall I’ve seen in Washington! This spectacular waterfall is one of the many waterfalls in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, it is not a waterfall that is right off the side of the road by any means, it is deep into this forest, a long drive up towards Ape Caves in the Mt. St. Helens region. The hike once you hit the parking lot is only a quarter mile and there are many viewpoints and even access to get to the bottom of the waterfall, where you can swim or walk on the shallow grounds! You can also access the top of the waterfall and find some swimming holes or cliff jump into the deeper parts of bottom of the waterfall.

Palouse Falls

This waterfall is massive! The biggest in Washington I’m pretty damn sure! You can see the waterfall from the parking lot, it pours into a giant crater so perfectly. You are able to hike along the rock sides and where the river flows before it leaves down the waterfall. You can even climb dangerously along the rocks where the waterfall falls off the giant ledge. There is also a small path to get down to the bottom, it looks a little sketchy, we didn’t do it but it would be an amazing view!

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Travel Hotspot Down Highway 101

So many times I have drove down Highway 101, just the drive home and sometimes further to Astoria, Seaside and Canon Beach. I drove it to school, I drove it basically whenever I needed to go anywhere at all. But it has taken me until now to recognize that, that very road is a famous scenic byway for travelers down the Washington, Oregon and California coast.

A staple during our travels so far down highway 101 has been stopping at the Elixir Culture Co., a company my aunt owns and has grown into a beautiful, lively destination for travelers down the coast, located in the small town where I grew up, South Bend. The Elixir is full of love that is always sensed as soon as you walk inside, a place to unwind and connect while looking at the beautiful bay right outside the windows.

The Elixir is full of color and unique floral design of which my aunt Nancy creates herself from Washington grown flowers. All choices are made with intention to help the town thrive by selling local products such as handmade mugs, shell jewelry, honey, photographs and as many locally farmed products as possible. The shop also has vegan options for delicious coffee’s and snacks and lots of lovely bouquets and plants around to purchase.

What I have always appreciated about this shop is the atmosphere of comfort and the care for everyone who walks inside and the nonprofit support the company makes to help local business thrive.

Nancy’s plans for the Elixir are big and bold, and I am so excited for the growth that will be happening. She plans to make her own flower farm using permaculture gardening, to be able to make all her bouquets with her own flowers. She would also love to teach others how to make their own flower farms and harvest some of her own foods for the shop as well.

It’s a beautiful thing to be in this shop and hear the stories from traveler’s, where they began their journey and where their next destination is. The Elixir is a must stop shop for just about anyone travelling down the 101 highway, come by and use the internet, unwind and tell your story.

 

 

 

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Limiting Our Things For Limited Spaces

Anyone who walked into our home would definitely think that we didn’t have many things. Within the last few months we have been selling so much and I felt quite minimalistic. But when we officially started packing all of our things, we made the decision to rent a U Haul because we weren’t going to have enough space, I realized I really had a ways to go before considering myself a true minimalist.

We thought this U Haul would have plenty of space, but after an hour or so of loading, we began noticing that we would need to fill the bed of the truck as well, and that was still pushing it for space.

Some things were going with to be sold at a family members yard sale, but this was still in our home. We were on a time crunch and running out of space, we found ourselves simply throwing away the things that would have trouble fitting. Which made me question it’s worth to me in the first place and why I ever thought that I needed it.

To me, this was a big eye opener in my life. Why were all these things necessary? After getting rid of it all, I couldn’t remember why I ever needed it and I felt so nice to let it go. This really hit me as beautiful feeling that I needed to share, so that I may inspire someone to challenge themselves to do the same and ask themselves the same questions.

Even when we started moving our things into the R. V, we threw away and sent even more things to yard sales.

More than half of our previously owned worldly possessions are no longer a part of our lives, and it makes me feel so free of clutter. It feels good to know that everything I own, I treasure.

 

Clearly, when you are moving into a space that doesn’t fit all the things you have, you have no choice but to get rid of things; but if this is not the case for you, you could try multiple other things to simplify your belongings.

Something I would suggest is to get rid of one thing a day. I don’t mean tossing out your shirt with a stain or your overused toothbrush, I mean things you come by in your everyday life that you notice you never use.

It may be easier at first, but doing it for a month or two will lead to ridding so many items from your life and forgetting you ever owned them.

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The Adventure Announcement

It has been only three months since I have graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism.

Since then, though I have not yet moved forward in that field, I have discovered a great deal about myself and a great deal of the world in adulthood and the time “making a living” consumes.

I adore the job that I have, though I need more time for myself and my passions. Many people probably feel this same way but let it go, but I will not.

I am a woman with a vision and a deep wanderlust, no worldly struggle or discouragement will block my path. I have just started off in the world as a full-time employee and cannot imagine the rest of my life in the position. And I do not mean the same job or the same field, I mean spending my whole life simply paying my bills with the biggest concern of more money, more money rather than living with adventures every single day.

I will continue to strive for my own happiness and some may call it craziness, but I have come up with my next move, my next adventure in this life.

My boyfriend and I are planning a road trip down the Oregon/California coast, down to Las Vegas, across to the Grand Canyon and back up through Utah and Idaho.

Why?

Well why not? Sometimes you need to throw yourself into a situation so you have no choice but to figure it out and grow into a stronger person for it. We have a map where we have marked several natural wonders along the way to see.

How long will this road trip be?

Well that’s just the beauty of it, there is no time limit here, because this is our lives and I will enjoy every minute of it and take my time to soak it all in. We live our lives too much in a hurry; to get down the road, get ready for work, go to that next appointment. We rarely really observe what is around us, slow down for a second and enjoy the simple beauty of being alive in this beautiful world. I don’t believe that such a thing should be a rarity.

It astounds me how many people seem to think our decision is crazy, like it’s illogical, stupid and that I should focus my time on a career. But I expect to live around 80 to 90 years old, a few simple years of that time frame should be spent to challenge yourself to new heights and travel to new places; this alone can teach you much more than a full-time job can.

The simple thought of this trip makes me so ambitious, I have never been so excited, so passionate about anything, and I quiet seriously mean anything. I know that any questions and any struggles that head our way, we will figure them out, just like you must with any other complication in life, our struggles will just be different.

Before you worry about our lives, I assure you that we have a thorough plan as to how we will live that I will explain in detail in my next adventure entry.

But for now, if you would like to follow our adventure with my words and photographs, this would make me very happy.

If you guys have any advice, questions or suggestions, I am entirely excited and open to them all. This will be our first-time major road trip and we are aware that there will be many trial and errors and we are ready to only learn and grow from them.

The beauty of our very own United States is overlooked and we are determined to see our own country that we have not yet explored, before we explore another.

*I will also be writing a book about our thoughts, travels and experiences. I will have a sneak peek up soon*

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Tools To Make Money For Travel

When I tell people of all the travelling that I plan to do, a lot of those people look at me like I’m a little crazy; like how will I afford it and that they could never do such a thing. But it’s really not as difficult as some may think.
Saving money for travel may take some trial and error, will power and a definite change in priorities. But when it comes right down to it, it’s really quiet simple.

First of all, let me just mention that if you really do your research and get ahold of some maps, there should be plenty of nearby adventures worth your while that hardly will cost a dime!

But if your thinking on a broader scale, some advice that I have would be to first get an airline credit card (check out my recommendation on one of my last post here).

Though a lot of my upcoming travels will be on wheels, the sooner you get an airline credit card, the better.

One good way to make money on the side is selling a lot of things just taking up space in your house

Go through your closet and get rid of all the things you never wear. Sell the extra bedding you have, the heels you never wear, the tools you never use, the dishes collecting dust. It will feel good to empty your house of clutter.

I recommend selling on OfferUp, Let Go, Craigslist and local buy and sell Facebook groups. You can also bring your clothes to a local Plato’s Closet.

If you really want to go above and beyond, sell just about everything from wall art to furniture! but only do this if you plan on travelling in an R.V or van.

You could also cancel subscriptions that you don’t take enough advantage of. You’re $40 gym membership (work out at home!) or your Birchbox subscription. These little things add up.

I’m telling you, it’s all about how much you truly want to travel/how far.

Saving your spare change in a jar is not overrated either. Give your change a designated jar that you will not touch!

Another tool I recently took advantage of, is an app called Qapital. This app is connected to your bank account and rounds up your transactions by two dollars and deposits it into your fund, until you’d like to cash it out. 

This is helpful because it’s out of your hands, this little bit of change can add up to a lot within a year or so.

One other way to make quick money is with gigs on Craigslist. Labor work, event gigs and odd jobs; these all make good money fast! Though I warn you to be extra careful for scammed.

The last piece of advice I have to save money is to donate plasma. I have yet to do this, but I plan on it. Some local places in Spokane to donate plasma is CSL Plasma and Octapharma Plasma, though they are all over the U. S. 

You can make about $75 a week for three hours (one hour each) to donate plasma. If you do that for a few months and put that money straight into your travel jar, you can collect a good amount of money. 

You’ll notice that you can save thousands of dollars if you commit to this fund, with hardly saving any money from your own pay check.