Tag Archives: starbucks

am i a unicorn?

Am I a unicorn?

After six months of sending resumes to every media outlet within a 60-mile radius of Fort Campbell, I joined the Kentucky New Era as a staff writer in September 2013. The local daily served a city of 35,000 and a tri-county area of about 125,000 people. Like all entry-level reporter positions it paid peanuts, but it was exactly what I always dreamed of doing. I love news and struggled with leaving once orders dropped.

Three years later, I’m still struggling to find a media outlet that will take me. I get that I chose a profession with pre-existing struggles and dumped a whole other set of obstacles on top of it.

And don’t get me wrong, PCS Life is hard for everyone, but it wasn’t until we moved for the second time that I realized how difficult it would be to continue pursing reporting. Journalism was always the plan before the Army, and it’s hard to accept doing anything else.

At NAS Pensacola I spent the first four months after the move counting down the days, weeks and months until our future move to journalism mecca. I just had to hold on for three more months and we’d be in the D.C. area for good.

Or so I thought. Paperwork sat on a desk, and seven months turned to a year. I took a job through a temp agency at a local radio station so I didn’t murder my husband for self-fulfillment.

Packing up every two to three years, setting up a new house and maintaining a career through it all can seem impossible when you first start the military life journey. You go to school with one plan in mind and then life turns around and craps all over it. Good prep for military life I guess?

Well, sometimes it seems impossible. Disheartening. Defeating.

That’s why being surrounded by military spouses of all professions and backgrounds Monday afternoon was so uplifting. Co-hosted by Starbucks, the first meeting of In Gear Career’s National Capital Region chapter kicked off over free coffee and cake.
IGC is a networking group for professional military spouses in pursuit of career advancement, not just a job. I first found the group at Fort Campbell when I wondered, “Could there be other spouses established in their careers and unwilling to let them go?”

Surrounded by about 20 other resilient, hard-working, eager spouses the answer was clear to me.

Yes, we’re here.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of In Gear Career. As always, the opinions and text are all mine. Photos by Sandy Davis Photography.

how to: eat clean while traveling

5 miles (54:54, 10:58 pace)



This is my last post about Fit Social but I promise it’s a good one.20130929_182351.2Maintaining a healthy lifestyle doesn’t come easy to me. Just like everyone else I have days where I really, really, really want that pizza/cupcake/pasta/etc. Most of the time I abstain. Some of the time I give in. It’s that balance that keeps me grounded.

While away for the weekend I didn’t get to do much outside of the hotels, but being away from my “normal” (eggs/protein, lunch salad, two paleo snacks and a dinner of protein and veg) was difficult.

It’s almost easy to stay on track when everything stays the same, but what do you do when life is full of surprises? Where and what do you eat on the go?

Not going to lie. I ate a lot of salads.20130927_195642Appetizer salad at Friday night’s hotel dinner. I tried jicama for the first time. Not bad. 20130928_131855
Black and bleu salad at Cedar Creek Pub on Saturday.rootdownRoasted beets, arugula, goat cheese toasted hazelnuts, beet-sunflower seed pesto and basil vinaigrette at Root Down DIA on Sunday. BEST AIRPORT FOOD EVER.

But they were some pretty fantastic salads. That’s usually my go-to lunch staple with a vinegar-based dressing on the side. Boring to some but it’s what you make of it. Nourishing your body makes it happy.

1. Eat local.
One of my favorite things about traveling is getting to check out the local eats. We stopped at a cute brunch spot in Boulder called Snooze Saturday morning. 20130928_082759I swapped out the toast and hashbrowns for fruit and added a bunch of veg to the omelet.20130928_075950The local places tend to have less grease and healthier selections. Plus the food is 10x better than anything you’re going to get at your local Fridays.

2. Stick to what you know.
I’m the first to try something new on vacation but to an extent. I’ll try the deep-fried frog legs, garlic butter-laden escargot and lavender lemonade while away from home but there’s a difference between trying and indulging. No one needs an entire plate of deep-fried anything.
Even when traveling I still try and stick with my general pattern of eating. Breakfast is still coffee (got to have one vice, no?), eggs and protein or fruit and yogurt. Lunch is a salad or protein and veg. Dinner is the same. Two snacks (AM before lunch and PM before dinner) or I’m a crazy biotch. Always. 20130928_065149My roomie, Courtenay, may have rivaled my Starbucks addiction. A total enabler.

While protein and veg might seem boring for two out of three meals there are limitless possibilities. Not every one of my meals is salmon and asparagus (although that is a weekly staple at home).20130928_183931I cheated with a smidge of risotto because everyone raved about it but I filled half my plate with grilled veggies and those were 10x better.

3. Be prepared.
So there’s nowhere to get eggs in the morning? Coffeemaker is jacked up? All they’re serving for dinner is rock-hard fishy chicken? Have a backup plan.
Friday morning I figured I could stop in the BNA Starbucks and get oatmeal for breakfast before my flight but no luck there. No hot food at that Starbucks? I was bummed but not defeated because I came prepared with a LUNA bar. Super delicious. Not a liquid. Totally airport-safe.20130927_054532
How do you keep it clean while traveling? What are your favorite tips, tricks or brands to keep up your lifestyle while on the go? I’d love to hear them!