I just flew back to OC from Montana last night and man it feels good to see Dylan and Murphy (our pup). I definitely missed them but had an amazing time with my family in Montana. It was seriously such a treat to spend quality time with my Dad! I honestly don’t remember the last time we had the chance to spend that much time together and it was truly such a blessing to do so. Oh and BTW, the road trip went really smoothly! The 16 hours in the car went by surprisingly fast… who would have thought!
On another note, Montana was STUNNING. Patagonia Instagram photoworthy around every single bend. I was so blown away by the beauty of Bozeman that I absolutely know I will be back soon. My brother loves it so much and it was ultimately the coolest thing ever to see him totally in his element!! He goes fishing nearly every day after work, goes camping often, hikes, rafts, and so on! I love being out in nature, which is one of the things I feel in love with most about Bozeman. Stay tuned (early next week) for a full Bozeman travel guide.
Today I wanted to share with you some things that became extremely clear to me while I was in Bozeman for the last week. I had a lot of time where I was out of cell range which allowed me the opportunity to truly unplug. I was away from my desk and usual long “to-do” list. Not to say I wasn’t working in the car and at coffee shops, but I definitely took more time than I usually would to “un-plug.”
So, here are the lessons that became clear to me during my time in beautiful Bozeman, MT.
1. It’s incredibly fefreshing (and necessary) to UNPLUG!
This one had to be number on in the list because MAN is it true! It also is one of the hardest things for me personally to do. I also think it’s much easier said than done. What became clear to me while I was in Bozeman was that I sometimes have a difficult time stepping away from my computer at the end of a work day or project. However, while I was away in Montana I made an extra effort to be in the moment with my family. I was mindful of the fact that my work (and dreams of making this blog a big success) would still be there if I took a few days to unplug and be with my family. That time was so precious!
2. Having “no service” is a really great thing
This absolutely goes hand in hand with number 1. One of the big reasons I was able to unplug was because I didn’t always have much of a choice, ha! In Bozeman, when you drive out of town about 20 minutes, you lose service. What a beautiful thing!! This meant that all the times we went hiking and rafting, I had no service. This truly helped me to focus on being with my family and living in the moment and reminded me that I want to be better about this even during times where I’m not out of service.
3. Make the time to spend uninterrupted time with your family
Like I mentioned above, getting to spend so much quality time with my Dad was a huge blessing. I think this was the first time we’ve taken a trip that was just the two of us and even though it might sound cheesy, I know I’ll remember it for a long time! We had so many hours in the car driving to Montana to catch up, jam to oldies, and just appreciate each other’s company. Once we got to Bozeman, we joined my brother and became a gang of three! Hours and hours of sitting around my brother’s apartment talking and “shooting the shit” really filled my heart up. I know I’ve mentioned this before, but family is very important to me. Life can get busy so I think it’s super important to be mindful of spending as much time with family as we can and taking opportunities to do so.
4. A slower pace of life can be EXTREMELY refreshing
There really is something different about the Montana way of life. I noticed it from the very first day we arrived in town! People truly drive slower, seemed to smile more, and seemed less stressed out than where I live in Southern California. I know that this isn’t true for everyone but it definitely was a vibe that I saw throughout the city. I think the proximity to stunning outdoor destinations (like multiple waterfalls) MUST have something to do with it.
5. There’s something magical that happens when you’re out in nature with loved ones
On one of my favorite nights of the trip, my Dad, brother, and I went out on a hike to Palisade Falls. This hike to the falls was about 30 minutes out of town. We arrived at the waterfall about an hour before golden hour and had obviously lost all cell reception. Sitting under the waterfall with two of my favorite people gave me all the happy feels. After the hike, we cooked out over an open fire by a creek and it was so peaceful. Spending that time in nature with my family, away from our phones and responsibilities made me relaxed in a way I hadn’t felt in a long time. You don’t realize how good that feels until you feel it.
I can’t wait to share with you my Bozeman travel guide post! During the days in Bozeman, I visited all sorts of healthy spots so I’m excited to share them with you. I highly recommend visiting Montana if you are looking for a place with a slower pace of life, kind people, and beautiful nature. I’m also hoping that these five lessons stay with me in the coming months. I have a feeling they will. 🙂
In other news, I truly loved this red freepeople dress for Montana. I felt like it was the perfect maxi to pack for the trip and had a great time taking these photos, especially in front of the beautiful skyline.