Hello! We've been doing some planning and organizing at Liv's Leaves HQ (my bedroom). Summer/life plans are in place, and I'm chomping at the bit to take these next leaps in life, and to be able to share my experiences here! Today's post will map out my EPIC summer travel plans, go over some Liv's Leaves developments, and discuss the budgeting and planning that is necessary before you decide to jump off the damn cliff and move across the country at age 25...so what its like to be #LIVing25 ;) #branding
First off - let's discuss the summer wardrobe one must prepare to go on the following excursions:
a. Trekking through Scottish Highland wilderness
b. Gyrating in Scottish pubs
c. Eating haggis (a lot of haggis)
d. Lounging on a Venetian beach
e. Lounging in a Venetian boat and cruising the Grand Canal
f. Gyrating in Venetian clubs
g. Drinking Scotch
h. Drinking wine
j. Wandering museums aka Getting ‘cultured’
So - in case you couldn't pinpoint it - I'll be traveling to Scotland and Venice! About a week in each place, starting in early June!! I've got a month to hone in my wardrobe and finalize details about some of the activities I'll be doing. Although not so much on the activities planning - I'm planning to go where the Highland winds take me! That means my stomach will lead the way :) Hopping from culinary experience to culinary experience is the best way to travel I think, and I'm looking forward to it! The first things I'm packing are all of my stretchy pants.
Another thing I'm packing will be the Teva Originals I just got! They are a geometric black/white pattern - simple to go with all of my brightler colored clothes. I also plan to do some thrifting when in Scotland. I need to populate my summer wardrobe as the majority of my clothes are a few sizes too big! Recently I’ve gotten a kick from posting photos of some of the trips I went on last year to see the difference in my body. To see that the changes I have made are really working, and that the dedication I've put in has paid off!
So, after a two week trip across the pond, and soaking up all the damn culture I can, I'll return to the USofA and see my little sister graduate from highschool (yay!!). A few days after that my sista, my ma, and I will tandem roadtrip two vehicles from NY to the #lastbestplace: MONTANA. We plan to take about a week to see some sights, stop in Chicago (one of my favorite cities!), and enjoy our time together. Following that, I will be living in a literal cabin in the woods of Montana. I am so excited to return to the house that I grew up in - surrounded by wildlife and mountains, and to be with my family! I plan to go hiking in Glacier National Park and elsewhere in Northwest Montana as much as possible. And I'm inviting all my friends! That's how I plan on reconnecting with relatives and friends while I'm home for two short months. AND! The best part - Archie and Roo - my PuPpIeS!! They are the absolute cutest, and they'll absolutely be featured on this blog, don't you worry!! July and August are the best months to be in Montana, and more importantly, in Montana, on the lake!
We'll talk about my September plans later :)
LIV'S LEAVES EXPANDS
So - the earring business is going well! :) But really, I am enjoying making these creations, and learning how master this whole resin craft thing! I especially have enjoyed custom orders! I love doing my own thing but having a muse, or an idea in mind, something to build on, has allowed me to create a few pairs of unique, beautiful earrings! Using glitter and paint as my main mediums has been fun. But - the Summer Collection of Liv's Leaves is brewing - and it will be much closer to the heart of the main idea behind Liv's Leaves - more nature themed, and utilizing real flowers and plants as my materials. With all this damn rain, I see FLOWERS blooming everywhere. I'm jerking my car to the side of the road to steal TULIPS to put into my jewlery :):)
I have just a few weeks to get all of my favorite flowers prepped and created into beautiful pieces. I hope to have the collection ready to launch the day before I leave for Scotland! Keep your eyes peeled for these babies to bloom onto the website! I'll be updating my Instagram @liv_nagler as usual. I feature daily videos of me rocking a #livsleaves liewk 👀 👀 Make sure you tune in.
ALSO - we'll be putting some "home goods" items onto the site soon :):):):) that's all I'll say for now because..marketing hooks.
ALSO ALSO - I have signed up to be a vendor at not one, BUT TWO Farmer's Markets in Montana this summer. IN PERSON SALES YA'LL. I'm planning my booth setup like crazy right now. SO EXCITED! I can't wait to be able to put my products into the hands of customers and speak to them in person. Looking forward to that experience. :)
JUMPING OFF THE CLIFF
So, here I am, about to go on a lengthy boujie vacation, then a week long roadtrip, and then live like a mountain woman in her natural habitat in the Montana wilderness for two months. Three months of unemployment...Holy shit. I've had a steady position since graduating college in 2015. I have tried to live up to the epitome of 'career woman.' Well, turns out the 9-5 just ain’t my cuppa tea. And I'm glad that I figured it out after only three years. However, just because my paychecks stop, absolutely does not mean the biilllllzz stop. Obviously it would be AmAzInG if Liv's Leaves exploded and I was able to make a living wage off of that (MANIFEST), but until then, I'll be coasting on savings.
It's a big deal for me to be able to say that I have a "savings account". I have never been good with finances. I don't feel I was ever taught any useful budgeting/math skills in school or college, and I really struggled in college and especially fresh out of college. I was struggling for a long time making it paycheck to paycheck. But you know what? Something like 73% (ALMOST THREE QUARTERS) of Americans live paycheck to paycheck. WHAAAAT?! When I heard that statistic it clenched my gut. HOW?! How does a society function when the majority of its citizens are fueled by fear of not being able to maintain their lives if they miss their next paycheck? No wonder Americans are so angry - we have no financial security! There is something fundamentally lacking in our conversations about money. Both amongst adults, and from adults to children. Education is the way to fix this. 🇺🇸 🇺🇸
Anyways - back to me personally and away from the suckiness of the partriarchy - I now can say that I have a savings account. Like, with money in it. Enough to float for three months, as well as planning for my future apartment down deposit 💰 💰Go Me! I would say it was to a lot of budgeting and making sure I cut down all of my expenses - and that is true, but I did it in an unconventional way: I moved in with my grandparents. Literally the only way I was ever going to save money was by eliminating that BIGGEST of expenses - rent.
moving in with them has meant for the past 8 months I've been commuting 175 miles per day - 3 hours of driving round trip - to my job. That was the tradeoff for moving in with them. I'll admit - I enjoy the drive. It gives me alone time, and I have really gotten into podcasts. I got a new vehicle once I started doing the commute and have been taking great care of it. The car and my cell phone have been my only main bills for months and it is AMAZING. The added plus I had on top of it all was that my grandparents live in the country, away from my friends and any bars I would want to go - which saved my hundreds of dollars alone i'm sure.
The main thing here is that I recommend moving in with your grandparents to everyone. The financial gain is great but, really its the connection you are able to build with your grandparents that is literally priceless. Getting to know them as an adult myself has been such an enjoyable ride. And I will be sad to leave them. I definitely want to feature them in a future blog. They are incredible individuals with colorful, meaningful life experiences. I can only hope to pass on the generosity they have shown me and to give it back to them in different ways. It was a lot easier to do that while living with them - as in being able to assist with things like snow removal. It was a nice feeling to be able to give back to a couple that has so openly and generously supported me, and many others in their lives, for so long.