While on my RTW trip I loved posting monthly updates as they’re so much fun to both write and look back on. So I figured why not recap my life out west too? Read about month 1months 2&3 and months 4&5 here. All these photos are from Instagram, @ashleyabroad– find me there for travel inspiration and mountain pics!

Amman_amphitheatre

Highs

A week in beautiful, fascinating, delicious Jordan.

Jordan_ruins

Obviously, Jordan was the highlight of April. In Jordan, I felt like myself again. I had forgotten how happy researching ancient ruins, learning tidbits of other languages and laughing my head off with friends makes me. Needless to say, I had an absolute blast and came back a better person.

I can’t wait to blog about Jordan and am really proud of the writing and photography I produced. More very soon!

 

On the upswing at work.

Sales is quite the fickle mistress, but when it’s good, it’s really good. I’ve been doing well at work since my revenue slump in February and am hoping to continue hitting numbers. Sales is tricky but I’m definitely growing more confident!

 

Feeling refreshed post-Jordan.

Though I didn’t realize it at the time, I was really unhappy before I left for Jordan. The honeymoon phase of settling down had rubbed off, and I was becoming increasingly tense and negative. Worst of all, I couldn’t stop snapping at friends, coworkers and my boyfriend. I was feeling so bogged down by my schedule that I even considered quitting blogging.

I came back from Jordan with a new perspective- I realized that I need to practice gratitude for my life in Colorado. And while I don’t want to live in the states forever, it’s pretty wonderful right now. Also I need to be kinder and more patient with others even if I’m feeling anxious or overwhelmed.

I also realized that I had become far too materialistic. As a frugal minimalist who loses everything, I’ve never cared much for material possessions. But over the winter I’d started buying things to mitigate my discontent, which is never a good path. Now I’m striving to be more conscious of my spending and only buy things I need. (No more trips to Sephora! For real.)

 

A relaxing weekend away with the boyfriend.

Buena Vista

I finally understand what people mean when they say “stay-cation.” Last weekend my boyfriend and I headed to a B&B in Buena Vista, a tiny 2,000 person town surrounded by mountains. I love B&Bs because you get good value for your money, have the opportunity to meet locals and duh- there’s free breakfast.

We spent the weekend hiking trails, drinking IPAs at the town’s only brewery, taking photos of the mountains, reading and just relaxing. It was so lovely.

 

Hitting the gym (and the hiking trails!)

Another thing that’s making me happier? Working out. I’ve been hiking a few times a week with friends and my stress levels have plummeted. Who needs the gym when you have the Rockies?

 

Lows

While April was a very, very good month in which I traveled a lot and mentally turned a corner, there still were a few minor lows.

Raging jetlag.

Dear god. Getting home from an international trip at 10 p.m. and waking up at 5 a.m. to go to work was so. rough. It turns out jetlag and office jobs do not mix at all- I was almost falling asleep at my desk for days.

But the worst was playing softball the night after getting home at 9:30 p.m., which for me was 6:30 a.m. I forgot my softball softball, threw a fit and acted a mess. Not my finest hour.

 

Not knowing what to do with my life.

As always, I’m unsure of the direction I want to pursue. Stay in Denver for two years because I work for a great company and have great friends? Move to Shanghai? Hack it all in and travel Central America and work on my blog and new site?

So many ideas for my future are swirling around in my head, and I feel torn. I wish a genie could tell me which decision would make me happiest. Ugh.

 

Missing my family a lot.

I’m really close with my family, so seeing them so infrequently is difficult.

When I was traveling my mom always said she wanted me to move home so we could be closer. But funny enough, I saw my family so much more when I traveled full-time- on average 2-3 months a year! It makes me sad that I can only see them a few times a year but I really can’t think of a solution.

 

Dreaming of Blogging.

Jordan reenergized me so much blogging-wise that I would kill for a solid week to blog 12 hours a day. Alas, the weekends will have to do.

 

Most Liked Instagram photo:

Camel

This adorable camel portrait with 150+ likes!

Something to Ponder

“I used to be afraid of failing at something that really mattered to me, but now I’m more afraid of succeeding at things that don’t matter.” – Bob Goff

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Ashley Fleckenstein

Ashley is an American travel blogger and freelance writer who moved to Paris at 21, traveled the world for a year and now lives in Denver. She's usually in pursuit of skiing, languages and perfectly ripe cheese. Her writing has been featured in National Geographic, Viator and Jetstar Australia.
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