Ups and Downs #50_before50

Last Updated on September 10, 2020 by Jody Halsted

It’s a fact- as you get older time just moves more quickly.

Except for this year. The one year when I would love a blink-and-it’s-gone feeling. This year just. won’t. end.

August brought a couple of wins, but it also brought an unexpected disaster, which also reminded us that we are surrounded with some of the very best people.

August #50_before50 Goal Report

I chose the phrase ‘ups and downs’ to describe this month. It felt like the road in the image above- definitely not smooth sailing, but better than the roller coaster ride it could have been!

Progress on my ‘Big 3’ Goals in August

Goal #1 Lost 50 lbs
August report: I lost 2 lbs – and achieved goal #3 (my 2nd weight loss micro goal)!

I have officially lost 15 pounds!!! It’s nowhere near what I had hoped or planned to have achieved by now, but it is still worth celebrating. I should schedule a massage.

Goal #9 Pay Off Debt
August report: Plodding along. We have had a little extra income in the past few weeks from renting out our RV, but we are holding on to that for the winter months when my income always dips. I’m planning a few ways to, hopefully, keep things flowing, but it’s so hard to tell what the coming months will bring.

Goal #50 Plan Birthday Getaway
I began working on this last month and have decided on the trip destinations and activities. Now I just have to finalize accommodations.

The big hold-up here is that my birthday falls 3 days after the presidential election. Will the country be on fire? Will we all be tense because the outcome won’t be known?

Can I safely leave my kids for a week???

Ups and Downs in August

You may have heard, though many did not, that Iowa experienced a hurricane in early August. Officially it was a Derecho- a wide-spread, long-lived, straight-line wind storm associated with fast moving thunderstorms. Winds in my area reached 94 mph for nearly an hour, with stronger gusts. Equal to an F2 tornado, but for a much longer time; or a category 2 and 3 hurricane.

Overall we were lucky. We lost 4 big, mature trees in our backyard but only one shingle from our roof. Others in our area, especially farmers, lost so very much. Homes, crops, and businesses were destroyed.

Crushed grain elevators in Luther, Iowa (about 20 minutes from my house) More images

Due to the storm we had to cancel our final summer getaway. We should have been enjoying a long weekend in Hayward, Wisconsin, floating down a cool river and relaxing in our RV. Instead we were chopping and hauling away trees.

You really see the best in people when disasters strike. Our neighborhood, community, and state pulled together following the Derecho. So many amazing acts of kindness.

Volunteers came to help us with our downed trees. The builder of our home (nearly 25 years ago) had his crew stop by to fix the missing shingle.

All told we probably had over $3500 worth of work done- and no one took a dime. It restored my faith in people in such a big and impactful way.

Between storm clean up and working extra hours at my second job (we were one of the only grocery stores in the area with power and when people finally got power back to their homes they needed groceries. A LOT of groceries) I didn’t have time to bike.

Add to that the danger of downed trees and power lines, there really wasn’t much safe area to go biking. So no additional cycling goals were met.

I completed Goal #45! My new Ireland tour of the Sunny Southeast is live! I am so excited to share this tour! The southeast of Ireland is an area often missed by tourists and the experiences I am arranging are amazing!

I started a photography class last month and am thrilled with the progress I am making at learning to understand my camera! I am going slow- I don’t have loads of time- but I am so happy with what I have learned so far!

I am even overcoming my ‘fear’ (inadequacy?) of night photography. I am pretty pleased with this shot of the High Trestle Bridge near Madrid.

High Trestle Trail Bridge at Night, Madrid, Iowa
High Trestle Trail Bridge at night

‘Sup September?

September is looking to be more of the same.

Dozens of activities are cancelled, so no marching band competitions or hockey games to look forward to.

But my daughter is scheduled to get her school permit this month! And since my husband isn’t going to an office we don’t have to buy another car (yet). A bit of COVID benefit!

What does your September look like? Different than past years? Tell me in the comments below!

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One Comment

  1. Congrats on meeting your goals and coming through on the other side of that derecho, you truly do see the strength in human kind in those moments. As far as the birthday weekend I’d say be flexible, I have a hair appointment in downtown Raleigh the day after that I am keeping my eye on. Not quite on the same scale but it certainly sums up our year, right?! Now that the outdoor weather is cooler I am hoping to get out to some local spots but remain highly frustrated with being unable to plan international trips! Le sigh!

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