Ferry to Bainbridge Island
Blogging, Mexico, Washington

Month in Review: February 2017

Typically, the month of February can be summed up in three short little words: Not Long Enough.

Seriously…where DID the month go?  One minute I’m in Mexico, and the next minute I’m just a few days away from my flight to Greece.  Mind = blown.

It was a great month overall, though. The first week of the month was my last week in Oaxaca, and the remainder of the month was spent in Washington, with time split between Seattle and my hometown.

Here’s the stuff worth mentioning.

In February 2017…

I cut a trip short for the first time in HISTORY.

When I originally planned my trip to Oaxaca, the intention was to stay for two full months. I arrived on January 2nd and had rented an apartment through February, but to remain flexible, my flight was one-way and not round-trip.Oaxaca, Mexico

Hearing this, you might assume that I somehow knew I would wind up coming home early, but in fact, the exact opposite is true–I thought I might end up staying in Oaxaca much longer.

A few weeks after booking my flight, however, my mom and I solidified our Greece plans and settled on March 6th as our departure date, meaning I’d be coming back to Washington around the end of February anyway.

I know what you’re thinking:  But Leah, that still doesn’t explain why you left Mexico on freakin’ February 7th, three whole weeks ahead of schedule.

And you’re absolutely right, dear friend.  It doesn’t.

The real reason for my early departure is that roughly one month before my trip, I met someone. Someone very special. In the blink of an eye, we were in a relationship; in another blink, I was in a different country.Monte Alban, Oaxaca, Mexico

Distance is hard on any relationship, and particularly so at the very beginning.

If I’m being really honest, it’s a miracle I lasted as long as I did. I wanted to leave from the moment I got there. When you toss in the fact that I’d long been ready for my travel lifestyle to be over, what you get is a recipe for disaster.

But I gave Oaxaca the old college try anyway and quickly realized I wasn’t going to be happy if I stayed the full two months.  I didn’t want that time or that experience to be wasted because I was too sad to leave the house.

In all fairness, I still loved the city and made some wonderful friends and memories. It just wasn’t what my heart wanted at the time.Why I chose to spend two months living in Oaxaca, Mexico

So, there you have it.  Cat’s out of the bag–I have a boyfriend, and he’s wonderful (and every bit worth coming home early for).

You’ll probably see his face around here before too long 🙂

I moved home to Washington and I’m here to stay. Sort of.

It probably comes as a shock to some of you that I’ve settled on Washington as the place I want to be right now.  Out of all the amazing places I’ve been in the world, why did I choose Washington?

Oh, I don’t know, because it’s HELLA beautiful here?  Jk, that’s not the real only reason.Lake Chelan, Washington

The answer is pretty simple, though, and it’s because my family and many close friends are here.  I wanted a chance to finally play a bigger role in people’s lives and this gives me the best chance to do it.

Since coming home, I’ve already been able to meet my childhood best friend’s new baby, help my mom look at a potential house to buy, have lunch with my aunt, uncle, and brother, and of course spend lots and lots of time with my new beau.

This summer, I look forward to attending some of my high school friends’ weddings and spend quality face time with the people who made an effort to keep in touch with me through all my years of travel.

This doesn’t mean that I’ll be in Washington forever, necessarily.Columbia River Gorge

In fact, the boy and I have intentions of taking our lives on the road at some stage and experiencing the van life for awhile (we have some pretty grand plans of fixing up a little school bus in the not-so-distant future).

We also have grand plans of exploring the ever-living shit out of Washington and the rest of the PNW this year, so while I may be “settled” for the time being, the adventures are far from over.

But what’s certain right now is that this will be my home base–the place I come back to over and over again and the place where I cultivate relationships and begin building my community.

Washington really is a beautiful place–things could definitely be worse. And I’m grateful each and every day for all the time I get to spend with the people I care about most.Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, Mount Vernon, Washington

I officially wrapped up the last of my freelancing contracts.

Yep, it’s officially official!  I’m a full-time blogger!  To be clear, this doesn’t mean I’m making a full-time income from my blog yet.  I don’t want to lead any of you to believe that I have it all figured out.

Because I worked as a freelancer for such a long time (doing Pinterest and social media for other bloggers, and occasionally picking up writing gigs) I think I unconsciously slacked on my own blog.

I knew it didn’t have to support me since I was earning through other means, and as a result, it didn’t grow at the rate I would have liked.

Now that I don’t have that safety net of freelancing income, it’s time to get serious.Take responsibility for everything in your life quote

My blog consistently earns me a small amount each month–anywhere from $500 to $1000–which is not too shabby, really, but it’s not a livable income either.

The next few months are set aside for figuring it out, though, and I have pretty high hopes (and an amazingly supportive community around me). Wish me luck!

My Most Popular Posts

When Travel No Longer Feels Meaningful

How to Find Remote Jobs: The Best Sites to Search

6 Simple Ways to Get Photos of Yourself When Traveling Solo

My Best Instagrams

Everybody really loved Seattle this month! 💙

I spent the first 18 years of my life in Washington, all the while dreaming of greener pastures elsewhere. I grew up in a rural part of the state and Seattle just never captured my imagination the way other places did. So I promptly fled to California as soon as I got the chance and only continued to move farther and farther from home as the years went by. Now here I am at nearly 30 years old, discovering Seattle as if for the very first time. And it’s absolutely beautiful. Perhaps what’s different this time around is that I know now that life is only as interesting as you make it, and that every day can be an adventure if you’re operating in the right mindset–maintaining an earnest curiosity, a childlike innocence, and in constant awe of the miracle that is life. 💕

A post shared by Leah Davis (@thesweetestway) on

Yeah, I think I could get used to this 💙

A post shared by Leah Davis (@thesweetestway) on

What I’m Reading

The 5 Love Languages – An absolutely essential read for every couple ever.

The Four Agreements – An absolutely essential read for every human being ever.

A Few Things I’m Loving

The Best Cat Video on the Internet

50 Facts You Didn’t Know About How I Met Your Mother (so good!!!)

That’s all for February…onward and upward!

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  • Reply Justine March 4, 2017 at 10:53 pm

    It sounds like you have some exciting plans coming up! Congrats on becoming a full-time blogger. That’s so exciting. And have a blast in Greece with your mom 🙂

  • Reply Ella March 6, 2017 at 8:00 am

    Sounds like you’re at the beginning of an amazing new chapter in your life! I’m glad to hear that you’re excited and enjoying these new changes… Have fun on this new adventure! 🙂

  • Reply Londya England March 10, 2017 at 11:53 am

    Your life sounds amazing. I love your blog posts. They are so inspiring. I will be starting my blog and freelance business as well. I hope to have all the backend processes worked out by the beginning of the week next week, so I can start building my accounts and promoting my services. 🙂 My blog will be at passionontheside.com but my freelance business will be based at symmetryandsway.com.

    The one thing I loved about this post was that although you’ve been all over at this point, you’ve settled in your hometown, realizing that your experience in life is what you make it, whether you live in Brazil, Dubai, New Zealand, or Iowa, you have control over your contentment. That really hit home for me, because the main reason I want to start my business is because I want to experience the freedom of traveling to different places as well as not have to worry about money. Ironically, I live in San Diego, “America’s Finest City.” This post helped me open my eyes and really just confirmed something I was thinking about my life recently while driving for work (I have a field-type job, so I am able to have a bit of flexibility in my 9 to 5) and that was instead of longing for what I don’t yet have, I should be grateful for what I do have. & I really just think that will make the journey of my financial/time/travel freedom pursuit all the more enjoyable. Anyway, lol sorry for the long comment. This was a great post. Keep writing the way you do. I enjoy your transparency.

    • Reply Leah Davis March 20, 2017 at 8:16 am

      I’m so happy to hear that this post resonated with you, Londya! It’s so true–your experience is what you make it, no matter where you happen to lay your head at night. I wish you the best of luck on your new blogging journey and flexible freelancing lifestyle! It’ll all be worth it! 🙂
      Leah Davis recently posted…How to Find Remote Jobs: The Best Sites to SearchMy Profile

  • Reply Alyssa LeClaire March 22, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    Hi Leah! I just found your blog and love it so much! I´m currently navigating and reading through your older posts, as I live in Medellin now. I´m originally from Washington, though, and am excited to read your posts about my home state for when I go home to visit. I feel like I didn´t touch the surface of the Pacific Northwest before I left too! I´m curious where you´re from in Washington and where you´ll be living when you go back, though.

    • Reply Leah Davis March 22, 2017 at 3:27 pm

      Hey Alyssa! Welcome! Where are you from in Washington? I’m from Central WA (the Wenatchee Valley, more or less) and that is also where I am currently based. I plan to do lots of exploring this summer, and I can’t wait! So glad you found me 🙂

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