This post—the first of my Love Letter series—was written on February 1, 2023 from Astoria, Oregon.
I’ve decided to slowly share the love letters here on my blog as well. If you’d like to receive a piece of my heart each month, I’d love to have you on my e-mail list. Subscribe here.
Without further ado, I invite you to enjoy my February 2023 love letter in all its glory.
February 1, 2023
Hello to my beautiful wolf-pack! I’m so happy to be here writing to you on February 1! I am going to make a habit of writing to you at the beginning of each month. It’s nice to stay connected, isn’t it?
I’ve been meaning to sit down and send you a Lauren life-update e-mail for some time now, and it feels like today is the day! I’m writing from Astoria, Oregon after just passing by The Goonies house. It’s been a fun morning.
Before I get into the twists and turns of my life, I’d like to first thank you all for your support on my podcasting endeavors with my sister, Camille. The Sex Den has been such a passion project for us and I really enjoyed sending you episode re-cap e-mails throughout our third season! I’m happy to see that many of you really enjoy those too.
We just launched our 4th season yesterday with our new name! We are now The Den Mothers! I’ve added our new look below! Yay!
Bye Bye Tulum
Alright, alright, alright… where am I? What am I writing to you about today?
Well, the last time I wrote you a life update, I was telling you about how Shane and I were selling our house and moving to Tulum, Mexico.
That feels like SO long ago, although it’s only been 5 months.
As we approached the 2023 new year, Shane and I had a check in with each other and determined that we weren’t feeling like staying in Tulum much longer.
Although we had a really great condo, a wonderful spa and gym close by, and dear friends right around the corner, it felt like the jungle had welcomed us in, and then decided that it was time for us to go. We just weren’t feeling as connected to the land as we had hoped.
Without much delay (per usual), we told our landlord that we’d be leaving, sold our beloved scooter to our friends, and started making new plans to explore the U.S. once more.
My favorite things about living in Tulum were Freediving (I made it down to 35 meters on one breath!), eating mangos every day, celebrating my 30th birthday with friends old and new, and waking up to the sunrise each morning for meditation. I’ll treasure these moments.
Hello Pacific Northwest
We left Tulum without a plan about where we’d plant next. We just knew it was time to go. So, December 22, 2022, we headed back to the USA for a family filled holiday schedule. We spent Christmas at my dad’s in Florida and then road-tripped to my Grandparents’ in Charleston. From there, Shane went home to Illinois to care for his mother while Camille and I went to California to spend time with our mom and step-dad.
Somewhere in the midst of all these life events, Shane and I found two amazing Short-term rentals that we locked into place. One, on the border of Olympic National Park in Washington. The other, near Whitefish, Montana.
We’ll spend two months in Washington, and then two months in Montana. Yeehaw! I have a feeling we’ll end up living long-term somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. I’m always open to being surprised by my own life though.
I want to interrupt sharing the logistics of my life with you to quickly mention that during all of this, I feel like I’ve grown a very deep appreciation for the unknown and an even greater relationship with surrender. Living the kind of lifestyle I do is really marvelous, AND it’s not always easy. It can feel stressful and ungrounded and frustrating to up and move and shake and explore constantly. I’ve learned that this won’t be forever and I’m really wanting to love each moment… even through the chaos of it all.
So, here I am. Reunited with my lover, and almost to our first destination in Washington. I wasn’t planning on taking you on a journey up the coast, but I’ve decided to do so. Let’s rock!
CALIFORNIA, OREGON, WASHINGTON, OH MY!
Shane and I began our roadtrip in San Diego and spent our first two night’s with Shane’s brother in Monterrey, California. We did a beautiful hike at Point Lobos on our first morning. I got to stick my fingers in sap and take off my shoes to feel the earth beneath my feet.
Next, we drove to Mount Shasta and collected many gallons of drinking water directly from Headwaters at City Park. We bought art, herbal tinctures, and effing delicious breakfast sandwiches at a place called Yak’s before driving into Oregon.
I really wanted to hit a natural hot springs in Oregon and found an incredible one called Umpqua Hot Springs. It did not disappoint. The fact that some of these natural wonders exist leaves me absolutely puzzled. The hot springs were unlike anything I’d ever experienced, and the hike up to them was gorgeous too. We were really worried that they’d be crowded, but to our pleasant surprise, we were there with just one young nudist after many people left, and I (of course) decided to join her naked freedom fight. A dream come true!
After the hot springs adventure and some snacks, we beelined to Eugene, Oregon and stayed the night at the most adorable Bed & Breakfast I ever did see. Shane took a giant bubble bath with jets (lol) and we enjoyed a breakfast of cinnamon french toast and a tasty scramble by a special little fireplace.
We didn’t see much of Eugene before continuing on our journey to Astoria, Oregon. We stopped for lunch at a charming fishing town called Newport, and Shane bought me a fuzzy white Alpaca hat that I will have for my entire life. I never want to take it off. When we arrived in Astoria, the truth came out that I had never seen The Goonies, so upon checking into our 1925 boutique hotel, we made tea and got to watchin’.
We woke up in the morning, and went to see The Goonies’ House and the bowling alley. We then found the most incredible herbalism store and spent an hour in there with the owner making special concoctions for my digestion and Shane’s sleep. It was quite a treat! I’m finishing this e-mail to you before we check-out.
I’m looking very forward to updating you on our digs in Washington.
I just finished up reading Waking Up by Sam Harris and absolutely loved it. I feel like it should be a must-read for each person on the planet.
I’m reading three other books at the same time:
Ensouling Language by Stephen Buhner
No Bad Parts by Dr. Richard Schwartz
Loving What Is by Byron Katie
So far, they’re all phenomenal. Highly recommend.
What I’m thinking about:
I am really concerned about the fact that the word “sex” and anything related to it is so censored on social media. All of a sudden, I’m using terms like seggs, secks, s*x, sx, etc. I am worried about what this says to young people who are just learning about sex, and what it says to a society who is already so incredibly confused when it comes to sexual expression.
Language shapes our reality. When we have to create separate language to hide what we’re really talking about, that could have major consequences on our psyche. I don’t like it, it scares me, and I plan to write more about it very soon.
Before I go, I know it’s winter and many of you likely live in cold climates. Perhaps you don’t want to go outside or do much of anything. I see it as my duty to remind you, however, that we need to be breathing fresh air, getting as much vitamin D as we can, and surrounding ourselves with folks and activities that make our hearts sing. Dance a little. Do some art. Journal. Stretch. Drink water (and not so much coffee). Masturbate. Put on an outfit that makes you feel like a stone cold fox.
Life can be so good despite a world that often tells us the opposite. We have to fight for the right to REALLY ENJOY our experience in this lifetime. If you have the privilege to do so, it’s my opinion that you must, and must start today!
I love you, and I love writing in longer form to you. Thank you for being here with me through all the change. It means the world to me. xx -L