• My AR-15 Build, Part 3: Handguard, Upper Receiver, Ejection Port Door Kit

    We are back at it! As I mentioned in my last AR-15 build update, we had to take a bit of a pause on continuing my build and doing videos thanks to the insanity of 2020. I’m so excited that we are able to get going on it again. A big thank you, as always, to Josh at Oregon Rifleworks for taking the time to do this! In this video, we are chatting about all things handguards, upper receivers, and ejection port doors. We did things a little backwards this time in that I have already purchased these parts, but we are…

  • The Best Self Defense Lesson I Learned From My Mother

    The things our parents or guardians teach us as kids can have deep rooted, lasting impacts into adulthood and throughout our lives. In the moment we may not even realize how important these lessons are or how they will play a role in our lives, and it often isn’t until much later in life that we appreciate their value. Sometimes these lessons come in the form of little tips and tricks, like how to keep your cookies from spreading too much when they bake, or how to use duct tape to fix literally anything. But sometimes these lessons are truly…

  • Hazelfern Cellars is Turning Me into a Chardonnay Drinker

    I’m writing this post while I sip on Chardonnay. You read that right. I’m not drinking a Pinot Noir, or even a red wine, I opened up a Chardonnay. The 2018 Little Hells Chardonnay from Hazelfern Cellars, to be exact. I may have to rebrand… Chardonnay and Shotguns? I kinda like the sound of that! Hazelfern has consistently been at the top of my “wineries to visit” list and I’ve been swooning over their website and Instagram page for what feels like years now. I could not have been more excited when my pal AJ organized a visit there for…

  • Getting Back to Wine Country

    I think we’ve all been craving a sense of normalcy in some way lately. The past few months have brought to light a lot of things for me, including the “normal” things I want to get back to and the “normal” things I definitely don’t want to get back to. I’m sure it doesn’t surprise anyone that spending time in Oregon wine country tops my “things I want to get back to” list. It may sound silly to some, but wine tasting really is one of my favorite things to do. Wine country is my happy place, but it’s not…

  • Why I’m Taking a Social Media Sabbatical

    Y’all may have noticed that I have not been active on social media lately. Why the heck not, you ask? I’m taking a social media sabbatical. Read on to find out what in the world I mean by that and why I’m doing it. A sabbatical is typically thought of as a paid leave from work to give a person a chance to step back from their day to day work duties and lean into the life side of the work/life balance equation. Many people use such a time to focus on personal development and/or embark on grandiose adventures around…

  • What is Concealed Carry Insurance and Why Should You Consider It?

    I was a few weeks away from getting my concealed handgun license when a family friend, an attorney, asked if I had purchased concealed carry insurance. My response: uhhh, what? I had never heard of such a thing, which was quite surprising given the amount of research I had been doing to prepare myself for gun ownership and concealed carry. I had studied up on shooting, dry fire, concealed carry, holsters, belts, self defense ammo, and so much more. But somehow, concealed carry insurance had never come up in my research. It seemed that no one was talking about what…

  • Ayoub Wines and Life Lessons

    Wine can teach us valuable lessons – lessons that don’t only apply to wine, but to life as well. This week’s wine for the Zoom wine meetup reminded me of a couple important lessons: patience is a virtue, and timing is everything. For this meetup, we explored Ayoub Wines, a small vineyard and winery tucked away in the Dundee Hills, owned and operated by Mo Ayoub. After years of working the winery and vineyard on the weekends and commuting to Silicon Valley during the week for work, Mo has finally made the transition to being a full time winemaker, viticulturist, and proprietor at…

  • Falling in Love with Oregon Pinot Noir at Domaine Divio

    I recently reminisced about my first visit to Domaine Divio with friends on Oregon Vino Country‘s weekly Zoom wine meet up. I was called out (in the nicest way possible, of course) by AJ for not ever writing about Domaine Divio on my blog. So here I am, writing about Domaine Divio, as I enjoy my favorite Pinot: Domaine Divio’s 2015 Chehalem Mountain Pinot Noir (second only to the 2014 vintage, which I sadly do not have any more of… holding on to wine is not my strong suit). This is not only the story of my first visit to…

  • My AR-15 Build: An Update

    Hello friends! I’ve been getting quite a few inquiries regarding the status of my AR-15 build, so I thought I’d write a quick update. In a nutshell, the build is currently on hold. As you may know, I am partnering with Oregon Rifleworks on my first build. Rather than simply buying parts and showing you what I’ve purchased, I’m using this build as an opportunity to educate myself on all things AR-15 and share what I’m learning with you. Josh, the owner of Oregon Rifleworks, and I are sitting down to do a video on each component of my build,…

  • Ask Monica

    Hi friends! I hope you all are doing well in these crazy times we are living in. Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, I have been searching for ways to stay connected with family, friends, and followers. I had grand plans of doing YouTube/IGTV videos, chatting it up on IG stories, FaceTiming with loved ones, and so much more. Unfortunately, I have been having some vocal cord issues, so I’ve had to shift my strategy a bit to do more writing instead of talking. Last week I put up a Q&A on my Instagram story but rather than answering questions via stories,…