My Awesomely Random Life (and Everything in Between)

Posts tagged ‘Colorado’

Colorado-versary: Celebrating Six Incredible Years

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Damn, Colorado. Time sure does fly when you’re having fun.

It was at about exactly this time six years ago when I crossed the state line, my little VW Bug packed to the brim with everything I owned (give or take a few discarded cups of coffee and empty Twizzler wrappers).

I remember having a conversation with my sister two nights prior while watching The Office. I randomly looked over at her [with a mouth full of Doritos, probably) and said, “You know what? I think I’m gonna move to Colorado.” There was no defining “Ah-ha!” or moment of clarity that led me to the decision of literally packing up my life and starting fresh in a state clear across the country. It was just me, Michael Scott and some stale potato chip product. If that’s not inspiring as fuck, I don’t know what is.

As I stepped out of my car, my legs stiff and my eyes heavy from driving over 22 hours, these questions–and so many more–were running through my head on the repeat.

I was terrified.

But I was also incredibly happy. Like, eating a giant ice cream cone on a sunny Saturday afternoon in a park full of puppies, happy.

Taking in that first sight of majestic Rocky Mountain goodness in front of me, I felt like I was home.

When I decided a little over six years ago to take a giant leap of faith and make the big move, I really had no idea what was in store for me. I did something so very unWendi-like and jumped without looking. I stuck a giant middle finger up to any kind of plan, any premeditated form of action. I felt, and I did. I didn’t have a job lined up, I knew just a handful of people and wasn’t even sure if I would like living in the Mile High City. All I really knew for sure was that if I didn’t try, if I didn’t take this chance now, I might never get the opportunity to do so again. I also knew that if I fell back on that fear of things not working out, if I chose instead to remain forever in my comfort zone, there would be some serious regret-age going on.

And if there is one thing I have learned in my 30 years thus far, it’s that regret is no friend of mine.

So I jumped.

Shit, I jumped hard.

And that by far has probably been one of the greatest decisions I have ever made to date.

For six years I have been lucky enough to call Denver my home.

For six years, I have been able to call the mountains my playground, my weekend escape. I’ve seen some of the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets imaginable, I’ve hiked some of the most challenging and breath-taking trails, explored the urban jungle that is downtown Denver and tasted some of the best food (And beer! Yes, I am now a beer fan! Well, getting there anyway) that I’ve ever had.

Professionally I’ve had some very challenging and rewarding opportunities that have really helped to shape not only me as a social media/writer/boss chic, but also have served as a reminder that I’m damn good at what I do, that I love what I do, and to never, ever never stop pursuing that dream of mine no matter what obstacles may get in my way. I’ve worked with some strong-willed and big-hearted people, have helped to inspire some incredibly talented and motivated students, and have learned and grown from each and every one of them.

Personally, I’ve broken out of this silly shell I’ve been hiding behind. Moving somewhere new by yourself kind of forces you to put your badass self out there and meet people, no matter how you end up doing that. I’ve met some incredible new friends, have reconnected with old ones and have made too many memories to count.

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The late-night conversations, the too-close-to-call softball games, the good first dates and the ones you wish you could Ctrl Alt Delete. The summer baseball games at Coors Field and Packer games at Badgers, the bike rides, snowball fights and Harry Potter movie-marathons. The pool parties, happy hours, road trips and barbeques.

The smiles.

The hugs.

The uncontrollable laughter.

These past six years have made my heart so incredibly full, nearly as full as my ever-shrinking apartment—the number of books I’ve accumulated since I’ve been here is embarrassing, guys. I cannot wait to see what happens in the next 2, 5, 10 or 15 years to come.

I’ve come a long way since making the decision to start this grand adventure—over 8,000 miles and an immeasurable amount of self-growth, courage, spontaneity and a ‘You only get one life so you better damn make it the best possible life there is’ mentality. If I can take just one thing away from this is that it’s never to late to make a change, to face that fear or worry and do the damn thing! You’ll never know the amazingness that awaits you on the other side if you never try.

Cheers to six years, y’all!

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10 reasons why you should never ever move to Colorado

Happy Wednesday, guys! How’s everyone doing? Anyone feeling the effects of a little too much St. Patrick’s Day fun last night? The only thing I was fighting this morning was a sugar hangover…but that’s kind of an everyday thing for me. The good thing is that we’re almost over the hump. Friday is right around the corner and to the left!

So I have some really, really, REALLY exciting news to share with all of you. My baby sister/partner-in-crime/best friend Lindsay IS MOVING OUT TO COLORADO IN T-MINUS 11 DAYS (but who’s counting, really?)!!!! She has worked so incredibly hard to make her dream of beginning a life out here a reality for quite some time and I could NOT be more proud of her for getting to this point! I can’t tell you how excited I am to have her out here with me! Colorado…brace yourself. The Hansen sisters are officially back together again!

In honor of her big move, I decided to highlight just some of the reasons why she, and anyone else should never, ever, never ever make the big move to Colorado. 😉

1. If you’re looking for a unique, quirky and amazing bookstore, good luck!

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2. The people. Ugh. They are really just all of the worst.

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3. And don’t even get me started on the food.

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Succulent chicken enchiladas w_ spicy, smokey and sweet chili Colorado sauce_ Say what say what!_! It all sounds good_

4. Weather? What weather?

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5. You may find yourself sleeping outside.

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6. And waking up early…willingly…on weekends to sweat it out.

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7. You will get lost. A lot.

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8. The music venues are terrible.

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9. And so are the views.

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10. You will learn how small you actually are.

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If you move to Colorado, you will make incredible memories, meet some pretty awesome people, get to experience this beautiful country in a completely new and different way…

…and you will never want to leave.

I may be a bit biased, but I am so very lucky and blessed that I was given the opportunity to live in such an amazing place. They say home is where your heart is, and my heart is definitely in Colorado.

Now if only I could get the Milwaukee Brewers to move out here too… 😉

Moving On Up to the East Side

Hey friends!

Happiest Friday to you all!

I don’t know about you, but I’m so very happyexcitedsuperduperpumpedandecstatic that it’s the weekend! I tell ya, I’m not used to this whole working, 8-5 thang. And before you go all “that’s what being an adult is like, Wendi” and “they don’t call work a 4-letter word for nothing” on me, I know.

I know, I know, I know.

The good news is I am actually starting to get the hang of my new job; three-weeks in and already I’m getting praise from my boss which is a pretty [insert another 4-letter word here] amazing feeling. And I am starting to enjoy what I do, which is the most important thing.

Did I even tell you guys about my new job yet?

My brain has been having a lot of shortages (or should I say more than usual) as of late so I do apologize if I left you in the dark. I am working at a company called Noel-Levitz, right in the heart of the Denver Tech Center. NL is a higher education consulting firm, which in laymen’s terms means they do research for universities all over the country, helping them get an idea of who their current students are, who their prospective students might be, and how to create the best learning and working environment for both the students and the staff. I get to wear my (fabulous if I do say so myself) nerd hat all day and conduct research, run analysis, and talk with some of the biggest and brightest schools in the U.S.

It’s pretty great.

Plus the people I work with are really, REALLY nice. Which, if anyone of you have worked in an office (or any real professional job environment) know, makes ALL the difference in the world! Although, just between you and me, there is a lady in the office directly across from me who insists on eating a tuna sandwich EVERY fishing DAY. I love her to death, I do. But I think it’s time I had a tuna-intervention. #Gross.

But enough about my job….

Let’s get to the real reason why I am so happyexcitedsuperduperpumpedandecstatic that it’s finally the weekend…

I’M MOVING INTO MY NEW APARTMENT TOMORROW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

For the past month or so, I’ve been staying at my aunt and uncle’s house, giving me time to get settled and used to the area. Moving to a new state and basically starting from scratch is terribly awesome but also a little daunting at first. Having family has definitely made the transition a lot easier. Don’t get me wrong; I have absolutely LOVED spending time with them and am so very grateful that they allowed me to crash their living space for a few weeks, BUT I am so frogging excited to have a place to call my own, my bachelorette pad, my crib (MTV, if you’re reading this and you’re still producing that wickedly addictive but ridiculous hit show from the late 90’s, get at a girl–one can never have too much pimping. Yep, definitely just realized how bad that sounded).

For what seems like forever, I’ve really been living in a sort of limbo; not really sure where I was going to end up due to the not-having-a-job-thing-but-on-the-constant-search, half-living out of a suitcase, half-not. It will be so nice to settle into a routine, decorate, make friends with my local produce guy, maybe join a kickball league? Who knows what I’ll do, but the thing of it is, the options are there for my taking! Moving to Denver was by far one of the craziest things that I have ever done; I didn’t have a job, no real clue as to what I would be doing once I got here, and there were no real guarantees which if you know me, are ALL things I hold near and dear to my ticker. I like having a concrete plan, a set goal, a way of knowing that everything is going to work out in the end.

Packing up my VW-Bug with just some clothes and an over-abundance of books, I made the solo trip across the country and haven’t looked back since.

Yes, moving to Denver was probably one of the craziest things I have ever done, but you know what? It was probably one of the BEST things I have ever done. Sometimes you have to throw a little caution to the wind, take a chance, and rely on the faith that in the end, everything will be OK.

Speaking of having faith, that is something I most definitely will have to have when I try to attempt to put together my furniture tomorrow.

Yeahhhhh…this should be interesting.

Have a great rest of your Friday my peeps and an even better weekend!

I’m Backkkkkk

Hey guys!

It’s been a while.

Okay. A long while.

HOW HAVE YOU ALL BEEN?!?!

I want to hear everything.

But before you give me a full rundown, I think I should probably tell you what I have been up to (and why I have been MIA for the past month or so).

I mean, not that anything major happened over on my end. Well, except for maybe:

1. Moving across the country–I decided to take a leap of faith and move out to the Mile-High city of Denver, CO for some amazing adventures, a lot of fun, and a new job. While it was sad to leave my friends and family, my home, and especially my pup (for the time being), I am so glad that I took the bull by the horns (So to speak. *Note: there were no actual bulls involved in the making of this post) and jumped at this opportunity. Life is too short to be inhibited by your fears, by your apprehensions, by your unplanned plans. 2

As Mark Twain once said, “20 years from now you will be disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the one’s you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

2. Officially applied to graduation-Come May 5th, I will officially be a proud holder of a masters degree. Hot diggety dog. These past two years have really flown by and while I am so proud of myself for kicking some serious grad school butt, I am mostly just glad to be almost be done. With homework, with papers, with studying and thesis writing. Just done. Until I go back to get my Ph.D that is 😉

3. Getting fresh ink–Book worm. Harry Potter nerd. To infinity and beyond. I know, I know. SO EPICALLY AWESOME, right?!?! I swear this is my last one. I think. For now. #MakingLibrariansCoolSince19871

4. Discovering the amazingness that are these little diddies–Uh Ohreo. No good can come from these. OH SNAP, crackle, pop. 3

5. Signing up for my first half-marathon–Can’t tell you how stoked I am to act like Forest and run. More specifically for 13. 1 miles. I’ve got to be honest though, this whole higher-altitude thing really does do a number on my pacing. The past month I’ve been slowly easing my way into the swing of things. Hopefully come the end of July, I’ll be in tip-top-running shape.

So that’s basically been nut in a me shell.

I mean, me in a nut shell.

Speaking of shells, I have a very serious question that has plagued me for the past two nights…

Does anybody really know where cashews come from? I mean, do they have a shell like their counterparts the peanut and almond? Do they grow on vines or underground? Are they even part of the legume family or just distant cousins?

Yes. These are the thoughts that go through my mind. Nuts, right? Pun SO intended.

I hope you are all doing fantabulously!

And I promise, I will not go this long again without blogging it up.

Check ya later, alligators 😉

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