Lotsa love.

From the unexpected to the highly anticipated, goodbyes are never easy. The last few weeks have been filled with goodbyes, both temporary and conclusive…. Yet they never seem to leave you feeling complete. It’s like we get so used to the way things are, we forget that life moves on. But there is something so beautiful about the way each sun sets. A hard goodbye means a lot of love has been shared, and throughout the last few weeks I have been incredibly blessed to shed so many tears. There are some special people who have walked into my life and within only moments completely changed the way I see the world. I don’t have much to say other than thank you for the love you give; for that I cannot express my appreciation. To my friends in the southern hemisphere and the angels that live above, you will be missed and always remembered… Until next time, the memories will stay.

On a bit of a lighter note… Here are some pictures from beautiful places spent with beautiful face. I love you all.

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Ice Cube once said “today was a good day”…..



20150205_065941Woke up at 5:50 a.m. following a perfect 7 hour night of sleep. Grabbed my bags after saying bye to Chuckles and enjoyed my breakfast full of water on the road. Stopped for gas and headed North West. Solo Dolo to Steamboat I went with the moon shinning through the drivers side window and the sun rising to the East. The best of both worlds? Oh and don’t forget about the Canyon, the rivers, and the mountains surrounding me. The roads were icy, but I could not ask for anything else. I let all the cars pass me by as I stuck to a pretty strict 30-40 mph maximum. Slowing down does a lot for20150205_071012 the soul. It allows you to really think about things… Well, it allows you to think about nothing, but realize everything. Slowing down gives you a chance to interpret what your really feeling, not what you thought you were feeling. For instance… this week I broke down on so many levels. Why? Because I was wrapped up in anticipation, anxiety, and worry. My mind was clouded, so muddy I couldn’t appreciate the present moment due to the worry of what might happen.




20150201_151428 The last nine days have been full of up’s and down’s, yet I can sit here and laugh. I have an on going joke in my life where when I meet people I care about, I invite them to my dream. I welcome them into this beautiful world of checks and balances that I experience everyday. Things can go wrong, but they always get better. And I mean better, not just the same. Earlier this week I broke my wrist and have had a bitchin time dealing with it… BUT, things are better now than they ever were.




IMG_20150130_122842I feel stronger. I’ve gained experience, and I am happy that this happened. I have been blessed with so much love and support from family, friends, and countless strangers. So many people have touched my heart, words can not describe. But I will try. A big thank you to the people who got me to the hospital the day it happened, the doctors who broke me part-of-the way back together, and mi amigo who held mi mano. Thank you to my family for listening to my sobs, to my employers and coworkers who have been so supportive, to the friend who brought me out to catch some fish, to  my roommate for sharing the pork chops, to my favorite cooks who made me dinner, to the friend who brought me out for BBQ.

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Thank you to Under The Sun for regular comp. and awesome  service. I am thankful for my multiple trips to Sharkys, and the waitress who put peanut butter on my bagel (whom also added honey). Thank you to my animals for the endless cuddles.  Thank you to the messages and texts sharing love and encouragement. I can not begin to explain my appreciation for all the hugs that made me feel okay.

  T20150121_150711hank you to the hotel that let me check-in early and check-out late. Thank you to the shuttle driver and the passengers on vacation. Thank you to the Golden Retriever service dog that greeted me while I waited in the lobby. Thank you to the nurses who congratulated me for not being pregnant J. To the doctors who took time to explain what was going to happen. Thank you to the surgeon with the knowledge and the support staff for the crackers and endless humor. Thank you to the bartender who recommended the best Asian salad I’ve had, and to Wendy (the lady sitting next to me at the bar) for the amazing company. Thank you to the 10 year old who told me about his 6 years of skiing and I thank him for his response when I asked if he rides blues…. “no double blacks”. Thank you to every single person who has passed through my life. Beautiful, beautiful people. I love you all and would do anything and everything for the ones who care.




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Thank you to the universe for always showing me the truth in life.

For putting me back in my place and reminding me to get over myself.

The world does not revolve around you (or I, or anyone else), we revolve around it.

Life truly isn’t about what happens, it’s about how you react to it.

I could go on with the clichés but the only important thing is:

you become what you think.




IMG_20150205_105755   I’m going to miss snowboarding everyday, and the falling, and the getting better.. But – I can’t wait for some amazing spring riding. I’m going to miss my hockey team I just met and the thrill of competition. But – I can’t wait for next season. Any powder we get, I’ll have to appreciate on snowshoes. But – the sun is still shining. Life is too good. Everything happens for a reason and I truly look forward to the changes to come.




(To be continued…..)

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Hello, Two-1000-Fifteen!

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In the New Years spirit I decided to take some “me time” and reflect on the year past and invision the one yet to come. Instead of writing a set of new resolutions I definitely won’t stick to, I have decided to concoct a list of cliche “must knows”. This is for my personal use and your personal entertainment, if you see it that way. If you don’t like it, don’t read it. If you do, live it. What has 2014 taught me?

  • Life is exactly what you make it. Whatever is considered “normal” is also considered “boring”. Do what makes you happy and truly experience this moment and every single moment that follows.
  • Don’t forget to play. Stay young, be a child, enjoy what it is that made you happy at age 5 or 11 or 13.
  • Think less. Breathe more.
  • What you give, you get.
  • People are important. Love them. Empathize. Get to know someone. Talk to the bus driver, the cashier, your server. When you say “how are you”, actually mean it.
  • The things you can learn are infinite. Search for new knowledge. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. If you don’t, you’re just cheating yourself.
  • Our World is changing and we are the controllers. If we wish to continue we should change how we do things. Use less, need less. Find a way to escape the constant need to compare and the habitual excess in everything.
  • Music is a powerful force. One that should be experienced often.
  • We’re all just a bunch of animals. We have a few basic necessities: we need time outside, we need good food in our bellies, and we need love. If we have those three things, we will always survive.
  • Balance is important.
  • Life is short. 2 hours turn into 2 weeks, 2 weeks into months. You can never keep up with the date or the time… So instead, stop chasing it. Live today and you will be rewarded with a life worth living.
  • You always have options. You are your own destiny.
  • Let go of what does not serve you.
  • Simple living is good living.

What I’ve learned about myself:

  • I have learned to finally understand love who I am.
  • Expression is important. It’s unnatural to hold back how you feel. If you feel something, feel it. But feel it with thought and with love.
  • ^^With that said… If you feel something strongly: paint/draw/write/say it. Find art in your life.
  • Traveling has taught me how to love more. Love the family I have to go home to, the friends in random spaces and the strangers I have yet to meet. Traveling is a state of mind, an open escape from monotony. It is the experience of a lifetime and the very essence of my soul.
  • ^^ Traveling does not have to mean a loaded passport. Travel the backyard or the state you grew up in. Go to an old memory and re-travel somewhere you’ve already been with a new mind. Traveling is just enjoying the ride regardless of where you are.
  • I’m passionate about a lot of things. You could say a little “in your face”. I never try, but this energy is usually a bit too much to handle. Though, if you take the time to get to know me, you know I have the best intentions.
  • Reflection is a mirror into who you really are. If you can look back to the past and accept it for everything it was (the good, the bad, and the ugly) then you can find true peace.
  • ^^Write it down.
  • If you’re having a bad day, change it.
  • To any of you that know me well, you’ve heard me say something around the lines of “this is my dream, you’re just living in it”. .. With that said, thank you for being beautiful characters in this limbo ride I call life.

Of course there is much more to say but, as usual, my mind has ran blank. However, to start the New Year I would like to say thank you to those amazing people I’ve met along the way. You all have influenced and transformed me. I am forever grateful for the life I have been blessed and look forward to all that is yet to come. Keep livin’ the dream my friends and remember that today is all you got. May this year be filled with a new perspective on life and a positive step toward a truer you.

Oregon, wonderful Oregon.

Over six weeks ago I started my workers-comp vacation. Not making much, but making the most of the time I had off. After hand surgery there was a bit of a slump in my physical and psychological condition… But traveling has done a great job making life a bit more bearable when you have nothing but beautiful scenery and limited responsibilities. So before I headed back to work I spent my last week of vacation in Oregon… Eugene, Portland, the coast, Mount Hood, Crater Lake. The people I met and the places I saw were nothing shy of beautiful. I can not thank you enough Stormy, Tyler, Doug, and Emily for leaving me with nothing but positive memories and a wonderful appreciation for random encounters. I love ya’ll and can’t wait for the next bender.

But I’m bad with words, so check out the pictures. As always, live the dream.


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Clear skies lead to clear minds.

It feels like just yesterday I was walking around with two huge gauze wrapped fingers… Five weeks has passed since I got in a tussle with some broken glass resulting in a little bit of slice and dice on my left digits.  At first I was excited for the time off, then frustrated, slightly depressed, and after a five day pity party I hopped back on the “get over yourself” train. Time off seems harder and harder to come by, so with my six weeks of restrictions I decided to travel and relax as much as possible. I spent most of my time sitting outside watching squirrels and clearing my mind to create the most beautiful bubble world anyone could imagine… In my optimistic daze I found myself committed to the present moment. Slowing down allowed me to find some peace of mind, usually in the most natural places… On the shores of Lake Superior, in the woods of Silver Bay, engulfed in the colors of fall, sitting at home with my parents. Everything seems brighter. Not as if I was in a dark haze, but after graduation I felt lost.. As do most post-grads I’m assuming. 15 years of schooling and strict institutionalization and all of a sudden you’re set free. Time to grow up they say, find that nine to five. And then it hit me… I no longer had to follow what society told me. I no longer had to worry about what I was “supposed” to do resulting in a beautiful cycle of good days and happy feelings. So cheers to the good years, the amazing friends I can count on no matter what, and my rock solid family who loves me unconditionally.

On that note: here is a little quote that seems to resinate well…. Enjoy the pictures & live the dream.

“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. As longs as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.”

― Anne FrankThe Diary of a Young Girl

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Colorado Roadie Round Two: 1,600 miles later

Over two years had passed… I was about to finally see my buddy Abby. We met while studying abroad in Australia. Your intentions are always to keep in contact, but as we all know, life gets busy. Every few months we’d chat about the day-to-day, but that was it. Finally, she was flying in. I went to pick her up at the Denver Airport on Tuesday. One big hug and everything was back to how it used to be. It blows my mind to think that a person can completely put you into another place and time, an old dusty memory waiting to be remembered.

After a night of catching up, it was time to make some new memories. We loaded up the good ol’ Taurus and headed for the mountains. Our first stop was Rocky Mountain National Park with wind, snow, and 40 degree weather. After coming face-to-face with a moose, endless GoPro selfies, and a scenic drive filled with jamming music we made our way back to Boulder only to continue the adventure the next day. We started the 1600 mile expedition in Aspen to see Maroon Bells, cute boys, and drink amazing coffee. Singing Hakuna Matata like we were middle school girls we left early afternoon in order to catch a hike at Hanging Lake and make it for movie night at my aunts house. Utah was next. We took our chances and drove as deep into the canyon as possible followed by a trip to Arches National Park. Our next stop was Telluride and a day filled with art museums, street murals, studios, and well behaved dogs. After a quick gondola trip up the mountain we went south to Mesa Verde to feel a bit of history and landed in Durango for some good company and a wonderful night of sleep. Our last stop was spent rolling around in the sand at Great Sand Dunes National Park in Almosa, Colorado. On the way we were stopped by state patrol and quickly released with a warning for 15 over.. 4.5 hours later we landed back in Boulder where we spent some time exploring Pearl Street. The trip ended on only the best note…. as the sun set we sat atop the foothills gleaming down at the city lights with an ice cold bloody in hand.

Thank you Abby for your amazing attitude and the endless inspiration and motivation you have given me to continue with my art. I love you and am so thankful to have such a creative, caring soul in my life. Keep it real darlin & I’ll be making a visit. #VirginiaRoadTrip

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My Minne Vacation.

I spent last week at home… and all I can say is THANK YOU! Thank you to my family for loving me. To my friends for spoiling me. To my cat for not hating me. To my niece and nephew for inspiring my imagination. Thank you to everyone who gave me the bear hugs I missed so much. To my brother for being my best friend. To Corey for the entertainment. To my sister who is always there. To Sammy for being so damn positive. Thank you to everyone who complimented my pictures or travels… you truly have no idea how much it pushes me to keep going. Thank you Duluth for two beautiful sunny days. Thank you to the unlimited bloody marys. Thank you Janessa for the amazing trip down memory lane, thanks for always showing up, thank you for being my best friend. Thank you Mother Julie for the special k bars and note, you’re a saint. Thank you Charlie for being the little angel you are. Thank you Nikki for the unforgettable trip up the North Shore. Thank you Mook and Aldi for being my brothers. Thank you Lake Superior, just because. Thank you Chester Park for never changing. Thank you Hunter for the puppy kisses, you too Leia.

Thank you Minnesota for being the most beautiful state filled with some of the most beautiful souls.

I am forever grateful xoxoxo

 

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“We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place, we stay there,

even though we go away. And there are things in us that we can find again only by going back there.” 

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. some of these pictures were taken by the amazingly talented Nikki Velch, don’t snag them 🙂

 

 

The good life.

It’s happened a few times now…. There is this moment where I have to ask what day it is. And without fail, I am astonished to how fast the time has gone. Today’s Thursday when I thought it was, well actually, I didn’t think anything at all. The 21st of August?!?!?! How is that possible. How has the last three months of my life gone by so fast? Well, let me tell you. It’s because I have been hanging out with some of the most amazing, fun, free-spirits you could ask for. I have gone to some beautiful places. Just this week I clocked over 800 miles towards the life of the one and only beautiful 2002 Ford Taurus. I’ve hiked three 14ers: Quandary, Grays, and Torreys. I spent some time in the Poudre Canyon cliff jumping into the Seaman Reservoir. Enjoyed great company in Fort Collins checking out some live music. Working… Once and a while. Usually on very little sleep and with the desire to leave the second I get there. I was introduced to the lovely Sanita’s Trail and the Red Rocks Loop which allowed me some practice time bouldering to the top. I drove to the tip of Flagstaff Road to finger paint while the sun was setting. I tanned my bod at the pool, enjoyed hours of yoga, and managed to some how relax and watch a few great movies. And throughout this I have been blessed with life changing experiences that I will never forget. The two that stuck out the most:

1. Regardless of when you go to bed, 4:00 a.m. comes quick. I woke up, brushed the sleep out of my eyes and jumped into Hannah’s whip. We met up with the clan in Golden and made our way to Grays & Torreys. Since my first attempt at Evans only a month ago I have become obsessed with climbing mountains. Every journey to the top is a religious experience. On the way up all you can think about is how much it sucks. You can’t breathe, your legs start to get tired, all you want is a f***ing snack (or five). Where is the damn Cliff Bar? And then, before you know it, you’ve made it. You’ve peaked in over 14,000 feet. Through the gain may have only been 3000 feet, you’ve only walked a distance of a few miles. The mental battle, that’s what I go for. I spend the whole time lost in my own head. And then you realize, the pain is temporary. Whatever pain that may be. The physical exhaustion, or the mental struggle. But you finally made it. At that point, none of the pain ever mattered in the first place. You got to the top and finally you pop some of the chocolate covered almonds and life seems to make a whole lot more sense. Up on top you feel this sense of accomplishment and once your pride and ego have been boosted, you level out. You look out at the layers of mountains. Everything goes silent regardless of the people around you. At this point, I realize my teeny tiny place in this gigantic universe. And that is where I feel truly humbled. You know, hiking the distance isn’t for everyone. But it is definitely for me. The connection I have with myself and all other energy out there is exemplified when I’m on top. The wind blows peace and clarity through every vain of my five foot three frame. Being outside, engulfed in the beauty, makes me want to be a better person. It is the inspiration that pushes me to talk to strangers, to hold the door, to look at every situation with a positive perspective. Well that’s cool and all….. But now is for the one memory I will never forget……

After our first peak (Torrey’s) we decided to hike on over to Gray’s. Only a short distance, but after sitting around it definitely is hard to get the motivation to do it again… So we found our pace and made our way to the top. The cookie finally hit me and I was feeling a little more in tune with my natural self, less conscious of what others would think, and I decided to lay horizontal. THIS moment was the point where my dreams and my reality met. Clouds, the sky, and all the unknown strike me with so much curiosity. And when you’re looking at it all upside down, with a different perspective, it doesn’t feel real. I was REALLY on a mountain, and these clouds were REALLY right there. Right in front of me. Almost close enough where I could feel them, reach out and touch them. But how could something so beautiful, physically & spiritually, be so close. This is what people search their whole lives for, is that peace with what you want and what you have, and it was sitting right there. Right in front of me. How simple. How simple and beautiful life can be…….

2. Story number two…..

So I am all about inspiring people. Making them feel good. Trying to make others feel this passion for life that I am so grateful to have… And this week my ongoing life goal has been met. So my buddy Hannah is a beautiful soul who introduced me to some beautiful girls. Iowans, is that how you would say it? Anyways, these three girls came to Colorado to enjoy what everyone comes to Colorado for. Well the first day we all went cliff jumping, which was awesome. But yesterday is what really made my heart go. We left Boulder in the a.m. with our final destination being Estes Park to check out Rocky Mountain. Naturally, we took the scenic byway while jamming out to some amazing music. After a bit of time “oooo-ing” “ahh-ing” the happy tears came.

So a little personal tid-bit…. I’m not a crier. You know, I don’t cry when I’m sad. Because for some reason I have this feeling of pride, regardless of whose around or if I’m by myself…. I just don’t like to cry. I don’t like to waste time on “pain” and “suffering” cause lets face it… It’s temporary. And not worth a second of happiness. Well, that is if it’s over something sad. BUT since moving to Colorado I have cried ALOT. And when I say ALOT, I mean A L O T. I’ll go camping and leave the group to sit on the cliff edge to cry at the beauty. When I went to Horsetooth and came around the bend I started balling my eyes out. These damn tears come close to every other day. You know, I’m just so happy. SO extremely content with life and where I’m at. Where I’m going. What I choose to spend my time doing. It’s beautiful. Every thing is just so beautiful. So I cry…..

But anyways. We were driving and in my rear-view I see tears rollin’ down their cheeks… And that was when my life goal was met. To be able to give that experience to someone else is truly amazing. One memory that I will never forget and will always cherish. So thank you girls, for crying. Cause you made my life worth livin’. 

SO enough of all the yadayayada, here are some pictures to give you a little more visual of what I’ve been up to. 

P.S. A big thank you to all the strangers that have become friends in the last few months, a thank you to roommates who have become family, and a thank you to the love and energy the universe has given me. I am truly blessed. HAPPY LIVING MY FRIENDS, HAPPY LIVING.

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