21.4.14

Phoenix 360º

Dan and I decided to enjoy the cool Arizona spring weather and take a trek up the Echo Park Canyon to the peak of Camelback mountain. I first noticed the peak when we went to a spring training game, which in its own right was a blast.

So, I saw this beautiful peak sticking out the middle of flat Scottsdale and did some research. Turns out it is possible to hike it. Oh what fun. With perfect weather we made our way there. It had been quite a while since we had hiked or enjoyed much outdoor activity at all because of the move and trying to get life organized, plus Denver.

15.4.14

Boulder - Bolder than Denver?

Snow Fallen Rockies - Find me on Esty!
It felt like Christmas morning because when we woke up it was snowing! So, so excited to see snow, but the drive up to Boulder from Denver was dreadful and slow. It was very scary at first seeing how we were in a tiny Chevy Spark that wasn't the type of car that has four wheel drive and is not made for snow driving. Luckily, we were not the only timid drivers on the road and therefore didn't feel rushed. Dan did a great job driving and for once his slow driving was a blessing.

Once we got into town we went directly downtown to Pearl Street. Once again pedestrian (like downtown Denver) and full of fun looking stores. Because it was snowing the street was basically empty. We were not deterred by the snow and enjoyed a good stroll.

I don't remember when, but at some point I noticed that a snowflake had landed on Dan's jacket and actually looked like a snowflake. You know, when you're a kid and you cut out shapes on folded up paper? Legit snowflakes. I almost started crying I was so excited. Crazy right? Well, first off I hadn't seen snowfall in quite a while and second, I'm pretty sure I've never seen snow like Colorado has. I feel like California snow is just little snowballs and Chicago snow, well I either saw that already on the ground or when I was a little kid.

We decided we earned a beer after the crazy drive and went into a cool looking place called the Bohemian Biergarten. Of course, great beer and I believe we got a pretzel (the only thing I could eat?). The place was neat and looked like it would be hopping at night. The bartender warned us of that as well. But, we had different plans.

Pearl Street Lass
One of the things on our list was to check out the Avery Brewery, having enjoyed their beers for quite some time. We made our way there to find that they were having a strong ale festival and tickets were about $50. Ouch. We didn't even bother to see if they had tickets because we figured strong ales and snow driving definitely do not mix and being unprepared for that, we figured missing out on Avery was okay.

I'm actually thrilled that we didn't go to Avery. We were determined to check out a local brewery, so I pulled up Yelp and started looking. Hmm, Wild Woods Brewery, almost in walking distance (if it wasn't snowing) and great reviews. Personally, I think this was the highlight of Boulder, well that and when the clouds cleared a bit and the Rockies seemed to slap us in the face. Wow, was that beautiful.

So, Wild Woods Brewery. Great place and I was pleased to find I had a kinship with the owners. They were from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where my dad was born, and one of the owners went to the same college as him. Their beer was themed to hiking and enjoying the mountains, which was a great touch for being at the foot of the Rockies.

We spoke with Erin, one of the owners, most of the time we were there and she explained the beers and their love for Boulder. She really made it a great experience. And their beers! Oh boy, they were amazing. Each one was perfectly fitting for the style and one flavor or ingredient wasn't prevalent in all their beers. So unique and delicious. There was only one I didn't try, the Smores Stout because it used milk sugars. I did touch my tongue to Dan's taster and was not happy. Yuck. But! I'm bias so I don't judge them on that beer alone. The rest were A-mazing. If you are in Boulder anytime soon go check them out. They should get the recognition they diserve and hopefully will then spread their beers for us all to enjoy, no matter where we are.

Dinner was at Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery which was back on Pearl Street. This was a fun, busy spot that looked to be a popular hangout for the locals. Good beers and food. Once again only a few vegan options, but I was used to this by now. I saw a group of college kids playing games at a table and drinking beers, but everyone else was eating. It wasn't a very good drinking only spot, but the beers were good enough to see why you'd want to hang out.

We called it an early night because I started to feel sick. We went to a liquor store that was huge and cards you on the way in. College town. Grabbed some local brews and headed back to the hotel. At this point it was about 3º outside, so it was no surprise that I was feeling off, plus at this point I was not used to the altitude yet.

Bronze Native - Fine me on Etsy
The next morning we went to breakfast at another local favorite, the Walnut Cafe. While here we came to confused conclusion that in both Denver and Boulder nobody goes anywhere, they are just there. There is practically no traffic to be found and at this time of year walking around is not an option for many (at least when it's snowing), but in many cases when we got to our destination it was packed! Where do these people come from?

Before heading back to Denver for more exploring, we stopped in at the Leanin' Tree Museum. A free exhibition filled with art and statues. This museum has the largest privately owned collection of western art, and it was amazing! We were the only ones there so we were able to peacefully take in all the art and enjoy a break from all our hustling and bustling. From here we left to return to Denver.

Boulder was an awesome city (I almost put town). It had some cute homes and I can see why people would love to be so close to the Rockies. I wonder what it would be like in summer. While we were pretty set on going back to Denver, it was a great side trip and I would totally go again.

Find out about our Denver adventure here.

12.4.14

Denver - A Beer & Brick Adventure!

Denver - Find me on Etsy
A while back we planned a trip to Denver to check out the city, along with Boulder. When Dan lost his job we decided to still go on our trip, even though it was in the middle of our move. We had already bought the tickets, booked our stay with Airbnb, and were very excited to go. We ended up having great timing!

Our adventure began with changing our flight out three times. First to book it, then to change the time since we didn't have to worry about Dan's schedule, then to fly out of Phoenix since we were going to be at Grandma's house.

10.3.14

Life Out Of Wack

Sheeh, talk about a crazy month.

Dan got laid off in mid-February, boo. But! It's actually quite alright. We were already mentally moving on from Los Angeles and this gave us the kick in the bum we needed to make the leap.

We had already planned a trip to Denver, and decided although it would be in the middle of everything to go anyway, and I'm really glad we did.

Although faster and more chaotic than I would have liked, within two weeks (to the day) of Dan getting let go, we were on the road with our goods and cats to our next adventure. Like tumbleweeds we are going to be exploring around the country for a new home base.

In March alone we will have visited 5 states. Le-sheeh!

20.1.14

Berlin: A History, Part One

Berlin, Berlin, mein Hertz ist in Berlin.

I love Berlin.

The first time I went there I was in 5th grade. Oh how I loved it. It was a magical place and my first experience outside of America. It took me out of school and plopped me in a place where I had no idea what people were saying. I saw cobblestone streets and attempted to walk on them. I ate food that I had only had at my Oma's house previously. I saw a world that I didn't know existed before.

At the time I had no idea how special a place Berlin would hold in my heart.

This post is a "quick" rundown of Berlin and German history. Enjoy and remember, I am a European history major, so prepare yourself.

10.1.14

How Did That Get In LA? The Culver City Scenic Outlook

Over the holiday break, Dan and I decided it was time to stop lounging around so much and enjoy the sunny, warm weather we had.

We decided to go on a hike and I mentioned how I wanted to check out the hill in Culver City that we can see on our neighborhood walk.

I looked on a map and figured out it was most likely Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area that we were seeing and decided to see what the little spot of nature was doing in the middle of Los Angeles, well off to the side at least.

So, we set off on our adventure.