Monday, March 30, 2009

Top shelf

A major project was completed this weekend...

I have living room shelves!

Why is this worthy of a blog post, you might ask? If you have been trying to get shelves hung for as long as I have you would know how momentous of an occasion this is!

I decided back in...I don't know...November? that I wanted old, weathered - even better if it was rotten - barn wood for my shelves. How cool, huh?

I thought so, except where do you get rotten, weathered barn wood aside from pulling it off an old barn itself? I asked around and finally found some at an antique store in town for super cheap!

I bought a board of it and it sat in my living room until last weekend. Getting them hung took a while for a few reasons.

First of all, I had to search for the perfect brackets. I wanted something that would match the weathered wood - like rusty iron. Turns out places like Home Depot and Lowe's only carry NEW stuff. Huh. But the antiques places around here didn't have anything I liked either.

Someone suggested Hobby Lobby. I don't have many crafty hobbies, so this place rarely pops to mind first. Lo and behold my dream brackets were there! But they only had one. I had to wait until a week later when they restocked.

Then there was the question of tools. I've got your average everyday tools like a hammer, screwdrivers and such. I don't have a drill or a stud finder, or drywall nails or a saw to make my barn board into the two shelves I wanted.

Then there was much debate between parties on how to hang them. Do I need to hang them from studs?? What about those plastic hole strengtheners to steady them??

Holy cow! I didn't want a project worthy of a freaking home improvement show - I wanted simple shelves.

All the decision-making and debate was worth it though because they are magical. Beautiful. JUST what I envisioned. I can't stop admiring them! I love sitting on my couch under them. They just add SO much to my living room! And the feeling of finally completing a project I wanted done by the time my family visited for Christmas is pretty nice too.

After they were up, Brandon, who helped put them up, joked about how I should have a shelf party.

I told him no joke - I just might throw a "top" shelf party this weekend. I'm already considering what top shelf liquors to serve...

One up close. Ain't it a beaut...?

You can imagine how bare the walls looked before! Wonderful...

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Active Endeavors

I have been on the move all day today running and biking. The weather is super nice and rumor has it we're supposed to maybe get more snow this week, so I've been taking advantage of the Spring-like weather.

After a considerable run this morning followed by a lengthy bike ride I was ready for some lunch. And I wanted something a little heartier than a salad.

So, I cooked up some pasta. Those who know me are probably pretty surprised by that. I basically never have pasta. I pretty much went cold turkey with it several years ago and haven't gotten back into it. It just seems like I'm throwing calories away on something for nothing, which I don't enjoy.

I know, I know...those who also know me will likely argue back: But what about beer and wine? Well, I enjoy those. And let's be realistic: I'm not giving them up so I need to cut somewhere!

Every once in a blue moon, however, I'll buy some whole wheat pasta to use in "healthier" dishes. I did that today. I figured after a 6.7-mile run, and a who-knows-how-many-mile bike ride...rotini could probably fit into my diet.

Here's what I concocted on the fly at my stove. I was very happy with it!

Active Endeavors Pasta
3/4 c. (serving size on box) whole wheat rotini pasta
1 c. frozen salad shrimp
1 small handful chopped walnuts
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 heaping tsp. chopped garlic
1 1/2 tbsp. grated parmesan

Boil pasta and shrimp. Drain and pour in serving bowl. Toss with remaining ingredients while warm. Serve immediately. Serving size = 1.

That's all folks. Badda-bing, badda-bang.


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Country storms and snow songs - what?

The wind is blowing and it hasn't stopped snowing since I woke up!

That sort of rhymes.

Maybe it could be a country song...

The wind is blowing
and it hasn't stopped snowing
since I woke up
this mornin'...

Maybe not.

Regardless, the governor officially closed all state offices in Cheyenne today at 3 p.m. because it hasn't let up - since 5 a.m. There was a nasty - I heard 40 car - pile up north of Ft. Collins, Colo., on I-25. It's not stock-your-pantry snow, but it's pretty crappy out.

My coworker Matt and I left around 2:30 p.m. I didn't want to go straight home...I was bored. But what was there to do? Everything was closed. So, I went and got a bottle of wine. On my way home I stopped by this dive bar near my place called The Four Winds and had a beer by myself while I watched NASCAR and some stupid ESPN2 show called Jim Rome's On Fire?? I don't wish to see it again...

Fed up, and overwhelmed with a sudden need to clean my apartment I left. Since then that's what I've been doing.

And the wine? It's a new try and pretty good. It's Bad Dog Ranch petite syrah. I hesitated at first because a) I'd never heard of it, b) it was a really good deal, and c) Bad Dog sounded too much like MAD Dog (20/20), which is the gross "bum" wine. That's how it's described!

I took a chance - and was pleasantly surprised.

So, I'll finish my glass then...I guess flip on Thursday night NBC...?

I look out my window,
and gaze at the snow,
but with 30 Rock blarin',
it can just blow.

Still not country...

Career change - Anchorwoman

I was on Cheyenne's Ch. 5 news again this morning touting another Wyoming-made product.

Today's is Berried Delights out of Newcastle, Wyo. They make single and combination flavor jams, jellies, syrups and fruit butters.

I actually tasted these before going on - which was easier to do than last time's raw meat - and can say they were all very tasty.

The wild chokecherry jam is apparently their top seller, and I can see why! It was yummilicious!

Aside from the fact that I have to get up earlier than normal for a three-minute segment, I like it when Annie's gone and I get to play anchorwoman! haha.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

2-post Tuesday: Exotic animals invade everyday life

So, for several months now, as I'm getting ready for work I hear this ridiculous/funny/catchy commercial for the Thermopolis, Wyo., Days Inn.

I just don't know what to think of it!

At first I'm incredulous that someone would actually allow this to go out on the airwaves. Then, once I actually saw the commercial that goes along with it I thought, "Huh. I can see that, but it's still a little odd." Before you know it, I'm singing the song and laughing as I blow-dry my hair.

I have recently discovered Wyoming Travel and Tourism's updated blog and am a big-time fan.

Kudos to them for also discovering the Days Inn jingle and posting a link. I have often wanted to search for it, but end up forgetting.

I just guffawed on my couch listening to it again...

Days Inn jingle - give it a second to start...

Just a regular Wyoming day

Not too much to report these last few days. It's just been life on the Plains...

The weather, though not quite as wintery as we were expecting in Cheyenne, has still been crummy, so I've had a couple quiet nights at home.

Tonight, for example, I signed up for a new gym, spent time making a nice dinner, and am currently drinking a tasty Colorado-based beer while blogging and watching the president's news conference.

Boring? Maybe. But not if you're into politics - ha!

The rest of the week is going to kind of pick up, so I've rather enjoyed a few nights to myself. On the docket for the next half? A work lunch, a potential lunch with Jonna, an appearance on Ch. 5 news Thursday morning to hock some Wyoming-made products, a couple friends from D.C., blowing through town (separately), girl's movie night tomorrow, the free dinner and a movie at the library on Thursday, and who knows what else this weekend.

Pretty tame so far, though - except for the excitement of getting new curtains hung in my bedroom...!

Sunday, March 22, 2009


I feel like my "Spring" posts are similar to Coldplay's songs "Lost!" and "Lost?" on the Viva La Vida album.

I was so sure in "Spring!" that it was. But tonight I'm really questioning it.

We have gone from absolutely amazing 70 degree weather today to a predicted blizzard for tonight and tomorrow. How? Why? I mean, I saw people actually wearing bikinis at the park today when I was on my bike ride!

I refused to believe it until I saw it, but I'm becoming a believer.

I went on a walk around 6:30 p.m. to enjoy the last little bit of the day and it was already a lot cooler. And there were ominous clouds brewing in the west. Now, the wind is howling outside my front door. Sadly, I think the blizzard rumor might be true.

So, here I sit sipping a mug of hot vanilla-milk with my heat up again.

It's so sad that such a great day is going to come to such a yucky end.

Part of my afternoon, after enjoying the nice day, was spent in the kitchen. I made some meatloaf, which is one of my favorite foods, and tried a new recipe for chicken soup that came out fantastic! Chicken soup is a kind of wintery food, I know...I wonder if somehow, deep down I knew it was only Spring(?).

You must try this soup!

Old Time Chicken Soup

1 tbsp. olive oil
1 parsnip, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 celery ribs and leaves sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
1 large onion, chopped
1 mined garlic clove

1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
6 1/2 c. low-sodium chicken broth
3 skinned chicken breasts
1 tsp. lemon juice

Heat oil in a very large pot. Add parsnip and next 6 ingredients and saute about 5 minutes, or until the veggies start to soften. In the meantime, lightly sear the chicken breasts on both sides in 2 tsp. of olive oil.

Add broth and chicken and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 35 minutes.

Remove chicken breasts and "shred" into bite-size pieces.

Return chicken to pot with lemon juice and heat through.


Saturday, March 21, 2009

National Corndog Day

Happy National Corndog Day!

You didn't know it was today??

Me either...until Wednesday when I got invited to an official Corndog Day party here in town. Official meaning it is sponsored by the National Corndog Day folks - whoever they are.

I missed the party though because I was in Ft. Collins, Colo., for another party: My friend April's daughter's birthday party at Chuck-E-Cheese! What a place...!

So, I got home a little late to go to the NCD party, but that was ok. My friend Luke and I went to a movie instead - and I have been longing to go to a movie.

Have you seen Coraline? It's cool, has a good, imaginative storyline, but it's creeeeeepy! Lots of dolls in there which I am not a fan of! This is definitely not a kid movie, so if you have kids I wouldn't suggest this one.

Hmmm...How did I go from breaded hotdogs on sticks to singing giant mice and animated movies with dolls?

I swear I haven't been drinking.

Happy Corndog Day to all and to all a Corndog Day night!

(I swear.)

Friday, March 20, 2009


Today is the first day of Spring!

Even though I think we've only got a few days to enjoy it before it reverts back to more wintery weather, just knowing it's technically Spring feels GREAT!

I always have such outdoorsy goals around this time. It's the same this year. I have a check list of things I want to get out and do.

I envision myself:
*on long morning runs
*exploring the Curt Gowdy/Happy Jack area (which I haven't done at all yet) on both foot and bike
*turning the back "patio" of my building into a patio without quotes. Right now it's just an entrance to the back of our building through the alley, but I think it has real potential. I want to put my old D.C., breakfast nook table out there with a couple of chairs, put in some planters with flowers and herbs and just generally make it a place for coffee on weekend mornings and grilled burgers on weekday nights. And I want to be able to look out of my kitchen window at something more pleasant than an ugly slab of concrete covered in dead leaves with our trash cans in the alley. Ugh.
*getting a grill. I haven't had one since before D.C. Strangely, nine-story apartment buildings don't like for you to have open flames going. Weird.
*sitting outside until 9 p.m. or longer because it's still light out.
*having happy hours outside at the few places around town that have outdoor seating.
*Camping. Something else I haven't done in YEARS. Oh, and fishing. Aside from the fish I caught in Cody, Wyo., last August I can't tell you the last time I've done that.
*Wearing summery dresses. Yay!
*Going to the Cheyenne farmers' market at the Depot on Saturday mornings
*Sleeping with my windows open

Is anyone else excited?!

Thursday, March 19, 2009


A random funny picture I forgot to include in my On the Road Omaha post...I think this was in North Platte, Neb., where I stopped for gas.

Monday, March 16, 2009


I got a library card today - the first I've had in YEARS. Honestly, I couldn't tell you the last time I had a library card...maybe college?

I usually just buy whatever books I want to read, but I decided to spring for a card because I need to get back on track with my family's book club and I didn't want to buy the last book (no offense mom!). I just have no idea what it's about and didn't want to drop money on this particular one.

So, I thought I'd take advantage of Laramie County's AWESOME library.

I've been to a few free events there, but never took the time to really look around.

First of all, it's huge. Secondly, it's got DVDs - like a super cheap Blockbuster - in there! And it's all high-techish. I checked out my book like I would groceries at the self-check register. Maybe these are things all libraries have nowadays, but I had no idea. (This all makes me sound like I haven't been in a library since card catalogs, which I have. And recently. I just haven't checked anything out.)

It has some fun events too, but I already knew that. This month, there is a free "dinner" and a movie each week with discussion. I'm going to try to go Thursday night.

All in all a good "investment."

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Pioneer hygiene

I ran out of toothpaste this morning.

I was in Laramie, getting ready for Linds H.'s baby shower and I used the very last drop of my Crest Whitening with Scope - which I am a devoted consumer of beyond any other brand out there.

"Don't forget to get more when you get into Cheyenne," I told myself.

I forgot.

Unfortunately, I didn't realize this until about 30 minutes ago when I was on the phone with my mom. This was at about 8:15 p.m. with me already in my PJs and no desire to go back out. (I agree, PJs at 8:15 p.m. is pretty lame, but I am really tired after not sleeping well last night!)


Without skipping a beat, my mom asked if I had any baking soda.

I do, and as unappealing as it sounded to concoct my own toothpaste out of baking soda, I wondered to myself how I had never thought to do this before.

I mean, I don't frequently run out of toothpaste or anything, but on the occasions I have I usually just brush my teeth with mouthwash and go immediately to the store the next morning. Using baking soda had never crossed my mind.

I decided to use mouthwash to mix it up instead of plain ol' water - maybe it would be more like real toothpaste and less...gross.

It was a good idea. There is a reason I am not an Arm & Hammer or Tom's natural toothpaste kind of gal.

It sucks.

But I made do, like I imagine pioneer women of the past did, and brushed it up.

Tomorrow it's back to Crest Whitening with Scope. All the way.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Firsthand knowledge

I made the ribeye steaks tonight from that I took on the local news Thursday morning.

I lightly salt and peppered them and spritzed them with a little extra virgin olive oil and popped them in a 325 degree oven until they cooked to about medium-rare to medium doneness.

So now, instead of pitching a product I haven't tried, I can say with 100 percent certainty that they were delicious.

Maybe it's because they're "dry-aged for 21 days for maximum flavor and tenderness" (what I said on t.v.), or maybe it's that "all their beef comes from organically grown cattle with no antibiotics or hormones" (another line from t.v.), or maybe it was simply just an awesome cut of meat and I haven't had a steak in a long time.

Whatever the reason, I would totally eat it again. And would recommend it to others too...

Ok. I'm dropping my t.v. personality...

But...maybe I could interest you in the "$25 griller special" for the nice weather coming up...?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Local celebrity

Today I went on Cheyenne's Ch. 5 news to talk about Wyoming Pure Natural Beef, a company out of Wheatland, Wyo.

One of the programs in my office is Wyoming First , which helps market products and companies located in Wyoming. One of the ways we do that is by having a segment every Thursday on the local morning news.

My friend Annie heads this program up and is usually the one to go on air, but since she's traveling today I got to take her place.

Since I've spent time around studios in previous jobs I wasn't nervous, but it IS hard to talk knowlegeably about a topic that you've just learned about. I think overall it went alright and I'm looking forward to going on again - I think even this month - when Annie is on another trip.

Hmmm...I've always kind of wanted to be an anchorwoman...

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

On the Road - Omaha 2009

Last year, in the early phases of my blog, there was an "On the Road" series where I shared all of my random thoughts as I drove with my U-Haul across the country.

Even though I'm not moving any time soon, I still feel compelled to keep track of my crazy thoughts any time I'm on the road for a good long while. I usually try to do this by mile marker if possible, but this trip wasn't conducive to that.

Here are my thoughts as I made the deceptively far trip to Omaha on Friday...

- Cheyenne skyline - no sky scrapers like I just got used to seeing in Chicago.
- I hate the group Sugarland. Except a couple of songs. But mostly, I can't stand her voice!
- Cheyenne's really not that bad. I think I'm just really happy to be home from 10 long Chicago days!
- Sierra Trading Post: I need to go there more.
- I was dreading this drive before, when I was gone for so long in Chicago, but now I'm looking forward to a nice drive. I love to drive.
- Can see the winter storm moving in. That's one of the things I missed when living in the city.
- Teal car = 1. Coming from Nebraska. (In one of my On the Roads I noticed how many teal cars there seem to be in Nebraska. I kept a count.) Wonder how many I'll see this time...
- There's another Buckhorn Bar in Hillsdale, Wyo.
- "From wagon ruts, to sinking puts - Nebraska" who thought of THAT as a slogan??
- Some poor guy just got pulled over for seemingly not doing a thing! Ridiculous!
- Weird house shaped like two giant connected teepees...
- Am still mad for that guy who got pulled over! I'll imagine him running drugs - that will help me get over it.
- Last time I was in Pine Bluffs, Wyo., it was blizzarding so badly I could hardly see in front of me - and forget the road.
- Oh no - starting to lose stations. I love iPods!
- On the Welcome to Nebraska sign - "Home of Arbor Day" But they have no trees!
- I still love the song Lost! by Coldplay
- Suzy Boggus is on. Erin and I were supposed to see her in concert. I need to talk to that girl! I would like to run the San Diego 1/2 marathon with her like we talked about.
- Need to get through the Ft. Collins 1/2 first though.
- Both of my pens are busted! Ink all over my hands.
- Hmmm. Didn't have to pee at all when there were bathrooms, now that there's none I'm about to wet my pants.
- Beyonce Single Ladies! Yay!
- Play it again
- Rhianna's song Rehab is on. I wonder if she wrote this about Chris Brown? Wait - what? Suddenly I'm writing for TMZ?
- A rest area! I'm saved.
- I think Kelly will like her presents. Wish I had something 30th birthday big to give her though...
- Think I want to do a Ft. Collins Friday for MY birthday.
- Sidney, Neb. I hate it. They rip people off on gas there. I will run out before stopping there again.
- Can't believe I was driving this trip in reverse exactly one year ago!
- Tumbleweeds! haha - they get me every time.
- Kim's Kar Karaoke is going strong!
- BONUS!! A teal car with a tumbleweed stuck to it's bumper!!
- Peaceful Easy Feeling is my fave Eagles song I think. I love the lines, "I want to sleep with you in the desert tonight. With a billion stars all around."
- I loved being in the "big city" again. I could easily move back to one...but would I want to?
- Maybe the happiness I felt in getting home was a revelation. I loved being back in the openness. Or...maybe it was just an extreme desire to not live out of a suitcase.
- Oh man. My coworker Mike got a WHOLE lot of Kim in Chicago! I drank (and consequently talked) way to much with him!
- Awww...I miss Tyler!
- I just sang "Please don't crack my windshield!" to some truckers to the tune of Rhianna's "Please Don't Stop the Music!" hahahahaha!
- I crack myself up!
- I can never decide if I like the perfume I'm wearing. It's an Aveda choose your scent oil kind of thing. It's kind of hippy-ish...which is why I like it. And why I don't.
- I want to see Carrie! The 4th of July will be fun!
- So many farms! I've always rather wanted to be a farmer or rancher. I think I could do it.
- Just passed one of the biggest 5th wheels I've ever seen - and I've seen a lot! I used to work at Crazy Woman Campground in Gillette, Wyo.
- Bon Jovi - Bad Name. I remember singing this on the back of the bus in elementary school!
- I am absolutely obsessed with the Zac Brown Band song "Chicken Fried." It's kind of cheesy, but man I LOVE it.
- They reference Georgia in the song. Can't hear the word Georgia without thinking of Jen F.
- Ok, this song and all the farms have put me in a country frame of mind. Time to switch to my All Country playlist.
- Just took my last sip out of the travel mug Cins and Linds C. made for my going away. Glad I have it on the reverse trip...
- I really do love Subway sandwiches when traveling. It's about the only thing I eat!
- Ok - sapphire-colored cars also seem to be VERY popular in Nebraska. I should start counting them too... Good grief!
- Teal semis are also very popular. Am laughing so hard right now!
- I DESPERATELY want to go country dancing. I don't have anyone to call who really knows how though. Rob and Jeff where are you?!
- It is mindblowing that next month will already be April.
- I like the name Applejack for a horse. Here's the train of thought there: Smelled my perfume again, what do I think of it? Would other people like it? What about animals? Could I wear it behind the shoots at Frontier Days without making the animals mad? Wonder if a horse would like it...If I had a horse I would name it Applejack. (Someone is going to call and get me committed now, I know!)
- This is kind of like one of my crazy after-lunch thoughts that I always seem to come back to the office with. Rachel always asks me, "What did you DO at lunch?!" I've come back singing the theme song to the old Bill Cosby Picture Pages, the song to Simon and his chalk drawings, and Nanerpuss.
- OMG! I just laughed out loud.
- I'm tired.
- Maybe it's because of the turkey on my sandwich... haha
- Lots of road kill. I wonder about those animals. I wonder if the others from their herd are thinking, "We dared him, but didn't think he'd really do it!"
- I want a coffee, but it's too late in the day. And I'm trying to drink less of it and get back to my preferred tea ways.
- There's a white truck with a teal stripe. Does that count?
- I love classic country. Merle on now. He was just in Cheyenne and I really wanted to see him but couldn't.
- Everyone I met on the Chicago trip was so nice.
- The grating on the road is making my tires sing. It's awful!
- Just passed a "Cheyenne State Recreation Area" sign.
- I want to bake chocolate chip cookies right now for some reason.
- Sign on the road for a drug sniffing dog in use. Never seen that before.
- This trip is taking FOREVER.
- I HAVE to go country dancing!
- There's a pretty little country church with a big steeple coming up out of the fields. Like that.
- Construction outside Lincoln. Not acceptable.
- iPod off. I need some silence.
- I also need a snack. But I'll wait until I get to Stacey's.
- A glass of wine sounds awesome! So much for trying to detox after Chicago!
- Almost there. Thank heavens.
- Teal car count = a truly astonishing 56! Plus seven semis. Sad thing is, I'm sure I missed some!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

One year...

I just got home from Omaha, Neb., from my nephew Judd's first birthday party (and my sister Kelly's upcoming birthday!).

Exactly one year ago last week I was in Omaha for Judd's birth. I was driving through with my U-Haul and was just in time for the big event.


and now...

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Two little bears...

I'm in Omaha, Neb., for my youngest nephew's first birthday party.

The two older boys normally sleep with my sister Stacey and brother-in-law, so she offered their beds to me and my other sister Kelly.

This morning, as I was lying in bed, I heard the door open...

"Aunt Kelly is sleeping in MY bed," said Owen.

"Aunt Kimmie is sleeping in MY bed," said Raymond.

I started to laugh under the covers.

Friday, March 6, 2009

The old homestead

My friend Jamie left me a message yesterday telling me an apartment is available in my old building that she may be interested in. She wanted to know what I thought of living could I begin to tell her how much I loved it?

My response:


I got your message last night and was planning to call you today!

So...the apartment that's available is on the corner too? Just five floors above where I was?? That is THE best location in the building for an apartment. You have tons of light and windows. You've got the little breakfast nook place. I LOVED that there was a sort of a "wall" "separating" the living room area from where my bed was. It made it seem like separate rooms.

I LOVED my apartment. The management was good at fixing things if there were problems. The location can't be beat - except when it comes to parking. That can be a real pain. But you'll get a feel for the good/bad parking times and places. I loved how all the church bells would ring around there on Sundays. I loved the smell of roasting coffee floating in the morning air from the Java Hut on 17th and Q - and I loved sitting there on weekend mornings having my bagel with cream cheese and lox. I loved the big trees in the front drive that would get all flowery in the spring...I loved being able to walk to the High Heel Races! There's a Whole Foods three blocks away! HR-57, Rosemary's Thyme...I LOVED how it was such a busy street in D.C., but in the early mornings you felt like you had it all to yourself. I loved hearing the transvestites coming home from Chaos. HAHAHAHA!!!

The laundry room was totally upgraded about two years ago. I hardly ever had problems in getting a machine. Ummmm...what else?

I think you would really, really enjoy it. Especially if it's the exact same apartment only a few floors up.

OMG!!! You might live in my old building!!!!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Chi-town to Chey-town

After 10 days, I am finally back in my own apartment on my own couch and am so excited to pull things like underwear out of drawers and not a suitcase.

I had a really good time though. I got off track in posting when our group went to Wisconsin to check out how some other small communities use the Main Street Program in their towns. I couldn't exactly post from a bus and was so tired when I'd get back to my hotel room I just didn't have posting in me.

I'd never been to Wisconin before and am glad I had a chance to see it. I had coffee at a new shop called Windsor Bakery in Lake Mills, Wisc. We had Wisconsin brews at a brewery called Taranya, spent the night in White Water, Wisc., and had a fantastic dinner at a super cool place called Cafe Belwah in Beloit, Wisc.

Then it was back to Chicago for the beginning of our conference where we stayed at the absolutely beautiful Palmer House Hilton downtown. Check out the hotel tour.

Since I was at the conference and had some other work to do for my job, I didn't see all the things in Chicago I wanted to, like: Wrigley field, some hotdog place Linds C. recommended, and walking a few other neighborhoods that friends told me were cool.

I did get to do some really great stuff though, like see friends I hadn't hung out with for a while, and eat at some awesome restaurants like OY SY for sushi, Tamarind for Pho soup, the Rosebud steakhouse, and Le Lan - an Asian fusion place that was phenom!

I did some nice city-morning runs - which I miss, explored some neighborhoods, caught a blues band, had deep dish pizza, went shopping at Forever 21 (yeah, I couldn't help it), got my picture taken at the Sears Tower, hung out a lot with Tyler, and took a cab, rode the Metro (El), admired the sounds of the city, and walked everywhere - all things I haven't had or done in a long, long time.

Overall, I'd give this trip two thumbs up...but let me tell you what...I'm also really glad to be home.

A photo overview...

Monday, March 2, 2009


Today is a remarkable day...

It was nearly exactly one day ago last year I pulled out of D.C., with a U-Haul behind me.

In the past month I have been so busy I haven't had a single chance to really contemplate this. It has crossed my mind haphazardly in the last month that it was this day that I made the decision to leave, or that day that I quit my job, or whatever day it was I was packing/last minute visiting/packing/drinking with friends/packing...

From the time I left D.C., to the present I have held three jobs and lived in five locales. I went from D.C., to Vail, Colo., to Laramie, Wyo., to Hermann, Mo., back to Laramie, to Cheyenne, Wyo. I worked retail at a kitchen store in Edwards, Colo., to keep the cash coming in to pay my bills. And I finally, against everything I left D.C., thinking would happen, landed a job in Cheyenne - which has been a good job that I love with a team I love working with.

It's just that...this wasn't in the plans. I mean my URL is kimscoloradocountdown for crying out loud. I left D.C., with Colorado or bust signs on my car. I had Colorado Bulldogs as a signature drink at my going away party. Wyoming was not in the stars.

Or so I thought.

Turns out I couldn't get a job in Colorado to save my life. I tried. But it just didn't work. And while I tried to keep creating other windows of opportunity the Cheyenne window kept standing open, and I finally concluded it had to be for a, I decided, let's try it out.

Now, a year later, I'm still not sure what that reason was. I'm still having a bit of a hard time adjusting and sometimes wonder if Cheyenne is a good fit, but overall I don't necessarily think it was a bad move.

I guess I'll have to continue to wait and see...


I know I haven't posted for a few days, but I either don't have ready access to the Internet or we were on a bus!

I will do some catching up later, but for now a photo from today's morning run in downtown Chicago...