In the blink of an eye, we moved from Tennessee to Colorado. So much happened all at once. From our last camping trip to skydiving and our going away party, we enjoyed every minute.

First, Caitlin and I went out for our last round of drinks on Friday. And with it being National Tequila Day, that was a plus. We started out in Midtown then made our way towards Santa’s.

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Also, I completed my last craft project before we left Nashville: Preserved my wedding flowers in a keepsake shadowbox.

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Matthew and I skydived my last Saturday in Nashville. This marks my third jump from a plane and Matthew’s first jump. Matthew coincidentally jumped tandem with the same man I first jumped with back in 2008. I jumped on 08.09.08, 08.09.10 and 07.25.15. I still definitely prefer the Tullahoma location, but my next jump will be somewhere around here.

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Don’t look down!!
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Gravity should be more than a theory
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Woooo
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Deuces in the sky
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Sorry for yelling in your ear
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So much fun
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My fav
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Here comes the parachute
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Floating

Fall Creek Falls takes the cake, although we anticipate finding new camping spots soon. After years of wishing we had time to hike down the actual Fall Creek Falls, we finally made the trek and swam at the bottom. And we swam some more at the main falls we love the most. Buddy passed out by the end of the night as we drank by the camp fire, dreading the morning sun, bringing us one day closer to the move. It’s ironic how eager I felt to leave Tennessee but my heart filled with trepidation imaging the tough goodbyes.

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From the top
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to the bottom!!
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My favorite lookout spot in the world
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🙂
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We packed in a hurried frenzy between our return from FCF (on Monday) to our going away party (that Wednesday). Once company arrived, most of our household items sat in the truck. I held it together pretty well until Amber and Casi began feeding me wine and people started to leave. I cried outside when my grandma and aunt left, along with my dad and a few others. Luckily, my parents returned in the morning to bid their emotional farewells.

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And then, we hit the road! Let me tell you, I’ve jumped out of an airplane three different times, but the rush you feel when you’re moving one way across the country is indescribable. I snapped a few pics as we left the city and headed North. We traveled through Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas and Colorado in about 20 hours. Our friend Josh set us up with a nice hotel about 2 hours past Kansas City, so our trip the following morning was much shorter.

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Buddy and the girls handled the drive surprisingly well. Shout out to Value Vet on Nolensville Road for providing the sedatives—the girls wound up sharing a snug box between us in the cab of the Penske truck, and they snoozed without a care in the world.

We arrived in Colorado around 4:00 p.m. on Friday and Fort Collins about 7:30. We live in Northern Colorado, about 30 minutes from Wyoming. As we rolled into town and I began to recognize the street names surrounding our house, I felt my eyes swell with tears. Yes, it’s cheesy, but when you’ve wanted to move on and off for 4 years and you’ve reached your new neighborhood, it’s a moving experience (no pun intended).

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Brittany, Justin and Cameron greeted us our first night here, and the following afternoon, we had all hands on deck to help unload the truck. Keegan’s sister Katie and boyfriend Ben traveled from Denver, and afterwards we grabbed drinks at Dungeons and Drafts—a nerd bar with board games even cooler than Green Dragon Public House in Murfreesboro. Then, we had dinner at Choice City before strolling around downtown Fort Collins.

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Breakfast at Cups: Bagels, coffee, smoothies and water for your dog 🙂
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Dungeons and drafts

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The cool thing about Fort Collins is how everyone rides their bikes, which lightens the flow of traffic. Keegan showed me Horsetooth Reservoir where bike enthusiasts power through the rocky terrain. We’re so fortunate to have something as beautiful and massive as the Reservoir 10 minutes from our house. We recently hiked 2 miles to this waterfall before sunset and enjoyed breathtaking views against the crisp, cool air. This marks my first hiking experience without a single drop of sweat, thanks to the arid climate.

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Started from the bottom, now we’re here

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We live on Glenmoor, at the corner of Glenmoor and Elizabeth, and if you turn left, you can easily walk to King Soopers (Kroger equivalent), Cups, and several other shops. If you go right on Elizabeth and walk a little further, you run into Sonic, Taco Bell, a local brewery, a Thai restaurant, a bagel shop, the liquor store and several other places that I probably don’t even know exist yet. And I know there’s also 2 parks nearby somewhere. All that’s to say, our location is perfect! I’ll never take for granted walking Buddy to grab coffee and whatever else we need. My toning goals seem fairly obtainable at this point.

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Overall, I’m in love with the climate and atmosphere. It’s amusing to read this list courtesy of the Nashville Scene describing the 30 Things Nashville Needs Today and realizing Fort Collins has us covered. We have an excellent public transit system, several fine art facilities, late-night dining options, city wide Wi-Fi, sidewalks with bike lanes everywhere, urban grocery stores, a local movie theater, lighter traffic to maneuver, and an overall welcoming stance on immigration. If this doesn’t convince you that Fort Collins is a better place to live than Nashville, check out the following links:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/awesomer/24-reasons-fort-collins-colorado-is-the-greatest-city-on-ear#.yaAB4ND4x

http://www.fcgov.com/fcfacts.php?ID=6

On a side note, we noticed someone sporting a Fortlandia tee if that’s indication of what it’s like to live here.

I’m not homesick yet, but with all the unpacking, sightseeing and job searching, I’m probably still in denial. This feels like a vacation and even more so like a dream. The elevation takes some getting used to, so the first several days felt like a xanax induced haze thanks to the lack of oxygen. In any case, the West has treated us well so far. Looking forward to exploring the mountains this weekend and getting outside as much as possible with Buddy.

I still remember these hopes and dreams in January–hoping to get married, move, maintain good grades, and achieve a healthier lifestyle. When I review old posts from earlier this year and look around me, it’s incredible how much can change in such a short amount of time. I’m eternally grateful for where my life is headed and for those walking alongside us in support of our decisions. Luck didn’t bring us here and neither did faith–we busted our butts and made it happen 🙂 So cheers to next phase of life. 😀 And may the future forever be in our favor.