Free Falling

Because. Fear is a state of mind & without it, we can conquer anything. Sincerely, Me. 

Hey adventure fam! I never thought I'd be doing this again so soon, but this weekend I went sky diving for the second time in my life. For those who don't remember, I went sky diving for the first time just last December, in Australia (here). This time, I chose a location closer to home. Just outside of Seattle, we have Skydive Snohomish.

I have to admit, I was little worried (not scared) about this second time. For one, I was worried that after skydiving over the great barrier reef & landing on a beach, nothing could top that. Then secondly, as someone that works in healthcare, taking x-rays for a living, I've seen my fare share of injuries. Granted, only one skydiving injury. 

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Regardless of that, when my coworker asked me to go, I was going! Accidents happen everyday. In fact, I see more people get injured on a regular basis, just crossing the street or driving their car. The thing that's always been important to me though, is that despite all the injuries I see on a regular basis, to not let it get to my head.

Plus, as I drove up to Harley Airport & saw people above me jumping out of the sky, all my worries went away. Suddenly, I was full of nothing but excitement & ready to jump. 

Thanks for reading! I recommend this to everyone at least once! You'll fall in love ;) - Jen

Moment of Discovery

Who am I?

Lately I've been doing a lot of thinking about what I wanted to do with the next 5 years of my life. Coincidently, I also recently got a reminder about my high school's 10 year reunion. Has it been 10 years already? Time seemed to have just flown by, yet it's crazy to think about how much has changed in those 10 years. 

In ways, I am very much the same: always hyperactively seeking a creative outlet, with border-lining, minimalistic, OCD tendencies. In other ways, I feel like I'm a completely different person, compared to who I was 10 years ago. My wants are different, my hopes are different, and my outlook on life is different.

 

If you could have met 18 year-old Jen, the outdoors meant bugs & physical activity was not in her repertoire. Her eyes would double in size & sparkle in the face of brand names & luxury sport cars. In fact, she could probably identify the brand of any clothing item, on the spot. She was ready to work her life away, however many work hours it took. She wanted to take life by storm, by the standards of the materialistic American Dream, big house & all.

Now?

What's the point of putting your money towards sitting in a big fancy house, when there's so much of the rest of the world to see? I see no point in giant collections of designer bags, shoes, figurines or DVDs. I am no longer impressed by site of Christian Louboutins or other high end brand names, and the fashion world feels empty. I seek more; more adventures & more experiences, more sites unseen. I am on a mission to live the most interesting life possible for myself, and that means being ok with having less. But is it less, if by giving up things, I gain so much more?

I've cleaned out my DVDs & CDs (moved to all digital), and have slowly donated about 1/3 of my closet so far. It feels good to remove the clutter & live only with what you need. I've begun to travel the world, but The question is, where do I go from here? What's my next step?

Currently, I don't have the answer (suggestions welcomed). It's definitely been a  thought that's been clouding my mind every night. I just have this impending feeling & that I need to make a drastic change. Love, Jen

"Once you've been still too long, it's best to throw a grenade where you are standing - and jump. And pray.” - Robyn Davidson, in Tracks

Lake 22

My Ankle 1 : Mountain 0

Today I went hiking for the first time since I sprained my ankle earlier this year. I've always had pretty stretchy ligaments (aka double jointed), so I had never sprained anything before. Now that I have, I have to be a little more cautious with that ankle, but I wasn't going to let it stop me!

Summer is finally here in Seattle, so I welcomed it by hiking up to Lake 22, on Mountain Loop Highway. I saw streams, waterfalls, rocky pathways, and slush galore. I wasn't fast, but I made it. I can still feel that my right ankle isn't quite up to par with my left, but I'm getting there. Can't wait to go again! Hope you're all having a great Sunday.

Love, Jen

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Hello 2016

There's nothing's better than ringing in the new year, with new ski gear & a bluebird Stevens Pass! I actually had to work the night shift on New Years Eve (bummer I know), so on January 2nd, I headed up to Stevens Pass with my friends to take advantage of this great snow season we've been having in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest. Plus I had to test out my new ski gear before my trip to Whistler.

Here's the view (above) from our first lift ride of the day, up to Hogsback. When nature looks this perfect, no filter or editing  is necessary. The only thing I took along was my trusty Canon RX100. It has great color correction as is, so no fuss. Plus the flip out screen was perfect for selfies.

The nice thing about not being a student anymore, and being a working professional, is that you can now finally afford to live the life you've been wanting, all those years you were a broke college student. Hard work, truly pays off!

For me, that meant upgrading my skis, getting custom heat-molded boots, new bindings, goggles & getting a helmet so I can finally feel safer about trying jumps. My former set was basically the largest version of kid skis. It was great to learn in, but I was ready to invest in something that would last me for the next few decades, as an adult. In case you're wondering, you can click on the photos or links below, for details on my gear:

  1. Skis - Atomic Vantage 95 C W - 15% lighter with carbon mesh interior
  2. Bindings - Marker Griffon 90
  3. Boots - Salomon X Pro 90 Ski 2015/2016 edition - custom heat moldable shell
  4. Goggles - Smith Scope (mens) in Red Sensor Mirror
  5. Helmet - Smith Holt Snow (mens) in Matte Gunmetal - most affordable helmet I could find
  6. Jacket - Patagonia Rubicon in Aqua Stone

 I hope you guys enjoyed the read and photos, and are having a good start to your new year. May you be successful in all your endeavors! - JEN

Sherman's Celebrity Softball Game

Hey loves! Two weekends ago, I got to go to Richard Sherman's 3rd annual Celebrity Softball Tournament. Not that it's exclusive or anything, but for the last two years I've tried to go, I've just happened to be schedule to work, or out of town. This time though, I made sure I got to go!

While I was disappointed that Macklemore wasn't part of the celebrity line-up this year, I was more than excited to be just 13 rows from Seattle Seahawks' Russell Wilson, Doug Baldwin, and Richard Sherman. There were also other celebrities like Brian McKnight, Isaiah Thomas Jr, and Ciara. We even got a surprise appearance at the very end, from Beastmode himself, Marshawn Lynch! Not only that, this was also the first time the game was held in Safeco Field & televised. 

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What I like about this event, is not only is it filled with celebrities, it's for charity! A portion of the proceeds from the game, go to Richard Sherman's Blanket Coverage Foundation, which helps give students of low-income families, clothing & supplies for school. Besides attending his annual softball games, you can also donate to his foundation here.

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I hope you guys enjoyed the read! After the game, we just headed to check out The Bite of Seattle, so here's a few more pictures, but I'll talk to you guys again later! xo JEN

Hurricane Ridge

Hello, to my fellow adventure junkies! 

My 26th birthday is a week from today, and despite the crazy stressful month I've been having, I decided to kick off the celebration with a first time trip over to Port Angeles, into Olympic National Park, and up the Hurricane Ridge Trail

Hikes like these are my favorite, because the biggest hiking motivator for me, is the potential for great photos. My favorite types of hiking photos involve snow, because I just love the contrast of the greenery against the reflective qualities of snow. Plus, it's nice to not get overheated on a hike because you're surrounded by snow. 

Lastly, lately I've been in such a euphoric state. Such a contrast to the sadness I was feeling last year, and it feels good. Part of it is the fact that I'm almost done with my radiologic technology program, part of it is the new friends I've made in the last couple months, and some of it is the new adventures I've embarked on since then. This year I've started to hike more and there's something just refreshing & satisfying about challenging yourself physically. Then when you've reached the top of a hike and you get to see the view, it's wonderful. I can't wait to see what other adventures wait for me in the rest of 2015. :) - JEN 

"Climb mountains not so the world can see you,
but so you can see the world." - David Mccullough