Thursday, February 18, 2010

Our year in Denver: a timeline

This week marks the one-year anniversary since we drove into Denver for the first time (February 16). It was 60 degrees and sunny and we drove through town with our windows down, our car packed full of stuff, looking for an affordable hotel to stay at while we hunted for an apartment. We ended up at a Red Lion and started looking at rentals that same day.

Two days later we went to visit our house (February 18). I had seen it online while checking out real estate listings before we moved, and I couldn't get it out of my head. I wanted to see it in person so that I could find all its flaws and forget about it. Instead, I loved it. We both did. But we knew it was insane to buy a house the week we arrived in town, before we knew if we would even like it here. So we went back to the Red Lion.

The next day we moved into our apartment (February 19). The moving truck arrived the next day with the rest of our stuff (February 20). We had upgraded from a one-bedroom apartment in DC to a three-bedroom in order to accommodate both of our new working-from-home situations. That weekend we went out and bought a desk for Torsten's office, because until then we only owned one desk (February 21).

That week we also made appointments to "interview" Montana and one other dog at the prison program (February 23). They didn't have an opening for a few weeks. I thought I was going to die with anticipation waiting for those few weeks. (The feeling kind of reminds me of how I feel now, actually, about waiting to have a baby.) We both wanted a dog so badly that when we stopped at PetSmart to buy some supplies like a leash and dishes, we seriously considered adopting a very cute cattle dog they had on site that day (February 22). But we knew it made more sense to wait and make a more rational decision about a dog that would be a good fit for us, so we left without adopting anybody.

A few weeks later we went to the prison (March 5). We met Montana in the parking lot. We met the other dog too. They were both so sweet, we had trouble deciding. But we knew from the personality profiles that Montana would be a great fit for us, so we went with our logic and picked her. They took her away to wash her and get her ready for our "go-home" class, and we got our visitor passes and checked into the prison. Two hours later, we watched in her final class with an inmate handler, so delicate, so graceful, so cautious. I cried, and Torsten and I both fell in love with her. She wasn't just the logical decision; in that moment, she became the emotional decision as well. She came home with us the same day.

Two weeks after that, knowing by then that Denver was the place for us and unable to get the house out of our minds, we went back to look at it again (March 14). We made an offer the same day. The next day we took Montana for a hike in the foothills, her first with us, and got a call from our realtor on our drive home that our offer had been accepted.

A couple weeks after that I attended a seminar and a follow-up appointment with my surgeon (April 2). At the follow-up appointment, we set the date for my lap-band surgery.

A couple weeks after that, we closed on our house (April 16). We moved in that weekend, during a snowstorm (April 19). And we both seriously plan to never, ever move again. No, really. Never. We went from a two-room apartment to an eight-room house in the space of two months. No more upgrading is required.

A month later, I had my lap-band surgery (May 14). I came home the same day and spent many days sleeping with an ice pack on my abdomen and eating basically nothing. I lost 20 pounds in those first few weeks.

After that the dates become fuzzier. Our lives became more routine. There's been hiking and gym-going and cooking and sleeping and working and traveling. There's been mountains and decorating and planning and visits to the dog park and farmer's markets and snowstorms. There's been new friends and lunches out and parties and visits from friends and family. There's been fires in the fireplaces and new furniture and lazy weekends and doggy baths in the backyard. There's been over 70 pounds lost and wedding photos framed and hung and money earned and money spent. There's been a job quit and a company started. There's been cuddling and laughing and barking and yes, whining (mostly, but not entirely, on the dog's part).

In short, it's been awesome. It's been the life we were seeking, the life that we've found. It's been exactly what we were hoping for and a million things that we never would have expected. It's been full and rich and awesome and wonderful and scary and overwhelming and fantastic.

It's been a hell of a year.

23 comments:

  1. Wow Jess! What a year indeed! You have built a wonderful life for yourself out here, it seems like you have done everything just perfectly. Onward and upward! :)

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  2. I say it's been two incredible years, given the year before was all about your nuptials. And if all goes according to your plan, this upcoming year could be equally as memorable. They say bad things happen in threes. It's good to know good things happen in threes, too.

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  3. Wow, it's already been a year? I really admire how you make things happen!

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  4. I love this post! It pretty much made me tear up.

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  5. No kidding! Not just a hell of a year, a hell of a 3 months there. I'm glad the last 9 were a little more routine, but those first 3 were months you'll never forget!

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  6. You know what's funny -- I think I found your blog like maybe the week or two before you moved -- so now I feel like I'm celebrating a year as a reader...Congrats on all the success you have had this year. I've loved reading about it!

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  7. I agree with Nilsa. The last two years of your life have been chalk full of huge and amazing things! It would be cool to see this timeline in pictures too. (hint hint)

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  8. ha, that IS a year, isn't it! i'm thrilled to say that i did NOT move this year, which is almost as much of an accomplishment for me ;-)

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  9. Yes it has! It's amazing all of the things that you can fit in just 365 days!

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  10. Wow! What a jam-packed year. It's hard to believe that so much can happen in such a short time. Reading this made me reflect on my past year and realize just how good life is even when it sometimes feels like the pits. Hope your next year is as awesome.

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  11. I've enjoyed reading about it! Can't wait to see what's next!

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  12. Well damn, for most people that'd be a 5-year timeline. Congratulations on 1 year of multiple successes and milestones. Can't wait until this weather warms up, though.

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  13. So much has happened! What a great year!

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  14. That seriously is one crazy year. I can't believe how much stuff you guys did and went through during the first half of it!

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  15. My lord it HAS been a hell of a year! In the best possible way!

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  16. Totally awesome. I'm so glad for you that you guys have made such a wonderful life together and I especially love the fact that you don't ever seem to take it for granted.

    I also got a chuckle out of one of those paragraphs starting out with "A few weeks later we went to the prison"...I wonder what kinds of google searches you'll get now :-)

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  17. I've been reading the whole time, but seeing the summary, wow what a year you've had! I know you're not loving the wait to have a baby, but I don't know how one more big thing could have fit into this year. Such happy stuff, and so much of it!

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  18. I CANNOT believe it has been a year already! Can. Not. !!

    Woah!

    But I also cannot believe I have been pregnant nine months already. Time flies when your having fun!

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