Thursday, July 21, 2016

In the Land of Unicorns...Part 1

Last month I had the opportunity to participate in the Skirt Sports Ambassador Retreat and 13er Race Weekend in Boulder, Colorado and lemme tell was AH-MAZ-INGGGGGG!!!! Seriously, it's been over a month and I'm still blown away every time I think about that weekend, the amazing stories, the fantastic people, all the love, all the inspiration and so much more!! So let me tell you all about it!

First, a little back story. This is the second year that Skirt Sports has held their Ambassador Retreat and I was super bummed that I wasn't able to go last year. So when I was welcomed back as an Ambassador this year, I told my husband that I didn't care what we had to do to make it happen, I was going to be there for it. Thankfully for him, he listened, and he also decided he wanted to go with. He knew it was going to be a lot of time for him to hang out solo, but he was okay with that.

We flew out bright and early on a Friday morning and had no problems getting into Denver, picking up our rental car, and driving into Boulder. Right away we were amazed by the views in Colorado - seriously, it was soooooooo beautiful!!! Just green everywhere and Rocky Mountain vistas in the background. We were immediately in love...

The beauty of an early morning flight is watching a sunrise like THIS one!! 
Our first views of Colorado didn't disappoint!

Coming from California, especially right at the tail end of a massive heat wave, where everything is already crisp and brown, seeing green was such a welcome sight! I could not get over how LUSH everything was.

Since the hubby decided to come with me and he knew he was going to be hanging solo for large chunks of time, he insisted on finding a hotel that was central to things to do, was appealing, and had a good view. So we selected The Hotel Boulderado in downtown Boulder. And it was so spectacular!! The Boulderado is an historical landmark with two sections, one that is part of the original hotel and decorated in a Victorian style, and the newer section that is more modern. We went with the Victorian and got one of the suites that had a balcony and I'm so glad we did. That balcony was one of my favorite parts of the hotel, along with the lobby and the grand staircase. I felt like I was in a movie, and thankfully I only felt like the movie was The Shining a couple of times. Ha!!

The Hotel Boulderado Lobby in downtown Boulder, Colorado

The view from the balcony at The Hotel Boulderado
After getting all settled into our room at the Hotel, we headed downstairs to the Corner Bar at the hotel and got some lunch. The food was amazingly good, the waitress was fabulous (she even remembered us when we went back the next day for dinner including what we had to eat and drink!) and the vibe was totally chill.

I mean, you can't go wrong with an awesome moose and bottle chandeliers, right?!?

But what I was most excited about was the reception that was scheduled for that night at the actual Mothership - the Skirt Sports store!!!! And not just getting to see the actual store, but finally getting to meet in real life all these wonderful ladies that I had formed friendships with over the past year. I was a little nervous, but when you throw on an awesome Skirt Sports outfit it is like throwing on a coat of armor - you have a little extra pep in your step! Besides, I had cash in my pocket and I was going shopping for new Skirt! LOL But, I will admit that I was like a high school girl in total geeked out fandom splendor. I felt like every time I turned around at the reception and got to meet another fabulous lady I just couldn't help jumping up and down, squealing in delight, and hugging the ever lovin' heck outta whoever was unlucky enough to be on the receiving end of my excitement. I'm sure you can picture it...heehee

Kim, Me, and Kriss - Just call us the Special K's! ;-) 

Jennifer, Sami, Amy and me! You might recognize those gorgeous gals as some of Skirt's models! They are gorgeous inside and out!

Noelle Wilson, the Ambassador Program Coordinator - AKA a ROCK STAR OF A WOMAN!!

I just can't even begin to describe how amazing it was to meet all these ladies and to give them a hug and talk to them face to face. I know it may seem over the top, but these gals that are part of Skirt Sports - they are absolute UNICORNS!! They just radiate positivity and empowerment and determination and perseverance and LOVE...So. Much. Love. You know that part of the mission of Skirt Sports is to embody that women come in all shapes and sizes and that we all have many roles in life, but I mean it when I say that Skirt Sports isn't just talking the talk - they are walking the walk!! These gals that are part of the Skirt family come from all different backgrounds and life stories, are all shaped different, all have different activities that are "their thing" but one thing is consistent and that is that in being a woman we are strong and that #REALwomenmove. It's true, y'all!! I honestly wish I could have bottled the warm fuzzies and share them with everyone I know.

Oh, and my wallet went home a little lighter, but I picked up some amazing things at the store! A few of the items in the store weren't yet available online and are some faves in my collection including this shirt:

Friends & Coffee & Running & Skirts - this shirt was MADE for me!!! And that's my Melissa in the background eating up some delicious Noosa yogurt - a Colorado based company that was one of the weekend's sponsors...and SOOOOOO good y'all! Seriously, so good. 
Another highlight of the night was getting to hear Nicole De Boom share with us some little anecdotes, her skirt story and how Skirt Sports was born, some behind-the-scenes previews (have you checked out The Sewing Room yet?) and more. You guys, she is AMAZING!!! I just don't have words to even describe her outside of she is like the Mother Unicorn! So warm, engaging, funny, authentic, kind, and inspiring. I implore you to watch this little video of her speaking at a women's event in Colorado, Evoso Live:

The evening ended with a sneak peek at the Fall/Winter line that will be releasing over the next several weeks, but I do have it on good authority that you may want to start stalking the website as early as TOMORROW for the first set of items. I have come to expect a lot from Skirt Sports, and for good reason! What I saw in the preview is definitely exciting and I know I'm pinching my pennies right now in preparation for buying all the things.

There was still a lot of fun to be had over the next several days and no matter what, just know that there's no way possible for me to truly convey how amazing it all was. But if the first night hanging out in the Land of Unicorns was any indication, then hopefully you know it was EPIC! More to come...stay tuned for the Ambassador Hike & Breakout Sessions, and of course, the 13er race (sneak preview is that I earned my personal worst finish time and am so glad I did!).

Here's a few pics from the Skirt Sports store (AKA The Mothership)

Talk about motivation walls!

How the magic all began - that's THE very first running skirt, EVERRRRRR!!

The entire Ambassador weekend was helped along by some amazing sponsors and we are all so thankful for them stepping up and supporting us. Special thanks to:

This CAKE you I've ever had, yo!

Two Moms in the Raw
SKA Brewing

Thanks again to all the wonderful sponsors! They kept us fed, hydrated, and happy all weekend long!

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