Reflecting on my 20s

On March 17th, 2019, I will enter my 30s.  As my 20s wind to a close, I can’t help but reflect on how much has happened over the last decade.  In order to prepare myself for the decade to come, I want to reflect on the time gone by.  I gathered my favorite moments and consolidated them here.

Wrote my first novel

I graduated college

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Got rejected from the Peace Corps

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Substitute Taught in dozens of schools in Greeley, Windsor, and Fort Collins

Ran for School Board–Lost

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Move out of my parents house

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Wrote a novel

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Voted for Obama 

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Met the Woman of my dreams then promptly left for Peace Corps

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Spent 13 months learning a language, interacting with a new culture, and teaching

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Moved to New York with the woman of my dreams

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Started my Career

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Got Engaged

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Got married

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Started brewing

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Voted for Bernie

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Got Hudson

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Moved back to Colorado

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Got pregnant

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Bought a House

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Got Titan

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Found out my unborn son had Gastroschisis

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Welcomed my son into the world–spent three weeks in the NICU

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Laid a penny floor and created my home brewery

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Now, onward to my thirties…

 

The Penny Floor Home Brewery

In June 2018, my wife and I bought my parents home.  It was the house I grew up in.  They had lived there for nearly 20 years.  It worked out perfectly that my wife and I were looking to buy our first home at the same time that my parents were looking to downsize and retire up in the Rocky Mountains.

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When my wife and I tried to plan out what we would do with the house, we quickly realized we had more space than we needed.  It is a house to grow into.  Since she was two months pregnant when we closed, it was perfect.  She knew full well that ever since she got me into brewing three year ago, I wanted a true brewery.  A place where I could keeping my brewing supplies out and dedicated.  Luckily, this house has the perfect place.  There is a “utility” room behind the garage.  It is the same length of the garage but only about six or seven feet across.  My father had been using it as a “tool” room.  Over 19 years though, he had accumulated a lot.

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In the Summer of 2018, my parents, my wife, and I started the long process of moving them out and moving us in.  It took months to complete the whole house.    As everything fell into place, I decide to turn a pipe dream into a reality.  I had seen videos and pictures of penny floors all over the internet.  I knew it would be perfect for a brewery.  As I cleared out the floor in my father’s tool room, it revealed a dirty light green concrete floor.  It seemed like the perfect opportunity to upgrade a room and to the penny floor I had been wanting for years.

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The day before we got our first ultrasound, I laid the first pennies.  It was a learning process.  We tried to lay them in such a way so that there would be as little gap as possible…but that turned out to be harder than I expected.

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One hour of work…

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About ten hours of work in (room being used as storage since I am taking months to get this done between work and taking care of my pregnant wife).

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My general setup was to do three rows across the room at a time.  That would take about half an hour.  So, about ten minutes per row.

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By the Fall of 2018, this project fell onto my back-burner.  In August, my unborn son had been diagnosed with Gastroschisis–a disorder that left his intestines outside of his body.  As the pregnancy progressed, it consumed my wife and I as our appointments became more and more common.  By his birth on December 27th, 2018, we had gone to more than twenty ultrasounds.

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After three weeks in the NICU, my son was discharge and I got two weeks of paternity leave (my wife had already quit her job). My wife and I gave each other free time to feel sane during these first few weeks.  I decided to use my time to finish the floor before I went back to work.

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Putting the final pennies down…

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After laying more than 28,000 pennies over the course of 75 hours, I grouted the entire floor to make the copper color pop.

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Lastly, the Polyurethane to protect the floor and make it shine.  I did two coats.

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After letting it dry for 48 hours, I moved the work benches into place.

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On  18 February 2019, I did my first brew in my new brewery.

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