Posts Tagged ‘meet munzee munday’

June 13, 2017

Team Munzee Tuezday: Chris Houlihan

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Our team continues to grow ,and we’re excited with the addition of Chris Houlihan.


Name and Title:

Chris Houlihan, Director of Technical Operations

Where are you from?
Flower Mound, Texas

Tell us about yourself:
I graduated from the University of North Texas with a bachelors in computer science. Prior to that, I was a math major at the University of Chicago until I realized how much I disliked higher level math. I have been in software development for over 20 years working in defense, telecom, and enterprise software. I transitioned into development management about ten years ago and found that I really enjoyed it. I have never stopped coding, though. I am married and have seven kids at last count.

How long have you worked for Munzee?
One week.

What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
The team.

What are some of your other hobbies?
Developing games, herding children

Any last words?
Not yet.

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May 8, 2017

Meet Munzee Munday: John Rogeles

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Our team continues to grow and we’re excited with the addition of John Rogeles.


Name and Title:

John Rogeles, Graphic Designer

Where are you from?
Puerto Rico

Tell us about yourself:
Self-taught artist, Creative, Gamer, overall whacky character

How long have you worked for Munzee?
My first day was May 1st, 2017.

What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
The culture — everyone here is on the same wave.

What are some of your other hobbies?
Besides art, I like to create small proto-type video games, backyard sports, camping, hiking, and watching movies.

Any last words?
I hope the Munzee community enjoys my artist take on badges, icons, and plenty of other art-related illustrations that will inevitably come out in the future.

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July 11, 2016

Meet Munzee Munday: Judy Nguyen

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Our team continues to grow and we’re excited with the addition of Judy Nguyen.


387998_2424252012886_742180605_nName and Title:


Judy Nguyen – Web Designer/Developer

Where are you from?

I grew up in a small town called Yukon, OK (the home of Garth Brooks, he never visits) right outside of Oklahoma City until I was sixteen and moved to the DFW area after that to be closer to family.

Tell us about yourself:
Pretty nerdy, laid back, introverted (but that doesn’t mean I don’t like meeting new people!).

I graduated from the University of Texas at Dallas with a BA in Arts and Technology. Initially I wasn’t sure what direction I wanted to take my degree, ended up getting interested in web development, studied a lot about it, and here I am! 🙂

How long have you worked for Munzee?
Approximately 1 month and 2 days.

What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
I’ve only been here for a month, so I’m still getting the hang of things, but so far the best part of working at Munzee are the people that work here. Everyone is proactive and open to new thoughts and ideas.1911278_10201742787478626_1028306444_o

What are some of your other hobbies?
I’m pretty obsessed with learning new things, which can range from teaching myself how to knit to hacking around with Raspberry Pi. In the era of the internet, learning how to do *anything* is just a Google search away.

When I’m not spending time nerding out learning about code and design, I enjoy playing video games (Fallout, Civilization, Stardew Valley are some of my faves). I also like dabbling in arts and crafts. I love music and enjoy finding new music to listen to (mad props to Discover Weekly on Spotify!). I also watch a lot of Netflix!
Any last words?
“Zip it up, and zip it out” – Dave Chappelle

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February 8, 2016

Meet Munzee Munday: Dale Swinehart

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Our team continues to grow and we’re excited with the addition of Dale Swinehart. (You will see some references to Munzee Marketplace – Cocoa Beach. We’ll be introducing that soon.)

 

Munzee Monday pic 5Name and Title:

Dale Swinehart, Manager of the Munzee Marketplace Cocoa Beach

Where are you from?

Born in a small town in Michigan then moved to Rockledge, FL when I was 9 years old. Spent the next 21 years in Rockledge before moving to Merritt Island. We have lived on Merritt Island now for last 18 years.

Tell us about yourself:
I have one son from a previous marriage who is 20 years old and lives in Rockledge still.  I also have two adult step kids ages 29 and 27 who were from Barb’s first marraige. I met Barb in 1998 in an AOL Chat room online. We have been together ever since. She is my soulmate without a doubt. I am very fortunate to have a partner that loves doing what I love doing. We both love Munzee, have worked side by side for many years now and pretty much do everything together.

How long have you worked for Munzee?
I work for Munzee??!!!

What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
First and foremost I have to say the people that work for Munzee. We met Trish and Rob a few years ago the Texas Challenge. It was a chance meeting that has changed our lives. We were fortunate to be able to spend extended time with team Munzee and they truly are an exceptional group of people. Next I would have to say the players we have interacted with. We have made some really great friends through Munzee.

Munzee Monday pic 3

What are some of your other hobbies?
Things I love but find very little time to enjoy besides Munzee would be kayaking, hiking through the woods, [caching] and playing/coaching soccer (if I tried to play soccer right now,
I probably would have a heart attack).

Any last words?
Yes, be sure to come visit the all new Munzee Marketplace in Cocoa Beach, FL. It will be a one of a kind experience.  Our grand opening is slated for February 29th, 2016 on world famous Cocoa Beach, FL.

Play the game that makes you happy. If you are not having fun then you should find a new game. Life is too short not to be happy.

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October 6, 2014

Meet Munzee Munday: State of the Munion

Although Munzee is only 3 years old, Team Munzee has grown like the game’s map: quick. Over the past few months we’ve seen a Marketplace open, a Bash blast off and a world freeze over. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg (pun intended). In the near future our players will see a new app, a subscription service and, as always, game growth. This growth is what we at Team Munzee pride ourselves on. We’re unwilling to rest when there are improvements to be made and through trial and error we’re making the most of Munzee. Through this all our faithful leader has stood tall, even when his back has crumbled. Like all great leaders, Munzee President Rob Vardeman has been the power behind the game’s recent growth and as he celebrates his first year in the books he has a few thoughts on how it has gone. October 4th, 2014 CoachV celebrated the end of his first year as Munzee president and we’re proud to congratulate him on a fine term.

IMG_2228It’s been a year since you took the reins on Munzee. How has it been?
This first year has exceeded any expectations I could have dreamed a year ago. The response of players around the world to some of the new game play and charity initiatives has been amazing!

What are some of your highlights from your first year as president?
So many highlights it is difficult to only choose a few, but I’ll give it a try. Multiple events around the world meeting new people has to be top of my list. Adding amazing new team members and truly growing the game from the inside has done wonders. Special charity Munzees and fundraising campaigns have touched me and impacted the lives of the recipients in great ways.

Anything you would have changed?
As with any new venture there are always things you look back and know you would change. I’m a risk taker and believe we have to try new things to find our sweet spot. The Munzlympics for example, big fail. However, it lead to a more successful Copa do Munzo, which will lead to an amazing next run along the same lines.

What’s your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part of the job is where my passion in life has always been, the people. I love the interaction. I love talking with players who visit MHQ. I love traveling to events and meeting the people who make this game what it is. Without the people, Munzee does not exist and that is never taken for granted.

Least favorite part?
Learning all the tech terms from Scott. I’m very fortunate to have a great team in place with each person having strengths in areas where I am lacking. Scott is very good at sharing issues we have in “Rob terms” so I can understand. I have a great appreciation (and limited understanding) for what Scott and his team do everyday!

teamWhat expectations do you have for your second year?
What can you expect from year 2.0 with me at the helm? Expect the Unexpected has been the slogan of the year and I think everyone (including the team) has come to know it to be true. We have some plans for expansion via the new Eventzee app for special events and private scavenger hunts. We will continue to press forward, innovate, and evolve the game of Munzee with new and unique ideas, contests, and prizes. Players should prepare for an exciting ride as we look to Munzee 3.0 (launch: TBD).  Let’s just put it this way, year one was just the opening act, there is still plenty ahead for Munzee players to be excited about!

Any words of enlightenment, El Presidente?
Our players now should be excited to have built Munzee to this point. They are still part of our early years and growing pains, members of the first 200,000 player club.  We strive daily to prepare for the future, for the millionth player. Will that player join Munzee in the next year? Only time will tell, but when they do, we will be ready! We appreciate the passion seen from players worldwide and will work with the same passion to make Munzee the scavenger hunt of the future! Grow the map, grow the game!rob

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September 8, 2014

Meet Munzee Munday: TJ Ogroske

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Over the next few weeks we’ll be showcasing members of Team Munzee so our players can get to know us a bit better. So each Munday (see what we did there?) check in to see a new member of Team Munzee and you decide if you trust the game in our hands. This week we highlight a man of few words who keeps the cogs of the Munzee machine moving. It’s Munzee VP of Operations TJ Ogroske!

photo(1)Name and Title:
TJ Ogroske
VP of Operations and Marketing

Where are you from?
Perham, MN

How did you find Munzee?
The one and only… Rob Vardeman.

photo(2)How long have you worked for Munzee?
1 Year

What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
How Munzee brings people together.  It promotes such a great sense of community, the people are great.  Also the Munzee virtual gardens and the virtual art, it is so cool opening up the map to see all the art!  I really wish there was one that we could do here at MHQ! (Editor’s Note: Interesting idea… more on that soon!)

 

Famous last words?
I try not to talk too much (Editor’s Note: We can tell) however I am so very impressed by the outreach of our player community.  It absolutely amazes me how much effort is given to the charity events and the amount of money that is given.  One day we will raise over $100,000 and even $1 million dollars, even though every dollar amazes me!  A big thank you to all the players from the bottom of my heart!

photo(3)

 

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August 18, 2014

Meet Munzee Munday: The Munzee Marketplace (cont.)

Team Munzee has been hard at work getting the Munzee Marketplace up and running so for this Meet Munzee Munday, check out our progress. It’s all starting to come together and we hope to open very soon. So get to Downtown McKinney and visit the Marketplace!

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August 11, 2014

Meet Munzee Munday: Rob Vardeman

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Over the next few weeks we’ll be showcasing members of Team Munzee so our players can get to know us a bit better. So each Munday (see what we did there?) check in to see a new member of Team Munzee and you decide if you trust the game in our hands. It may have taken him all day to finish his questionnaire, but he’s a pretty busy guy. It’s Munzee President Rob Vardeman!

IMG_3729Name and Title:
Rob Vardeman, President of Munzee Inc.

Where are you from?
Born in West Texas (Odessa) but jumped around the state several times, and a 4-year stay in California, before finally landing in Allen Texas. I’ve lived in Allen for 22 years, about 5 miles from our amazing location for Munzee HeadQuarters.

How did you find Munzee?
robDad August 13th 2011, just over a month after Munzee launched I was out playing two other location games. I was headed for a long trail, but stopped at a windmill to find a container. As I approached GZ I noticed a tag zip tied to the structure flapping in the breeze. Odd but unimportant in my current search. I found the container a few feet away, took care of business, and turned to leave. Then I noticed the tag had a QR code on it and said “Scan for points”. Being a gamer, and having just installed a QR code reader on my phone a few weeks earlier I scanned it and was taken to the Munzee website. I found out I needed to create an account to play this game, so I did. It was love at first cap. I spent the next 5 hours, and over 100 miles driving to all the nearby Munzees collecting my 5 points. Over the next few weeks I started to interact with “snicker” via email because I was unable to find some of his daughter’s deployments. He IMG_3128basically made fun of me (sarcastically) and said I needed to improve my “geo-senses” if I couldn’t find something hidden by his little daughter. LOL. It kicked my Munzee hunting into high gear when I figured out I was interacting with a co-founder and the president. Eventually capping Munzees in his neighborhood lead to meeting him so I took my shot and told him I would work for Munzee one day. I had a vision for what it could be used for and where it could go! I became addicted to chasing special icons and points. I was a fanatical player and made it all the way to #7 on the global leaderboard before I finally got added to the team. The rest of the story is history. 🙂

How long have you worked for Munzee?
After 9 months of bugging Aaron and Scott to let me help, I began volunteering for Munzee in June of 2012 as my summer started for my teaching job. My title was Business Development, Community Support, and Player Interaction (or something like that). Over the next 6 months I worked hard to prove my worth and earn my spot, while working full time as a 5th grade Math teacher. In December 2012 I presented a plan to Aaron that would move me to full time contractor status with Munzee due to increasing needs for work to be done during “normal business hours”. While the plan was risky, I had faith and knew it was the right move for MIMG_3896unzee, and Aaron agreed. In January 2013, things really started to take off, after finally finding a supplier for vinyl stickers. It was 9 months later when Aaron and I talked through the future path for Munzee and he handed off the reins of Munzee Inc to me. October 4th 2013 was a life changing day for me and a game changer for Munzee. Since that time we’ve grown by leaps and bounds, increasing to 8 full time employees, 3 part time, and a fast growing worldwide community of players! Every day I’m amazed at our growth as a company and a game. I’m proud to lead our team as we venture out into new arenas and press on as THE 21st century scavenger hunt.

IMG_3922What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
Munzee is family. I truly see it that way. From hanging out with players at events, to interacting via email or Facebook groups I have always enjoyed spending time with my Munzee family. Hearing stories of need and how Munzee has made a difference, like in the case of my buddy David Reed, I believe in giving back to the players and their communities. It’s part of the reason I love to travel to events so much. Without the players, and their love for Munzee, we would be nothing. That’s something at the forefront of every choice we make at MHQ. The theme of 2014 is “Expect the Unexpected” and I think we’ve lived up to it at this point. The addition of new Munzee types, special contests, new badges, special events, and the marketplace show we aren’t afraid to keep things fresh. Munzee is home of the “Play it your way” special, and we will absolutely continue to innovate and give players new experiences in the years to come.

Famous last words?
When we moved into our first MHQ in January the three of us had quotes on the board. Mine is “I’ll be excited with one”. Sometimes we get carried away with bigger, faster, better, and the things that could be. But I’m excited with one. One person at an event, one deploy in a small town, one event in a new location, one shipment to a new country, one new player. It takes one to get the ball rolling. We’re seeing amazing growth in so many new places all around the world and it all started from one person in that area. Thanks also to the One who protects and guides me daily through this life I’m blessed to live and to my supportive family for allowing me to chase this dream. #MunzeeOnRobFamily

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August 4, 2014

Meet Munzee Munday: Scott Foster

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Over the next few weeks we’ll be showcasing members of Team Munzee so our players can get to know us a bit better. So each Munday (see what we did there?) check in to see a new member of Team Munzee and you decide if you trust the game in our hands. This week we take a peak behind the veil at co-founder Scott Foster!

-4Name and Title:
Scott Foster, Co-Founder/VP of Technology

Where are you from?
I am from San Rafael, California, USA which is on the North side of the Golden Gate Bridge, south being the beautiful city of San Francisco. I lived there until I was 15 and then moved to Texas with my mom and step-dad. We moved in the middle of July and I would call my friends back in California and say “You wouldn’t believe this place. It’s 2am and it’s still 102F outside.” I still hate the heat. HATE IT.

Tell us about yourself:
About me? Let’s step back a bit …

I have always been interested in programming. I remember being fascinated with computers as a child. I feel like this is very cliché, but I loved being able to type something into the keyboard and things would appear. My dad bought me a C++ book when I was 7 and I didn’t understand a single word of it, but I felt much smarter that I had that book. “Look at me, I’m a REAL programmer!” I remember my house had two phone lines and two computers. So one day I played Warcraft 2 with my friend in the other room via dialup (56k baud modem) and was so amazed how that worked. I lost the game, but it was amazing how it was possible that I could play a game with somebody in the other room. It almost felt like Bell talking into the phone to Watson for the first time, “Mr. Watson – Come here – I want to see you.” … ah, something that is so taken for granted nowadays.

In middle school, I learned Hypercard and would make the teachers impressed that I could make a button on the screen that when you click it, a sound would play on the computer. The girls in my class were not as impressed as my teachers (surprising, I know). My school also had a website that they had no idea what to do with, so I asked if I could play with it – and I thought it was so cool that I could make changes to a file called index.html and people all over the world would see it. Things like that were always a delight.

Once I moved to Texas at 15, it was time to grow up. I just wanted to learn programming and make my 7 year old self proud. Once I graduated from high school and tried a few attempts at college, I decided to join the United States Air Force because they were willing to teach me programming, or so I thought. Basic training was “fun” as was technical training school. I kept asking when I was going to go learn real programming. I got stationed at RAF Lakenheath, England and was excited to learn … which I never did. I bought a PHP book which, like when I was young, I thought that it made me a real programmer. I learned the basics, created a website, and just had fun. As the great historian band Bone Thugs-n-Harmony once said, “You know nothing come easy, you gotta try real, real hard, I tried hard…but I guess I gotta try harder.”

-3I got out of the USAF after 2.5 years because the military was done relying on people to do programming and switched to using companies. I then moved back to Texas where I married my high school sweetheart, got my college degree at University of Texas at Dallas in Management Information Systems, and my wife and I moved to Philadelphia, PA to start our lives. I worked for a few companies, learned a lot about real programming, and then one day got a Facebook message from Aaron talking about this game he thought about called Munzee which has all lead to this.

Now, my life is not completely boring. I love all kinds of things. I have a Barry Bonds jersey in my closet. I will fight to the death at the notion that he ever did steroids. I also still love playing video games – Final Fantasy and Counterstrike: Global Offensive are the two that I play the most. I also enjoy nature, bike riding, 90’s west coast rap music, and hanging out with my family. A wife and 3 kids keep me very busy outside of work, but I love it.

-2How long have you worked for Munzee?
I have been around since the almost beginning of Munzee, but have only been working on it full time for about 1.5 years. Most people don’t know, but the first year when we created Munzee… nobody got paid. Everybody thought the idea was stupid, but we wanted to prove them wrong. All the money we earned, which wasn’t much, went back towards the servers or things to grow the game. Myself, along with the three other founders, would sit on Skype from about 8pm – midnight every night coming up with what Munzee was. We all had families and full time jobs so it was all done on the side because players, like you, kept playing. There were many debates on things like what it’s called when you scan a munzee. Everybody now knows it’s called capturing, but back then we had to come up with the terminology.

How did you come up with Munzee?
I actually did not come up with Munzee. Aaron approached me with some ideas he had along with mockups of the website. When I moved back to Texas, the 4 founders met on a cold February 2011 evening at a Mexican restaurant where we all agreed to start Munzee. The rest is history.

-1What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
The two things I love most are the abilities to prove to myself that I am a real programmer, that my 7 year old self would be proud of, and talking to people all over the world. Most people just go to work, do their job, think the work that they do doesn’t matter to anyone, and go home. Not me. My job is to make sure there is enough coal in the Munzee engine so that people can use it and Rob can steer where the boat needs to go. I have met a lot of interesting people via Munzee and realize that people from all over the world have the same hopes, fears, doubts, inspirations, and goals.

Famous last words?

I got 3 quotes. Dylan is mad that I couldn’t just pick one.

“I want to put a ding in the universe.” – Steve Jobs
“Everyone has a plan ’till they get punched in the mouth. ” – Mike Tyson
“When my time on earth is gone, and my activities here are passed, I want them to bury me upside down, and my critics can kiss my…” – Bobby Knight

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July 28, 2014

Meet Munzee Munday: Omi Salavea

Here at Munzee we’re constantly encouraging our players to meet and greet and build the personal relationships that make this game so great. Over the next few weeks we’ll be showcasing members of Team Munzee so our players can get to know us a bit better. So each Munday (see what we did there?) check in to see a new member of Team Munzee and you decide if you trust the game in our hands. You know her voice, you probably know her instagrammed face, it’s social media director and podcast host extraordinaire Omi Salavea!

Name and Title: 10426687_819145448096871_3386544952757225396_n
Omi Salavea, Social Media Director for Munzee

Where are you from?
Everywhere, USA! But I hung my hat in Virginia for the longest time.

Tell us about yourself:
Almost everything people could learn about me can be found online, 🙂 . Well, almost everything.

I spent most of my childhood as a Navy brat in Virginia. I grew up loving sci-fi, fine arts, and the great outdoors. I come from creative artists, but to this day, can barely scratch out a simple stick figure. Being surrounded by creativity, I had to find my own niche. Back in my day, the web and communicating globally was still a very new thing. So I made a decision to attend quite a few technical colleges, majoring in anything from web design (hey, that’s creative) to general IT/Networking studies (pays the bills).

With a whirlwind of half-completed studies, creative endeavors, and general craziness that happens in your 20’s, I landed a very awesome job at a pretty large company. I spent several years working up the ranks from the bottom level, technical support. Working in technical support gave me two things: appreciation and compassion for the customers that sign my paychecks, and time to work on what I wanted to do career-wise.

By now the internet was in the infant stages of global communication and interaction. The ability to enjoy a photo of the Sahara desert taken ten minutes ago, and then turn around and watch a DIY repair video recorded in Seattle intrigued me. This sense of sharing experiences, art, etc… to millions of people planted the seeds in my heart to delve into the world of Social Media.

I officially started in 2008 running several blogs and social campaigns with limited success, until I settled on my old blog and Youtube channels (poor, poor, neglected media outlets). In late 2010, Canon USA & Canon ITS grabbed me out of my current Fraud/Investigations position (at the time), and placed me as lead/senior technical consult for developing and launching Canon’s first ever involvement within Social Media. I assisted in rolling out Canon USA’s presence on all major Social Outlets. In 2011, I shifted to the role of senior Social Media Moderator/Advocate for Canon CITS.

Once this happened, well, I officially designated myself a Social Media Maven :). People have seen my face (or heard my voice) all over Youtube, re-pin ANYTHING any of my Pinterest presences post, deal with my terrible blogs, and “heart” my ridiculous tweets.

10553476_830885030256246_3564965413026840304_nHow long have you worked for Munzee?
Scott, Rob and the original president of Munzee, Aaron, took quick notice of me online and how pro-active I was in promoting some of my outdoor hobbies. In late July, 2013 Aaron asked me to join the team. Basic stuff first, answering support tickets, providing suggestions/feedback about Social Media. The role has grown from there. Everyone at Munzee wears different hats, currently I’m wearing a painter’s mask and a sailor hat constructed out of 120 grit sandpaper.

How did you find Munzee?
Probably the only normal answer I have for this interview! I found Munzee the same way many of our players did. I went out for a ‘caching break at a rest area during a very cold, bitter December. After rooting around in a tangle of dead branches and snow, I found a very neglected cache. No swag, no travel bugs, but a very large, home-printed Munzee with very vague instructions on the back. When I got to my vacation destination, I looked up Munzee and was instantly intrigued, and confused! It took a better smartphone, and a lot of time out in parking lots to get familiar with the game, as well as time spent in the forums, Facebook, and Youtube.

What do you enjoy most about Munzee?
Unlike some of my other hobbies, Munzee doesn’t have me circling the same area for 20 minutes scratching my head because I can’t locate it. Then someone else finds it 2 hours later and says I didn’t look hard enough. I don’t spend 4 hours carving an elaborate stamp of a heron flying through reeds, weeks planning the special place to plant it, and then days being depressed when someone takes the stamp out of it’s hidden spot because they thought it was a prize (Letterboxers feel my pain right now).

10155574_780700318608051_1486860716799934650_nMunzee helps so many people stay active. That makes me super proud of Munzee. Even if I didn’t run almost every evening, I get my daily walk and Fitbit steps in by playing Munzee almost every night. It’s the same for many of our players out there.

What are some of your other hobbies?
Live, Eat, Breathe Social Media (drops mic, walks off-stage). Actually, in my spare time I love hiking, making videos for Youtube, and photography. I’m not that great at any of those, but I still love them. I have taken up running, and hope to take part in my first Color Me Rad later on this year. I love spontaneous road trips and with the amount of road trips I’ve taken this year, I’m sure we can list those as a hobby. Oh, does weight loss count as a hobby? If so, then that too.

Famous last words?
Will be available via podcast, you just need to download a better audio player to hear them.10351968_760506017347364_1774709760837554661_n

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