the places we will go | gem & jam festival RECAP video + tuscon travels

March 2, 2017

a few months ago, i spontaneously decided i was going to make a trip down to phoenix, arizona to see my best friend, and fellow desert iris co-founder, hannah. we planned for a week of adventure, photo ops, good music, new friends, and a break from life. although this trip was planned in advance, it didn’t feel like it.

i quickly put my life on hold, and braced myself for a much needed getaway. when i say it didn’t feel planned, i mean that. on my way to the airport we weren’t even sure if we did the booking right, leaving me unsure if i had a spot on that plane. with only a backpack and my camera gear, i took the metro to the airport and hoped for the best.


luckily, we found my reservation just in time for me to get to the airport. over the course of my week, it became more and more evident how much we needed this trip. both of our lives filled with responsibilities and obligations, we made an executive decision to put it all aside.


even if it was just for a few days, we needed to get out and do what makes our heart happy without worrying about anything else. we cruised around downtown phoenix, capturing photos at every mural we could. we caught up with old high school friends and took in arizona’s highly underrated beauty while hiking.


we then set out on a mini road trip to tuscon, arizona to volunteer for gem & jam festival. as our dusty wheels rode in the back roads of the pima county fair grounds, we were instantly amazed by the amount of like-minded individuals that surrounded us and we finally felt at home.


as the weekend went by, we were able to experience a festival unlike any other way we had before. working as a volunteer we were able to see really how much work goes into creating a festival experience. and wow- kudos to anyone and everyone who has ever had any part in festival production.


your work has not gone unnoticed and we appreciate you. not only were we able to work in the green room and meet some of the festival headliners, but we were also able to connect with countless like-minded people that taught us a lot over the weekend. whether it be our science nerd neighbors from colorado, or the 64 year-old dancing security guard, nancy.


through it all, because of this trip i was able to realize the importance of traveling, connecting with people, and taking a break from life. it is so easy to get wrapped up in the busy-ness of it all- we need to remember how important it is to pause sometimes and go chase adventure.


brkklyn-1whether that means going on a day trip on your day off to escape, or randomly booking a trip across the country to see your bff. do it. forget your troubles, don’t be afraid to take a detour for awhile. some of life’s greatest lessons are learned on those detours. and lastly: travel more. as much as you can, wherever you can- even if that means putting life on hold for a week.

stay creating,


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