You know how there’s that one day every spring when you throw open the windows, shake out the rugs, let the outside in, and celebrate the fact that winter is finally over? I had that day last week.
It didn’t happen at home. It happened at the Women Grow office in Denver, where we did some extreme spring cleaning. In preparation for big new moves, the Women Grow team is packing up our Denver Headquarters.
Two years ago, our longtime sponsor Weedmaps handed us the keys to 1,200 square feet of space in a worn office building. We’ve been squatting there ever since. Now the space we’ve called home is about to be razed for new development. As the team packed up and moved out, co-founder Julie Batkiewicz and I sorted through two years of memories. In one small box went the keepers. In an enormous bin went the trash. In a third box, the stuff going to Goodwill. Yes Goodwill! We’ve been legal in Colorado for over two years, and in Goodwill stores now you’ll find empty stash jars and rolling trays among the shelves of secondhand wine glasses. Welcome to life in the future.
Our office had become a time capsule of the first two years of legal adult use cannabis. We came across old editions of Dope, and stacks of TIME and Newsweek containing articles about our members. We found vintage swag from now-defunct cannabis brands. Cashed onesies and tar-covered paperclips. A lifetime supply of lanyards. Green name badges from conference after conference. Little bags of weed. Bigger bags of weed. Enough Chapstick for an army of women entrepreneurs. Two years worth of extra rolling papers. So many glass jars, o.Pen chargers, promotional grinder cards, and men's cut t-shirts. We lost count of the exit bags we had to throw away. It turns out that one of the hazards of a highly regulated cannabis market is the production of massive amounts of plastic packaging (childproof grade plastic — not the biodegradable, eco-friendly kind).
It was so cathartic! Every little piece of promotional junk conjured up stories and jokes and laughs about the “good ‘ol days.”
“Remember the Bhang party?” Julie said as she held up a custom Vegas poker chip.
“Can you believe we even put this out?” I said, holding up a crude, pixelated flyer from our early days.
“Remember when our 420 Kits were a thing?” Julie said as she held up the very last one.
I built a wall of memories in the office over the course of two years. It started by my desk and just kept growing. Now, thumbtack by thumbtack, I was taking those memories down. My Red Rocks “On a High Note” poster, a 2014 Edible Events Series calendar, original hand-drawn renderings of the Women Grow, Edible Events, and Jane West logos, now neatly tucked away in a photobook labeled 2014–2015.
What an amazing afternoon.
The next day I started fresh in my new space. I’m again setting up an office at home. Down came the pictures of the kids when they were infants (it already feels like a lifetime ago), up went the clean corkboard. The windows were open, the air was fresh and finally warm. I chose a nice spring sativa and elevated the mood sans caffeine.
I’m definitely a seasonal consumer. For me, winters call for mellow, quiet indicas. Come spring, I’m ready for energizing, uplifting sativas.
I’m a Tangie kind of woman, or Durban Poison to kick it up a notch. It was time to rebalance the chi, move the furniture, revamp my playlist, get some new sound bouncing off the walls. Wild Things by Alessia Cara. Done. Work it.
On the top shelf of my desk sits a photobook labeled 2016–2017. Our second annual Women Grow Summit has filled the first few pages, but the rest are blank, stark white pages waiting for future memories and clippings as we embark on the next phase for Women Grow. Outside my new home office, I can see flowers starting to emerge in my grassy front yard. I’m inspired by the potential within those seedlings, the power that is held within a tiny bud that starts to sprout. With the clutter gone, my workspace and mind are clear and fertile for new ideas to sprout and bloom. This year is ripe for growth in our industry, and I’m prepared to bring a crop of new ideas to fruition. I look forward to sharing my progress with you over the next months, and wish you all the very best for 4/20 week, known here in Colorado as the High Holidays. Party #safer.