We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelly Rodgers and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kelly, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
I have learned in my forty-two years how important life is and how much I love living life. I work so that I can travel and do the things that I enjoy. I think that it is important that work does not take control of your life unless it is truly your passion and brings you incredible joy. For me, work is a means to live my life with quality versus quantity. To help accomplish the life that I want, I live tiny in a three hundred and eighty-two square foot addition to my home which allows me to rent my main house and supplement my income. Living my best life means living minimally so that I can have time to do the things that are important to me. Since my blog and travel business are not quite where I need to be yet in terms of making money, I work part time remote giving me the opportunity to continue work on my blog, travel planning company, social media and websites. I have been coming to the point where work life balance has been increasingly important to me and Covid-19 has instilled this even further. I have learned so much from this virus in terms of what is really important to me in my life and that is working remotely part time, time to garden, read, be creative, spend time with those I truly love and bring value to my life. The saying goes, I work so that I can live. I do not live so that I can work.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I have always loved writing. Working on a blog with the focus on travel I get to write about what I enjoy most. My writing continues to improve with time, it becomes easier to relate my travel and stories to my followers and readers. I enjoy sharing my stories and photographs with people in hopes to inspire others. My photography continues to get better over time, I’ve upgraded my camera and I’m looking into taking photography classes online as I will always have something to learn. I feel that with every photograph I come closer to where I want to be and engage the craft. The longer I blog, post to social media, take photographs and work on my travel business, I learn that you don’t have to be perfect. Sometimes what I’m working on turns out amazing! And other times, it really doesn’t and that’s okay. I think what is most important is that you keep trying, keep learning and improve as best as you can. I am proud that I am willing to take chances, that I continue to move towards my goals and dreams. I think the most important lesson that I have learned is that you should never give up, even small steps can get you where you want to be.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Denver is a great city to explore, with the mountains and so many other cities nearby, it’s easy to take day trips as well. If I had a friend visiting for a week, I would visit the places below (note: some items on the itinerary may not be available due to the pandemic).

I think it’s great taking visitors to one of many Denver Neighborhoods such as Downtown, Washington Park, Berkely, Congress Park, City Park and Baker. In downtown Denver, stop by Blue Sparrow for a latte and then check out the alley art in RiNo, take a stroll in the Centennial Gardens, shop around Larimer Square and make sure to have a meal at Bistro Vendome. In Wash Park (Washington Park) stop by Vert Kitchen for brunch before heading for a stroll around the park. In Berkeley, go to Tennyson Street between 44th and 38th to explore many shops like Lady Jones, SecondLove and Inspyre. When you get hungry from all of your shopping, grab some lunch at Parisi’s. Then head to the Congress Park area for a meander around Wild Flowers before heading to Blue Pan for pizza. Once you are full, make sure to go across the street to Sweet Cooie’s (Little Man Ice Cream) for dessert and if you’re feeling up to it, stop by Sienna Wine Bar for a cocktail. In the City Park area, you can take a stroll in the park, have a picnic or head to D Bar for a delicious meal. When you have some free time, go to the Baker neighborhood to grab a slice of pizza at Fat Sully’s and then stop at VooDoo Donut to get some sweets. There are lots of cute shops on Broadway as well, stop by Decade, La Lovely Vintage and Goldmine Vintage. Detour Bakery, Gateaux and Les Delices de Paris are all favorites of mine, they are all a bit off the beaten path but if you have time you should stop in.
Once you have explored what the Denver neighborhoods have to offer, you may want to take a day trip or two. You can head to Georgetown and drive up Guanella Pass. Take a picnic to enjoy at Clear Lake or stop by Alpine Restaurant on your way out of town. There are also many cute shops in Georgetown like Shoppe Internationale, Ophelia’s Antique Gallery and Georgetown Valley Candy, make sure you have time to pop in. Another easy day trip from Denver is Longmont, they have a cute downtown to walk around and you must visit the Cheese Importers. Have lunch here, do some shopping and buy lots of cheese! Visit Fort Collins and Horsetooth Reservoir, stopping at the Welsh Rabbit Cheese Shop for lunch provisions. The Perennial Garden and Sunday Supply Co are great for some shopping. A day trip to Boulder is also always a great option. Walk around Pearl Street Mall and then drive up to Boulder Falls. On the way to Boulder, stop in Louisville along the way to get some amazing Indian food at Bawarchi.
I always recommend some of the really great restaurants at the Denver International Airport on the way in or out of town. Depending on which terminal you are in, stop by Root Down, Modern Market, Central Market and if you didn’t find time to stop by one of the Little Man Ice Cream options in the city, you can get some ice cream at the airport.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My family and friends have been very supportive in my journey of thinking outside of the normal nine to five lifestyle that we as a society have been brought up to believe is the only way to make a living and live life. Living tiny, starting my own company and working on my blog is not the norm and all of my family and friends have been supportive of my journey to find what works best for me in my life. They encourage me to follow my passions.

I follow many bloggers who inspire me and would say my biggest inspiration and mentor (even though she doesn’t know it!) is Whitney, The Blonde Atlas (@blonde_atlas). She made a life for herself doing what she loves and she inspires me to keep going to make my dreams come true.
I bought my mom a book last year for Christmas, Capital Gaines by Chip Gaines. She told me I should read it as she read it twice in a week! It was very inspiring in the aspect of taking a chance to do what you love to do and what you think is right for you. I read it after leaving my nine to five job at the beginning of twenty twenty and it was perfect timing.

Website: afemmeunique.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/afemmeunique/
Linkedin: linkedin.com/in/kelly-rodgers
Other: afemmeunique@gmail.com

Image Credits
Kelly Rodgers

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