Turning 20 years of technology into a dream job in cannabis.

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As a middle-aged, professional woman who spent a lifetime working in corporate technology, I don’t exactly fit the persona of the stereotypical ‘budtender.’ Yet, just a few years ago, that’s where I was… working behind the counter at a quaint Denver cannabis dispensary.


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By MysteryShot — Adobe Stock

As prohibition drifts into the past, hemp farmers and producers stand ready for the unprecedented growth forecasted for hemp products in the United States and globally. Unfortunately, several factors continue to impede industry acceleration, including continued FDA ambiguity, lack of consumer education, and limited retail shelf space.

Factor in a deadly disease, an economic downturn, and political chaos, the past year presented challenges for most industries, including hemp. Last year, without question, wasn’t a banner year for shopping, but as we turn the page on a global pandemic, businesses are anxiously anticipating the return of retail traffic.

But, if 2020 was a year to drawback, 2021 is the year to launch forward, at least according to Good Hemp (GHMP), a publicly-traded hemp beverage manufacturer based out of North Carolina. In an interview with CEO and Founder Bill Alessi, we discussed the strategic moves he believes will help slingshot the company into the emerging hemp beverage industry’s pole position. …


Spoiler Alert — It won’t get you high!

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Image from Pixabay

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is found in all vertebrate animals. Since its discovery in the early 90s, researchers and scientists have only started to uncover all of the functions of the mysterious system.

If we compare the systems in the human body to software applications, then the ECS would be the operating system that allows them to communicate and controls when and how the applications respond.

The ECS acts as a modulator for all the other systems in the human body. It searches for imbalances that it can correct. While much research is still needed to fully understand how the system works, we know it consists of receptors, endocannabinoids, and metabolic enzymes. …


The cannabis products that brought me peace, happiness, or a better experience in an otherwise brutal year.

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Image from Pixabay

Few people in the United States are going to look back on 2020 with fond memories. Even if you’ve been spared by COVID, the anxiety surrounding the economic struggles and election chaos has taken a toll on everyone.

Fortunately, living in Colorado, the cannabis industry was quickly deemed essential by the powers that be, and thus, the cannabis industry continued to press forward. But, not only did it continue, it flourished. Five new states legalized cannabis by ballot, and Colorado reported record cannabis sales for 2020.

Since my husband and I are cannabis patients, we were thankful for the essential designation, and since I work as a journalist covering the industry, the work must go on! …


A Small Device Packed with Big Personality

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Image provided by author.

I admit it… I’m a tech geek. If there’s a shiny new device out there, I want to try it — especially in the cannabis space. In an emerging industry, everyone is racing to build a better mousetrap, which means that the market is being inundated with new consumption technology.

When I worked in mobile technology, I would joke that I enjoyed the industry because it worked well with my lack of focus. The technology was evolving and adapting quickly; new tech became outdated just months after it was released. …


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Image from Adobe Stock

Cannabis stories for the sophisticated consumer.

As a forty-something woman, I accept the fact that I am not a stereotypical cannabis consumer. I am looking for more from my cannabis products than just getting high to escape reality, and I don’t want to listen to a random 20-something sell me a product because “it got them sooooo stoned.” I stopped reading (and writing) cannabis strain reviews and descriptions years ago, and because of my involvement in the cannabis industry for the last several years, I am a little more advanced than the Average Joe when it comes to finding the cannabis content I want.

I am not a girlie-girl, I’m a grown-ass woman that has lost interest in the standards girls keep. So, I do not want to read about what varieties of cannabis are best for hooking up. I do not want to read about cannabis manicures or about CBD-infused lip plumpers. I couldn’t care less about what music pairs well with Bubba Kush, I don’t need a dab bucket that cooks slabs of shatter, and I am not interested in using any products that claim to increase libido —I think the world is oversexed and overstimulated as it is. …


Not all THC is created equal, and I’ve tried most of them. Here’s my take.

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One of the biggest perks to being a journalist and writer in the cannabis industry is that I frequently get the opportunity to try new products — many before they hit the market. With a niche in cannabis technology, I often get the chance to use and evaluate new tech gadgets, like the tCheck, Gpen Connect, and even the new DAVINCI vaporizer.

As an experienced cannabis consumer living in a legal state, I also have sampled a broad range of products available in Colorado — mostly out of curiosity. …


Observation in nature can teach us to be better humans.

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Pinyon Jay — Image provided by author.

Each morning, after breakfast, I take a bucket of birdseed out into my yard and spend a few minutes birdwatching. I never anticipated turning into the crazy bird lady, but when my husband and I moved to the mountains, I became obsessed.

Shortly after we moved, I visited the Florissant Fossil Beds, a national monument not far from our ranch. I found a book called, Birds of Colorado — A Field Guide, a book written by a former coworker of mine, Stan Tekiela. The book’s index is laid out like a checklist, so, like my own real-life version of Pokemon Go, I started ‘collecting’ the various birds I’d see at my bird feeders. …


When they said, “I give it six months.”

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Photo By Ben Rosett, Unsplash

Eight years ago, this month, my husband and I went “Facebook Official” in our budding relationship. Eight years ago, this weekend, we took our first vacation away together. Driving north along the Mississippi River on a pilgrimage to view the fall colors, we were on the hunt for seasonal Pumpkin Ale and fresh Wisconsin apples.

This past weekend, to celebrate the anniversary, we drove north to go hiking and view the fall colors. And it dawned on me during the trip that maybe for the first time in eight years, I can honestly say… we’re happily married.

It wasn’t easy, it wasn’t a fairytale, and in fact, it was downright fucking ugly at some points. But, at the end of the day, we’re still together. …


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Image provided by the author

I have always been an adventurer. I grew up in the country where it was natural to get outside and explore. I had a horse long before I ever had a bicycle, and even in elementary school, it was common for me to disappear for hours.

When my husband and I moved to Colorado, we were so broke for the first year, hiking was the only entertainment we could afford. If we didn’t have the gas to get to the mountains we went “Urban Hiking” and just walked around Denver.

As an adult, my adventures through the forest started to have a much deeper meaning. Today, hiking is more like meditation for me, and there are many lessons about life the trails can teach us. …

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Kristina Etter

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