This is probably the most picture-intensive blog I've ever done. But there's so much fun stuff to remember and share... I had to post a lot. Two weeks ago my little family of three went out west to explore. We stayed half the time in Colorado with my super adventurous aunts (think wilderness camping and fishing with not another human in sight for miles)... and the other half with Jenny and her beautiful family. (I'd never met Jenny in person... we've just been "email friends" for ages. So I was a bit nervous to meet her in person!)
It was so cool to visit and be with each household for a few days... I think it's much easier to see how other people live life and do things when you live with someone for a short while. And that's what we were able to do. What a cool experience.
We saw all the gorgeous aspens turning yellow in the mountains. Different from a mid-western autumn, and so lovely. We hiked around Bear Lake at Rocky Mtn National Park with my aunts. Veda ate snow for the first time and really couldn't get enough. She kept asking for more. She was a trooper as we hiked. Saying hello and "I missed you!" to the bright green moss on the rocks and laughing at squirrels playing in the trees. I was just proud of us all that we didn't get altitude sickness... being so high up and all. :)
We explored Colorado a little bit en route to New Mexico where Jenny and Patrick and Tulsi live. Stopped at one of the world's highest suspension bridges where I learned that I am not a big fan of heights. I made it half way across and decided I'd had enough. I liked it better on the rocks.
Onward to the Kostecki-Shaw residence... Where I met Jenny for the first time. And she was just the loveliest, coolest person ever. I already knew that though. She's been inspiring me for so so long. Her smile was so welcoming. And Tulsi. Good lord that girl is a cute little bean. She kept saying her name in the highest, sweetest voice "Tulsi! Tulsi!"... and was quite taken with Colin. hee hee.
We spent most of our time playing and talking. Making leaf mustaches. Jumping on a sunken trampoline. Walking through the woods and resting in fields. We threw bright yellow leaves into a stream and watched them float away. We walked through the sage brush and cactus to visit the Buddhist stupa and visit the local dog that hangs out there. We played in the sandbox that Jenny dug and made a fire in their artisan-made fire pit.
I learned a little more about Ayurveda and Thai massage from Patrick, which was really super cool. I must have asked six hundred questions, and he was very patient, thank goodness. (Since then I've signed up for a 3 day thai workshop here in November. I just have to know more.) And the cooking... The Kostecki-Shaws do it right. It was the best! So simple and straight from their giant garden. Just amazing. (Thank you again so much for the meals ... so yummy!)
I hate that this really only scratches the surface. How do you fit such an experience into a few paragraphs? So much beauty and heart and interesting conversations. It was so nice to get to know my aunts a little better and to see the mountains. And also such a treat to really connect with Jenny in person. I felt like we were old friends.
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I've been just BURIED with work since we got back. So if you've emailed, I got it tucked away in my inbox waiting till I can breathe a little. I promise to get to it. :)