My Sanctuary…

My goal for this month was to write more, unfortunately, desire, health, and my heinous schedule has curtailed my efforts.  I made six trips to Lone Tree Cancer Center to get my infusion, only to have those infusions cancelled (until this past week), then I spent two days of my chemo recovery trying to stay awake long enough to entertain two children.  Needless to say this week hasn’t really gone as expected.  Normally, we do a Sunday morning hike, but my desire to walk through the woods right now is non-existent.  Further receiving distressing news about the health of one of my sister-in-laws didn’t make me feel like doing much.

So I am going to post some pictures of a recent hike we took to Catamount Falls, as part of the Catamount trail.  The trail itself is 5.5 miles (one way, but I could not do the entire hike, so I did just the Thomas Trail where the falls are visible.  These pictures were taken a few weeks ago, so the leaves are in full bloom.  I didn’t realize how much I missed four seasons until living in a state with one season.

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The first thing I noticed on this hike is the interspersed maple and aspen with the pine trees.  Pine in Colorado burns easily, but also grows easily, so when the fires went through a few years ago, the pine still thrived, and the hard woods did not.

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Near the streams, however, there are plenty of young maple and aspen.  We have a few growing in our yard now, and the colors have changed from a dark brownish to a golden red.  But my all time favorite are the cedar/aspen.

 

I love the golden colors.  They just make me excited for warm coffee mornings, hot chocolate, ‘amores, and the trappings of winter that are just not the same in Florida.  Not that I don’t miss flip flops, and eternal summer, but it for this Yankee it just isn’t the same.

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Florida does have it’s share of water, but there is nothing like a cool stream falling along creaky rocks, with falling leaves, and a brisk breeze.  I absolutely loved watching the water fall down 30 ft rock cliffs, and hearing the sounds of the brook near the valley.

I call Colorado my sanctuary, because I feel so much like home here.  Among the mountains, wild flowers, streams, and clear air.

And finally after several miles of hiking, sweating, and stops of sharp hypoxic breathing, we reached the bottom of the valley, and followed our stream back to the car.  There I reveled in the pictures that I took.  I realize that I love photography, because I love going back, looking at the streams, sticks, trees, flowers, and remember the smells, the feelings, and the pure joy I have during my hikes.  These are my happy times, and this is my sanctuary.

 

Lent Day 22: Super Photobomb…

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I went for a walk during my rest day.  My neighborhood is full of beautiful flowers.  I now know why everyone in my family is suffering from allergies this morning.  I only know a few of the flowers pictured, so please pardon my lack of knowledge and labels.  I was attempting to capture the doe and fawn that I have seen during runs, I also wanted to capture the Ospreys and Pelican.  Unfortunately, I missed the two deer, but here are some of the shots I got…

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Jasmine often grows as a weed out here.  Right now, you can’t really smell it, as there is a few trees that smell strongly.

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Flowering trees in my neighbor’s yard.  These are the most fragrant trees right now, and they have a musk-y perfume, unlike the Jasmine in the area.

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This is the roadway to a mansion that’s currently for sale, the list price is $7.1 million.  It has 5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, a ballroom, an indoor and outdoor pool, it’s over 5,000 sq. ft., and has 17 acres.  There is over 18 feet of beach front.

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Pineapples and manatees adorn much of the properties in our area.

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Squirrels are everywhere.  They can be aggressive and bite, but so far no deer.

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This is another flower that has a strong odor.

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Sea Grass…  The water was not great today.  There were no birds on this side of the bridge.  I saw them swimming, fishing, and diving on the other side of the bridge.  I could not cross the bridge.

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And finally here’s my photobomb.  Here I was trying to take a picture of this beautiful creature, and this flower goes and jumps into my picture….  Oh well, hopefully it doesn’t ruin the picture too much.

Lent Day 17: The sun is finally shining today!

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I got outside to take pictures today.  I went to my normal spot, Turkey Creek.  First, thing in the morning, I ran 6 miles on the treadmill, and then walked another 40 minutes to get in my 15,000 steps.  All told, I walked an additional 3 miles at Turkey Creek.  The first picture is a picture of the reflection of the sun in the creek.

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The path is raised above the swamp.  They are currently refinishing and redoing all the wood on the pathway, here is a section of the path that’s brand new.

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The trees around here are starting to bloom.  Despite the below normal winter temperatures yesterday, there are little white blossoms on trees throughout the forest.

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New leaves are budding on some of the twigs.  No wonder my allergies are pretty bad these last few weeks.

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Even though this tree is dead, there is always still life :).  Fungus always grows everywhere with the moisture in the air.

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Moss growing on a fallen tree.  Even on dead things life grows.

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More reflections on the water.  I used both ATV and MV formats on my camera.

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Another dead tree sitting in mud, I seem to think that dead things in the forest are beautiful.

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Water lilies and other buds are forming near the water.  I keep coming back to the creek to see if they have opened up yet.  Once the flowers start budding this will be an absolutely beautiful and fragrant area to walk in.

Lenten Observation 2015

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I am not overly religious.  I am a practicing Catholic, so I normally try to give up something for Lent. When I was little I gave up things like chocolate, candy, or I promised to clean my room.  Those sacrifices normally lasted a few weeks at most.  And each year, I ended up not being very successful at keeping those sacrifices.  Since I started Isagenix, I have been really careful about my diet, though I plan on cleaning it up a LOT.  Here are 10 things I intend on doing in observance of Lent:

10.  I will be closing down my Facebook pages, both my professional and personal Facebook pages.

9.  I will be blogging every day that I am no longer on Facebook.  I find that I’m a much better runner when I run a lot, and the same goes for writing.  Practice makes me a more focused writer.

8.  I plan on continuing my walk/run streak.  The last three weeks, I have been walking/running steps, and I plan on continuing this trend.

7.  With that, I plan on also tracking my calorie intake and output on My Fitness Pal.

6.  Shane is giving up alcohol, and it is so much easier to do so with a partner, so I will be giving up alcohol starting on Tuesday as well.

5.  I also intend on finishing one household project a week.  Lent is only 6 weeks, so I am picking 6 projects to complete before the end of the season.

4.  I also plan on finishing the novel that I started to write in November, and then attempt to send out manuscript to an agent and/or publisher.

3.  Along with blogging every day, I also intend on doing more things I enjoy, like painting and doing some photography work.

2.  I have a substantial amount of money tied up in credit card bills, so I would really like to make a significant dent in my credit cards, while increasing the amount money in personal investments.

1.  Finally, I plan on taking advantage of the more time I have while off Facebook, and spend the time with my family.