Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Us-SHOE-ing in the New Year

We snowshoed in Colorado yesterday and it was GLORY.US! I apologize for my "famous" poses with one snowshoe up, but a girl's gotta have her fling every now and then. We had the trail all to ourselves. No one else came along, not even a moose. We made it home this afternoon. Fourteen days, nine states, and 2900 miles! We had so much fun. To celebrate, we're staying IN. But we made our special Raspberry Crush Punch from the wedding. Happy New Year!!!

Christmas Is...Bubble Lights, Dear Friends, and Good Scenery!

My father-in-law puts Bubble Lights on their Christmas Tree. We all love them. I love the design of lake ice. We know have friends in Ogallala, Nebraska! So we went to a steak place and got all caught up--fabulous folks! Spent a good part of an afternoon searching for Pawnee Buttes in Colorado. Lots of dirt road winding through gas and oil fields. Just love the pattern inside this dried up plant!

Wandering Around the Farm

One of our family traditions is to walk to the bridge at the farm. Sometimes we walk on the land and sometimes we walk on the road. We just mess around, chit-chat, take pictures, throw snow, make snow angels, pump water...whatever strikes our fancy! K showed me the old "colors" box leftover from his mother's childhood. What impresses me about this box is that although the colors were used, they were respected. They still have the box! The children were obviously taught to appreciate and keep good care of anything they were given. I love that one of the colors is THISTLE. Maybe I just don't remember...but did we have "Thistle" in our box of Crayolas?

Patterns and Textures in Grandpa's Life

This was my tenth Christmas as a married woman. We make this annual pilgrimage to my husband's ancestral home and it's always wonderful. We spent a night with Grandpa on his farm after the rest of the extended family left. I started seeing The Farm with different eyes and tried to capture the every day patterns and textures that comprise "the farm." We slept under a quilt that Grandma stitched by hand and then tied. She made those quilts from scraps of clothing worn out by her family. The floor upstairs is scuffed from the kids rollerskating inside. Yellow and pink bathroom tile must have been all the rage in the fifties. The wallpaper, the barn door, the wind-sculpted snow drifts, the gravel road, the snow fence, the inside of the mailbox...just wanted to remember some of these things.

Hawkeye Point

We now have one less thing on our bucket list! We have been to the highest point in Iowa! It is a slight rise in some farmer's field. Been there. Done that.

In other news, we spent the night in Le Mars, Iowa, home of Blue Bunny ice cream!

Winter Badlands

We stopped off at Badlands National Park after leaving Montana and heading into South Dakota. Yeah. We were the only visitors there and the park was actually closed (no employees, but you could still drive in). It was ten degrees with a wind chill of something significant, but we got out of the car for a little stretch and before I could get my gloves on the mister was off! He soon disappeared, but I stayed close to the car. Still, we had the whole place to ourselves and the restrooms were unlocked. Did not see a single rattlesnake!