Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I come bearing pictures.

::beautiful aspen trees::
:: rehearsal dinner::

::outdoor yoga!::

::hanging out before the ceremony::
::love in its truest form::

People who are better at life than me.

I'm having one of those moments where instead of posting this, I wish I had posted something more like this.  Hers was far more articulate while still covering all the bases.

Oh well.  Next time I have a mid-week breakdown.
Next time.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

a thank you.

Hunter and my trip to Steamboat this past weekend was one that I will never, ever, EVER forget.  And also one that I hope we will be talking about with Ryan and Lindsey for years to come.  There isn't just one quick post I can write to do justice to the weekend, so instead I will write a (or several) virtual thank you card(s).

to the aspen trees, thank you for being on your game this weekend.  between the drive from denver to steamboat, the trees surrounding the reception site, the trees hugging us during our outdoor morning yoga session, the trees waving me on during my trail run, the trees framing the bedroom window, and all throughout our long sunday afternoon drive.  thank you, thank you, thank you for being so vibrant and alive with reds, oranges, yellows and a few lingering greens.  to freshies for opening your doors to all the beautiful hearts so close to ryan and lindsey at the rehearsal dinner, thank you.  the food, drinks, setting and atmosphere was spot on perfection.  to the weather on saturday, september 22nd  i wouldn't have asked for you in any other form than you were.  to our morning outdoor yoga session there really was no better way to start the wedding day, so thank you.  completely surrounded  by hundreds of thousands of trees, the warm sunlight on our faces, the sounds of horses, birds and squirrels for days and not to mention the incredible energy that each and every person brought to the session { including lindsey's grandma and mom....swoon! } was unlike any other yoga session i've ever experienced.  scratch that - unlike ANYTHING i've ever experienced.  and how stunning did lindsey look?! srsly.  to the mountain bike ride, hike and trail run thank you for providing each person their own version of outdoor serenity before the wedding chaos struck. actually, to the wedding chaos thank you for being absent the entire day.  zero, zilch, nada.  no bobby pin melt downs, no dress malfunctions, no nothin'.  to the few hours we had with the bride and groom + wedding party before the ceremony thank you for letting us have some downtime with all these beautiful people before people started flooding in.  those moments are some of my favorite moments of the entire weekend.  to the before ceremony reception you set the mood for the entire ceremony, and for that i thank you x100.  you gave all of the guests an opportunity to meet and get to know each other, you cut any last minute tension and you gave us a chance to further enjoy the aspen grove where ryan and linds exchanged their vows.  to the bluegrass band you killed it.  you absolutely killed it. to the wedding ceremony where. do. i. begin.  the music, the whispering of the aspen leaves, the mismatched vintage fabric covering the hay-bales, the glow of the bridal party walking down knowing how fortunate they are to stand up there cheering on r&l, the stalker in the crowd with her cell phone in one hand, and camera in the other not wanting to miss a single moment { guilty }, the kleenex stuffed in h's pants pocket which came in darn good use, the impeccably hand written vows, the tears shed by all, the sweet vintage lace handkerchief grasped by the bride, the friends who were courageous enough to perform live one of the couple's favorite songs, to hunter's shoulder for being my resting place when the emotions were running far too high, to lindsey's beautiful grandma who spoke, the rings that were passed around the crowd to have each of us touch and send our energy into the rings, the staged people in the crowd who shouted out their favorite things about lindsey,  the look on lindsey's face when she heard the wonderful things people had to say about her, the vintage bells we were given out to ring when they had their first all fucking nailed it.  to the walk through the trees hand in hand with my love on our way to the reception, thank you for letting us steal a few minutes of our own.  to the bucket of kim crawford sauv blanc thank you for letting me love and hate you all at the exact same time.  love you during the night, hate you come morning.  to the absolutely delightfully delicious hors d'Ĺ“uvre, you were star of the show for a solid 2 hours.  yeah i'm lookin' at you curried buttnernut squash soup and brie pesto bruschetta.  to the open bar, i have yet to form my opinion about you, but i think you are alright ;) however, to the gentleman serving the open bar, thank you for always having a glass of white wine, and beer ready when you saw h and i approach.  to the floor to ceiling window walls facing the mountain, good gracious you were awesome.  to the dinner with several vegan options, thank you for giving me yet another reason to love linds even more.  to the live band, thank you for changing my mind on live music at weddings.  i don't know how you did it, but you had the dance floor PACKED up until it was time to leave.  to hunter and his dancing shoes, thank you for dancing with me all. night. long.  you really, really are my most favorite dance partner.  to my glass of white wine thank you for joining in on our dancing.  you clearly thought we were having fun because you chose to jump up and dance out of my wine glass every now and again, too.  i hope i didn't make you too dizzy when hunter was spinning me around and around and around, but you looked like you were having a blast.    to my brand spankin' new outfit thank you for still looking cute with food spilled down you, wine spilled on ya, and scuffs on my boots.  now whenever i look down and see those spots and scratches, i will be reminded of a night of pure bliss, joy and can i be mad about that?!  to the stars and clear sky, you painted a perfect canvas for dancing under.  you really were lovely.  to the visual of r&l walking back to their cabin hand in hand at the end of the night, i will never forget you.  to the hot tub once we got back home, could there have been a more perfect way to end the day?  no.  no there wasn't.

Photos to come soon.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Livin' it.


Now if you'll excuse me, I am off to finish packing, bust out a few hours of work and head to the hills to meet MY adventure partner!  TGIF, Party People!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Thank you Food Gods.

I was texting with Amie yesterday { weird, her and I texting all. day. long?!  So rare.  Not. } and we were discussing how if we lived closer she would hire me as her personal chef because of course I couldn't stop talking about the amazing recipes I've been trying lately and she of course asked me to send her tofu and quinoa recipes because she wants to cook with them more and I of course sent her 5+ of each, and this morning when I logged into my BlogLovin' I of course had THIS recipe in my feed.

Of course.

And of course when I was at the grocery on Sunday of course I bought a big and beautiful butternut squash with absolutely no recipe in mind for it and of course this was another post in my feed this morning.

Of course.

And of course I had mac and cheese on the brain after watching Eat This Not That on the Today Show yesterday and they had like a kabillion { 7 } servings of mac and cheese and of course I was thinking it looked good and of course I was mildly sad I couldn't just rush out to the store and pick up a box of Easy Mac and of course I have everything on hand to make that delicious Butternut Squash Mac & Cheeze.

Of course.

Thanks for listening.

Isn't it kinda fun to write a blog post and throw all the language and grammar caution to the wind?  What's that?  Oh it's just fun for me to type and not for you to read?  Shame.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Speaking of things that couldn't have come at a more perfect time:

Can I get an amen?  And yes, bitch pass me the { vegan } ranch dressing!

Full dance card.

Warning: Whinny bitchy blogger behind the keyboard.  Abandon current internet window and click on the always happy-go-lucky blogger with posts of sunshine and rainbows shooting out of their asses if not up for the task of seeing a not so happy-and-go-lucky Beth.  

Lately it feels like my days has been consumed by events.  Wake up, walk the dog, go to work, go to gym, cook dinner, work on freelance, sleep, repeat.  I feel like I'm constantly asking myself the question of "What am I supposed to be doing now?"  Working?  Working out?  Helping out friends?  Unpacking?  Cleaning?  Catching up on phone calls with friends that have fallen to the wayside?  Walking the dog?  I've become utterly consumed with what I should be doing, and forgetting the things I want to be doing.  Examples: I want to cozy up with a hot cup of tea and watch a chick flick while working on crocheting my blanket, but the should part of my brain takes over, and I spend another 3 hours behind the computer at home after 8 hours behind the computer during the day.  I want to take a walk and explore my neighborhood, but will that be enough exercise?  So, I do what I feel like I should do and go to the gym instead.  I should focus on not spending carelessly so by virtue of that I bypass the cute teeny restaurants surrounding my house that I've been wanting to try for weeks now and spend the night eating at home.

Don't get me wrong.  I love going to the gym.  I love the ability to get creative and work on freelance.  And if you don't know by now that I love cooking, you had best just close this window right meow.  But I don't love feeling like I need to do that all the time.

Also, do you know that there has been 2 weekends since the end of July that I haven't packed up, set off and for at least one day of the weekend?  I love weekend trips, I really, really, reallyreallyreally do.  But what happened to the slow Saturday mornings of coffee and Food Network?  Or going to bed super early to enjoy a good glass of wine and book?  Trying to make plans like a simple Saturday morning brunch with friends has lately gotten my response of "Sorry, I'm out of town this weekend..."  This past Saturday morning, I had a mild anxiety attack while folding my laundry thinking that I didn't have time to fold clothes and I needed to get to work on my computer.  Follow that up with such a packed event evening on Saturday night, that I ended up breaking down, multiple times, to really anyone who would listen - and in this case it was poor Hunter.

What I'm trying to say I miss the simpler days, and I miss the slower days, and if I don't make a change to achieve a slower lifestyle I will continue down this path of breaking down and sobbing while brushing my teeth at Hunter's house.  Do you know how embarrassing that is to look back on the next day?  No bueno peeps.  No.  Bueno.

I was venting bitching to Amie about it all this weekend and her exact advice?

Sounds like you need to cancel all plans for the week and sit home with a blanket, wine and watch reality tv all week.  No lie.

She told me that Sunday morning, and let me show you what my Sunday night looked like:

And allow me to show you what my Monday night looked like:

Not pictured: Blanket, wine + reality tv.

And I can't wait to show you what my night tonight will look like.

I am walking the oh so very thin line of treating life as a business meeting and forgetting how to blow off steam by just having some good old fashioned f{u}cking fun.  My idol Kris Carr posted this on Facebook last week and it couldn't have come at a better time.

Kris Carr
September 14  Amidst the website renovation extravaganza (Monday is the BIG reveal!), I've missed out on some precious zzzzs. No more! This weekend, I'm committed to giving my mind and body the eight hours of rest and repair it deserves. 
How will YOU practice some self-care smarts this weekend? xo

Simply put; I'm not practicing self-care smarts and I most certainly am not focusing on rest and repair.  Period, the end, discussion closed.  { I prooooooobably could have just posted that and that alone while skipping the rant, but it felt WAY better getting it all off my chest. }

More posts of sunshine and rainbows tomorrow...I promise.  Until then, I'll be buried under a blanket, with a good book, or good shit reality tv.  I haven't decided which quite yet...

Monday, September 17, 2012

Click, click!

Two clicks to see what has made me smile so far today:

one and two.

SNOW in the mountains, plus a Crazy Sexy Diet COOKBOOK?!

Dude.  It's bound to be a good day.

Friday, September 14, 2012


Oh week, week, week.  You have been way good to me....daresay too good to me?

It was so fun spending time with these cute squishy faces all weekend long.  Between playing da-doo's { tractors }, to rocking baby girl to sleep time and time again, we got in some good eats, drinks and just all around fun times.  Big whoop the Cowboy's lost - we had a blastie with old-to-him, new-to-me friends and having the opportunity to finally exhale a week's worth of meetings, text messages and errands while enjoying the cozy Wyomin'.

After a long transition back into the work week, I got to unwind Monday night doing what I've done hundreds of times in the past and loved it probably even more than I ever have.  Worked out, drove to Jon's still sticky and sweaty, poured up a drink, cuddled the neighbors bebe, ordered in Thai food and watched whatever singing competition is on tv all while laughing, insulting each other yet sneaking in a rather solid heart to heart in the process.  This man's home has really proved yet again to be really the place I call home in CO.  Through countless moves of me in the city, him moving to and from CA while keeping his house, it's always been my little soft place to land, and I cherish our tv/thai/manhattan nights with him more than words can express.

Moving on to Tuesday where I had my first real quiet night in the new house since Sara has been on her whirlwind Peru trip.  I got a kick a gym workout in, picked up some fresh produce and got to settle in for the night with tofu marinating on the stove top, and brussels sprouts cookin' out on the grill IN the rain.  Yes, yes.  In the rain.  Grilling in the rain is probably my new favorite past time, just FYI.  Finishing the night off cuddling Wiley and getting major things emailed off/accomplished on my to do list put me to bed a happy woman.

Wednesday work day comes and goes, enter my weekly happy hour with my dear friend Steven, and Mary even came to join us!  We went to Zengo, continued on to the new Al Lado, and finished at McLoughlin's.  The latter 2 I have been wanting to check out for ages now, where the former will always be my favorite spot in Denver.  It holds such special memories of going there with my sister and aunt long before I decided to make my move here.  It hold memories of first friend dates, random happy hours, and one of my most favorite drinks in Denver, their cucumber mojito.

Thursday, another killer work out, my amaze dinner for 1.  Cool breeze.  Wiley.  Hot tea.  Freelance.  Food Network.

The photos in this post are random...but each mean something to me.  Some days I was the shutter bug I love being, other days I just put it away and enjoyed the moment.  Both are equal parts satisfying to me.

This weekend is packed to the brim with friends, family, eating out, and cooking in.  Freelance planning, laughter, football watching and maybe some relaxing.  Maybe.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Just in case you were wondering...

this plus this equals not just one of the best meals I've ever made, but the perfect love affair involving end of summer salads mixed with a quick warm up for this little thing called Fall that keeps flirting it's way into our lives.

I highly and strongly recommend both - or you can just stop by my house on any given day in the next few months because I have a feeling I will be making both again, and again...................and again.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

What did you do today?

Me? Oh I just had a Pumpkin Spice latte on my rainy drive to work

AND, and! Enjoyed my first handful of Candy Corn.

If that isn't a productive day, then I don't want to know what a productive day is.

I'm off to dream up outfits of scarves and boots.

Le sigh......

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I'm using a blanket as I type this.

And also am not using the middle finger on my right hand as I type because I cut the crap out of it chopping veggies opening wine and it hurts too badly to type with.

But anyway - can I get a whoop whoop for actually feeling a smidge of chill in the evenings which require a blanket vs walking around with a spray bottle and taking 3 showers just to cool off?

Whoop whoop!

I also miiiiiight have my dinner { read: soup } picked up for Thursday night, which won't be just any dinner { soup }.  It will be the dinner {soup } on a day where the forecast is predicted to be in the 60s!  THE SIXTIES   And of course I didn't pick one of the soups from my list because that would be far too expected.  aka I have an obsession for food blogs and found the top dog today.  It's called veganyumyum, guys.  I mean.  Really.  VEGANYUMYUM.  Not only am I infatuated with the blog name....the pictures.  Sweet Pickled Carrots - the pictures!  I need to stop before I get ahead of my rustic bread & eggplant lasagna self.

I'm stopping.


I made a very important To Do list for this evening, and I don't give a shiiiiiii if you want to hear what it  is or not, I'm sharing it:

Email Cody
Email Bob and Aaron
Email Becky pictures
Go to store
Drink wine

See what I said?  VERY important.  I'll have you know I have successfully chedked off #4, #5, #6 ok FINE it was the wine I cut my finger on.  Busted. and #7.  Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to complete #1-3 while dreaming up what color of nail polish to use before bed.

Talk about serious life decisions.  Nein!  Nein!  Nein!  Ok fine.?!  Or You Don't Know Jacques????!

Also, judge me for putting "Drink wine" on my to do list, and I'll bore you with details on a looooooooong work week { emphasis on ooooooooooooong } mixed with an abundance of freelance work without a ton of extra time to do get'erdone.  Let's just agree to agree it's necessary, mmk?  Mmk.

As you were.

Friday, September 7, 2012



What are you most looking forward to this weekend?

I'm most excited to watch these two run around:

And to look like this most of the day Saturday and Sunday, only sub blue and orange for brown and yellow on Saturday...GO POKES!:

Bring on the beer, football, babies and funnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn!

*If you have to ask, you don't deserve to know.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

5280 to 14,420 { part 3 }

Who would have ever thought that 24 hours would add up to 3 blog posts...but I guess that's what you get when Long Winded Beth gets behind the keyboard!

After Hunter says to me

You know tonight is a full moon......right?

He finishes it with "Wouldn't it be cool if we got up at 3am and finished the hike in moonlight?!"

Umm...CHYEAHELLSYEAH it would!  Sooooooooooo.  That's what we did.  Crawled into the tent around 7:15pm for bed to get up at 3am.  What were YOU doing at 7:15pm the Saturday of a long weekend?  Not going to bed?  Oh okay, kewl.  ;p  { You are welcome for that, Mart. }

Anyway, back to sleeping.  { Gosh, I run a THRILLING blog, don't I?! }  The winds did pick up an awful lot during the evening, so Hunter and I were both worried that it would be too windy to finish our summit that early, but as quickly as the alarm went off, those winds died down.  We layered up, packed up { thankfully with our smaller packs this time, so we didn't have 50lbs on our backs. } and headed off!  Though I wasn't totally convinced we could do the entire hike without the assistance of our headlamps, the moonlight really was enough to keep the path lit for us.

We were about 30 minutes into the hike, when the both of us kept hearing rustling, tree branches cracking - things like that.  Hunter first said "Well, it could be a moose.  If it is, just keep talking to me because our voices will scare it away."  What is a girl to do about THAT?!  I did just like he said, and kept talking about absolutely nothing { I'm sure you are SHOCKED to hear that I actually succeeded in that quite well. } for some time.  Well, it wasn't a moose, or any wild animal for that matter.  It was a group of about 15 people!  LadaGagasaywhaaaaa?  Yes.  A group of about 15 people were also out at 4am, trying to hike a freaking mountain.  They were looking to get to Columbia, and mistakenly got on the trail for Harvard.  Hunter set them straight and they were on their merry way.  We kept hiking and I continued the attempt to keep my mind busy and not focus on the chill, thin air or tired legs.  After we made it above treeline, Hunter warned me that this is where it will begin to get really challenging.  I guess what I didn't realize going into this was that you would have to essentially walk from loose boulder to loose boulder hoping that it didn't slip out from underneath you!  Believe it or not, I actually preferred hiking through the billions of loose rock versus the steep trail.  I think constantly finding good rocks to step on kept my mind busy enough that I forgot what I was doing { read: so I wouldn't be bitching as much }.

I feel like I need not to save this til the very end and make sure to highlight what an amazing guide Hunter was.  Through the whole thing he was SO patient with me, stopped whenever I asked him for a break.  Hugged me whenever I was cold/needy/scared.  Constantly told me what I good job I was doing.  Reassured me when I told him that I was scared and didn't think I could do it.  Stopped to take photos with me when I'm certain all he wanted to do was keep hiking our way up. I'll rent him out for any of you reading this who would like a guide for their next 14'er.  But his rate is very, very high.

Speaking of stopping to take pictures, allow me to share one of my favorite outtakes.  H was in the middle of saying he thought we had the camera on the wrong setting right as the picture took.

You can kind of see the dew on my hair from the wackadoodle early morning weather.  Another cool thing about hiking at 4am?  You don't give a shizzzz what your hair looks like because it's too dark to see!!  Though once Hunter did get a glimpse of it and announced it was Crazy Hair Time.  At least he spoke the truth.

Where was I?  Talking about absolutely nothing again.  Check.

There we were.  Hiking boulders.  Me: Planning recipes for the week do distract from my burning lungs.  Him: Rocking at life.  What do we start to hear again?  More rustling, more rocks falling, more big, big shapes headed our way.  Though deep down I knew { hoped } they were people, their shapes looked what I would picture a pack of moose to look like. But again, it was a group of about forty people making their way down from the summit.  Let's review.  If it was 5am, and they were coming DOWN from the mountain, that means A) they are crazy, B) they had to head UP the mountain like....super freaking early, C) there were SO MANY of them, I can't fathom how it could be safe, effective, quick, safe, get the idea.  Anyway, they were all nice enough, warned us of the cold weather up top { duh } and told us how pretty the views were { much did you see while it was dark out, sir? }.  Pretty much right after we ran into them, we saw a light from the summit of a neighboring 14'er to which I finally cried out "HUNTER PEOPLE ARE CRAZY.  PEOPLE ARE CRAZY!!!"  and in return he reminded me that we were in fact one of those crazy people too, and had the 3am alarm to prove it.

Touche, sir.  Touche.

Stretch of boulders/loose rock.  More trail steep, steep climbing, then final stretch of more loose boulders and rock.  Right about this time I started feeling the altitude sickness and I started feeling it hard.  Between the anxiety of getting to the summit { it looked SO FAR UPPPPPPPPPPPP }, mixed with the high high highhighhighhigh elevation, mixed with that pesky little annoying voice in my head trying to tell me mean ugly things about how I wasn't going to be able to finish it, Beth was in a bad way.  I'm so grateful that Mary shared her story of her first 14'er, and also my roommate/landlord/friend Sara had done her first just the weekend before - so I had them heavy on the brain and all the positive things they had to say about their experiences.  I knew ultimately it was going to be worth it, I just wasn't sure if I would feel that pride because, again, it was SO FAR UPPPPPPPP.  But just like Hunter continued reminding me "One step at a time.  We aren't trying to break any records here.  Just set your own pace."

He's so good.

The coolest part about the entire hike, was getting about 300 feet from summit and being able to sit for a few minutes and enjoy the sunrise!  I only managed to snap one photo of it, which of course doesn't do it even a seconds worth of justice.  Between the sick stomach and freezing hands, we really wanted to soak that moment up and enjoy it as that was a huge reason for why we had gotten up so early.  And let me tell you - it was incredibly stunning.  The way the sun peeking out hit on the sides of the mountains, casting shadows from the other mountains, it was really a sight to see!

The sun was refreshing to see, and it was amazing to look around us and really breathe in what we were doing, and where we were doing it at.  Just as we were getting to the top, we saw a man behind us { Of course I said to H "Man alive, that man is crazy!" to which I was reminded we were actually AHEAD of him, which makes guessed it.  Equally as crazy. }.  We paused to let him pass, and as he approached us he pulled out his watch and said "According to my watch we are above 14,000 feet!  Can't we just turn around and say we've done it?!"  Shortly after that statement he said something that for whatever reason gave me a huge burst of energy "I climbed Massive yesterday, in half the time, but this one is kicking my ASS!"

Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute.

You are telling me you are an experienced mountain hiker { he has a goal set to climb all 54 of the 14'ers, and Harvard was his 21st! }, and this particular 14'er is kicking your ass?  So it's not just me?!  It isn't only in my head????  ROCK ON BUDDY!

That gave me a huge kick to finish up that sumbitch and conquer the heck out of it.  Seconds after we picked back up hiking again, Hunter made it to the top of a pile of rocks { not summit }, and I hear him go "Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh wowwwww.....!"  I made my way up next to him, and sure enough....wowwwwww!  Though we hadn't made it to the tippy top yet, we were at a place where you could see mountains as far left as you could look, as far in front of you as you could look, and as far right as you could look.  It was truly incredible.  After letting those views soak in, we did what the bitchy voice in my head said we couldn't do.

We summited Mt. Harvard!!!

It was an incredible feat, and an even bigger one looking back on it.  I learned a lot of lessons on this 14'er like: always pack gloves, remember to charge your camera battery, and never, ever let your head tell you something that your body can't do...because it can go a LOT farther than you might think it can!

The hike down was filled with a few scary moments after getting a little off track on our way down { google "rock scrambling" and picture us doing that, but it was also filled with huge rewards of taking in the sights we missed while hiking in the moonlight, reliving some of the funny and not so funny moments of our morning, but ultimately checking off another adventure with my favorite adventure partner.

The rest of the day was filled with a 2 hour nap, repacking our backpacks, and a 2+ hike back to the car.  Once we made it to the truck, the whole experience really hit me and I was so very proud of what we had accomplished as a team.

So there you have it fine readers; a 3 post series of our 14'er.  What did youuuuuuu do for your Labor Day weekend?

Fall cookin' on the brain.

I interrupt this Labor Day recap program to bring you what I can't get enough of it seems.

Soup recipes.

I subscribe to my fair share of food blogs, and I have found more and more people posting about how they are saying screw the 90 degree temps, and bring on the soups!  I haven't hit that point yet, however I have more than enough bookmarked for when those temps do indeed fall below 60.  Heck, at this point I'll even take falling below 80!

Black and White Chili

Mushroom and Kale Soup

Cashew Corn Chowder with Cilantro Cream
Tomato Chutney
Chipotle Chicken Tortilla Soup
Good, right?!  I'll have to do a few alterations and remove the meats and dairy from a few of them, but I think these are a perfect start to welcome Fall.  Another recipe high, high, high on my list is to perfect my own version of Pho!  Hunter and I made vegetarian pho back in February using this recipie, which was SO good, but I'm anxious to make it so, so, SO good.

Thanks for reading, now if you will excuse me, I have to go wipe the drool off my chin after writing this post...

5280 to 14,420 { part 2 }

Hunter was the first out of bed on Saturday morning, which meant that I had breakfast and coffee waiting for me when I pulled my sleepy butt out of bed.  We got our things packed up, delayered from the night before { I had on wool socks, 2 pairs of pants, a tank top, 2 long sleeved shirts, a Patagonia pullover and scarf, while Hunter, King of Mastering Cold, was wearing just shorts, a long sleeved shirt and a pullover. } We secured the items we needed in our packs, and headed onward and upward!

I really didn't know what to expect, as I've never backpacked before.  All I knew was I wanted a hiking stick...and I wanted a hiking stick FAST.  Hunter spotted this one above in a ditch when we first started our hike, and it was absolutely perfect!  I may or may not I have an affinity for naming inadament objects and spent the first while coming up with a name for my hiking stick.  I first started referring to him as Squiggles, which Hunter said in a kind, yet firm way, that no bad ass stick could be called Squiggles.  I tried Mr, Dr and Homie G Squiggles, but each got vetoed quicker than the next.  H threw out "Knots" which I loved right away, so off Hunter, Knots and I went!  

It took us about 3.5 hours to do the first 4 miles.  Some parts were most certainly more challenging than others, but we took two breaks where we snacked on an orange and Cliff bars.  Hunter had an idea of where to set up camp, and oh me oh my, did we pick a BEAUtiful spot!  

::this is my most favorite photo; totally unedited and BEAUtiful!::

Once we picked out our home for the next 24 hours, we were mildly rushed to set up camp only because the weather that high up is SO unpredictable!  When we first got there it was awfully overcast and slightly windy - so we busted butt to get the tent set up....and right when we did, the clouds broke and there were blue skies for miles.  I was only a little disappointed when the blue skies appeared because secretly I wanted an excuse to get in the tent and nap the next few hours away.  Hunter picked up on this rather quickly and sent me to bed to nap after our lunch even though the clouds had all disappeared and there wasn't a chance of rain in sight. 

::beck; recognize what we had for lunch saturday and sunday?::

Sidenote: I am not a good napper.  On the rare occasion that I know I need to nap to power through a busy weekend, or after work before a night out, I truely act like a 2 year old.  I suddenly get a surge of energy and start picking at whomever might be closest to me...either physically or via text.  I get super gitty and silly and fight sleep like you wouldn't believe.  Anyway, the second I hit the sleeping bag in the tent in the afternoon...I was O.U.T., which proved to me how much the backpacking and hiking had taken it out of me!!  Hunter crawled in with me after a while, but woke up before I was ready to be up and att'em again.  He went off on his own little exploring adventure, and captured the following photos, which I absolutely love.

Since we had set up camp so early, we had a good portion of the afternoon to kill so we did such activities as...

{ 1 } Play in the creek


 { 2 } Monkey around with the self timer

{ 3 } .....take photos like.........this.

::i'm fully aware at how unflattering that photo paints my booty, but it makes me laugh too hard not to share::

We brought a dinner of mediterranean couscous with raisins and as we were cleaning up dinner Hunter says to me:

You know tonight is a full moon.....right? 

HELLO Cliffhanger.
I'll be back tomorrow with why that stroke of genius changed the course of the final leg of our 14'er!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

5289 to 14,420 { part 1 }

Oh Labor Day were oh'so good to us.  Just like I predicted, nothing but mountains, creeks, stretchy pants and my Hunter for miles and miles.  Safe to say we were both in wildlife bliss.

Here's a little { long winded & unnecessary } background leading up to our backpacking/camping trip.

::the hat which held our 2012 goal fates!::
This past New Years Eve was spent with Hunter's good friend's Ryan and Lindsey. { If you scroll through this post, you can see photos of our wild and crazy night in at Hunter's parents house. }  These two are the most sweet, down to earth, bad ass outdoorsy people I have ever met. Though they live in Utah, we've had the change to hang out with them just a few small handful of times, and I'm so proud to say they have also quickly became fast friends of my own, too!  During our New Years Eve bash, we played a variety of games reflecting on current events in 2011, and also set goals for 2012.  We each were to put a goal that could apply to the whole group in a hat, pull out a piece of paper, and accomplish that said goal in 2012.  Hunter and Lindsey both got ones that Lindsey and Ryan put in which were along the lines of daily meditation and reflection, Ryan picked mine which was take a 3 day vacation, and whose did I get you ask?  Hunter's.  And what was I to do?

Climb a frickin' mountain.

I give Hunter a hard time about it and pretend like it was the last thing in life I would ever want to do, but truthfully I was really excited about accomplishing this goal.  Of all the 5 years I've spent in Colorado, I've done my fair share of biking, skiing, and hiking, but never had I climbed a mountain, which is more well known in the CO as hiking a 14'er.

Mix this goal, with our summer long dream of taking a backpacking trip { It's equal parts depressing and awesome how darn quickly the summer weekends zoomed by and we didn't get to this until September! } and BAM.  You have our Labor Day weekend.

After much searching { and by "much searching" I mean "much of Hunter's time spent searching" }, we { he }decided on Mt. Harvard.  Hunt and I set out for Buena Vista Friday around 5p, and thankfully didn't get stuck in mountain traffic too much.  { Anyone who knows I-70 mountain traffic knows what a debbie downer drag it can be on your ENTIRE weekend. }  We got to Buena Vista after dark, and stopped at a local brewery for pizza and brewhaha's.  Though the beer fell short, the atmosphere and mood of a small mountain town pub was just what we were after to kick off the weekend.  A quick stop to the dollar store to pick up cards { we can't go anywhere without them }, and we were off to settle in at the trail-head for the night.  We picked an incredibly calm and beautiful spot along the river { a must when we are camping it seems! }, and quickly realized how beautiful it was with the full moon and zero breeze that we nixed the tent and set up our sleeping supplies in the bed of Hunter's truck!  After we had our beds ready, we found the packed bag of wine { most genius thing ever for backpacking.  Buy a box of wine, remove the bag, pack the bag, drink the bag, win at life. } and scampered through the river and used a  fallen tree as our date night hot spot.  Sipping wine, laughing, chatting and even sitting in silence enjoying the scenery was pretty top notch for a Friday night.  We made our way back to the truck to play cards in the moonlight which was also, you guessed it, a perfecto mundo Friday night date night activity.

Gosh, I have more to say about this weekend than I had expected, so I'll break this into two posts so you all don't go falling asleep on me.


Monday, September 3, 2012

Swoonworthy weekend.

Hunter and I are back from our backpacking/camping/hiking trip and are the perfect mix of sunburnt, sore, exhausted and satisfied.  Tomorrow I'll have more time to sit, tell stories and share pix, but for now I'll leave you with my dreamy mountain man making our way back to camp after summit.

Sigh....can we go back yet?  Please?  Now?  Kthanksbye.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Instagram Dump.

::juice addiction::

::royg salad::

::avacado taost; i can't quit you::

::packing priorities.  eating out of tupperware while using plastic utensils, but saved packing my good glass wine glasses for last::

::bottling h's homebrew!::

::none goes wasted::

::flu and cold godsend::

::cheers to jaime for a wonderful dinner!::

::early bird gets the cherry tomato at the farmer's market::


::23 minutes early for my happy hour date.  pathetic, or awesome?::