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It was a wonderful weekend with Kelsea. I have been wanting to write more, but feel overwhelmed by so much of what is happening in the world, that my fingers feel as though they’ve lost their voice. Know that I am working on it. I have so much to say, and yet can find no words.
Two of a Kind

Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth.” — William Faulkner

Daily gratitudes:
Support
Firefighters
Kelsea
My grandfather’s wedding band
Patience

 

My birthday was actually yesterday, but I think these count, along with all the other ones we saw this morning.  MKL and Kelsea have both made my birthday extended on either end and very special and I love them. Otherwise, the world has been hard on itself, and on the people I love, which makes it hard on me as well. The mixed curse and blessing of the empath. For now, I am listening to the wind in the aspens outside our room, and watching their green leaves shimmer and tremble as no others do.

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Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Sooner or later we all discover that the important moments in life are not the advertised ones, not the birthdays, the graduations, the weddings, not the great goals achieved. The real milestones are less prepossessing. They come to the door of memory unannounced, stray dogs that amble in, sniff around a bit and simply never leave. Our lives are measured by these.” — Susan B. Anthony

Daily gratitudes:
Our voices
Our hearts
Forgiveness
Blue skies
Small adventures

 

This is the barn so often included in postcards from Steamboat Springs. I saw it on my first solo trip there, and then couldn’t find it again. I even asked local folk about it, and they all pled ignorance (weird). This last summer I found it again, and Kelsea had the pleasure of exploring its innards, though even she thought there were spots that the floor might collapse beneath her feet in the hayloft. The barn is very old, and the community is building up around it, condos to the left and right, front, and back, which is sad from my point of view. But I’m glad the barn still stands.

The Steamboat Barn
Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Traveling makes you realize what an immeasurably nice place much of America could be if only people possessed the same instinct for preservation as they do in Europe.” — Bill Bryson

Daily gratitudes:
Mr. Man
My sister’s birthday
People like Pam who are devoted to historic preservation
The BBC
Mindfulness

I don’t think this balloon understands camouflage. And I have promised threatened to buy MKL a pink camouflage hat for most of our relationship. He’s not a camouflage guy, much less a pink camouflage guy, but he is a hat guy, so of course

Poorly Camoflauged
Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “The extraordinary hides behind the camouflage of the ordinary.” — Jacqueline Winspear

Daily gratitudes:
Dogs so fluffy they look like clouds
A possible new friend
Seeing MKL after three days absence
My very special grilled cheese sandwich
Belated birthday gifts

Kelsea and I had a lovely weekend together in Steamboat Springs – one of our traditional mother-daughter trips, consisting of too-early morning risings for the Hot Air Balloon Rodeo, breakfast, walks, rodeo, naps, explorations, and bad late-night television. We talked and talked. And I got a little weepy on my way home, as it will be hard for me when she goes to college. Rightly or wrongly, she’s one of my dearest friends as well as my daughter. I will miss her.

Twinsies1
Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Everybody has to leave, everybody has to leave their home and come back so they can love it again for all new reasons.” — Donald Miller

Daily gratitudes:
How much I laugh with my daughter
Music
Flocks of seagulls in strange places
Open roads
Social and philosophical discussions

I love shooting reflections. At the Hot Air Balloon Rodeo, they usually do a dip and drag in the lake, but conditions were warming up too fast this year, so only one or two balloons accepted the challenge.

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Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Reflect upon your present blessings — of which every man has many — not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” — Charles Dickens

Daily gratitudes:
That Bridget’s dad is such a remarkable fighter
MKL
The Voodoo Donut fairy
Books
That the passive-aggressive postman did NOT leave my package of paper in a puddle

 

Because we love our hot air balloons. We have hot air balloon rodeos, like the one we went to this weekend, and in the mornings, I often see them floating in the blue as I am heading to work. Once at ex-Pat’s house, one flew so low over the backyard that we heard the whoosh of the flame as we were laying in bed in the morning. They represent light and freedom, and the epitome of air. I have never been up in one, but someday…though I think I’d prefer the basket to the chair that this gentleman is riding in.

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Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” — Terry Pratchett

Daily gratitudes:
Cheryl and her gratitude challenge
Seeing MKL for the first time in a week
Janalee for buying us our birthday lunch
A cool bath at the end of the day
My little workhorse of an air conditioner

And tonight, I send special prayers to my friend Bridget and her family. My thoughts are with you.

While this doesn’t look particularly comfortable, it did make me feel like I was sitting in the lap of nature.

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Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the day: “Because even if the lie is beautiful, the truth is what you face in the end.” — Lauren DeStefano

Daily gratitudes:
Amazing fall afternoon light
People with lovely souls
Millie
Getting lots of hugs in one day
A perfumed bath in the clawfoot tub

One of our happy things to do on our summer visits to Steamboat Springs is to attend the PRCA Rodeo. It’s an outdoor arena, so if it’s been raining, it stadium is awesomely muddy. But still, everyone tries to get their eight!

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Steamboat Springs, Colorado,

Quote of the day: “I plan on growing old much later in life, or maybe not at all.”  — Patty Carey (Rodeo Rider, 1913)

Daily gratitudes:
Pretty evening clouds
My almost-better-than-sex soup
Having MKL home
Talks with Kender
That Lindsay Lohan got out of rehab today (which made Kelsea happy)
Philosophical conversations that skirt the edge of madness

I’ve been quiet, haven’t I? Sorry. Just pondering life. And working a lot. And trying to make Mr. Man feel at home. But I’m back now, and ready to share some images from the last roadtrip.

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Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Quote of the Day: “It was amazing how you could get so far from where you’d planned, and yet find it was exactly were you needed to be.” — Sarah Dessen

Daily gratitudes:
A cooler day
Walking home from the bus
Thunder and lightning
Gardens
Simplicity
Mr. Man coming to greet me when I get home (so happy to have a cat again)

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