Monday, October 20, 2014


We took a long trip home last week. It was hard. It was work. It was imperfect hearts learning to be selfless and giving and learning to love in action not just words. We almost got swallowed by the past. But we remembered the future. And then we came home. And we went to the mountains and we BREATHED. What is it about those mountains? They open up your lungs. They just let you be. They just let you enjoy them. And as I climbed that hill with a scared kitten trailing an adoring little girl and a pissed off possessive dog and a sucker eating sticky boy my heart slowed. And it whispered 'you are home. you have made it home'

I don't know why this place is home right now but it is.
Home used to be sub saharan africa with temperatures always in the 100s and bright bright sunshine and sweat rolling down my back. I breathed that dusty dry air that was mixed with all kinds of unpleasant smells and my heart slowed and it whispered 'you are home. you are home'.

During a particularly (the most of my life) rough year I would come to the house I grew up in. To the people who have stood behind me and loved me even when I was ugly. I would stand in that kitchen, hug my mom who smelled like my life and my heart would slow and it whispered 'you are home. you are safe'

During every single day of my life when I get frustrated with my posse. When I am frustrated with breaking three glass jars in two weeks. When I am frustrated with the dog digging holes in backyard this man who has promised to love me forever and always looks at me with knowing, touches my shoulder, or hugs me all the way around and my heart slows and it whispers 'you are home. you are loved'

People say that home is where the heart is. My heart has been in so many places-is in so many places. I have so many homes.

Monday, September 29, 2014

I hate thinking of titles.

Something strange is happening here.
I don't know what to do with it.
I don't know what to do with myself.
For 4 years I have been the mother to an intense (funny, curious, smart, strong) girl. (can I borrow the word spicy??)

When she was a baby it was the hardest.

When she was cranky-she was CRANKY. And that happened a lot. More than not. No one could hold her but me. I had to hold her all the time. She didn't want me to hold her. She didn't want me to put her down. No single activity would occupy her for more than five minutes. The only thing that soothed her was begin outside, talking a walk. And even that would only help for so long.

I spent most of my teenage years babysitting. I studied child development in school. I nannied. I worked at an orphanage. I spent a lot of time with a lot of kids.

In all that time I had never met anyone like her.

And in public, at family functions, at dinner parties, at play dates in the park, mostly people didn't understand. They tried to be kind and 'Why? Is she just hungry? Is she just tired'…but no. She just napped two hours. She just ate more than I did lunch. She is just this way. It's her way. I don't know why she refuses-screams bloody murder with a pouty lip and real tears refuses-to let ANYONE else hold her. Even her daddy somedays. Not grammy or pop-pop. Grandma and Grandpa. Not good friends she sees all the time.  Sometimes it was like she just didn't want anyone to LOOK at her.

I spent SO MUCH ENERGY playing, singing, talking, teaching, comforting, (even when she refused to be comforted) feeding… I started early teaching her to identify her emotions and teaching her how to deal with them. ('screaming is not allowed in the living room. If you are angry and need to scream, please go to your bedroom.' -this I have said on a daily basis for two years. 'If you are confused you need to use your words and ask questions.' 'If you are sad, let's talk about it-please do not scream')

For 3 years I have been the mother to a fun-loving, cuddly boy.

This boy is ONLY interested in doing something if it is fun. Riding a bike totally loses its shine after two days. Potty training is only fun when the treats are mixed up daily (Really, who wants to get M&M's two days in a row??) and never ever ever ever gummy bears. Stickers are for the birds after one use.

When he is in trouble, he laughs! When in time out he laughs! After hitting his sister, he laughs! After kicking Joki, he laughs!

He just wants to laugh ALL THE TIME.
He loves life.
He always wanted to be snuggled. Which is adorable.  And also, it made making dinner quite difficult for two and a half years. The first 2 years I could only make dinner with him strapped to my back. And when he got too big for that I put him on the counter and he cooked with me. (please read between the lines: 'cook with me' means MESSSSSSSSSSSSSSx100000)

But the point is: I have been NEEDED. In real physical, emotional, demanding way for four years. Four years of rarely having enough space or quiet to think my own thoughts. It's survival really. All of you mothers know that. And fathers too. Just get through today.

And dinnertime and bedtime…don't even…just..wwwhhhaatttt planet do we live on? Worst time of every single day. There are beautiful moments thrown in there sure- but some of you talk about LOVING bath time -its so sweet. And bed time is so peaceful and calm..and I  just want to move to your planet..because…wow. Its like a scene from a horror film over here. Screaming, running, lots of nakedness, wicked laughter (because, you know, Bub thinks me asking for him to get his pajamas 1600 times is hilarious), slamming doors, coming in and out and in and out of doors, yelling 'I NEED ANOTHER SNACK!!' and 'BUT MOOOOMMMMMMMMMM IM STILL THIRSSSSTTTYYYY' 'MOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMMYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY you forgot my song!' (even though we sang five.)

(Are you tired??)

Ok ok enough about what its been like for 4 years…here is what is happening now...

Peace is happening.




No one is helping me cook. No one is following me around the house demanding to be held for hours. No one …. is needing me.

I find myself sitting alone at the kitchen table after a meal, the posse already having put their dishes in the sink, staring at the wall. It's been so long since I've been left alone in this way that I have NO IDEA what to do.
Do I get up and clean? Do I read a book? Do I…I don't even know what my other options are. It's been THAT long.

And it's such a fragile magical thing…I'm almost afraid I'll break it if I start doing something-using my brain in some capacity. I'm sure that if they heard me thinking my own thoughts the posse would rush in with an abundance of needs.

So mostly I find myself staring at the wall or slowly mindlessly scrolling through news feeds and blogs and weird internet stories about the Irish trying American junk food and where the most affordable mountain towns are. All the while in secret parts of my soul I am in awe…eyebrows raised, stopped breathing, no words kind of awe.

I never thought this would happen. I've probably jinxed myself by writing about it.

BUT what I just really want to say is….'Its true!!! They grow up!!!'  And I feel a bit sad about it.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Je veux jouer.

I spent my teenage years sitting in friend's basements watching movies-my dad always chiding us that we should DO something.

DO something? Like what? 16 is much too old to PLAY. Serious adult matters concerned us-riding with a newly licensed driver in their new-parent-bought car, and detangling the latest drama.

My immature introvert self was not confident enough in herself to realize what she really enjoyed doing. I felt most alive and happy and confident and learned the most about myself when I was playing. Outside. Hiking a cliff. Biking a trail. Water fight with friends. Rock climbing and repelling. White water rafting. Float trips. But I didn't pursue those activities…being a teenager is weird. I didn't really know what I liked to do. I felt weird about the things I liked to do. I think.

I wrote off camping and hiking for most of my life because I was forced into going when all my friends would be in a basement watching a movie (I was missing out on so much!) and I HATE PACKING. (This strange turn of events where I love camping and took Sis on a girls only trip this summer makes my parents laugh and also wonder what happened to me. I don't think they should be too surprised though-I have always been adventurous.)

But now that I'm grown I don't care so much if people think I'm weird for reading as many books as I do, or that I just REALLY love to be outside…I'm learning to play!

Not that I didn't play before. It's just a new era of playing.

I could say 'having kids is teaching me to play again!' but that sounds cliche…and not exactly true.

Yesterday we met up with friends and played all day. We ran a 10k, the posse ran a mile, it was pouring rain, we ate lunch, we swam hard (floating around the lazy river and hiking all the stairs to the huge water slide take so much energy) There was no other agenda…we just played!

I hiked with two friends last week. Into the mountains with the aspens changing colors. We heard elk bugle-one of the most magical sounds, we saw elk, we hiked off trail to find a better view of said elk…there was no other agenda...we just played!

It feels like a lot of the pieces of who I am are coming together in this one place. And they come together the most when I am playing. That's how we learn right? Somewhere along the way we forget it, like when we are 16 probably. We forget that playing is how we learn.  It's how I'm learning myself. It's how I'm learning my posse and this other guy who I've promised to spend my life with (He's really fascinating! And amazing! He does hard things!). It's how I'm learning about the world. It's how I'm making friends….And not that I haven't learned these things in other places and's just that the mountains demand these things from you. Demand that you know yourself. Demand that you know your team. Demand that you know the mountains. But they demand that you do it while playing. Because why would you endure the harshness of the mountains if it wasn't fun?

Before moving here I thought there was nothing in Wyoming. Literally nothing. And while that's sort of true-it is also not at all. It would be easy to look at our little town and write us off saying  'nothing to do. two restaurants. one screen theatre with uncomfortable chairs. no night life.' But you would be missing the world class rock climbing. The mountain biking, the trail running, the hiking, the cross country skiing, the hunting, the camping, the boating, the snowshoeing, the fishing, the being outside watching a river rush past you with wildflowers all around…all within a 20 minute drive.

I'm learning to play. I'm learning I like to play. I'm learning playing is a lifelong skill. I'm learning playing is what bonds people together…the people I care about most are the ones I've played hardest with (which also means we have probably been through hard things together too)

And my kind of playing doesn't have to look like your kind playing and we don't need to feel guilty about playing.

And, adults listen, I think we should call it that-call it playing when it is in fact playing! We are allowed that. So much else of the adult life is hard...

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

le saison change

The season is changing.

The sun is at a different angle. A 'summer is bowing out' angle.

We family camped. We 'girls only' camped. We ran. We hiked. We raced. We backpacked. We played with family. We played in the mountains.We jumped through sprinklers. We picked raspberries. We played with friends. We had birthday parties! We got sun burns and blonde hair. We rode bikes. We rode bikes in the mountains. We climbed rocks. We climbed rock faces and pinnacles. We got stronger. We got smarter. We grew. We spent long slow lovely evenings sipping wine with friends outside as the sun faded. We read books. We played 'I spy with my little eye'. We got frustrated with tourists. We saw a moose momma and a moose baby. We saw a herd of elk. We saw bison. We saw deer. We saw bunnies, and pikas, and marmots, and butterflies, and bees. We saw and picked and smelled and loved flowers of a rainbow of colors. We collected rocks and feathers and bones, and horseshoes.

There is still a bit more to come. A grown-ups only hike. One more race. One big wedding in the mountains. One more birthday (party!!). One more camping trip.

But summer is closing up shop-and I feel good. Content. Happy. Filled. Ready to take on the next adventure….

And when it comes- when that fluffy, cold, white color fills these big Wyoming skies you do not even have to rub your sunny warm fall weather in our virtual faces-because this is good. We sucked all the life out of the summer. We are ready to suck all the life out of the fall. Swimming lessons, and mountains in a fire of colors, and skiing, and pumpkins, and VESTS!!, and holidays (and a nephew!) on the horizon.

I am so frequently overwhelmed by the ocean of emotions flowing through here. I ride the waves and breath deep and try remembering to move with it instead of standing against it.

But the season is changing there too. There is a little more air at the top of those waves. Just a little bit. Just enough that I know we survived it. We aren't out of it yet, but we are going to make it out of the hard 'we have a little posse at home'. And we are going to make it out having lived. Having loved. Having worn holes in our jeans. Having worked. Having experienced and felt and grown. Having taught. Having fought and come back together over and over and over. Having discovered our strength. Having discovered our weakness.

And I feel good. Content. Happy. Filled. Ready for the next adventure...

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Mountain Women 2014

How do you describe this?

It's been two weeks since the Mountain Women backpacked/adventured through 14ish miles in the Tetons. And I still don't know what to say.

Peace, beauty, amazingly fresh air..I mean, it feels like REAL air! Not recycled or controlled or filtered. Just air. Blue skies, flowers in varying shades of purple, pink, blue, orange, yellow, white… wild huckleberries we could just pick and eat!! WATERFALLS EVERYWHERE. Like in the picture…there is a waterfall if you look hard enough but we could see it for a LONG ways. We could HEAR it for a long ways. And it was a LONG waterfall. Bright vibrant 'its springtime!' green. Friends. New friends. Old friends. Family that is like friends. And the stars. SO MANY STARS.

These things sit in the soul like a puddle and are slowly slowly soaked into the soil.

It's seeping in slowly.

And mostly for now it's only these single words that seem adequate to describe it. Even though it's far from adequate. It's this big huge feeling.

We went in celebration of my cousin who just finished her Masters. It turned out to be perfect timing because she has had a lot of things going on her life besides school. She needed the break. The break to breath, to see, to feel, to experience life in this way. Disconnected-and more connected. She needed the space to push herself physically and mentally and know that she could do it and do it well.

When we got back I asked what her favorite part was and she said 'I don't know. There is so much. But having done it. Having finished it.' Accomplishing the thing we set out to do.

I am so proud of her. She took such great care of herself. Stopping to drink water and telling us when she was feeling the altitude and needed to rest (she was the only one not acclimated). Others (including myself) might have tried to push the limits and ended up sick-not her! She kept herself within her limits all the while pushing at those limits.

How else do you describe it?

There is this feeling out there in the wilderness. This feeling that comes when the climate controlled, machine run, technology driven world fades away. It's unreachable really. One of us was able to get one bar of reception on her phone and called to check in with her family. But the rest of us were untethered. And theres this feeling of letting go. This freedom to just be. This feeling of life-all the life that surrounds us…we humans are not the only ones breathing and eating and playing. The pikas and the marmots and the bumble bees. There is life everywhere pulsing through everything. And we are connected to all of it.

What else is there for me to do when I feel all these big feelings and see all these amazing things except to jump in the alpine, snow fed lake? And dry off on a boulder.

And close my eyes an smile at the wonder and beauty and amazing-ness of it all. That I am lucky enough to be here in this moment now experiencing life up here with these women…a life few people really get to see.

Monday, July 7, 2014

The first race

This girl:
had no idea what she was in for. But she was ready for it.

She watches me lace up my purple running shoes (I really believe in feeling pretty as much as possible), put on my running shorts (with my running tights most of the year), throw on a T-shirt (again, most of the year also my icebreaker and running jacket) and head out the door. She is worried when I tell her I'm going for a long run 'I'll miss you momma! I wish I could run with you!' and relieved when I'll be back before quiet time is over or before she is asleep.

But she doesn't run much. She is a mad hiker. She is becoming a mad biker. She has got some climbing skillzzz that I did not teach her. But as much as she says she would like to run with me, she doesn't last very long.

Until July 4, 2014.

The first annual Challenge for Charities 1 mile Mad Dash Kids Run.

She was excited about it from the beginning. Actually, it was more about the running shoes. But still. She was excited.

As the day drew near I could see the nervousness set it. She was not sure what she had signed up for but she didn't back down…she was going to get a Tshirt in her race packet!

We started the morning with some stretching and hydrating. We got dressed. We pinned her number on (714!!! I love my number momma!) We walked four blocks to the starting line. I carried her…there was going to be a lot of walking later and I wanted to save her legs. We talked about how the man would shoot a gun in the air and that would be our signal to go. We got in line. 50 kids under 9 and half as many parents. Cameras flashing everywhere, the parents staying behind reminding their kids to watch for the adults on the track who would tell them where to go and to follow the orange arrows spray painted on the ground. Sis was nervous. She was looking around and her body was tense. She was not letting go of my hand even though she had very sternly told me several weeks earlier that under no circumstance would she be holding my hand and she would be running in front of me. But she was ready. As soon as the gun went off we were off navigating around the kids who had been tripped accidentally by other kids and the one kid who was accidentally tripped by a parent. She moved fast and pretty quickly said she was getting tired but pressed on anyway. We slowed down a bit and then when she said she was ready we sped up. We passed a few people-all the parents saying the same things: 'We are pacing ourselves. Go slow now and then speed up' 'It's fine if you need to slow down' 'It's fine if you need to walk' 'You can do this!'.

Before we reached the halfway mark Sis realized that it was fun to pass people. She looked up at me and said 'Momma I want to pass that girl in braids!' who was 30 ft in front of us. She let go of my hand and sprinted up passed her and then slowed down and grabbed my hand again 'I passed her momma!!!' So then I realized that competition is what is going to drive this girl to finish the race…so we found another girl to pass and passed her. Then she sped up and passed us so we sped up and passed her. And found a boy to pass. She kept running! She got tired and we slowed down a bit. But then we reached the bridge! The final stretch! She kicked it into high gear running so fast that daddy barely got a picture of her. There were so many people cheering and some she even knew! And then we crossed the finish line and she was on top of the world. She got the watermelon they set out for the post-race refuel. Everyone was giving her high 5's and saying 'great job!' She smiled big and said 'thanks!' She said 'hi!' to everyone we passed. She was proud of herself and so were we. 

She ran the whole mile. In about 13 minutes-maybe less. We don't have the official time yet but that's not what matters anyway. She's learning how good it feels to work really hard to accomplish something…

Friday, July 4, 2014

The boy and the deer

In the woods.

Away from home.

Cold and rainy turns to sunny and warm.

But there are so many things that are 'no touch'.

Tents, knives, fire, stakes, coolers…

And so many people around. People are on almost every campsite around the loop.

Or so it seems.

This little boy hears 'No touch!'' and 'Come back! Thats not our tent.' and 'Don't touch that wood-it's not ours.'

Too many rules for a boy in the woods. Too many rules for a girl in the woods-but she is content to sit down and color. He wants to run. He wants to touch. He wants to taste. He wants to breathe.

The dirt, the rocks, the sticks, the flowers, the pine trees, the squirrels, the mud, the lake water, the clouds.

Instead of the correcting and the time outs and the frustration-we walked.

Around the circle and to a new part of the park. We stumbled along. Me still frustrated by his restless tired hungry boy-ness. Him by the rules. (No splashing in puddles with those shoes on. Don't poke momma with sticks).

On the back side of a secluded loop I looked up and saw a deer.

We see deer all the time. People all over see deer all the time. They are nothing new. Nothing like a moose which was what I REALLY wanted to see in this area. But she was 20 ft from us. Standing still. She saw us (heard more likely) before we saw her. But when we did, we put the stick down, we talked in hushed tones (he is very good at that), and moved slowly through the woods to see if we could get a better look.

We stared at each other quiet for a few minutes. She moved closer, then farther away. We crept closer. We kept quiet.

And then she was gone.

And so was the frustration. And the restlessness.

We were calmed by this creature who is seemingly so ordinary-but still so different from us.

When we left that campsite two nights, 4 bison, a herd of elk, a 2 mile hike to a geyser, and a lot of campfire time with family that are more like friends later we were full. Satisfied. Peaceful. Full of beauty and wonder.

I am amazed every time at how the simple things fill me up.

An ordinary deer still produces wonder. Early mornings snuggles with my boy set the tone for the day. Late night chats by the fire. Good wine, of course. Being outside. Being open to being amazed.

I want more simple.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The posse needs a name change. Rock stars is more fitting.

The white season is long here. And the colorful short.

I'm not complaining because there are a lot of beautiful things about the white season.

The sun, for instance. Never stops shining. Rarely is there a totally cloudy day.

But we have made it through to feel warmth again. To see green leaves. To see yellow, purple, pink, blue in several shades wildflowers painted on the hills of our playground. To see white, green, and orange with strange striped butterflies who cannot contain their excitement for spring flitting from place to place. To see birds dressed in striking red and bold vibrant yellow and to hear as they sing their songs loud and clear 'come out to play!'. To smell the dreamy intoxicating scent of lilac that covers the town like a fog. To feel the power of water (or rather to be made to feel small) as its white tips push into other white tips tumbling clumsily down the rocks with all the ice cold water that has most recently been snow at the top of the mountains.

We enjoyed the snow. We played hard.
But now there is something new.
And no more hatscoatsbootsgloves.

During the white season only a handful of trails are accessible. So we do those trails over and over and over. They are beautiful. We always find something new.

But now-we get to do new trails. Or at least trails we haven't seen in 6 months so they feel new.

Before I remembered we had so many new things to explore during the colorful season I made a goal for the posse (and myself). We were going to hike the 1.5mi to the Falls, be able to stay and play in the freezing water on a hot day, and hike the 1.5mi back to the car without anyone being carried. 3mi. I thought if we practiced and practiced we could do it. Maybe, by the end of the color. September. That was what I was hoping for.

We started practicing a few months ago with friends and lots of snacks. It was going well, so I thought. Each time out brought us a little farther down the path.

Then came yesterday. We went out to hike. No friends-just me, the posse, and ever interested in new smells Joki, and of course A LOT of snacks-because somehow we didn't make it out until it was almost lunch time. But it was a lovely blue sky kind of day so we were not going to miss it. We were headed to the Falls trailhead but then I remembered how crowded its been lately. A lot of tourists are starting to come through town and that's the preferred trail for them. I get it. It beautiful. It's fairly short and easy.
But not yesterday. I didn't want to meet a million people on the way-I still was not sure of Joki and how he does with meeting other dogs on the trail.

So I turned the car around with lots of 'Why aren't we stopping momma?! I want to hike!!' and found ourselves a trail we have visited many times but not hiked all the way. I thought I knew the path, though and where it would come out-a big loop. Easy.

We first had to rock hop across a very wide stream which Sis did with agility and balance I didn't know she had. She didn't need me to help her really at all. And then we needed snacks. And I told myself 'Ami, it's the being out here part that counts-if we only walk a little bit and have to head back that is ok' It's hard sometimes for my task-oriented-just-finish-a-thing self to be flexible with the needs of little people.

After the snacks I heard 'Im getting tired' and we'd been out for 15 minutes. Yikes.

But the lead hiker hiked on. The rear hiker continued picking up sticks and rocks, looking at ants, and pretending to be Dusty Crophopper as he trailed behind us never closer than 20 feet to me-the middle hiker. Lead hiker ran and danced, picked a lovely bouquet of very bright colored wildflowers 'for my daddy. I really miss him'. We started up a big hill and they wanted to quit-but I just wanted to get to the top of the hill to see what was there because we've never done this trail before. So I say we hike up to the top and then turn around. They agree. But we get to the top and it it just keeps going up and up and up. And the posse keeps finding red ants, and green (boy) butterflies leading us on, and white (girl) butterflies showing new rocks and new colored flowers and I roll with it. We keep heading up. Although I'm thinking I might have to pay for this decision later. We meet a friend and her dog-we say hello and pass quickly so the dogs don't have time to stop listening. Joki was awesome. We meet another dog and Joki was awesome. I now have confidence in his ability to meet dogs and listen to me about where he needs to be and what he needs to be doing. We reach the summit of our long trek up-I think its great timing, definitely time to head down. But the trail doesn't go down. It's just flat. We are walking along the side of one rim of the canyon. And singing songs and walking on logs and climbing up rocks.  Eventually we start to go down-I'm relived, I can see the parking lot in the distance-but then we start walking the opposite direction from the car…what? I'm a little concerned now about how far we are going to have to walk. I know that this trail does not go past a certain point but that point is very far. But no one is complaining. We just keep going. Bub is trailing a little farther so I pick him up for a few minutes. We take some water breaks. Joki is slowing down and starting to walk with us instead of running ahead of us a little more.

After forever we finally see the blue diamonds-the ones that mark the trail we are on-we haven't seen those in a long time! We run to each one knowing it's bringing us back to the car.

We looped around exactly like I thought we would-I just didn't know that it was (in my best estimation) 3mi. that looped. I thought it was more like 1-1.5. It took us 2.5 hours-a lot of breaks. A lot of playing and singing and looking at ants, beetles, bees, spiders, flowers, logs… but this posse did the thing that I had set as a goal to reach by the end of the summer. 3 mi!! And they were happy. They were still feeling strong. They were hungry. And ready to stop and see some fish in a place the river pools. But they did it. And had no idea what they had just accomplished. It was no big deal to them.

Just another day living life in the mountains.

But I cannot get over how strong they are and how much endurance they have. And what amazing things this kind of life is going to teach them about life as they grow...
With her bouquet for daddy

Sis carried these for the entire hike-they lived to be put in water where they are perking up a bit
PS the Rock Stars were exhausted and cranky last night and this morning…it was totally worth it.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

The 57 hour adventure

One thing that was forgotten in all the wonderfulness of catching up with old friends: stolen wallet.

No driver's liscence, no credit card, no cash, no nothing.

Having flown from the cowboy state getting past the TSA on the way back seemed like it was going to be an issue. But it wasn't. Husband FedExed all important identifying papers to me.
I read all the TSA info available online, and this seemed like the most plausible easiest way for me to get through.

What all the info didn't say was that if you do not have a photo ID-no matter how many or how 'good' your papers are-you are going to get pat down and have your bag searched. No matter that I am by myself with a 2 & 3 yr old. I take a deep breathe and do my best to keep everyone moving through the chaos and try and explain to them what is going to happen while I'm not exactly sure myself. I just know that after the x-ray I am not allowed to touch them or our stuff…I can't help them put their backpacks back on and people are pushing on all sides. Some people are even trying to help and getting scolded by the TSA agent like I'm a criminal. Some people are offended for me 'Really? You are doing this to HER?? She has two kids with her!!!' They are totally ignored.

Sis was a bit freaked out. Bubs refused to listen. But we survived. It was fine. We found our gate. We sat down. We ate peanut butter and jelly. We got on the plane.

Our seats weren't together, and the woman who I needed to trade seats with in order to be with the posse didn't speak English and was cranky. She just said 'NO!' and sat down next to a worried looking Bubs and Sis.

A Spanish speaking kind stranger helped us figure it out…so we are settled in for the flight to Denver. Quick change to Salt Lake City. Almost there. Just a few more hours (I think.)

Right outside Denver we have to start circling because there is a huge storm over the airport. Bubs needs a nap but is instead crawling on top of me, taking his seat belt on and off, standing up and asking everyone he sees what their name is.

OH! And my phone is basically dead. 10% battery left. No movies to entertain, no communication.

An hour goes by and we have to land in Colorado Springs bc we are low on fuel….but so are all the other planes that have been circling for an hour…so we sit there for 2.5. hours. We stand in line for 15 minutes to use the bathroom with Sis (who hasn't peed all day) screaming 'I don't like this potty!!!!!!!!! Don't flush it!! I don't like this potty!!!!!!!!!!!!' We meet a cat traveling with it's owner. We tell stories even though I am so exhausted that I'm hardly keeping my eyes open (I'm a traveler who likes to nap-you can't do this when you are the only adult…so I'm having a hard time resisting the urge to nap) We sing songs. I worry about how and if we are going to catch the next Salt Lake flight…but not too much because everything has bee grounded in Denver.

We finally take off. And land and taxi and taxi because all the other planes are landing too. We finally get off the plane and it is past 6 o'clock. We left KC at 130. They said there would be a customer service representative to help us get on our next flight but there are SO MANY people and Bubs does NOT want to hold me hand but run and run that I cannot find this representative. All I know is that we missed our flight and the next one was supposed to leave at 9p but is now delayed until 1030p. YIKES!!!!

I just really need to get my phone charged so I can let people know what's going on. We walk up and down the concourse looking-scouring every corner for an outlet. I'm basically dragging the posse. They don't want to walk with me. Or walk at all. We find one right outside a Schlotsky's. We park it. Charge the phone, get some dinner (I at least have a few cash dollars thanks to my parents even if I have nothing else), and text and call and explain what it going on. Bub is eating off the dirty airport floor. Scooting around and getting in people's way. Sis doesn't want to eat anything. I scarf down half my sandwich, take a drink and start to feel better. We can do this. But it's time to go. Bub is eating off the airport floor!!! We look for the customer service representative again. Find her/him/them. At the end of a 200+ person line. We get in the back of the line. People line up after us. Bubs immediately starts rolling on the floor. Sis starts twirling and running into the people in front of us. They play tag running in circles around the people in front and behind us. We've been in line 15 minutes and have moved 2 feet. This is not going to work. I'm talking to Husband. He's going to get us a hotel (But then I'll have to do the whole pat down thing again only at this huge airport with lots more people…not really a positive thought at this point) more running around. More me saying 'you have to stand with me-you cannot run out of the line!' More Husband calling so I can't keep track and they run out and people almost trip over them, we almost spill lemonade all over the floor several times, the patience of our fellow line-waiters is running thin-they aren't in a good place either-and so is mine. Husband says no hotels are available. The airlines are buying up the rooms! Ok, next idea: rent a car. I don't have a driver's liscence!!  Running out of ideas. Running out of patience. It's 730. This line is going nowhere and my phone is going to die again because I only charged it to 30% last time to come stand in this line.
We look for a quiet(er) spot where we can still see the line. Park it and watch movies-while receiving and making phone calls. When I'm on the phone Bubs is in the middle of the walkway rolling of the floor. The whole airport feels tense and annoyed. Bub hasn't napped. Sis hasn't napped. They are exhausted. It's past their bedtime. The people we were standing with are not even half way to the front. Husband is having no luck rebooking us on the phone or online-everyone else is trying that too. Looks like we are going to have to sleep here…which means we are NOT going to sleep.
Husband has the idea that we need to find someone we know in Denver to come get us. But who do we know? We know one family but don't have their numbers…so he calls our parents to see if they know anyone. My mom does! A good friend of hers son and family lives there!!! She calls them and even though I haven't not seen this guy in a good ten years an we were never really friends-he is younger than me- and he lives an hour from the airport he will come pick us up! We can stay with him tonight and figure things out in the morning. !!!!!!! I feel so relieved. I do not have to 'sleep' at the airport with the posse.
While we are waiting for this rescue I find an airline agent in a short line that I can talk to-Bubs is crawling and rolling on the floor. Sis is trying to run behind the counter in the opposite direction. Awesome. The agent says he can't rebook me because thats like cutting in line. His advice? Get comfortable and watch the line. Oh, and if I leave the airport and come back in the morning they can't rebook me there-it has to be here or online or on the phone. We are definitely leaving so Husband needs to get that done.

But really-I just want him to come get us. I know its a long way. I know he has just worked 9 really long hard shifts in a row. But I cannot even think about spending the night, going through the whole pat down thing, getting on another plane, arriving in SLC, probably spending another night with friends and driving the 5 hours home ALL BY MYSELF. I could do it. If I had to. But I really don't want to. It sounds awful. It sounds like I might lose my mind…or just cry the whole way home. I don't want to be anywhere near an airport or planes for a good while.

But we have a dog now (I haven't talked about him yet!) So we need to figure that out. I text our friend who knows Joki really well.

It's 930 at least by the time we are outside the main terminal waiting for the white CR-V to rescue us. Sis cried on the way out because she really didn't want to stay with a stranger. While talking with my mom for a second Bub tried to climb UP the down escalator with people on it. All that flashed through my mind was an episode of Rescue 911 where a kids shirt gets stuck in the teeth of the escalator. It's scarred me.
Sis is whimpering that she is so tired and feet are hurting so bad.

But then the white car pulls up. I've never got in anything so quickly. We are out of the airport. No more recycled air. It takes 5 minutes for the posse to fall asleep-Sis sitting straight up. We drive the hour, we get out, we get settled in a dark guest room with one twin mattress and one toddler mattress on the floor with lots of blankets and pillows. It feels like a room at the fanciest hotel. It's dark. It's quiet. It's warm. We settle in fall asleep pretty quickly. And sleep. And sleep.

Our friend calls to say that she can't watch Joki but she knows someone she would recommend…are we ok with that? Yes! We are.

Husband called on the drive home. He is going to come get us. He can't get through to the airline. He's going to leave early in the  morning on his first day off in 9 days off and drive 6 hours to get us. I'm elated.
We spend the day making new friends, playing at the neighborhood park, praying we don't stink too badly and pretending we don't feel the fuzz on our teeth.

After a couple hours of not hearing from Husband I start to get really worried…although I shouldn't. He is driving through Wyoming and suddenly a car pulls up! We are saved! But his phone is not working…he needs a new one.

We go to Target (where the whole mess of having my wallet stolen started) to pick up a few needed things-our bags are in Salt Lake City- our friends will pick them up and drive our Jeep back up to Lander for us so we don't have to drive over there too.

We drive to a hotel and settle in for the first night in almost two weeks that we all have been together.

We get up eat a leisurely breakfast-make one more Target stop…It will be awhile before we are back-and make the drive home. We stop to see friends and get a new phone along the way so it takes a bit longer than it should.

But the relief on everyone's faces and in their attitudes is palpable.

Vacation was so fun.
But we are so glad to be home.
We are so glad to be back together.
We are so glad that there are people out there who are willing to help others out…without their kindness this would have been a different (more horrible??) story.

Monday, May 19, 2014


The posse and I have spent the past week away from our mountains.
Away from rugged trails and waterfalls and raging-spring-run-off-rivers.
Away from small town-no-traffic.
Away from Superman/Jack Bauer/Jason Bourne depending on the day and skills required to ford the current situation.

We have gone back home. My home. Where I grew up. Where those roots were planted.

It's been amazing.
It's warm and sunny and GREEN and FLOWERY like it is not yet in the mountains.

And here there are good friends.

There are aunts who know things that few others do. Who I know are always on my side. Rooting for me and mine and loving me all the way. Who take me to coffee where I can see the difference between her latte and my cappucino. The barista gig is so fun.

There are friends that I have been friends with since I was 11 and we (basically) close down Starbucks (I can't believe I'm admitting that...OLD TOWN COFFEE still has my heart) catching up about living and mothering and wife-ing and working and loving. And say a few healing words to the wounds we understand in each others hearts.

There are friends who I spent some of the most intense moments of my life with-friends who I learned how to travel internationally with-friends who watched me freak out when our flight was cancelled and we had to stay over night in a hotel when we were barely 20. But we lost touch. Life got in the way and we spent the whole evening on the screen porch breathing fresh spring air and recounting the good and bad and beautiful of the last several years.

There are friends who I have known since preschool, and lived with in college, and in the same town after college and who I know will always always always be there. She is one who I've called when I didn't know who else to call and she was there. Every time. And she has amazing beautiful joy-filled things going on her life and it's amazing to see it all on her face. In person.

There are friends who taught me how to run. Taught me that I liked running. Taught me I was stronger than I knew. Who I was pregnant with at the same time and we both had boys that were 4 days apart.

There are grandparents and uncles who put together a special meal just because we've come back in town. And go out of there way for an impromptu photo session.

And there are cousins who I have no words for how much they mean to me. The roots I've talked about before. Our growing up together created something that....well....blood is thicker than water is what they say.

And of course, grammy and pop-pop. And time spent drinking wine on the deck in the setting sun eating and enjoying the moment and each other.

But man, we miss that Superman. And those mountains...time to get back to our other home soon for our adventure filled summer!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Easter and roots.

2 hour drive ALONE* through the high desert of central Wyoming
45 min flight ALONE
1 hr flight ALONE

A big family party.
Remembering my roots.

1 hr flight ALONE
45 min flight ALONE
3 hour drive ALONE back through the high desert of central Wyoming (with an unfruitful burrito stop)

That was Easter.

Loving, caring, weird, funny, emotional, creative, independent, adventurous roots.

Roots that taught receiving forgiveness.

Roots that taught giving forgiveness.

Roots that taught faith.

Roots that taught fun.

Roots that taught goofy/silly/ridiculous. i.e. Did you know that licorice can talk?

Roots that said 'This-this family-this is safe.'

Roots that taught DREAMS and go after them!

And we did…All of us growing from these roots at the same time.

We are now doctors, artists, poets, designers, physical therapists, sound engineers.
We are married.
We are single.
We have kids.
We have lived and do live all over the world. 

We are so very different* now…but then someone said 'You say you are so different but…'

We started from the same place. With the same roots. Digging in the same dirt. Running through the same woods.

So grateful for these roots.
Grateful to remember where and who I started with 
Grateful to remember how close I hold them
Grateful to remember how close I am held.

*we are also not very different because we all understand and occasionally (i.e. more than we would like to admit) use 'Bruemmer humor'-it's probably mostly in honor of our late grandparents…right?!

*being ALONE was amazing. There is nothing else to say about it.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Let it GO

Let it go.

Before, I used to say it.

Before, when Sis was angry because Bub said the turtle was orange but it 'is REALLY GREEEENNNN momma!!!' I said 'Let it go Sis. He can think what he wants to think.'

Before, when Bubs was so angry that Sis was painting on a piece of purple paper instead of white paper like he wanted her to do I said 'Let it go Bubs. You are not in charge of Sis. You are only in charge of yourself.'

Before Disney made a song with the title 'Let it go' and not one single day passes that I don't hear one posse member or the other singing at the TOP of their lungs 'LET IT GOOOO CANT HOLD IT BACK ANYMORRRREEEEEEEE'

How much of life is really about letting it GO?

Most of it?


One million tiny (big) things to let go.

Let go that it is 60 degrees outside and Sis wants to wear a sleeveless dress with no jacket and sandals. Let go that there is dirt ALL OVER my clean-for-two-hours floor. Let go that two little people want to 'help' make breakfast/lunch/dinner-and by help I mean LICK EVERYTHING and also DUMP EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE. Let go that I drive a freaking mom mobile. Let go that my dryer makes a 'squeak squeak squeak' or rather 'SQUEAK SQUEAK SQUEAK' every time the cycle is ten minutes from being done. Let go that I can't wear headbands when my hair is dirty for more than an hour without a horrific headache. Let go that Bubs found something else disgusting to put in his mouth-you don't want me to mention what. Let go that the woman at work wants to give her 5 yr old a 16oz caffeinated drink. Let go that the woman at work who always complains her drink is not hot enough now complains that her drink is TOO hot.

Because it doesn't matter.


the truth is…….I am not in charge.

Some days I am not even in charge of my children.

I absolutely discipline and correct and put my foot down and teach.

But I cannot say the word and suddenly have Sis stop 'feeling cranky momma' when I have a few more things I need to do at an errand.

I cannot magically make Bubs stop pooping and rubbing it into the carpet. (really really wish I could)

But I can LET IT GO.

This too shall pass.

Nothing stays forever.

I find I need this daily reminder-just maybe not screamed at the top of one's lungs. Because things are INTENSE over here. This house is full of so much drama. And I am the calm-the tree that doesn't bend to the winds. But all these emotions threaten to push me over-roots hanging out of the ground and all or haul me under the gigantic waves that come rushing at me everyday-or force me to runaway somewhere more rational and calm and clean.

But instead.

Let it go.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Oatmeal and the 'tired epidemic'

There is a commercial I've seen recently.

Something to do with a 'tired epidemic' in this country. It shows middle aged women and young men and old men and even kids looking run down. Ragged. Yawning. TIRED.

The solution?

Eat oatmeal for breakfast! That's why we are all tired-we aren't eating enough oatmeal for breakfast!!


This is the problem and the solution.


I have nothing against oatmeal.
But it's not going to start giving you all kinds of energy. It's just not. Especially when you slept 5 hours the night before.

When you are juggling wife(husband)/mother(father)/sister(brother)/daughter(son)/friend/employee/stranger-on-the-street-trying-to-be-kind/stranger-on-the-street-needing-kindness…..and all that those roles entail.

It's a lot.

I am exhausted. Even if I have a whole nights uninterrupted sleep. I am still tired. We have 17 things to do every day. Cleaning, cooking, shopping, making sure the posse have social interactions, making sure the posse are in activities so that they are learning skills so that they will be productive members of society, taking care of the cars, taking care of the laundry, making sure that we have time with friends, making sure we have time by ourselves. WORK. Schedule. Schedule. Schedule.

And we live in Small-mountain-town, USA. Not even in Big-city, USA where there are things to worry about like traffic and if you are dressed trendy enough. Being trendy here involves making sure you have good enough snow boots.

What are we racing around for?
Is your life better because of all the things you are doing?
Is mine?
What makes a good life?

What if instead of eating oatmeal every morning to give us energy. Or instead of drinking 5 gallons of caffeine every morning just to 'get us going'.

What if we just SLOWED DOWN??

What if?

What if your life was not run by your schedule.
What if YOU ran IT?
What if you carved out the time to do the things that are really important to you and yours and FORGET the rest.

We used to have something scheduled for every morning of the week. Swim lessons, story time, play group, play dates….I felt like I was never home-always rushing to get the posse to their next thing-because this is what they need right? But what if what they need is to take their time. Because they are 2 and 3. What if they need the time to get dressed so they can learn to do it themselves. What if they need to not be rushed because waking up takes time sometimes (or EVERY SINGLE MORNING). What if I need time to make breakfast and enjoy it? To see the sun rise? To take a walk without a destination. Or take a walk with a destination but not in the hurried frenzied way of 'we-have-so-much-to-get-done'

Why do we have to get things done?
Isn't it ok to just be together?

Contrary to popular belief my worth, and by extension your worth (I'm assuming you are a human) is not tied productivity. But we are trained to think that aren't we?

In a small West African country you sit under a baobab and drink 3 cups of tea or bissop or whatever you are served for three hours chatting with old women and playing with children while the person you are looking for is fetched from a field 10km away-he walked there-when he eventually shows up, he gets to drink a cup of tea too. And then you do business.

And if your business happens to be during sieste-a sacred time of day where EVERYONE goes home to eat lunch and have a little reposer before finishing their work for the day-well you are just out of luck. You will probably be offered lunch and time to rest before business continues.

Although, you will more than likely plan your day so that you can get back to your own home before sieste. Which means you leave at 8 AM and spend the whole morning on this one thing.

This is frustrating and infuriating to a Westerner who is accustomed to making a phone call/shooting an email/meeting for a quick lunch to do business. Is is not a whole morning/whole family sitting around affair.

And while we Westerners certainly know how to make money and build businesses and all of that-maybe we can take some lessons from other cultures. The ones who purposefully build time in their day to take a long break. The ones who are closed for August as everyone goes on vacation for the entire month.
Taking one day out of the week to actually REST. To stop working.

I don't think oatmeal is going to fix this 'tired epidemic'.
I think rest is.
I think slowing down is.

I know, I know. It's easier said then done. From the time we are 2-judging by what's happening in our house-we are taught to be productive. So when we sit down for just a moment to rest we feel guilty or we feel restless 'I need to be DOING something!!! I feel lazy!'  But maybe relearning how to just BE is worth our mental health. Worth our physical health. Worth the depth of our relationships.

I want to linger over dinner with friends for a little longer.
I want to walk a little more.
I want to sit quietly without a device in my hands more frequently.

(And maybe eat a little less processed food. That's not helping anyone either)

Monday, March 3, 2014

Il y a cinq ans.

Five years ago.


And only.

Two people coming from opposite ends collided. Crashed.

And nothing has been the same since.

We are two boards of equal force leaning against one another holding each other up. Equal force sometimes means equally stubborn. Equally unwilling to move an inch. Sometimes it means gentle gentle gentle urging. encouraging. loving.

He is truth and I am grace.

I had a host of secrets.
So did he.

He said 'You are ok'
I said 'You are ok'

Broken pieces put back together again make a beautiful mosaic. Sometimes, oftentimes more beautiful than the original.

We didn't make sense. Only a few got it.
Even now I'm not sure how much sense we make.

But this is home.

It is easy to forget. It is easy to remember all the opposites. All the reasons there are still a lot of collisions five years later. To only pay attention to things that are not happening. Or to the things that won't stop happening. To complain that 'THIS IS NOT WHAT I SIGNED UP FOR!' Pregnant nine months in and then again and layoffs and back to school and hard times...

(but what DID I sign up for?) I signed up for life. This is life.

After all the colliding and the chaos of the day, when the posse is laid down, when the house is picked up, when PAX VINCENT is reestablished I see him again. I remember him again. The funny man with the big heart beneath the surface of entertaining obnoxiousness. The man who looked me in the eye and  said 'You are ok' when I was most broken. The man who says 'Do it' anytime I suggest anything I want to do. Nanny, stay home, breastfeed the posse back to back, natural child birth with a doula, make baby food, baby led weaning, running, run a half marathon, be a doula, be barista, be fluent en français, bike everywhere in town, walk everywhere in town…he is fiercely loyal and every hurdle I jump and every challenge I face my back is covered.

I know this even in the midst of battles over what to do with the posse or what to do with the money or how to tell family we are moving to Wyoming.

He knows my secrets. And I know his.
We've crawled through the mud together. Even  dragging the other behind.
And in the midst of it all we have built something. It's not big or flashy. It's quiet and unassuming. We are still working on it-working on each other. Helping heal the broken places. Building a beautiful mosaic out of the give and take of our lives that crashed together so mysteriously five years ago.


And only.

And I think I'm learning that this journey is not just about being happy during it or at the end of it-but more about the person I am becoming because of it.

Friday, February 21, 2014


The past several weeks have brought with it an experiment.

Some of you might balk at the idea…but hear me out.

If you know us-and by us I really mean ME- you know that I lean heavily towards minimalism. I left the country seven years ago and gave away 75% of my belongings. Including my winter coat. I didn't think I'd be coming home in the middle of February to a snow storm.

Since then I've not really replaced much of my stuff. I got married, so that stuff came to inhabit my space and we had to buy some furniture, but mostly its the basics and one carry-on size suitcase filled with mementos. The ones that mean the most, the ones I want my posse to show their posses.

And since I worked in an orphanage in rural Burkina Faso I came home with a different idea about what kids NEED in order to learn and grow and love and be loved. (And it's not loads and loads of toys. And then more toys. And maybe a few more).

My posse has the least amount of toys of any kids I know save for maybe one. And it sometimes still feels like too much. They don't play with what they have and whine and beg for something else. And the mess. Don't even talk to me about the mess. I have such a hard time with THE MESS. I'm sometimes afraid I'm going to give my children a complex with all the cleaning up (before we leave to go somewhere, before lunch, before naps, before dinner, before bed…) and then I relax and tell myself I'm going to give them a complex about something, might as well be cleaning up. It's part of the job of being an imperfect teacher to young impressionable souls.


We I took away the toys.

Not all of them.

But we've got a system now. The toys live in the closet. Every week each posse member can choose 3 toys for the week. The rest go back. (Toys are grouped in piles-so all the plastic animals counts as one toy) Even the big ones like the kitchen and the workbench. In the closet. Off limits for the week.

It felt a little extreme as I was doing it. Honestly. I was doing it out of frustration and at-the-end-of-my-rope feelings. I didn't know what else to do. I was screaming (in my head of course) "WHY ARE YOU NOT PLAYING WITH YOUR TOYS!!" So I just decided spur of the moment in the middle of the afternoon while Partner in Parenting and Life was watching a Bears game. (That's sacred time you know. DO. NOT. INTERRUPT.) I find that most of my best decisions are made spur of the moment. I just decide to do it. And then do it. And then I'm so glad I did. And the same can be said for this one.

I have nothing negative to say about this experience.

They play with their toys more. There is less to clean up. They are excited to get 'new' toys every week. There is a sense of ownership and pride I see in them when they make a choice for the week. Sis is playing with 'boy' toys and Bubs is playing with 'girl' toys…

I will not go back.

And just for the record, Partner in Parenting and Life is totally on board.

Anyone else want to try it out and see how it goes?

Thursday, February 13, 2014


The moon is full.

And chocolate chips are 'hiding' in the freezer.

This equals disaster for dreams.

They can't imagine and dance and, well, dream. There is no sleep happening.

Apparently a full moon makes people crazy and werewolf like. This is true for the posse. And  me.

And chocolate-my demise-is 'full' of this stuff called 'caffeine'. If you have too much, or in some cases, just a handful at 9pm, it causes sleep to be elusive.

So it's been a long week.

Not in the 'It's been such a LOONNNGGG week-I'm-ready-to-start-over' kind of way. Just in the 'I've hardly slept at all it feels like one loonnggg day' kind of way.

Two 'caffeinated' (let's use that term lightly) nights that followed a day of skiing and a day of working. And today was another day of working. At 6am. Careful NOT to eat ANY chocolate last night, sleep was still elusive as the anxiety about waking up on time forces my eyelids open every hour.

It was also elusive because of this sweet girl.


At this point it's obviously not going to stop by itself. The realization should have come sooner-but it was only 3 hours before the alarm went off!! Staying in bed to try and sleep seemed rational (it wasn't). Also, there is no cough syrup in the house. Sickness rarely visits this house in a way that calls for medicine.


Honey works well for sore little throats and coughs.

(Sis did NOT mind this)

Still coughing.


We have Vick's. The menthol-ly greasy rub. When put on the bottoms of feet covered in socks coughs disappear. Lesson learned three years ago. Never used again-still have the Vicks.

Squinting in flashlight light (It's incomprehensible when people turn the light on at 2am) I look for an expiration date. There was none.
Sweet, patient talking is not my forté at 2am-did the best I could and talked the Princess into letting me rub her feet and put socks on 'But my feet are not cold!' (vigorously shaking head) and let me rub a little bit on her chest. 15 minutes later we heard

235 'cough cough'
240 'hack'
250 'cough'

300 zzzzzzzzzzz

Until the 430 alarm for the RN and the 530 alarm for the barisata.

The day is almost over. The weather is beautiful and my body is aching for a run outside but that pillow is looking D E L I G H T F U L.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


January is the longest month ever.

And also the shortest.

The darkness drags on and on.

The cold lingers inside my bones.

It's always been this way. It probably will always be this way.

Death is a good reminder of life. After the death comes the life. Comes the warmth. Comes the flowers and the green and the being outside without coatshatsglovesboots.

But it gets old.

It's why this place has been empty for so long. What is there to write about when its all so still, so quiet, so dark. But also so loud and chaotic and the posse is basically breaking down the walls to get outside?

It's felt like something to endure. Something to 'hold your breath and close your eyes and just get through it'

BUT what if instead it was celebrated for what it is?

Celebrate Wyoming winters? I hardly recognize the girl who got along famously in a sub-Saharan country.

We are going to start by getting coatshatsglovesboots on and going outside.

I cross country skied today, for the second time ever. It was SNOWING. Coming down. The whole 2 hours we were out. Never let up. And it was beautiful. Mostly quiet. Trees, clouds, snow, friend, dog, me. No screaming. No attitude.

The peace that is found in the stillness, in the laughter, in long answers to short questions, in the working hard to get up that hill only to turn around and come gliding down it…that is what I am determined to make of my winters. Memories.

Memories that include the cold, the snow, the grayness.

Every season has its merit and ALL THINGS PASS. It will not stay this way forever.

(which means you will be hearing more from me!)