Our family just returned from a week of recreating ourselves in Estes Park, CO. It is easily one of our favorite spots in the state. This is a photo of my son, Will, and the oft-elusive mountain Yeti (me). Much is captured in this photo: our smiles (common fare when we're in the mountains), beautiful backdrops (this one is Sprague Lake in Rocky Mtn. Natl. Park), shorts and fleece (warm days and nipply nights), and being close to family (the Yeti sprang from behind a Ponderosa Pine and grabbed Will, eliciting a smile from a 9-year old boy that's worth it's weight in gold). We had a good week and hope to live there some day...seriously.
There's nothing like coming over the rise and seeing Estes Park sitting quietly down in the valley, with Longs Peak before you and the Stanley Hotel (remember The Shining?) off to your left. Or peeking out before sunrise and seeing elk grazing beside your minivan. Or eating ice cream cones every evening after dinner for four days straight; not small, mannerly cones mind you, but large, mountainous scoops of chocolate in a sugar cone that drip all over your fingers so you have to wipe them on your shirt or pants. Or leisurely simmering in the morning with a cup of Seattle's Best and the novel Gilead (two thumbs way up) and wool socks. Or hiking with three kids a mile and a half route up to Alberta Falls and hopefully helping them to see that to experience beauty, sometimes you've got to hike for it or fight for it or suck it up, buttercup. Or buying your wife a turquoise cross for your 16th wedding anniversary and seeing her wear it around her neck and truly realizing her love affair with this western place of rock and snow and turquoise and moose. And Yeti.