Exploring

You are currently browsing the archive for the Exploring category.

It is said that if you want wildlife to visit a garden, just add water, as it attracts more critters than food. I’m not sure about our numbers, but I will say that we get a lot of activity, with this adorable female Lesser Goldfinch enjoying our hospitality on the regular. We are happy to oblige.

Early last Saturday morning, driving for a waterside hike.

I cannot be certain, but I do believe this butterfly flitted in our wake for the whole of the hike.

Mr. Silly helps me find just the right angle. This cast too much shade on his handsome face.

Happiness!

white evening primrose

These currants were beautiful and delicious!

Post hike cinnamon roll at The Pantry. It did not disappoint!

What a treat to rise early, hike for a couple hours, eat a hearty breakfast AND a cinnamon roll, and be home by NOON. The height, peeps, the height!

porch life…

mountain shadows

Saving the best for last. Do you like shrimp and grits but despair at having an even distribution of flavor? I am known to cut shrimp into itty bits so every bite is just so. A hassle, to be sure, but, like most things, worth it in the end. That is until I encountered Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock’s Shrimp Grits. The shrimp is cooked in heaps of butter then whirled into oblivion in a food processor before being mixed into already cooked grits. They “get to know each other” for five minutes or so before everyone at the table does their best to contain ecstatic outbursts at each and every bite. Yes ma’am, exactly. Just try it!

Duck Musubi at Lucky Dumpling

Lunch buffet at our favorite Indian restaurant – Mirch Masala. Second to naan!!

Ingrid’s brood…

neon, always neon…

Time in the garden – it’s really coming along now!

Did someone say walk?

the Platte River

freshly canned cherries!

I am writing this on Wednesday, the second day back from an unexpected staycation. We were originally going to snake a winding route along Western Colorado, with stops in Telluride and Grand Junction, places this native is slightly embarrassed to admit I’ve never been. Both of us were super excited to scale mountains and skim creeks previously unknown to us. Then I blew out my knee while trampolining (kid at heart, right here!) and couldn’t walk. Giant sad face.

I spent a week on the sofa and hobbling around on crutches, as any amount of weight on my leg made it scream. The lesson? Listen to your body! Don’t push to get your money’s worth at the trampoline gym when you already feel satisfied. Rest and enjoy the time you’ve had. I really wish I had done that. Boy howdy.

Ever the optimist mated with yet another, we didn’t really feel it was a loss, save for the annoyance of pain. It was nice to putter around the house, watch scads of gardening and home improvement shows, start and finish projects. We cleaned and organized the shed, which finally enabled us to get our bicycles out of the basement. Then there was a trip to the garden center and the purchase and planting of a dozen more sweet scented lovelies, like dianthus and phlox. Greg built a much needed roof over our wood pile. If you give a good look, it’s in the third picture of the garden and looks great! We’re especially glad to have made it entirely from scrap.

You may be laughing that this was more work than play, but, oh, we did play! We enjoyed whole days lounging in the garden, watching every growing thing, birds and  insects flitting about, sipping mango iced tea. We grilled to keep the house cool and ate out a bit, happy for old favorites and to try new to us Lucky Dumpling, enjoying that gorgeous and yummy duck musubi. Then there was a nice morning at Garden of the Gods, lunch in Manitou Springs, and an evening with our Portland neighbor Ingrid and her brood of five on the Colorado Springs leg of their epic summer vacation.

We also went north to meet two of my nephews and parents for lunch. That was followed by a stroll along the Platte to get Juniper’s wiggles out before heading to Michael and Mary’s for a retirement and 40th Wedding Anniversary celebration. Fun…

And the cherries! My sweet neighbor Judy offered up her fruit laden tree, and I picked almost seven pounds of ruby jewels, watched a movie or two while seeding and stemming, and canned what I hope to be enough for two generous pies. My cup runneth over, peeps, in all aspects, again and again and again…

Nature smiles back, though we did wonder if some human intervened in this one.

An early morning hike at Castlewood Canyon last weekend. The hubster, Juniper, and I met our friend (and my brother from another mother) Jeff for a beautifully misty adventure!

Jeff’s favorite tree…

I AM short, but Greg was also standing on a taller bit of rock. How adorable is Juniper’s bandana!!

 

Took a step back in time today, to visit Glen Eyrie Castle, the home of William Palmer, the founder of Colorado Springs. Though we all know my Native American ancestors had a bit of a jump on him! It was a rare treat, as every room of the castle was available for viewing, including each of the guest rooms. We had two stellar and knowledgeable tour guides, and oohed and aahed over details grand and small.

As you can tell, I was most intrigued by the views, imagining quiet moments wandering from gorgeous window to window, conjuring the supreme quiet of every season: a drift of snow, froth of new green, arc of azure sky and rock formations and evergreens at every turn.

We ended our tour with a very British high tea, with that pretty salad, wee sandwiches, biscuits, and scones and equally good conversation. Thank you, Cori (front and center), for the marvelous suggestion. Happy Birthday to you!

Tags: ,

Full

Yesterday afternoon, sweet rabbit necklace resting on an equally sweet magazine read. Greg took a very long lunch. Sadly nothing remarkable until we stopped for dessert at Amy’s for bomb-diggity donuts – Nutella fluff, apple fritter, and chocolate filled with cream. Eeek, that place!

We ran errands, too. A cookbook purchase, a stop at the grocery. I bought a Camerons stove top smoker about a month ago, and delight of delights, discovered  they have an outlet in Colorado Springs. I am having all kinds of fun with it, so we went to buy more chips. Smoked ribs, smoked chicken, smoked trout, smoked steak! I’ve done each up differently. Ribs with  barbeque sauce, chicken with sticky Asian ginger, and an Italian rosemary rub. Plain old for the trout and steak, which is not so very plain. Good fun!

It was one of those magical afternoons of big nothings and feeling full –  of all the best in life and of gratitude, too. For a husband who has the great privilege of working from home AND wanting to spend the afternoon with me.

Coming home to a dog eager for a sunshiney walk and a cuddle was pretty great, too. So very full, indeed. My sincerest thanks to whomever is in charge.

 

« Older entries