New York part 2 (turning 40)

I decided in March that I really wanted to spend my 40th birthday in New York. I wanted to spend the day at a museum with Alder and my parents and then go out for dinner with my cousins. So I guess you could say that I got everything I wanted for my birthday, though the dinner out ended up being the night before. I really wanted to go to the MOMA but the line was an hour and fifteen minutes to get in the front door. Instead we went to an Japanese Noodle House that has been around for fifty years, then we headed to The Center for Book Arts to see their exhibit Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here which was both moving and motivating. The entire time I was there I was wishing that I could sign up for one of their week long intensive bookmaking classes. After the museum Alder and I decided we needed some alone time so we wandered until we came across a glowing cupcake shop and ate cupcakes at a white enamel table with red edging.

The rest of my birthday was another dinner, this one I cooked with the help of my cousin. It was quick and amazing. Fettuccine with steamers, mussels, scallops, and shrimp, with a big salad and asparagus. There were giant cookies for dessert and then Alder and I fell into bed full and happy.

DSC_0092
DSC_0094
DSC_0091
Cupcakes
DSC_0088
WIndow Dressing
At Ilili
Harald and Amanda at Ilili the night before. Such good food and company. (just thinking about it is making me hungry)

Still more New York to come.

New York part 1

Welcome to New York!

George Washington Bridge View
My River Up Close

They Insisted on lots of Pads in New York
Riverside Park Skate Park, where they insist on all the pads, insurance numbers, parent waivers, and have short hours.

Keeping you from skating
Alder: Why are there those pipes locked to the parts of the skate park?
Skate Park Attendant: To keep people from skating.

[the park is open only 5 days a week 11am to 7 pm, it was around 5 pm when this picture was taken]

On 5th Avenue Even the Dinosuars are Gold Plated
New York is truly a place of excess, they even plate their dinosaurs in gold.

Lego Clone Trooper
Visiting FAO Schwartz as a kid was a thrill, ever since it was sold the soul has gone out of it….at least there was Lego.

Fairytale
I know the world loves Central Park, but I grew up with it as my stomping grounds. I still come across views I’ve forgotten. The moment, the boy, the light, I know that feeling.

girls on a hill
Just right.

DSC_0049
You forget that most cities aren’t filled with slabs of granite.

Waiting
People talk of New York as a city that moves so fast, the thing they never tell you is how much time you spend waiting in New York, and it isn’t just the trains.

My Boy
After a week alone with his grandparents even waiting for a train with me could elitist a smile.

Wyoming Trip 2013

Camp Site

Screaming for a Kayak

Flowers on the Bridge

In

Trail View

Exploring

Naturally Terraced

It isn't so hot

Eggs

Breakfast

Morning

Tired

My classes ended last week and I was more than ready to head out of town. So the boy and I packed up the car and headed northwest to Lander Wyoming. I had been there when I was a teenager on a seven week hiking and climbing trip with CTT. What I remembered of the town was vague, though I had spent a night there again on my way to Colorado when I moved here in 1996. But there were a lot of things that made it the perfect place for the two of us. Lots of hikes near town, an amazing free camp site in the town park, and the world’s largest hot springs not too far away.

The drive to Lander is long, and not too exciting. But we pushed through after a late start and ended up pulling in before dark. Settling ourselves into our spot and having dinner we climbed into the tent, one tired Mama and one energetic boy. Still we managed to float off to sleep.

One thing I have learned with Alder is that saving the exciting activity for last only leads to an anxious child who doesn’t enjoy what he’s doing. So we headed up to Thermopolis to the hot springs that morning. When you get there you have three choices of places to enjoy the springs, one is the state park soaking pools which are great, for grownups, the other two are fun pools with slides and other fun amenities. We ended up at Star Plunge we had a little fun on the big slides, but spent most of our time in the outdoor pool where there was a shorter slide and a high dive. We played games and I spent a lot of time reading while Alder spent most of his time on the high dive.

That evening we met our neighbors, a father with his two young children, two and not yet one. Alder took it on himself to teach the girls how to catch water skitters and from then any time we were at camp the three of them were playing in the little stream that flowed through the park. By the end of the trip he had six kids following him around and playing (I wish I had gotten a picture of all of them). It always amazes me how well he does with little kids, especially since he usually prefers the company of grownups more than kids his own age. Who would have thought that I would get to read over 100 pages of my book during the trip.

The next morning we headed up to Worthen Meadow Reservoir for some time in the mountains. There was much chasing of bright blue dragonflies, and gray ones. There was a dock to jump off of, rocks to boulder, trails to hike, and plans to make for next summer (words like backpacking and kayaks come to mind). We explored the edges of the water finding patterns and colors in the world around us. We were especially loving the blues that seemed to explode everywhere through the green of the trees. We stopped to watch the wind in the aspen leaves and hiked until the trail started to head down. We dreamed about backpacking trips to the valley below (not without Papa). On the way down the canyon as Alder slept I paused to look at the scar from a fire that had burned a swath of the north (west?) side off the canyon.

That night after dinner the winds came, 45-55 mile an hour winds. We hid in the tent sure that the limbs of the trees were going to crash down. Later in the evening the wind died down to a respectful bluster and the rains came. Yet some how a tired little boy slept through it all. In the morning you could see the results downed branches everywhere, luckily none of the tents had been hit.

With the next trip starting on Monday we headed out mid-day Friday for the long drive back to Denver. Next up in our lives Alder’s first flight by himself!!!

Cathedral Rock

We drove a little north the other day up to Sedona to hike Cathedral Rock. It’s a popular hike, like Delicate Arch in Moab, but there was plenty of sandstone to play on. Being us we took a little bit of an alternative route around one of the rocks and found some bushwhacking, a common part of any hiking trip with my in-laws.

 Prep

 
On There Way

Red

Corner

Texture

Tres Mas

Happy Solistice

A Solitice Sunrise
The Solstice sun rose just as we arrived from Denver, sixteen hours of driving through the night.

The Last of the Sun
The final view of sun on this shortest day of the year.

Solstice Moon
An early moon.

Winter
The brilliance of winter in the desert.

DSC_0079
Last, a reminder that the next few days are a time for reflection, and a time for looking forward to a new year.

It all started with a thought (Wyoming part 1)

Campsite at Vedawoo

Evening Light on the Rocks

Last week I mentioned how I was feeling the need to start living again. Well this past Saturday morning during breakfast Kevin suggested that we head up to Vedawoo for a day or two of climbing. I’ve gotten so used to feeling overwhelmed by the idea of going camping, but this time I said yes. four hours later we were driving north on I 25 and crossing out of Colorado.

Scrambling

The thing about us is that when we first met we would go camping anytime we could. There was so much BLM and Forest Service land that we would just go. Sure we’ve woken up to bears, cows, and chipmunks without a campsite but it’s just such a great way to be away and not too far away. But moving to Denver and getting busy changed that. It takes about twenty minutes just to get out of town and with suburbs and such it is harder to find places to just camp. Like many other thingsĀ  it was easy to get complacent and stay in the city, or just go out for a hike or climb.

Climbing 1

Climbing 2

I get on the rock 2

The thing is that camping is fun, it’s peaceful, and it’s just part of who we are. So when Kevin suggested it I said yes. Besides Vedawoo is one of most interesting places to play around. Which is important when you’ve got a six year old who rather be climbing something than walking. The other thing about camping is once you get out you don’t want to go back home. So after two days of climbing we decided that rather than heading home that we would explore the Snowy Mountain Range, because well they were near by and we had never been. Which in my mind has to be the best reason to do it.

Our other natural place