What a fantastic month June was for me! I loved seeing my whole family again, and I loved the medicinal herbal conference! I saw my dearest family, old friends, and made new friends!
It was actually cool in Arizona when I was there (the heat wave that kept planes from taking off came the next week), Durango had perfect weather and was so beautiful, and Denver had pretty great weather, too. There was get-togethers with all my nieces and nephew and spouses, and Kelsey and Lauren (with one on the way!). Hans and Hurley came to visit, too! Pat was the greatest host with 5-star breakfast feasts every morning.The pictures tells it all! It was hard to leave! I miss my sister all the time!
As I drove into Durango, I had forgotten how beautiful it was. Trees and flowers, the cute little Durango-Silverton train that goes through town carrying tourists (I was on it many years ago with Jeff and JJ), and lots of cute shops in their quaint downtown. The houses surrounding the downtown are little old Victorians going for $700,000 to over a million! Unbelievable! There are herbal shops and organic food stores and of course, Ft. Lewis College on top of the ridge. That's where the herbal conference was held and where, on the first day, I met Jaren, who lives just outside of town. She was registering at the same time I was. Then we met the two Vickis from Utah, and Theresa from Tennessee. We all just hit it off. What wonderful people!
A young lady named Ruthie Mattes sat next to me and Jaren leaned and said, "She's famous." I nodded and smiled at her, and Jaren said, "No, I mean, she is REALLY famous. Internationally famous" So I asked Ruthie how she was famous, and she smiled a little and modestly said, "I used to ride a mountain bike really fast." She participated in the World Cup of Mountain Bike Riding, and its taken very seriously in Durango. She was so sweet. Everyone was!
I loved the classes which was a surprise. Usually I go to conferences and can't wait to get out of the class. This time I didn't want any of the classes to end! I loved what I learned and loved the instructors. I was the only one that looked like a former cheerleader who had aged into Grandma. Everyone else had long hair, tattoos and long skirts and scarves. Me, I was in my jeans and normal tops and short frosted hair. Did I stick out or what? But I felt like one with the "Tribe" as we were called. It was a life-changing experience!
Jaren and her husband bought a ranch outside of Durango, although they don't live there. She took Theresa and me there one evening. I'm so glad I was able to see it. It's beautiful. (Jaren is the one with the straight long hair; Theresa is the one with the curly long hair.) The only pictures I have of the Durango area are of Jaren's ranch. I forgot to take pictures at the herbal conference. So please enjoy Jaren's ranch in the photos below. I'm so glad she shared it with us. We had a great time!
Then on to Denver! So good to see my family again!
I arrived in time for Father's Day, so we had a long, fun-filled Sunday. We started off with Jeff opening up his gifts, and putting jigsaw puzzles together on the front porch. I helped the kids 'cause I love jigsaw puzzles, and it was so much fun! We couldn't stop! Then we biked to the swimming pool where I actually got in the water and again, it was SO MUCH FUN! The kids are good swimmers and we worked on the crawl stroke. I showed them how to cup their hands so they could "pull" the water. I even got in some synchronized swimming! How good it felt! Then we biked to The Stanley for some dinner, and biked home. I was pooped, but happy! What a day!
Monday Jeff and I went out with Jason, JJ's friend and top seller for a real estate company in Parker, to see the different areas of Parker. Of course, the houses I like are around $500,000 so I won't be buying one right away. But the idea is to get educated in case (when!) I move out there. Jeff wants me closer, and Linda said I just HAVE to move out west. It is so relaxing and fulfilling to be around family!
Aaron, Jeff's best friend from Lake Oswego, came to visit for a couple of days. They've been best buds since 15 years old! It was good to see him. His parents and I (and his grandmother) spent many an hour together watching basketball games! Those were the days!
I brought dress up clothes for the girls. Poor Jack - I bought him a hat, but I didn't have dress up clothes for him. It's much easier to find girl dress-up clothes. Chloe was a gypsy and Katie (lo! and behold!) loved her grey fancy dress so we dubbed her "The Debutante!"
Oh, and before I left on my vacation, I stopped by the farm. In a matter of hours, Dave and I revamped the porch and other rooms for a more "lodge" look for those hunters who may be interested in the farm and yet, just can't picture themselves living there. I still have to replace the floral couch in the porch, but for now I covered it up - somewhat. I hope you like the Hunting Lodge look, dear Reader. I do!
And finally, I'm back home. Everything looks beautiful here, with Gordon and Gordeeta's little son (or daughter) growing up a lot. The first picture of him is in early June before I left. The last picture shows "Gordie Junior" growing up fast. Maggie is the dog in the photo of the pond. She's my neighbor's dog, remember, and visits often. Kyle said she didn't go to my house the entire time I was gone. But she was over pronto when she knew I returned!
Now its back to mowing, watering, finishing up the chapel, etc. A great big thank you to Dave, David and Ken for watering my plants while I was gone! Everything has filled in, and I'm in my own little private world once again. Truly a sanctuary!
My dear Reader, I hope you have had a good June and here's to enjoying summer in full swing! Happy 4th of July next week! We have a beautiful country with many diverse people making it strong!