Sunday, June 1, 2014

Fresh Start

After a roller coaster of a school year, I finally feel like myself again. The last few months in particular have been trying but this past month I've s.l.o.w.l.y worked myself back into the grateful, hopeful person I usually am. The other day I found myself feeling excited at the prospect of being given the opportunity to enjoy Boulder for one more year. It's still possible something could pop up for Nathan somewhere else, but it's more likely than not at this point we will be here another school year. That reality is hard for a couple of reasons but wonderful for a lot more. I spent most of this year counting all the "lasts" and dreading having to leave. Now, I'll be able to soak it up in a more positive light because instead of being the last year here, it's a bonus year here. Plus, now the job slate is cleared for Nathan and we can go back to crossing our fingers for a great job on the East Coast. We are going to have to be creative financially but we are no strangers to that, so bring it on Boulder. You're going to have to entertain these Stith's a bit longer.

Days like today do nothing but boost the positivity level because it was a perfect summer day and I was lucky enough to spend pretty much the whole day outside hiking.  Since moving here we have hiked a few times but haven't made it a priority because our kids haven't been terribly great at it. In fact they usually kind of hate it. We make the most of it when we do go and find the positives for sure but we just don't run out and do it every chance we get. Today though, was another world. They hardly whined, walked the whole way themselves and had a great time from start to finish. Nathan and I feel like another layer of this beautiful city is now accessible for our family and the timing couldn't be better.

This morning I spent a few hours getting lost in the Chautauqua trail system with my great friend Jessica. She and her family are moving away soon and we will miss them like crazy so I was so happy to have this long morning to hike and chat with her.

Soaking up the pre-hike atmosphere. We came up here to Flagstaff Mountain to geocache but there weren't any caches nearby. Nathan and I were about to hop back in the car to find another spot but Zoe asked if we could explore. So glad she did!

Cool little pavillion you can rent out for bbq's

So many beautiful views and wildflowers!

So proud of these kiddos today!

I mean..come ON! How lucky are we??

They loved this "baby tree"

Sunrise Amphitheater. Nathan and I vowed to grab some coffee and doughnuts and come up here someday soon to watch the sunrise because....

...wouldn't you?

Watching big sister put on a show. Didn't take him long to join in.

On our way down in the car we came upon this mother fox and her 4 kits. Nathan had just been telling the kids he is always hoping to see an animal when he is out hiking. Pretty special!

Afterwards we went to a park near our house (Park East) to cool off in the water. We walked quite a ways in the stream like this and it took me way back to 88 Monument Avenue, the house I grew up in. A friend and I used to pretend we were explorers and would slowly make our way up the brook behind our house. I had kind of forgotten about it until today.
A nice pre-dinner soapy bath, dinner outside on the patio and post-dinner popsicles were in order of course. Not a bad way to kick off summer vacation.