Crunchy Snow Steps

The days are long, but the weeks are short. That’s how the saying goes, right? The months are short too. Someone requested a coffee date recently, and as I looked at my calendar, I realized I would need to schedule out into February. FEBRUARY! January is flying by.

I have a January birthday, and I think it is one of the most sustaining things that helps me survive this month. Once that birthday passes though, I desire to whiz right by and move into late March. Please bring me those 55 degree days with blue skies and t-shirts. I tried to eat my lunch outside earlier this afternoon, and I froze. The sun may be out, but yes, it is still January. I am thankful that I am not drowning in snow right now like those on the East coast.

Oh wait, for those living in Colorado, we DID get one of those 55 degree days on Saturday. It was delightful. I wore patterned pants and a black t-shirt to my favorite brewery in Northern Colorado. I invited friends from many stages of life to come together and share a brew, laugh and soak up the rays as I celebrated another trip around the sun. This mismatched group of people who came to celebrate with me bring so much beauty to my life.

On Friday I got to eat at a new restaurant with my family- the foodie in me was delighted by the charming presentation that The Farmhouse at Jessup Farms delivers. This restaurant literally has a nook under the stairs that you are encouraged to sit at while you wait for your table. Cozy throw blankets and pillows are paired with wooden benches and beautifully lit brick walls that made me feel as if I was eating out of an extravagantly comfortable living room. Well done to the team that has created such an inviting and inspirational place to eat and experience community. I loved reminiscing about my year that just passed. This restaurant truly is a beautiful place.

Hard to believe last Monday was a holiday as well. I had the day off from work, and invited my mom to join me on an adventure up to the mountains. She had never been snowshoeing, and I am discovering this is one of my new favorite pass times. As we entered into Rocky Mountain National Park I started to doubt our excursion. Wind! So much wind was blowing snow across the winding roads. When I parked the car at the trailhead I was worried we may blow away – strong gusts threatened to trap me as my car door slammed shut with force. I may be a Colorado native, but I have a propensity to chicken out when weather sucks, or in this case blows. I bow out with the excuse of, “Hey, I can always go next weekend.” The chances of the weather improving in the next seven days are high.

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We got out of the car, and I shared a knowing glance with my mom from behind the trunk of my SUV. We weren’t going to give up after making the trek out there, not this time. We strapped on our snow shoes, buttoned up our coats, and started stomping our way through the beautifully crunchy snow.  I forget how absolutely refreshing it can be to be outdoors. These monstrous mountains are literally in my backyard, and I take them for granted as they blend into the scenery of my life.

We took step after step, sometimes losing our balance, other times laughing as we slid down small drifts, and made our way across the frozen mountain lake. I stood five steps ahead of my mom,  threw my face to the sky, and whispered a breath of thanks to the giver in the universe. Thanks that I get to live here, that I have the means to walk, thanks that I can spend time with my mom, to celebrate, and to most of all, keep taking steps.

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I’ve been mentally challenged this month, to give myself grace, compassion, patience, and love as I take steps while acclimating to my new job. For those of you who have been following along in January, you know I’ve been writing about my fears of isolation, and loss of previous relationship, and the great “what if this doesn’t bring fulfillment” question I give so much anxious energy to. I’m learning in these spaces of mountain air and festivity, that I need to work on me first and to allow all of these emotions to move through. Give myself the space and grace to keep taking steps. Even when you are crunching along, there are processes and people and air, beautiful mountain air, to support you.

 

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