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For as long as I can remember, I have been inspired by the world around me – nature, my family, my husband…it wasn’t the words I read that were written by others or films I watched created by people I didn’t know (though these too have a place in my heart), it was the life I was living at any given moment. And with eight days into my twenty-eighth year in this world, I am no different.

Six days ago, I moved into a home in what feels like the middle of nowhere – the San Luis Valley – and I love it because this, too, inspires me. A 1909 farmhouse overlooking a high alpine desert. Inspirational, right? It inspires me because it is a giant leap from what my “normal” was a mere week ago. Just nine days ago, I was nestled in a cozy house on a 26 acre horse farm in central Pennsylvania: Home. I was surrounded by familiarity; familiarity which never ceased to inspire: maple trees and Eastern Hemlocks, meandering creeks like Slab Cabin Run filled to the gills with stubborn trout, Red-tailed hawks and Blue Jays, Musser Gap in Rothrock State Forest and the seemingly never-ending Appalachians rolling into the horizon.

Today, I rest in unfamiliarity, but I am still surrounded by inspiration. Today, I miss my friends, I miss having a community of people to explore with, eat with, drink with, celebrate with. The sadness that comes from missing these things makes me think about regret and I believe the only regrets we may have in life are those from inaction – the what if’s. What if we didn’t move here? What if Sam said no to this job? What if we didn’t leave the people and places we love to explore for new opportunities? I guess we may never know – but that’s the best part. What I do know is yes, I miss a lot of things about where I am from, but I’m ready for the challenge of this new place and the inspiration that may come with it.

As my forester of a husband travels across the state, it is my responsibility to hold down the fort – to feed the dogs (to feed myself), mind the house, unpack our belongings, clean up, to…explore? I hope so.


Sam at BADL    sam hiking badlands wilderness at badlands national park (wall, south dakota)

Bison at BADL   bison resting along sage creek road in badlands national park (wall, south dakota)

Bison at BADL (2)      two generations of bison at badlands national park (wall, south dakota)

Sheep at Rio Grande NF      big horn sheep in rio grande national forest (creede, colorado)


the only constant is change

Over the last few years, I have found myself attempting to actively blog without much success. I must admit, when not traveling or exploring the outdoors, I stare at a screen for nearly 9 hours a day, 4 to 5 days a week – and that is just for work. Screens can be exhausting. Typing can be painful. But change, as it goes, is coming.

I have kept a written journal for as long as I can remember: My family encouraged writing down my thoughts, my college studies supported it, and so it became a lifelong activity for me – not really a “well, I guess I need to write ‘this’ or ‘that’ down”, but more an instinct. Memories fade…words and images remind us of our experiences when our minds are too full or busy. These same words and images flash me back to chapters and moments of my life, the way the smell of dry leaves brings up childhood memories of leave hopping with my siblings. While they hold deeper, personal meaning – they also share my life with those that are not able to experience it with me.

This is the very reason I have decided to re-engage with this whole blogging experience: I want to stay connected to family and friends in as many ways possible as I move across the country.

So, as I kick my feet up during a gray middle-PA lunch break, I invite you to see the world through my lens. Stop by and stay a while, or just check in when your Instagram or Facebook pages are neglecting your needs – hopefully the words and images shared on here will give at least a quick glimpse of the way I enjoy living life (and even more so, inspire you to get outside, too).