Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas at the Wilson's with One Sister and Two Furry Friends

Shane and I spent this Christmas with my sister Kim and two Golden retrievers. At the last minute friends of ours called looking for a dog sitter so we spent the week taking care of AND falling in love with their dogs. Shane is still trying to convince me that we don't need to get a dog now. We were thankful and blessed this Christmas as we rejoiced in the birth of our Savior.

...for God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall have everlasting life...John 3:16

Paddington is the most lovable and cuddly dog.

Kim is getting all geared up to snowboard with her new North Face fleece.

Thanks Mom & Dad Wilson for the hoodie.

Shane wearing his new hat and gloves from his parents.

My first attempt at Grandma's wreath coffee cake.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Everest? It Felt Like It!

Saturday morning, I was driving South on US 287. The coffee was steaming and the sun was rising to the East with a glow the mix of purple and orange....Dispatch was blasting from the radio. After a quick detour through Arvada, my friend Mark and I were off to St. Mary's Glacier to earn a few turns. Good conversation ensued throughout the drive up the canyon.

St. Mary's is a relatively small glacier about 70 miles from Longmont. Our intent was simple: bootpack the glacier, have a few snacks and ski to the car. Basking in the glory of it all? Optional!

After reaching the top of the glacier, we decided there was plenty of time for additional adventure. James Peak was only a mile or so away and would be a great climb. We decided to take on the 13,294 ft beast of a mountain. Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating, but it would definitely turn out to be more than we expected.

Once arriving at the base of the mountain, the fun began. Soon, we were getting slammed with 60-70 mph wind gusts. Our jackets flapped in the wind louder than a rock concert and the skis on our packs acted as sails. The power of Mother Nature can truly knock you down to size. Once reaching the top of the snow field, we decided the summit would wait for another day...we had tackled all but 700 vert ft or so and we couldn't take any more. I would find that my socks had frozen upon putting my ski boots on, so I was anxious as ever to move to more of a mild climate.

Skiing down a mountain doesn't always put into perspective the work that was accomplished, but this time was different. As we made our way back to the glacier, the sun was peaking from behind the clouds, the snow was getting softer, and our feet had almost thawed. The last bit of skiing to the car was deep through the trees and left us wanting more.

By far, the best part of the day was enjoying being in nature with a good friend. When you're in the midst of a unpleasant situation (i.e. excessive wind and frozen boots), it's easy just to focus on that and that alone. But when the mountain is behind you and you're all alone, the question is not "what will I do next," but "what will WE do next!"

I'm just thankful I can always come home to my greatest adventure....See below!!!

Creative movement class

On Friday mornings I teach two creative movement classes; I have a group of 10-12 three year olds and about 6 four/five year olds. They are such a joy! I've been teaching since the fall and it's been neat to see the kids progress is their skills and creativity. Here are a few pics of the older class. The picture above I asked the kids to make a "shape" and what you see is their pose!

We used streamers to dance, whirl, and sway.

Something to think about...

This quote was printed in our bulletin at church last Sunday. I really like it and thought that it was worth sharing.

"People get from books the idea that if you have married the right person you may expect to go on "being in love" forever. As a result, when they find they are not, they think this proved they have made a mistake and are entitled to a change- not realizing that, when they have changed, the glamour will presently go out of the new love just as it went out of the old one. In this department of life, as in every other, thrills come at the beginning and do not last...Let the thrill go - let it die away - go on through that period of death into the quieter interest and happiness that follow - and you will find that you are living in a world of new thrills all the time. But if you make thrills your regular diet and try to prolong them artificially, they will all get weaker and weaker, and fewer and fewer, and you will be a bored, disillusioned old man for the rest of your life. It is because so few people understand this that you find many middle-aged men and women maundering about their lost youth, at the very age when new horizons ought to be appearing and new doors opening all round them. It is much better fun to learn to swim than to go on endlessly (and hopelessly) trying to get back the feeling you had when you first went paddling as a small boy."

-C.S Lewis, Mere Christianity

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


This year my sister Kim decided she wanted to cook Thanksgiving dinner. We started out thinking we'd have four or five people for dinner and ended up with eleven. My parents flew in from Michigan and surprised us on Thanksgiving day. I don't think Shane or I have ever been so shocked. It was really exciting and special. I haven't spent Thanksgiving with my parents in 7 years!! We had a wonderful day filled with family, new and old friends, lots of laughter and overly full bellies. I have to say, I think my first attempt at cooking a turkey was a success. My parents were only in town for a day and a half so we spent the next few days soaking up time with them. Hiking in Boulder and meeting Kim's new dog were a few highlights.

Shane and Dad

Andrea, Joy, and Joy's mom who was visiting from Dallas

Andrea, Joy, and Olivia....friends from our Community group

Kim's new dog Louie

A trip to Boulder would not be complete without a hike up Boulder's famous Sanitas trail.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

One year ago

5 more days until vacation!!!

Catch up

This past weekend I got to enjoy a night up in Frisco catching up with my good friends Amanda and Jamee. I met Amanda six years ago when I first moved to Boulder. We also experienced life together as roommates in California. Amanda stayed in Cali and I moved back to Boulder. Jamee and I, both bridesmaids in Amanda's wedding last July, met and bonded while shopping for our bridesmaids dresses. Jamee is a wedding photographer in Denver and photographed my wedding. It's been really fun to see how these friendships have grown over time. We enjoyed getting out for a walk without having to bundle up too much. Girlfriends, ice cream, and the mountains....what more can you ask for?

Me, Jamee, and Amanda went for a walk from the condo to downtown Frisco

There isn't a whole lot of snow for the end of November in the mountains. We hope that changes soon!

Monday, November 17, 2008


"I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge - that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God." ~ Ephesians 3:16-19

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Men's Retreat

This weekend, All Souls Church of Boulder had a Men's Retreat at the cabin outside of Ned. I've been to quite a few retreats in my days, but I must say none can compare. The week prior, Pat (the guy leading the discussion) sent out an online survey. The survey was 10 questions ranging from overall life struggles to the ability to connect at church. He used the survey results to determine the content of the discussion. What followed was a group of men, admitting their weaknesses, praying for each other, and "gossiping the gospel!"

It seems that often times, we can know a lot of people without truly knowing anyone. Men are especially vulnerable to this, as we have difficulties admitting weakness. Everywhere we turn, it's as though men have to be strong and without emotion. Men have to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. Jesus has taught the something different...the opposite actually. He tells to be weak to be strong. It's counterintuitive, but it's the truth.

This retreat has spurred me on to truly begin investing in other people as well as opening up and allowing others to penetrate my heart and mind. I'm looking forward to what the Lord will do through my weaknesses.

Here's a couple pictures from the weekend.

What better way to spend a weekend with the guys than in a cabin in the woods!

Pat, speaking wisdom into our lives.

The view from deck was incredible.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Community Group

Thursday nights Shane and I host a community group at our house. There are between 10 and 12 of us that started getting together about a month ago. I love hosting...but often times don't find it easy to have people over. We live in Longmont about 25 minutes from Boulder where we go to church. It seems that Boulder is the center of most everything, but rarely do you find young people who own homes and live in Boulder. It is ridiculously expensive. The "Longmont community group" or ELomoCo and Shane calls it, that we are hosting consists of people that live in our area of town. It is an eclectic mix....our pastor and his wife, a wise and spirited couple in their 60's who have been French missionaries, young singles, married with children and us. Instead of doing a study, we've decided to start off by sharing our stories. It has been amazing to hear a few of the stories so far. Everyone has a story....ask and you'll learn.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Oh iTunes

Shane and I absolutely love music. I am especially loving the new genius feature on iTunes. It is too easy to find new music. I'd addicted!!

Here are some of my favorites....
  • Donavon Frankenreiter - all of his stuff is great, super chill, love his new album Pass It Around
  • Tristan Prettyman - great driving music
  • Erin McCarley - just discovered her song Pony (It's OK) yesterday, soulful and upbeat
  • Angels & Airwaves - Lifeline, heard this song on One Tree Hill last night...I know, I know, I can't believe I'm watching that show
  • Phil Wickham - Divine Romance...beautiful lyrics

Monday, November 10, 2008

Portrait of the past two weeks

Randy and Brian Murphy at Randy's birthday/Halloween party up at the cabin in Nederland. Some of us dressed up, others did not...either way it was a festive night, filled with great company, pumpkin soup, apple pie, and homemade apple cider. The rustic cabin tucked away in the mountains puts the soul at ease.

My friend Laura and I

Becky and John's reception in Golden

My old roommate Becky was married November 1st at the Red Rocks Chapel. The views were amazing!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Faith. All too often my faith seems to be based upon circumstance....if I had a good day and things went as planned....if I went for a run and my neck or back didn't hurt....if I teach a client and they understand Pilates and feel better....if my husband is not stressed or working late....if everything is going my way, I so easily trust God and believe in Him. But when life does not go as planned I find myself in doubt and unbelief more than I'd like to admit. Life is not perfect, but God is still good and faithful. "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him..." Romans 8:28

Recently I've been reading Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest. Here are some of his thoughts on faith. I hope you enjoy.

The life of faith says, "Lord, You have said it, it appears to be irrational, but I'm going to step out boldly, trusting your Word." God brings us into particular circumstances to educate our faith, because the nature of faith is to make the object of our faith very real to us. Until we know Jesus, God is merely a concept, and we can't have faith in Him. But once we hear Jesus say, "He who has seen Me has seen the Father" (John 14:9) we immediately have something that is real, and our faith is limitless. Faith is the entire person in the right relationship with God through the power of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.

God wants you to understand that it is a life of faith, not a life of emotional enjoyment of His blessings. The beginning of your life of faith was very narrow and intense, centered around a small amount of experience that had as much emotion as faith in it, and it was full of light and sweetness. Then God withdrew His conscious blessings to teach you to "walk by faith" (2 Corinthians 5:7). And you are worth much more to Him now than you were in your days of conscious delight with your thrilling testimony.
Faith by its very nature must be tested and tried. And the real trail of faith is not that we find it difficult to trust God, but that God's character must be proven as trustworthy in our own minds.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Unexpected Weekend

Christine and I had planned to head to Moab, UT with friends for a long weekend of mtn biking, hiking, and camping. The mini-flu hit me mid week and we were wondering if it was the best idea to go. After I was getting better on Thursday, Christine took a turn for the worst. We thought it better to stick around Longtucky and take it easy.

I still took Friday off from work and the unexpected weekend was great. We slept in, then went to our favorite restaurant, Lucile's, for breakfast. We enjoyed coffee, salmon, and good conversation for hours. We then headed to Lyons Picture Rock trail for some hiking/trail running.

Picture Rock Trail

Town of Lyons below

After the trail run, we took off to Boulder for the TRG film 'Under the Influence.' Christine and I decided we're getting too old for the college, ski flick, waiting in line for hours, loud, scene. Next year we'll just buy the movie and enjoy it at home with ice cream.

Saturday morning I got up before Christine, made coffee, and spent some good time reading. After Christine got up, we had coffee together by the fire and talked a little bit. I then slipped out for a little mountain biking prior to the Bama game.

Hall Ranch, with Long's Peak in the background.

We topped off the weekend with lunch with our friend Keith (soup!) and a win from Alabama over Ole Miss. I wasn't the happiest camper, as they played terrible in the second half, but a win is a win right. Good times were had though.....well, as good as it gets with a Miss St graduate!!!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Good Times in Alabama

Christine and I took a couple days off and spent time in Alabama with my family. We left at the crack of dawn on Thursday (getting up at 3 AM...ouch). My parents picked us up at the airport and treated us to lunch. We then recommended stopping for ice cream (we're suckers for ice cream, no matter when or where). We hung out with the parents for the day, catching up and hitting he sack pretty early after a tiring day of travel.

The next morning I took off to find coffee for us, since my parents don't indulge. Surprisingly, the one coffee shop in the metropolis of Russellville has closed....did I mention the town population is around 9,000. After a quick stop in to see an old friend, now an optometrist, it was on to McDonald's for coffee (not too bad actually).

My brother called and offered to take us to lunch. We enjoyed getting time to hang out and hear his thoughts about welcoming a new little one to the family. After hearing from him that it was homecoming weekend, we had to drop by and see the town parade.

No offense, but the floats from the class of '97 were much better!!!

Christine and I got to hang with my grandmother for a while. Her German/Southern sound coupled with good story telling skills make for a good time.

One of the best parts of the weekend was getting to spend time with my nephew Samuel. He's grown so much. Check out the sweet snow boots....he had to wear them as he always associates us with snow!

All in all, it was a good weekend.

It seems the older we get, the important things in life shift from where you are and what you're doing, to who you are with. Life is definitely full of changes.....the internal changes are now starting to catch up with the external ones. I'm both excited and scared for what's next.

Did I say scared? No way, I'm from Alabama!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Picture Rock Mtn Biking

Christine and I decided to enjoy our Sunday with a Mountain Bike ride on the new Picture Rock Trail. The trail just opened last week so there were plenty of riders that had the same thoughts as we did. We enjoyed the ascent on the winding singletrack, with a view of Steamboat Mtn in the background (I think). Just as we were nearing the spot where we decided to turn around, Christine had a hard fall over a rock and tumbled down the hillside. She walked away with plenty of scratches and bruises, but she did walk away and that was the critical part. We rested a bit, cleaned her war-wounds and snapped a couple pictures.

We took our time on the descent, talking about mountain bike skills. Christine wanted to know all about technique as I replied, "just go faster!"

The day brought about many questions for us; why is that we want to compliment each other in a marriage, yet our differences can be a huge obstacle in our path? We've found that often times it's the thing(s) you love most about people that seem to cause the most conflict. For example, Christine loves my spontaneity, but taking her out on a date without a plan can sometime be frustrating. Interesting stuff, aye?

The thing I found that helps the most is communication!! The more Christine and I can talk about our frustrations as well as our needs, the better we become at striking the balance that we are searching so hard for.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mt. Bierstadt 14,060 ft

Here are a few pics from our recent 14er hike. It will probably be our first and only 14er of the season. As you can see it's getting pretty snowy up high!! It is amazing how many people hike this mountain. The summit was filled with people!

Just hanging out

Shane is in California working for a couple days so I am at home just hanging out, catching up on a few things. I hope to get some good reading time in! I just started reading A Long Way Gone, about a boy soldier in Sierra Leone. We are working on building a bookshelf. Shane bought a piece of wood that he sanded and I need to finish staining it. We are having people over Friday night to talk about starting a community group in Longmont. We are excited to get to know more people that live close to us. Saturday I am co-hosting a brunch for my friend/old roommate Becky who is getting married in a month. It's going to be a busy weekend!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Finally a blogspot!

Well, I've finally gotten around to setting up a blogspot. I have to admit, it was easier than I thought it would be. Hopefully it will be a great way to stay in touch with all of our friends and family scattered around the country!! I'm looking forward to posting pictures and sharing stories about our life in Colorado.