Sunday, August 28, 2016

Leadership conference, Pagosa Springs, and a dusting of snow

Truly in the clouds and a dusting of snow
Our reputation as a bed and breakfast continues. We are NOT but the rumor persists. Mark just had his senior leadership team stay at the house for a working conference. They came from every direction including both coasts to our remote location. There was some play involved - jeeping and Secret Stash along with serious work. I joined in for some card games after dinner - very entertaining but let's just say not for children. Thanks Michelle! Overall the conference was labeled a success, hopefully the first of many.

Yup Mark's famous paella
Shock and surprise as Flap has shown up at the end of summer with a fawn. She has done this before and about the same time. So the questions will continue: how old is she really and is she the poor mother I think she is? She seems to forget about her fawns and leave them to their own devices as an example. She's "ours" though and I would be sad not to have her reappear every year. The deer leave Star Mt. for the winter to areas with less snow.

A bit of a diversion happened over this weekend. We headed to Pagosa Springs, my first visit, to check on Mark's Uncle Ralph's house (sadly he passed away a few months ago) and see a bit of the town. We stayed at a lovely real B & B (Elkwood Manor) just outside of town, went to a couple of restaurants, and looked at the famous hot springs.The water is steaming: 107-110 degrees and the resort (The Springs) has 23 pools and multi building to stay. Sulpher smell was in the air.

Nice couple from Houston bought the B&B a year ago. A mid-life big new adventure.

Homeward bound and yes, more company is coming to Star Mt. Nancy and Rodney next!

Monday, August 22, 2016

Fun company and summer is a waning

Amazing sunset - looked like the sun fell out of the sky
No sooner than I got home from Seattle I had guests the very next day, my brother Cliff and girlfriend Tish. It was a very quick visit but we made the most of it.

Woods walk, magic spring water stop, and the Ohio Pass required photo. Absolutely gorgeous weather on top of it all.

Of course we had to do Secret Stash...and Third Bowl...and shopping. It seems our secret little town is not so secret anymore. Tish had heard of CB and Secret Stash from friends of hers in Houston. Shhh, we don't want everyone to know.

Camp 4 coffee of course
While wandering around town we took a peek at Sean Guerrero's latest metal sculptures. and surprise, the artist was there himself. Had a great conversation and found out he was taking all the sculptures to Durango as the featured artist at a big car show. Amazing work but out of my price range.

Cliff and Tish exploring the hundred year old miner's cabin that's half on our property. If you've been reading my blog these past years you will notice this cabin is disintegrating more each year. The roof is collapsing and worse within. No community money to restore these cabins sadly.

Flap looking a little older and no fawns this year
Deer, deer everywhere in our yard including Flap and an injured doe who has been using our shady under deck space as a rehab. No photos of her but she has a deep gash on her right hindquarters. No idea what happened but she's definitely limping less than when she showed up 4 weeks ago.

A normal traffic jam on our one road into town. It turned out to be a small cattle drive so only a short delay and minimal manure spray. Trust me on this, that's important. Cliff and Tish, you missed out on this!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


My Seattle visit was a lot of fun and went by in a flash. It had been too long since I'd been and so wonderful to catch up with the family. We crammed a lot in courtesy of Anne, who took the week off from work to basically entertain me. Thank you Anne I had such a great time!

Anne's house and Mom's house which is in the backyard. Mom was way ahead of the current trend of tiny houses. Cutting edge! The beautiful garden is in between the two houses. Mom's green thumb at work.

Lots of fun on Discovery Park. Water, water everywhere and a beautiful lighthouse (top photo) which juts into Puget Sound.

Lots of walks in the eclectic neighborhood. Green Lake is well known and so close. Doggy Zia went with us everyday. In this urban neighborhood there are stores, restaurants, community gardens and lots of animals in everyone's backyard. As in ducks, chickens, rabbits. Seattle is such a beautiful charming city.

Family dinner out. Grappa's an eclectic mediterranean mix and a first time visit for us all. Justine found it and success - good food and a fun time was had.

Got to see where Clare takes horse lessons. One of her happy places and she doesn't even mind doing chores there, like mucking out stalls. Oooh.

Mom's 88 and going strong!
Last but not least, a rose garden visit. This one is close, near the zoo and quite the serene beautiful space. Another benefit of urban living - everything's close.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Approaching fall in the mountains

Much quieter week with lots of local activities happening. The weather already has a whiff of fall in the air. Festivals, races, farmers markets are going strong.

Haying season has been going strong for a few weeks now. This is worth gold out there in the world of hay purchasers. A good deal of Ohio Creek hay goes to savvy ranchers and Kentucky horse plantations.

Farmstands abound and we're taking full advantage. It's a short season here for the wonderful produce.

Been in a rainy pattern (called monsoon season - funny for Colorado) the past few days. We are so high that quite frequently we're in the clouds. Outdoor activities are such a mainstay that it throws everyone off when the rain comes in.

This weather has also caused amazing sunsets to appear. Random rainbows as well. Amazing spot in the world.

The hummingbirds have strained the system. Boiling sugar water multi times a day is tiring for those 4 mega boy feeders. 60 hummingbirds at the feeders is ridiculous! And of course we realize we caused it.We are at the end though as I have to take down the feeders as I travel to Seattle this next week. Only a handful will stick around for me to come back. A little sad to tell the truth...

Feeding of the fish. Our community pond has become a popular spot since we started stocking it with trout. Lots of easy catching.

After most of the summer missing the "whoo whoo's" and the gigantic wing span swooping over the landscape at dusk, I finally saw a great horned owl this morning in the mist and clouds. Truly amazing creatures and this was a fair distance away outside a bedroom window. My internal camera lens saves the day.

The Castles
Mill Creek
Mark left today for Miami but is back in two weeks. We still have a fair amount of company coming through the fall. Love it, it's what we enjoy the most. And Seattle is next for me.