"Some people do not have to search, for they find their niche easily in life and rest there seemingly contented and resigned. At times, I envy them, but usually I do not understnad..and seldom do they understnad me. I am on of the searches. There are, I believe, millionsof us. We are not unhappy, but n neither are we completely content. We continue to explore life, hoping to uncover its ultimate secret. We continue to explore ourselves hoping to understand. We like to walk along the beach, we are drawn by the ocean, taken by its power and unceasing motion, its mystery and unspeakable beauty. We like forests, mountains, deserts, hiddern rivers, and lovely cities as well. Our sadness is as much a part of our lives as our laughter; to share our sadness with the ones we love is perhaps as great a joy as we know. Unless it is to share our laughter. We searchers are ambitious but only for life itself and anything beautiful it can provide. Most of all, we want to love and be loved, to live in a relationship that will not impede our wanderings and prevail our search. We do not want to prove ourselves to others or compete for love. This passage is for wanderers, dreamers, and lovers who dare to ask of life, everything which is good and beautiful." ~Found in the door of a deserted store in Colorado

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Pumpkin Season

The past couple weeks I have been dying to go to a pumpkin patch and pick out a pumpkin and carve it...hay ride and all. The weather is finally just right for it (well except for the few bouts of snow we have had recently) but none-the-less, it is fall and time to go pumpkin hunting. Well, apparently it is too cold to grow pumpkins in this part of the world so we were unsuccessful in finding a pumpkin patch. I never really imagined a place where pumpkin patches don't exist...but oh well. So, Jay and I headed out to Albertson's (a local grocery store) to pick out our pumpkin. We had a great time...I cleaned out the guts of the pumpkin, Jay carved it, and I toasted the pumpkin seeds afterwards! I love this time of year! Below are some pictures from our evening of pumpkin carving. Enjoy :)

Jay starting to carve the pumpkin.

Evaluating what to do next...
Part way through...looking good!

Carving the mouth

And he is done! Looks GREAT :)

Say cheese :)

The master pumpkin carver!

All lit up outside

First time ever toasting pumpkin seeds. We did one batch regular with just salt and butter and one batch with cinnamon, ginger, salt, and butter...YUM! They turned out pretty good for my first time but I definitely put too much butter on...whoops. Still pretty tasty though :)

Who ever said wine and pumpkin seeds don't go together...wine goes with EVERYTHING :)

So, I am officially starting to move my things into my new place in the village. And hopefully moving everything this weekend. I am very excited about the move and my new place. Can't wait to get settled in! AND...I will be home in 8 days...can't wait to see you all! Hope all is well! Big hugs and kisses :) LOVE YOU!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Missing Reese

Well, Reese is safe and sound at Mom and Dad's...but me...not so good. I had to send Reese to live with Mom and Dad for a bit because my new place doesn't allow dogs. I am absolutely sick about not having her here. I wasn't really sure how things would be...but they are tough :( I didn't want to send her back at all but I didn't have a choice. Finding housing that allows dogs around this town is very difficult. She flew back to Atlanta yesterday from Idaho Falls. Jay and I took our time driving back to Jackson...I wasn't ready to go back to my house where Reese wouldn't be there to great me as she always was...so excited EVERY time I walked in the door. That is one thing I love about dogs, especially Reese, they are always so happy to see you :) Well, I kept busy the rest of yesterday and last night but then this morning when I went home and walked in the door to no little Reese jumping up and down and dying to go for a walk...I lost it. I was consumed with sadness and loneliness. She was my best little pal and always there...always. I know as the days go by things will get easier, but right now they are not so easy and I miss her bunches and bunches. I know she is living in the best possible place she could live...at Mom and Dad's with 5 acres and 2 other dogs to run and play with all day. I couldn't ask for more and I am so blessed that Mom and Dad are so willing to let her live with them and take care of her like she is their own. I know you are probably thinking that she is just a dog...but she was more than just a dog, she was my best little friend and she has been apart of my life day in and day out for 3 1/2 years. It is my day to day routine that has been turned upside down and that will be so hard. I hate that it was so difficult for me to find a place that would allow her, but around here it is just so hard and I couldn't pass on the opportunity and location of my new place. The apartment is through my employer. They offer employee housing to full time/year round employees and they don't gouge you on the rent. So, for my situation, I couldn't pass on this deal.

Anywhoooo, with all that being said, I just wanted to share with you where Reese is living now and why I don't have her anymore. I am very sad right now but I know I couldn't ask for a better home for Reese to live than Mom and Dad's. Fortunately dogs have short memories and she is already loving life and happy as can be. Me on the other hand...I just need some time.

Thanks for listening...writing all of this out has been nice. If any of you stop by the house, give Reese a big hug and kiss for me. Love and miss everyone bunches but I will be home in 10 days!!!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Mom and Dad's Wild Wild West Adventure

Mom and Dad came out in August to visit me and they stay on a ranch in the Gros Ventre's called The Gros Ventre River Ranch. This place was so beautiful and had incredible views. It was located right on the Gros Ventre River which was great for fly fishing. They rode horses all day long and were able to see some of the best views in Jackson Hole. Their patio looked right at The Grand Teton. I absolutely loved having them here and getting to spend quality time with them doing so many fun things...hot air balloon ride, horse back riding, white water rafting, cowboy camp fires and cookouts! We had a ball!!! I loved that they were able to see Jackson Hole as it truly is...full of adventure and beautiful scenery...you honestly can't beat it! Here are some pictures from their trip. Enjoy :)

Dad in front of the hot air balloon before we went up. This was both of our first trips in a hot air balloon!

This is a great view of the Teton's! So beautiful!

I love this picture because you can't tell we are in a hot air balloon. Great view of the valley!

The champagne toast afterward. A common tradition among balloonists is to have a champagne toast upon landing. Legend has it that early French aeronauts carried champagne to appease angry or frightened spectators at the landing site. Along with the champagne, a popular toast among balloonists is: "soft winds and gentle landings" Many balloonists recite the Balloonists Blessing (author unknown) with the champagne toast:

The winds have welcomed you with softness
The sun has blessed you with warm hands
You have flown so high and so well
That God had joined you in your laughter
and set you gently back into the loving arms of mother earth.

Mom and I being silly!

Mom and Dad's cabin

The view of the Teton's from their porch...amazing and this picture doesn't do the view justice at all.A great view of the Gros Ventre River from one of the main areas of the ranch.

Mom and I in front of Lewis Falls in Yellowstone National Park.

Dad, Jay, and I in front of Lewis Falls.

Dad and I at Oxbow Bend. Also, a great view of Mt. Moran. Look at the reflection in the bend.

Jay, Mom, and I at Jackson Lake.

Dad and I inside the Old Faithful in (the largest solid wood structure in America). Check out the lady with the blue hat..very typical for the type of tourist you see walking around that place...ha :)

One of the many geysers we saw. The blue color in this one was simply amazing!

And another one...

Towards the end of the trip we came across a huge herd of buffalo hanging out by the river.

Mom and I at Lower Fall.

Mom and Dad's new friends...they were so very nice and fun! This is us at one of the cowboy campfire cookouts.

The campfire cookout.

Dad, Mom, and I at the campfire.

Dad and I.

Mom and I...great laughing picture!

Jenny, Mom, and I at the Couloir and underneath Corbet's. We had lunch and it was such a beautiful day. We were so happy Jenny could join us as well.

One of the many beautiful views that Mom and Dad enjoyed on their horse back rides.

Breakfast ride. It was early and cold but so worth it for the views and the yummy breakfast they prepared for us by the warm fire :)

Us and our horses...gitty up!

Dad and I before white water rafting.

Dad fly fishing on the Gros Venre river.

Mom gettin after it...she rounded the cattle like it was her job. Pretty sure they won the team pinning contest...yeah they are pretty bad ass :)

More cattle herding.

Yay! They won!

The Four Musketeers...they are so cute in their matching shirts. This was our last night at dinner before the rodeo.

Jay and I at the rodeo.

Awe aren't they so cute! I love them :) This was the last night and we went to the rodeo. They knew more people there then I did and I have lived here almost a year.

Well, I think that is all. We had such a fantastic time! I loved having them here so much and I loved the time we were able to spend together and the memories we created that will last forever. There was a lot of "stepping out of the box" on this trip...and I love that! I am pretty sure they will be returning to the ranch again next summer because they had such a grand time this trip. I miss them so much and wish they could be here more. But Mom is flying now so they can come anytime they want :) Good times, great company, lots of laughs...what more can you ask for...I LOVE YOU!

So, Jay and I will be flying to Atlanta October 30th for a few days so I can move my things out of my house and in to storage (a.k.a Mom and Dad's basement). I can't wait to see the family and go trick-or-treating with the little ones! After the few days at home, Jay and I are heading to Spain for just over 2 weeks of holiday! I am beyond excited about this trip and the adventures that lay ahead. Neither Jay nor I have been to Spain so it will be a first for both of us. I look forward to sharing our pictures and stories with you when we return. Lots of love, hugs, and kisses to all! See you soon :)