Seek Adventure // King Solomon Falls

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Eddie's face in this last photo perfectly describes how he felt about this hike.

We left without a map or trustworthy directions. Our destination: King Solomon Falls, a hidden gem outside of Steamboat. About 30 minutes into our drive I realized I was wearing my birkenstocks, with no hiking boots in sight.

But when we finished this adventurous hike, which involved passing Eddie off after climbing numerous rock faces, we were greeted with a beautiful waterfall. The only other people in sight were a couple celebrating their 6th anniversary. A typical Steamboat couple, they began friendly conversation easily.

While this hike was not for the faint of heart, it was indeed an adventure and I would recommend it to  anyone willing to venture outside of their comfort zone!

Monday Mantra 03

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Happy new moon!

This is a great time to make space within your life. Think about something in your life you want to let go of. It's good to make this a journaling exercise... you can make a list... or just start writing to discover what in your life you might need to let go of. A bad habit, an unhealthy relationship, a negative thought pattern.

When we truly release there is room left over for something new and beautiful. SPACE. Trust me, this is so freeing.

This week I'm letting go of my negative thought patterns surrounding my outward appearance. Specifically, my hormonal acne. I'm going to manifest positivity and healthy skin in it's place!

The Hat.

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The hat that can turn a shitty week upside down.
The hat that you put a little sage into while road tripping.
The hat that makes you feel somewhat OK about taking self portraits with a pug. (thank goodness for fenced in backyards!)

It seems that every summer I end up with a new hat. This one is pretty perfect for living in a mountain town, where the weather is currently 54 degrees (yup, buh bye summer!) I am also the laziest person in the world when it comes to my hair... so this hat is perfect when the frizzies just won't settle down.

I won't lie, this hat has not made everything better this week. Does anyone know whats going on with astrology? I feel like we're in retrograde. So many crazy events. It is funny how the universe always give us what we need, not what we want. I was faced with several situations this week that challenged me to practice what I preach. There were lots of healing tears and realigning moments with my higher self.

Have a beautiful weekend! I'm shooting my first wedding tomorrow and couldn't be more excited! Eeeep!

Tuesday Tunes

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No good excuse this time, Tuesday Tunes on a Wednesday again. Whoops! I really love making playlists for my yoga classes. While you do not need music to practice I truly love it. Music has so much emotion and enhances my ability to feel into the asanas (poses). Expect many more yoga playlists, as it is one of my favorite ways to prepare for my classes.

So here you have a playlist for an hour long class. I try to make my yoga playlists feel like a bell curve (yes, you can feel a bell curve?): smooth beginnings, energetic middles, and slow endings. Enjoy! xo

Monday Mantra 02

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I just started reading Pema Chodron's book Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change. This book is based off Buddhist philosophy and is deeply rooted in mindfulness. So far, the first chapter has really challenged my thought process. August has been a funky month. Adventurous and exciting, yet there has been a tiny dark cloud constantly looming over me. Change! Lately I have caught myself manifesting negativity and being quiet pessimistic, ways of coping with upcoming transitions and unsteady ground. Therefore, this week's mantra is to drop the storyline.

Chodron's book talks about the "physiological mechanism behind emotion: an emotion, like anger, that's an automatic response lasts just ninety seconds from the moment it's triggered until it runs its course. One and a half minutes, that's all. When it lasts any longer, which it usually does, it's because we've chosen to rekindle it."

Say what? We choose our emotions? (to a certain extent) Ah ha! So, to keep it simple, I'm trying to drop the story line I create around my emotions. If even for a few seconds. 

Happy Monday!

P.S. The above photo is from this day last year! Tobias & I had just begun our European Eurail adventure. This photo is from a walk on the German island Rugen where we camped.

Weekly Review

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This week we took Eddie, the pug we're petsitting, for a few hikes and gave him tons of cuddles. I've realized pugs are indeed little aliens.

A photographer that I admire greatly suggested one of the best ways to advance in photography is through self portraiture. I've been playing with this a little bit lately. The other night the light was stunning as the sun was coming down over the balcony where I'm housesitting. (by the way... I am not a fan of petunias! She told me I could not over water them.... and I did) I've always shied away from self portraits because I think they can quickly become narcissistic. The "selfie" culture also disgusts me at time. Yet, self portraits were important throughout art history. All of the worlds greatest painters created self portraits as a way to fine tune their skills. I think that taking self portraits  has also helped me in cultivating self love. It is so easy for me to pick myself a part as soon as I look at the back of my DSLR screen. Rather than doing this I've been trying to practice compassion. Maybe I will start a series on this?

Tobias and I saw The Giver this week. We enjoyed it. I haven't read the book so I can't really judge, but I left the movie feeling empowered. It really gave me hope in humanity. Especially with the recent news going on in my hometown of St. Louis, MO.

In other news, there will be a post next week about that little waterfall up there, King Solomon Falls. This happened to be one of the craziest hikes of summer thus far and I've got to scraps to show for it. Stay tuned.

Happy weekend!!

Seek Adventure // Great Sand Dunes

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Great Sand Dunes National Park is located in a magical southern Colorado valley. The San Luis Valley is vast and surrounded by mighty mountains.

About two weeks ago Tobias & I decided to treat ourselves to a four day weekend so we could adventure on the dunes. We camped, explored Zapata Falls, and hiked the dunes barefoot twice. (note: hiking uphill in sand is quiet the calf & ankle work out!) I also learned that doing a handstand on a slope is almost near impossible and that homemade granola, peanut butter, and blueberries on a wheat tortilla is the best breakfast for camping.

After playing on the dunes we made our way to Joyful Journey Hot Springs, a sacred place surrounded by mountains. Thankfully, the day was rainy and perfect for floating in hot pools of water. After reviving ourselves in the mineral water we ventured into the tiny mountainside town of Creststone. This city is very special as it contains the Baca Grande, a sanctuary where numerous different religions and spiritual centers coexist together. I had been here once before, when I was a freshman in college, and it was exciting to revisit. Being in a place that brought up nostalgia allowed me to take a close look at my personal growth.

We spent the night camping at Crestfest, Creststone's little music festival. Paper Bird headlined and this was my first time experiencing their musical melodies. The next day we woke up, said goodbye to the valley, and drove towards Denver to see Railroad Earth at Red Rocks.

Reuniting with old friends, dancing under the half moon, and singing to the poetry of Railroad filled my heart to the brim with immense love.

Through this Railroad Earth
for whatever it's worth,
singin' songs and stain' high
And you know I'll be where my heart feels free
and my thoughts are free to fly
~Railroad Earth by Railroad Earth

Tuesday Tunes

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Here are your Tuesday Tunes, on a Wednesday. It's one of those weeks. Tobias is moving away for a new job next week about 2 hours away so I'm trying to soak in every bit of time I possibly can!

Enjoy this mix. For the early mornings when you can't decide what to listen.

Monday Mantra

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Monday's. They seem to be a pretty grey place.... hard to start but exciting, I like to look at them as a blank canvas to create something beautiful.

Therefore, I've decided to start a Monday Mantra series on this little blog. I LOVE a blank canvas. They are intimidating but so full of potential. 

This week's mantra is to "shift your perspective". As a photographer, this is an intention I always try to set. I've found this to be an endeavor I can cultivate within my personal life as well . Ex: Putting myself in someone else's shoes (a friend, my partner, a coworker). I truly believe the world is much more beautiful and amazing when we are open to changing our point of view. 

Weekly Review

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-Sneak peek of some photos from our little trip last weekend. The Great Sand Dunes are stunning.
-Pinecones that desperately want to be hung in our apartment.
-My plants just look happier now that I've jazzed up their pots a bit.
-I've started an herb drying wall in our kitchen, hoping to make my own teas for fall!
-Ok, yes, I deserve a lil love kick for mentioning fall....
-After visiting our friends in Denver last weekend I was inspired to make some AMAZING, easy, healthy, vietnamese spring rolls.
-Lately I've been playing around with long night exposures. Tobias & I had some fun with this around our campfire.
-Speaking of night photography.. happy full moon! (well, tomorrow)
-Mmmmmmm crystals. Quartz was the crystal of the week for me.

I'm eagerly awaiting the visit of some dear friends. Two of my college girlfriends will arrive this afternoon and then one of my best friends from high school is coming into town tomorrow! While I love the seclusion & isolation of living in a tiny mountain town it most defiantly makes visits less frequent and all that much more appreciated. 

Have a gorgeous weekend!