Monday, September 22, 2008

Simple Woman Monday, September 22nd

Peggy at The Simple Woman hosts this lovely excuse for visiting kindred spirits. Run over there to catch up on a cornucopia of Monday morning thoughts!
Outside my Window.... it's a beautiful, crisp autumn morning. The leaves on the cottonwood tree overhanging the patio right beside my window are just becoming tinged in yellow.

I am thinking... We have a full week ahead ~ without Michelle here. She's spending a week with her grandparents in Southern California. The little girls are going to have to step it up, but I'm not worried. They always relish the idea of acting like "big kids."
From the Learning Rooms... We're overhauling Michelle's curriculum, due to a change in her schooling plans this year. Though we think the homeschool co-op we started on is a fabulous option, we're finding out that it's really cramping our style. We all decided it'd be best to continue homeschooling on our own this year, without the co-op, and maybe revisit the idea next year, when Shell will start to need the higher math and sciences that we can't provide as easily.

From the kitchen... While I was gone over the weekend, the little girls made some banana bread and banana cookies! I can't wait to tast their experimental banana cookies! Sounds like breakfast to me! Also, we picked up some fresh organic peaches from a farm stand near Paonia, CO (their last two flats!), and picked three bags full of Granny Smith apples from a friend's tree on the Grand Mesa. We'll see what we end up doing with all of it...

I am creating... Some new way of storing my every-day books and every-day school items. Right now everything is just piled up on the hearth in the dining room, and it's just not working. I'll let you know what I figure out...

I am going... to the chiropractor and nowhere else this week, if I can help it. I need a full week of organizing at home and doing home-centric things!

I am wearing... my favorite, comfy green, black and brown patterned gypsy skirt and a green button down blouse.

I am reading... Just got the fourth in the series of
Maisie Dobbs books! Looking forward to a cool autumn night in my big comfy chair-and-a-half in front of the woodstove to get started on it!

I am hoping... I have success on a cleansing diet program I'm starting this week. Pray for me! It involves eating a lot less food than I'm used to ~ and breaking the sugar and caffeine habit. But, I know I need to suffer it for my health. (Ugh.)

I am thankful for... A beautiful weekend's rest seeing beautiful scenery, laughing, talking, and eating too much with my fellow M&M enthusiast, my friend, my sister, Nina. And I'm thankful for my wonderfully thoughtful husband who arranged for me to go ~ and cleaned up the house so well before I got back!

One of my Favorite things... Fresh, sweet, juicy, Colorado peaches!

I am hearing... The little boys running up and down the stairs, laughing and playing. (That kind of laughing and playing usually turns into trouble, though.... I'm just waiting for the crying to start...)

Around the house... My sweet husband and children did a wonderful job of cleaning up before I got home from my weekend trip. I have nothing but laundry to catch up on this morning. Like I said, I'm a very grateful mama!

Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... Work on more fall decorating. Pull the sweaters out of storage. Can peaches and make apple butter and whatever else we can think of that's yummy ~ like at least one pie ~ before I start my diet.

Here is a Picture Thought (or two or ten) I'm Sharing With You...

Some pictures of the weekend's hunt for fall color in southwestern Colorado.

The leaves near the tops of the San Juans were changing, and at peak, but the lower elevations have only just begun to turn. The talk on the trail is that the cooler, wet summer and somewhat warm fall thus far have pushed the usual peak color dates back a week or two.

I'm sure I've probably shown pictures of these areas before, but they're always beautiful, always changing, so, if you don't mind sitting in for a tour, here we go,

First, to a favorite old "haunt" of ours: The Ironton Ghost Town on hwy 550, above Ouray:

This is a chicken house built onto the back of someone's late-1800s home. The snow got so deep in the backcountry up here, that some would build their animal's pens very close to the house, or even connected to the house for ease of care during the winter. I have to wonder that the bad smell wouldn't outweigh the inconvenience of moving the animals downwind... Check out the size of this wasps' nest! Yikes!

The path to someone's home ,once-upon-a-time.

Aspen leaves changing outside a very old stable.The eaves of a well-presevered 1870s homestead against the autumn blue sky.
Paul and Nicole. Such a fun day spent with our young people!

My sis ~ camera in hand, as always. (She's trying to catch an "orb" here...)
Looking up and around: To one side of the ghost town, you see the above mountain (don't know the name of it), and to the other side, the view below:

This is Red Mountain, towering over the Million Dollar Highway route through the San Juans. The mountain is red due to the iron oxide in the rock that forms the mountain. So, this mountain is red because it's actually rusty!
Now, we're looking over Silverton, Colorado, from the Christ of the Mines Shrine.

Here is the beautiful image of Christ, erected in 1959 as a tribute to the miners of the region.
This statue is sculpted of real Italian Carrara marble.
And here is some of the scenery that this image of the Sacred Heart presides over:

This hollow concrete "globe" is specifically intended for votive candles. It protects them from being blown out by the ever-present wind up here.
Here's the view to the northwest: And to the south:

Do you see the little train way dow there: The Durango and Silverton narrow guage steam engine roughly follows the route of the Las Animas River through the San Juan mountains. As we stood on the top of the hill to the north of the town, we could hear the sound of the steam engine whistle floating up to us and see the puff of smoke from the engine. So cool!

Here's some bright color to the southwest. I wish I could show them to you the way they really are ~ so golden they look lit from within! Alas, my camera's not quite up to that challenge.

Here are Paul and Nicole walking down from the shrine heading to the car so we can go down to Silverton and get some goodies at one of the candy shops down there. It's the fall, you know, when a young man's fancy turns to thoughts of fudge...

Here are some of the brightly painted victorian facades of historic Silverton, Colorado. A snippet of the train whistle at the Durango-Silverton Railway Station:

And, last, a couple views from the northern end of our weekend trip ~ from the West Elks range on the way over McClure Pass, between Paonia and Redstone, Colorado. I wish we could go back up next week; all these aspen will be changed to autumn gold by then!

Here's one last "hello" from Colorado: The wind in the aspens in the San Juan mountains at the Ironton ghost town site.

Happy Autumn, everyone!


Sleepy Cat Hollow said...

OMGosh...I miss that part of Colorado! So pretty. I need to plan a vacation. Thankies for the pictures!

Hill upon Hill said...

Wow I am so glad I visited you. What a lovely entry. I also enjoyed the photos. I wish you well in organising your books and with your health. Your family sound like a blessing.

Anonymous said...

It has been a great many years since I was last in Colorado. Now I'm really missing it. Thanks for sharing all those photos.

Kaila said...

I remember visitng Silverton when I was little. I LOVE Colorado :-)

His Servant: Ann Kraeger said...

Lisa, what a blessing to be able to get away like that. Your pictures are beautiful and fill my heart with peace and joy. I too like to explore and feast on the wonders of God's creation. I am glad that you got this time away. I will pray for the start of your diet. It is always difficult to do but God will help you along I am sure.