The other day on our family walk, we encountered some other walkers. Now, I have noticed that in Boise, Idaho it is clear that there are A LOT of people who enjoy walking for pleasure. As we were entering the trail, they were exiting and they told us that they had come upon a “lynx or bobcat” just off the trail up a little ways. I got extremely interested and had to control myself not to beg them to show us. They said that since they had passed it coming and going, the chances were very high we would see it. Having never seen anything like it, (in the wild) I was so excited. We followed their directions scanning all over the place. I had long since given up when my daughter figured we had passed the place they were talking about. However, since there were 5 of us my husband and daughter in the rear spotted it. The cat was up in a tree. This animal was very well camouflaged so much so that even having it pointed out, I could barely see it until it became clear to me. It was just far enough off that I had to go off trail a bit to get a lot closer look and a decent photo. I am used to chasing red rocks and vistas on my walking adventures, but seeing anything other than generic wildlife is pretty awesome and a first.
There is a storm brewing back East that has a lot of people prepping for gridlock. I don’t know why, but I am really into the news with these weather related storms. I am particularly happy when the news portray people stranded in airports during the holidays and I am warm and cozy at HOME. I have flown enough during the holidays to know that I’m lucky to get to my destination. One time in Detroit on New Year’s Eve, our flight crew didn’t show up so we got hotel vouchers and told to come back the next day. It was awesome when we had one diaper to spare. It was a great way to get miles when you have a legitimate complaint. (I don’t condone frivolous whiners though!) My own mother was finally willing to go somewhere for Christmas one time and then Portland, Oregon got totally snowed in. Luckily flights were cancelled before they made the trek for full refunds and not stuck miserably at the airport with NO WAY to get them 30 minutes drive from my house. Usually it is a safe bet to fly out of LAS, but I’ve been there with snow too!
My hometown did an article in the newspaper last year saying that in the whole history of the school district they had never had a snow day so could all of the move-ins please stop asking for them. In Southern Utah, we have snow!!!! However, I was a student at the University of Utah on one of their historic snow days. It was an epic storm! I lived on campus so it was a bit dead and eerily silent, but awesome.
Are you a snowbird or do these events energize you?
I wanted to go skiing on Saturday, but I didn’t have a plan. Plans require all of the gear (coats, pants, gloves, etc.) in place and ready to go. However, it was already mid-morning when I decided it was going to happen. The nearest local resort has night skiing so we decided to do it. Now, 2 of my children already have been on skis, but 1 basically hadn’t and it was time to get her there. (The youngest did have a lesson with other students a few years earlier where she didn’t graduate to the chair lift.) We rented equipment cause I haven’t owned my own equipment since the eighties as I don’t go regularly enough. It is pretty darn easy to rent, but times it by 4 people and it becomes a lot of STUFF to deal with. Our chauffeur wasn’t going to ski so we had much needed help. When we got to the resort, we put on our gear and sent my husband for tickets. Then, there was time to contemplate what I was doing. I was planning on teaching my youngest to ski. Was it going to be a DISASTER? Was I going to have a horrible time with her crossing over my skis and knocking me down while I got super frustrated with my inept teaching skills? She was excited so that is a good start for a student. She had been left out before so she was ready to learn. I’m not going to lie cause there were a few bad moments, but we made it down the hill on the first try with no big issues and she was skiing after that. AND by skiing I don’t mean she looked like Lindsey Vonn. She was snowplowing down the hill on her own and having a great time. If you are wondering if you want to learn how to ski, I will tell you it can be A LOT of fun. It isn’t for everyone though. I basically grew up on skis, but I tried snowboarding for the first time a few years ago and I have never been so black and blue in my life so that is how I can relate to adults learning to ski. I will likely NEVER snowboard again.
We downsized from a house with tons of storage to A LOT less storage so I made my husband go through his things the other night to dejunk. He had a number of photos of us when we were newlywed or dating that I had never seen. Wow, you never know what you’ll find when you go through your stuff. In typical male fashion, his photos had never come out of the old envelopes that they were purchased in. This was life in the olden days. We had photos that you could actually touch and feel. I don’t remember this hike, but isn’t my nineties style awesome? That t-shirt could fit 2 of me!
Hiking Zion circa ’99
That’s a lot of gear I’m wearing. I’m rarely so prepared these days which is why we had to eat at the Zion cafeteria last summer. I was smart enough to realize that hungry kids would wreak havoc on the hike if we didn’t fuel up first. Hiking in Utah sans H20 is not something you’ll live to talk about though.
On Christmas day, we went sledding behind our house. It was kind of sad since there wasn’t a lot of snow. Like 2 inches maximum! But…When you have a child begging you, you make do. On New Year’s Day, we tried again. This time, we drove up the canyon and stopped in a beautiful spot that was plowed and had other sledders. I went many times, but since the snow was not fresh I felt like my head didn’t approve the hard landings. (A few years ago, I signed up for Taikwando. They were not used to many non-child students, but there were a few men in the adult class. I took a kick and my head felt like crap for a week. I was fine with the karate kid moves, but I didn’t like my head getting touched. I also didn’t like the subservient elements to the class! So… I went once and called it good with my groupon. That was the first time I thought, maybe I’m getting old cause my head didn’t bounce back from that jostling.) So, I also didn’t enjoy the way my head felt after the rough sledding. It was cold, but the child who insisted on sledding was very happy. I was sad to take down the Christmas tree this year, but when all of the stuff was put away, I was ready to move on and get in a regular routine again.
UNLESS you are going to use it or don’t care about wasting $$$. I have a lot of really fit friends, one of them who works as a fitness instructor posted some insight a few days ago. 1. lots of people join for the new year and January is pretty busy at the gym 2. they get intimidated by fit “lunks” 3. they give up. He encouraged people to START slow. Personally, I’m too cheap to join a gym and not go, but apparently many aren’t. I haven’t gone to a gym for a few years, but I was quite regular when I had a membership except in the summer when I had full time parenting. I love the classes, well not the ab focused ones. I’ve always been fit, but with belly fat. I’m fine doing whatever at the gym except I get dizzy if I spin around while dancing so I don’t spin and my core cannot compete with the regulars at pilates. I was never ashamed to lay there when I couldn’t do stuff though. Also, I secretly rooted for every really overweight person who showed up. I’m definitely too reserved to go give them a high 5, but I did it in my head. Years of Zumba with the girl who would be on the Wii video game and I still looked like the white girl with no rhythm. When I was a regular at yoga, I would have to leave before the cool down or I’d fall asleep on my mat. (Sleeping for 2 minutes and then being kicked out is oddly unpleasant.) In yoga class, there was a guy who had so much energy that he’d do leaps in between the poses so you have to find your own groove. If the gym isn’t for you then walking is of course my favorite option. It’s as affordable as you want it to be, but you can upgrade to some great vistas as far as your budget and your imagination will allow. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!