Joy’s Top Ten from Summer So Far

Welcome to the top ten list of happenings over the last three months! I turned 29 on Friday and am treating it like New Years Eve. Resolutions include but are not limited to doing more yoga, writing more consistently, and being thankful for the days, which are awesome.

Nick excited to be in Colorado!!!

Nick excited to be in Colorado!!!

10. BEST THING FOR OUR BANK ACCOUNTS: We got jobs! Nick landed an ideal position as Marketing Ninja at Pine Needle Mountaineering. He’s of course mastering it, as he does everything. I quit landscaping and have been focusing on writing projects. I’m also a museum attendant and yard tour guide one day a week at the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Museum in downtown Durango. Many stories have come from this Thursday undertaking, some I’m sure that will seep into a post some day. Not today. Biggest perk: free train tickets!!

Required uniform at museum: my hardhat for workin' on the railroad. And safety goggles...

Required uniform at museum: my hardhat for workin’ on the railroad. And safety goggles…

9. BEST MOVE: At long last, our traveling and running buddy, Ronald Vernon Braselton (“Braz”) moved from Dallas to Durango! He quickly landed a job at Brown’s Shoe Store as a manager and found a place to live at the base of Animas Mountain, which he runs almost every day. He got a mountain bike, a backpacking backpack, and is a recent convert to quasi-vegetarianism. Welcome Brazzy!!!!

Braz & Nic in 'nam during a moto day along the coast

Braz & Nic in ‘nam during a moto day along the coast

8. BEST COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: The Bad Goats Sporting Club won our first game of the season on May 13th when community kickball started for the summer. We had our last game two weeks ago finishing third in the league. Not bad considering we only had one decent girl player – it wasn’t me. I’m glad the season’s over considering I’m not a huge fan of things I’m not good at. We made some great friends, though, and got some super cute t-shirts out of the deal!

Bad Goat Sporting Club t-shirt

Bad Goat Sporting Club t-shirt

7. BEST INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL EXPERIENCE: Nick and I flew to Alberta, Canada, for Stephan & Leanne’s wedding on May 25th. After some nerves about our ability to get into the country (another long story that’s post-worthy some other day), we arrived in Calgary before heading to Canmore for the celebrations. It poured rain for 72 hours straight and then the sun popped out over the snow-covered Canadian Rockies right at the beginning of the ceremony. Destiny!

Stephan & Leanne's wedding in Canmore, Alberta, officiated by Sequoia and bathed in sunshine! Stephan is offering a peace pipe around the party

Stephan & Leanne’s wedding in Canmore, Alberta, officiated by Sequoia and bathed in sunshine! Stephan is offering a peace pipe to Nick

6. BEST PROJECT: The time between weekend travel was spent out at the cabin preparing for our wedding. We had great ambitions to build five or six picnic tables for the reception. After five weeks and five hundred dollars, we finally finished one and decided that was plenty. This picnic table ended up being our ‘guest book’ and now has carvings and well-wishings from all of our favorite people on the planet!

Five weeks and $500 later, our first and only completed Picnic Table

Five weeks and $500 later, our first and only completed Picnic Table

Nethaniel & Emily carving the guest book/picnic table at the wedding

Nethaniel & Emily carving the guest book/picnic table at the wedding

Grandmommy & Grandaddy signing the picnic table

Grandmommy & Grandaddy signing the picnic table

Steph & Leanne signing the underside of the picnic table

Steph & Leanne signing the underside of the picnic table

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. BEST MEAL: Dad and Nancy came out for ‘wedding planning’ and then left us with a $150 gift card for the best restaurant in the San Juans, Kennebec Cafe. Jesse and Valerie and the dogs came out the following weekend and after fun times at the cabin, we spent the next morning ordering the most lavish breakfast ever consumed by four people.  Advice about gift cards to fancy restaurants: go for breakfast and get more bang for your buck. Shoot, we even ordered an appetizer of brioche french toast before our actual boss meals. Stuffed and happy, we went for a sweet hike around Kennebec Pass. And then took naps…

Thanks Dad & Nanc for the Best Breakfast of Our Lives

Thanks Dad & Nanc for the Best Breakfast of Our Lives

4. BEST AOA RELAPSE: I worked a last minute REI rim-to-rim trip June 3-9. The trip was a success despite the temps soaring to 130 degrees at Phantom Ranch. That’s what the waterfalls, creeks, and eddy at Boat Beach are for: cold water to wake up the soul! Always the best part of any trip to the grandest of canyons. The days in AZ were bookended by quality time with some of my best friends relishing poolside mojitos, happy salads, Scottsdale yoga, Downton Abby, and of course Four Peaks chicken rolls and pints of cold beer to ease the oppressive summer heat… so good!!

Blackberry mojitos, pooltime, and Downton Abby made for a fabulous girls' day in Scottsdale!

Blackberry mojitos, pooltime, and Downton Abby made for a fabulous girls’ day in Scottsdale!

3. BEST MTB ENDO: While I was in Grand Canyon, Nick crashed his bike and split his arm open. He got to use his WFR experience and ended up not needing to have it amputated. Almost. This is probably a future blog post… too soon though… too soon…

Nick's Gnar

Nick’s Gnar

2. BEST WEEK OF MY LIFE: Wedding week was here and gone too fast. Dad and Nancy came first and left last making the week possible by offering up every acre of their property and paying for every crumb of cornbread, shuttle bus, and kayak adventure, all the while exuding a general sense of calm and fun that reigned that week for everyone. We also zip-lined with Nick’s mom, Vicki, and sister, Amy, before heading to Farmington to pickup Trina and John, the officiant and my youth pastor from high school. Friends and the rest of family showed up on Thursday and we kayaked the Animas on Friday under a perfectly warm sun and blue sky before indulging in a fine meal at Carver’s hosted by Nick’s dad, Mike. All the while, I got to hang with my best girlfriends before riding a horse down the lupine-laden ‘aisle’ on June 22nd, the day of the wedding and the best day of my life. My husband looked dapper in grey suit and vest with massive sunflower in pocket and perfectly tied bow tie (thanks Sandy!). He knocked his vows out of the park and there wasn’t a dry eye around the hitchin’ post. Good grief, he loves me… BIG TIME.

First dance at our wedding - You & Me by Penny and the Quarters

First dance at our wedding – You & Me by Penny and the Quarters

We left the morning after and drove to Telluride for the bluegrass fest, camping, hiking, via ferrata, swimming, and relaxing in our super luxurious robes at the Mountain Lodge where we got upgraded to a sweet suite just because it was our honeymoon. Use that line, by the way. It works. Just keep that glow about you and your lover and people will fall for it every time! Then it was time to go back to Durango, which is awesome and brings me to what we’ve been up to.

Me scaling the via ferrata above Telluride on our honeymoon

Me scaling the via ferrata above Telluride on our honeymoon

1. BEST LIFE FOR JOY: Now, we’re living out loud, happy, long days in Durango! Nick has Tuesday and Wednesday off so we take advantage of fewer people in the high country and camp under rainy skies, summit 14,000 foot peaks, scramble ledges with a thousand feet of exposure on either side, cook Indian food, sleep in cabooses, escape lightening and grave robbers, scale mountains, filter water, eat Fritos, bike ridges, train for a 50 mile race coming up at the end of September, drink whiskey gingers (that’s part of training), play Cards Against Humanity with Braz on our porch under the same white lights we used for the epic dance party the night of our wedding, and mostly take every possible morsel of daylight available and then some before crashing to sleep in our new Rab sleeping bags or in our new 8000 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets (thanks Ellis!!). Life. Is. Good.

Dance party under the super moon after the wedding - June 22

Dance party under the super moon after the wedding – June 22

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