skiing in vermont, part 2.

i didn't brave the downhill slopes this weekend, as we had chilly winds all weekend. on sunday, mom & i decided to embark on a little adventure to trapp family lodge (yes, as in von trapp as in sound of music!) for an afternoon of cross country skiing. growing up, i was never a big fan of cross country skiing... it always meant being rather chilly, having a tremendous fear of skinny skis on "big" hills, and worst of all (depending on my age)-- doing an activity with my parents.  my time at running the nordic center at vista verde transformed my feelings for cross country skiing. the long, smooth trails around the pastures, with only gentle and rolling hills, improved my confidence and ability to get good exercise from skiing. by the time my parents came out to visit that year, skiing became something we could all enjoy together. i'm still a bit timid towards the big vermont hills, but i'm definitely coming around. despite a breeze out in the field, mom and i enjoyed a lovely afternoon in the woods, getting into a good rhythm on the smoother trails, and practicing my snowplow on the hills. surrounded by maple tap buckets, it was a perfectly vermonty afternoon.


skiing in vermont, part 1.

last weekend i embarked on my first vermont downhill skiing adventure in about six years-- maybe seven winters... since that last ski at sugarbush, i've skied well over one hundred days in colorado. my expectations for the snow quality were low, though it was a perfect bluebird day (hey wait, i thought we only had those in colorado?)...
so my dad and i embarked on a little drive through the mad river valley over to sugarbush to visit my old stomping grounds & meet jen and her dad for an afternoon on the slopes. the snow was a mix between corn snow and slabs of ice, and i feared for my ability to turn (and therefore, my wellbeing) multiples times throughout the day.

but here's the thing. i. had. fun.

vermonters are an interesting bunch of people. they don't care largely about appearance, or new gear. if it works, and they can play on it, they are good to go. and rather than judging them, as so often happens in steamboat, i enjoyed them. i loved that people were out and about in their ancient skis, duct taped gear, rear-entry boots, etc. many outfits resembled what steamboat would consider to be "awesome gaper costumes." and here, those were people's real ski outfits because there seems to be a strong "if it's not broke, why fix it?" mentality.

it's refreshing. people in steamboat, myself & my friends included, spend a lot of time obsessing over the latest ski gear, drooling over ski clothes with giant price tags, buying new goggles to look less like a 'gaper.' i spent two full seasons feeling self-conscious of how i looked on the slopes, searching all the stores for some snazzy new pants. i finally have pants that i absolutely love, but with them came a ridiculous price tag. was it worth it? sure, because i will be wearing them for many years to come, probably far enough into the future that will be looking like an awesome costume....

i also loved being out as part of a father-daughter double date. jenna & i grew up skiing at sugarbush, heading up on weekends and alternately skiing thoroughly, drinking hot cocoa in allyn's lodge, or taking the lengthy chairlift from the southern mountain to the northern mountain. my memories of our ski days are fairly clear, but riding each trail this time was a strange combination of experiencing it for the first time & traveling back in time (oh no, wait, that was just when 'stairway to heaven' was playing at the base and i was transported back to the late 1990's skiing the day after a school dance!). when jenna and alex came to visit us in steamboat, brett couldn't get over what twins jen & i looked like cruising down the slopes after all of our years taking lessons and spending weekends together. even now, as i've spent the past five years downhilling all the time, while jen has spent her mountain time on cross country trails, i still felt like we were skiing along in unison.

so, while i love steamboat & it's fresh powder, fancy skis, and high speed lifts... for now you can find me slipping and sliding on the ice (and hopefully finding some nice corn snow to celebrate spring), riding the wooden chairlifts, and appreciating the good ol' gettups. all in good company.

*i know i called the vermonters "they" and "them" and i'm well aware... i've only been back here for 3 weeks! did you think i'd transform that quickly? :)

**i will say--i do think vermonters could stand to wear helmets while they ski, and i really do believe in the rocker technology that is in skis coming out this year. 


today was my most productive day so far. i felt like i was actually getting projects accomplished throughout the day & it felt great. after work i met my mom for a 'taste of vermont' reception. considering all of the incredible local foods here in vermont, you can imagine how painfully stuffed i still am now. a huge variety of local cheeses, meats, turkey sliders, seafood mac & cheese, flatbreads, chocolate mousse, carrot cake cookies with goat chevre filling. and on top of that, vermont beers & wines? vermonters really know how to use their resources. it was an absolute feast, and gave me one more reason to appreciate my new surroundings. from there, i was off for an impromptu gathering of aloha maidens. if there is one thing i can count on camp friends for, it is deep, full belly-laughter. and this was no disappointment. within moments i was wiping tears from my eyes after gasping for air between chuckles. 

i'm settling in with my tea & my book with a smile on my face. 


saturdays in vermont.


  • visions of sleeping in, only to find myself wide awake at 7:30
  • a little quiet time, and some strong coffee
  • a chilly walk down the hill 
  • a sweaty cardio workout & attempts at switching up my weight routine
  • a warmer walk back up the hill full of sunshine
  • indoor farmer's market right around the corner! vermont's strong local food movement is one of the things that excites me most about living here again, and the fact that there are weekly (incredible, as in top 10 in the country) farmers markets in the summer, and twice-monthly markets the rest of the year is amazing!
  • fresh bread, cheese samples, sausage samples, a delicious tamale, fun fiddles and my sweet jen
  • tea, a successful remote network access, and reading my first vermont grant proposals
  • a long and adventurous walk all around montpelier with jenna
  • cozy time, tv catch up, house-hunting, baking
  • wontons & wine with dad
  • the perfect twilight blue as the sun set
  • a hilarious & creative movie at the green mountain film festival. check it out. get it on itunes. enjoy it! find it here. 
  • the super moon! we missed the rise but it is incredible. 
lots to love here. 


orientation: complete. hooray! i have learned so much this week already, and i haven't even spent more than five minutes in my office yet. but i have a badge, a plethora of knowledge about coffee, and a lot more learning ahead of me!

i also went to my first yoga class in almost two weeks. on my last full day in steamboat, i wrapped up with my early morning yoga class & bagels to keep myself sane in my big packing and cleaning day. since then, i've covered 2,364.7 miles in the car, and then even more driving around vermont, followed by three days of primarily sitting during orientation. i've squeezed in some walks & workouts, but the feeling of my first foray into downward dog tonight was delicious. my body feels restored and flexed again. phew.

breakfast burritos for dinner with dad, and now i'm settling in for the night. first "real" day tomorrow!

hope you are having a great week.


after 2,364.7 miles of driving across 9 states, we arrived in vermont! 

b & i had two days to drive around, explore, unpack, etc. we had nice time with my parents, feasting with neighbors, enjoying local foods & dreaming up our future. unfortunately the weather has been fairly miserable. a day of sloppy snow, followed by rain, followed by cloudy damp weather. we just keep saying that now brett's seen the worst. i won't lie, i am missing my bluebird skies & powdery snow. i sent him back to colorado on an airplane yesterday, which was sad, but luckily i did a bit of shopping in burlington with jen & kim to boost my spirits afterwards! today has been a productive day of really unpacking/hiding away things i don't need for now/exercising (finally! hooray!)/downtime. tomorrow, the new job starts. here goes...


goodbye to my mountain town. until we meet again...

the final descent.

while the last run with kim was meant to be my last run down the mountain, brett & i decided to squeeze a few final runs on the mountain. it was only appropriate to be trying to keep my ski gear unpacked and get up there, as i often have skied before heading out of town to catch a flight, or on the afternoon i return. so, once the car was packed, the floors mopped, the goodbyes said, we ran up to look out at the valley and make a few final turns. originally i envisioned all of my people gathering for one big run, but of course the reality of jobs & dogs & conflicting schedules left it with just me and brett. which was equally appropriate. i wished that it either be a bluebird day or a powder day, but instead it was a damp, grey day. not unlike vermont. we went up the gondola, up to storm peak, skied many of my favorite runs, rode my favorite lift, and began to get cold. we skied back to the top of the gondola, took a photo, and started down a final run on the heavenly daze. part way down we decided to veer off to a trail that i had somehow never been down. hiding right below ted's ridge is a trail called vertigo. as far as i can recall, this was my first lap down it! so, i smiled, looked out at my valley home, and made embarked on a new adventure down a new trail. 

final descent.

“let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” (thank you)

for one final hurrah, we held a potluck dinner at cherry drive. by the end of the night, all of my dearest people in steamboat were there (hooray for nick & molly each coming after work!). everything was just as it should be-- great eats, tasty beverages, beautiful people, laughter, music and oh-so-much love. i loved having one last night at the house that has been so dear to me in the last few years. it all felt surreal that i was actually leaving, that the party was actually in my honor, until friends started to leave, and the tears began to flow. the last two years in steamboat have brought some of the most wonderful, kind, funny people into my world. days spent skiing, biking, drinking coffee in the sunshine, lounging, tubing the river... nights spent at happy hour, dancing, enjoying free concerts, cookouts at cherry, horseshoes in the yard... we've shared many beautiful moments.  i've formed lasting relationships that i know will endure the cross-country barrier. thank you, to each of you, for being my people. i love you. 

beautiful girls.

me and tj.

past and present residents of 466 cherry.

molly's arrival completed my night!

silly t.

original vista verde team.

love these girls.

my other brett.

highly concerned what mischief my cubs will get into now.

cute couples.

current cherry residents & their honorary roomie.

these are my people. 
thank you for being. 


final ski days.

i was blessed with ski time on the slopes with my lovely friend kim during my final days in the boat. our winter hasn't involved enough time together with very different work schedules, and her leaving town for 3 weeks to go on big crazy adventures. so, we squeezed in a few days right at the end. we got sunshine, warm temps & lots of fun. on friday, after a long day of cleaning & packing & final errands, we snuck up for what was meant to be my final run down the slopes. one last hurrah, a quick stop at the t-bar, and then we were off to the sam bush concert at the bottom of the slopes! we found our clan there and enjoyed a beverage, bluegrass, and bliss. thank you, kim, for being a helpful packer, a super vacuum-er, and a supportive and sweet friend. you've made an impact in my life & i loved our steamboat adventures. here's to many more sweet sunny days.

cute little tele girl!

final run

quick stop at t-bar

helpful ski slave

love these two.

sam bush!

perfect day.


fear not, i still have tales of my final ski runs, an incredible potluck, and pictures of the people who have made up my world. but in the meantime, this happened yesterday, and we have made it across kansas.

see you on the other side. 


so long, steamboat library. you've been a wonderful respite, resource & blogging location. 
until next time...

winter park.

we headed to winter park on monday for a ski day... my pass has been valid at winter park the past several years but i had never been, so i had to cross that one off the bucket list! it was a gorgeous day, though incredibly windy at the top of the mtn. we had fun traversing back and forth between winter park and mary jane, soaking in the gorgeous view, grilling in the parking lot, and drinking local beers. it was a great day, but i was glad to get back to my "home" mountain and navigate it easily on tuesday.