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At the beginning of the year when I wrote out my hopes and dreams for 2016, I said I wanted to go to the mountains at least once a month. It's September, and so far I've checked time in the mountains off my list every month. Ever since moving to Colorado, I'd dreamed of adventuring in Rocky Mountain National Park. So in July, some friends and I woke up before the sun, piled into the truck, and chased after adventure in the mountains.

A friend had told me to check out this three lake hike, and when I was telling my mama about it, she said it was the same hike she'd been on during her time in Colorado while she was on staff with Campus Crusade. It's fun to have pictures in the same spot with years in between. I'm going to have to check them out when I go home for Christmas.

The hike was an easy one, but oh so beautiful. I told the boys we had to stop at each lake to take it all in (and take pictures, obvi.) Nymph Lake was the first and the smallest. Dream Lake really lives up to its name. Beautiful water and breathtaking mountain backdrops. We wandered around this one for a while before heading to our final destination, Emerald Lake.

GUYS. The color of the water is the prettiest in all the land. So clear and so emerald all at the same time and ever changing as the light shone through it. We sat on the rocks by the water, ate our lunch, and were surprised by the cutest marmot ever that I'm still slightly giddy about. The boys decided to rock hop around the entire lake, so I sat next to the water by myself for a while as the wind blew fluffy clouds across the sky and whipped up the water on the lake. It was an introvert's dream.

What is one of the best hikes you've ever been on?



Because it's Friday and you probably need to look at pretty pictures of the ocean.

Last month I flew to San Diego to see my family and breathe in the salty sea air. Let me tell you a secret: I love the ocean. I love the way it looks, the way it smells, the way it sounds. I could sit on the beach for hours and watch and listen as the waves form, break, and roll up onto the sand. I love how the ocean makes me feel small and but reminds me of my value all at the same time. I stand there feeling so small in comparison to this beautiful and powerful body of water, but knowing I am even more beautiful and precious to my Creator than this thing that I am so in awe of.

We spent our weekend in California hiking a little, exploring a little, hanging out with family, and I even got to see a wonderful friend I had not seen in FIVE years. Isn't that crazy? Crazy fun. We walked around Seaport Village, saw all of the ships docked in the bay, and took a drive up to La Jolla, which is one of my favorite spots to visit when in San Diego. You have cliffs, seals swimming in the waves or laying on the rocks, and salty sea air.

If you can't tell already, I'm obsessed with water, so I won't apologize for the tidal wave of ocean photos that follow. ;)

I'm off to the mountains with friends this weekend! What adventures are you up to?



I turn twenty-eight today.

I'm not really sure how I got here. In a lot of ways, I still feel like that twenty-two year old girl who had just graduated from college, was working three jobs, and left everything to be a counselor at a summer camp in Colorado. I guess you could say no matter how old I get, I'm always feelin' twenty-two. ;)

In case you were wondering, I'm not freaking out about it...the whole getting older thing. I already got that out of of my system when I turned twenty, and then again at twenty-five. So maybe I'm on the "freak out every 5 years" plan. We'll see what happens when thirty rolls around. ;)

But in all honesty, for the most part, getting older doesn't really bother me anymore. (Do you like how non-committal that sentence was?)

There is a struggle sometimes not to feel like I've missed something along the way that would make my life look different than it does right now. But I am reminded that God does not make mistakes, and that I am not running behind or running late in life. I am right where I am supposed to be.

I realized a couple of years ago that I had to quit looking at age as something to fear and start looking at it as something to appreciate. Another year means more experiences, more wisdom, more laughter, more time with friends and family, and more days to know Jesus better. After all, we don't get to be here long, so each year is a gift.

Here's to more adventures and more laughter and more grace in twenty-eight.