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Location: Leadville, CO
Details: August Ink Pullover | Aria Down Vest | Custom Chacos

While the gals (Amy and Sam) were here, we spent a day driving through the mountains to visit Leadville, CO. I'd never been, and as we all know, exploring new places with friends is one of my favorite things in all the land. I love watching people experience new things, and with travel, I love watching them take in all the new sights and sounds and point out all of the things that they find interesting. You learn so much about a person when you adventure together.

We stopped for lunch at a mom & pop burger joint and inhaled some yummy food (because we're super ladylike.) It was so much fun to walk around and explore little shops and side streets. Leadville has some really fun art on the exterior of their buildings. My favorite being the wall of Aspen trees because, in my opinion, Aspens are one of the best parts of Colorado. We walked, chatted, stopped to take photos, took a coffee break, stopped to take more photos, fought the wind and lost, stopped to take more photos, got frostbite (okay, I'm being dramatic), headed home, pulled over to take more photos, and arrived home exhausted but with hearts so full. More road trips like this, please.

Various Photos By: Elah Tree | Oak + Oats | Taking Steps Home



Location: Garden of the Gods Park
Details: Dress (Filly Flair) | Hammered Gold Cuff | Gold Necklace
Photos By: A Love Photography

At the end of September, two of my dear blog-turn-real-life friends came to visit Beth and me for a long weekend. We had so many adventures and conversations to warm your heart with Sam and Amy, which you'll hear about later. Everyone came with their own hopes and dreams for the weekend, and Amy's greatest dream was to do our hair and makeup, put us in flowy dresses, and throw us in a field with mountain backdrops right at golden hour.

Now if you know me at all, you might know this kind of deal isn't my favorite. For someone who loves taking pictures of other people, I really dislike having my own photo taken. My level of awkwardness sky rockets on the awkwardness scale any time I step in front of a camera (you can ask my friends. They'll confirm this.) The good news is that Amy can make just about anybody feel comfortable about having their photos taken, and she helped me step outside my comfort zone in the best way.

I learned so much from the girls over the weekend as we watched how each of us approaches taking a photo. Some of us snap away like crazy while others take their time and really study the lighting or the posing or the framing. I loved seeing us capture moments from so many different perspectives, and I can't wait for our next weekend getaway. :)

P.S. Get 15% off your purchase of Ekata jewelry with code EKATA15



This post is sponsored by Stanely-PMI but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

LOCATION: St. Mary's Falls
DETAILS: Stanley Switchback Mug | Stanley Classic Vacuum Thermos | Custom Chacos | JCrew Flannel | GAP Flannel

This is my second autumn in Colorado, and let me tell you, it has been very different from my first. Not only has it been weirdly hot in Colorado, but life looks much different this year than it did twelve months ago. I'm more settled into this state, my friendships have reached a deeper and more meaningful level, and I've grown and changed.

But there are some things I hope will never change: Exploring in the mountains with my best friend. Wearing all the cozy flannels. Drinking out of all the Stanley Brand mugs.

Last year around this time, Beth and I needed some best friend time to get away, talk about us, manage expectations in the midst of a lot of changes, and just share what was on our hearts. So we took a drive up into the mountains to see the changing leaves. We laughed and cried and came out of that afternoon with a better understanding of one another.

This year, we grabbed our drinks of choice (hot cocoa and tea: peppermint editions), tossed our sturdy Stanley gear into my backpack and headed for the mountains. It was the perfect day to get out and hike, even though we maybe hiked a few miles more than I had originally anticipated. ;) I love being in the outdoors during this season. The air is crisp like cider, the forests of evergreens transport me to Narnia, hiking by the water reminds me of all the backpacking trips I took while growing up, and the sound of crunching leaves under my feet fills my heart with all the autumn joy.

And Stanley Brand is forever my go-to sidekick for bringing on all of my outdoor adventures to keep my drinks hot or cold (whatever I'm feeling that day.)