Jan 26, 2020

Birthday Adventures

1/26/2020 — cori

I turned 47 this past Thursday. I am so happy to be alive! I think about that everyday as my maternal grandmother never got to experience this age having died at age 46 from emphysema. Every single day is a gift. The brevity of life touched close to home today after learning of the tragic news that stunned the world of Kobe Bryant's death. It causes you to do some deep reflecting and soul searching; an apt reminder for us all to live each moment to its fullest.

We had a wonderful family celebration on Thursday evening where all my loved ones showered me with the most thoughtful gifts. We even had Gavin with us via FaceTime. Chuck pulled out all the stops, as usual, and gave me the most treasured gift of time together going on adventures. Being us, we like to have a plan, but rarely do we follow it. It's more of a "flexible idea list." Usually, we get to everything on our list and even then some, but we like to keep it open for other fun things that come up that we didn't anticipate. So, no surprise, that's what happened with this beautiful plan too. Sadly, we never made it to the Book Sale. (Side note: the library only has 4 book sales per year and we are there! This is our mecca. We have grown our personal library by leaps and bounds through this book sale. So it's a big deal.)

We decided instead to have a late (for us) breakfast at The Urban Egg and get nice and full to start our hike early. Around here, the sunniest and least windy part of the day is in the morning. The sky is a beautiful, vibrant blue. It's so sunny and happy. We decided to make the most of the beautiful morning. This was our destination - Horsetooth Mountain. It is the iconic Mountain in the Foothills of Fort Collins. This is as close as we made it, however. After almost two hours of hard hiking, we made it about 30 minutes away from actually getting to climb on the rock itself. You can see tiny dots on the right of the mountain, those are people. We are not them, nor did we want to be. We were happy just seeing it this close up. The entire hike was a 1300 foot elevation gain.

I just love this photo. It sums up our hike beautifully. Sunny, uphill, rocky, happy.

What an incredible vista! I can't believe this is my life!

On the way back down, this is the view we were treated to. Can you believe those incredible clouds?! Can you believe we get to hike in January, in the mid-40s?! 

After the hike, we checked into, by far, the loveliest hotel we've ever stayed in. Craftsmanship and fine details were everywhere. We were both very impressed! The rest of the day went by in a blur. We made the New Belgium Brewery Tour. I detest beer, but loved the tour. It was fascinating to learn how they make it and how much science and time goes into the process. We headed to dinner and then the theater where we were yawning our heads off. But being 47, we can do hard things. So we pushed through our sleepiness and even ended with a nightcap of french fries at The Emporium. Chuck always wins at birthday gifts!

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