Winter Storm warning, hiking and Wild Animal Sanctuary

Right after the last blog post, we had a winter storm warning issued for our area here in Boulder. We woke that Monday morning to a beautiful snow-laden landscape! The roads were too warm to keep the snow, so they stayed just wet. We must have gotten about 4-6 inches on the grass, in this area, and I’m sure the mountains got more! I guess I got my snow fix! It was beautiful, but now we are back to 70-75 degrees F, beautiful weather for more walks and hikes.


The past 2 weeks we have hiked to Crater Lake near Nederland in the mountains (that was just before the snow!), Mount Sanitas west of Boulder, and the Enchanted Mesa trail of the Chautaugua in south Boulder. We’ve done babysitting with the grandkids (Jeni’s daughters), bike-riding and of course, being the foodies that we are, have found some great area eateries. I’ve walked almost every day, have seen some great amazing sunrises


and sunsets, and recently we visited the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg, Colorado, which is northeast of Denver.

So we had planned a hike up in the mountains and drove about an hour to get there. When we got there, the Lost Lake at the Hessie trailhead parking lot was full, and we needed to drive back to the  small town of Nederland, to take a shuttle back to the trailhead. We got back to town and visited the Information Center. The attendant there gave us other options and a map. So chose Crater Lakes Trail near the Moffit Tunnel. Didn’t look too bad on the map. So we ate some lunch and drove out to the trailhead. Well, we started at 9200 feet of elevation! And I was pretty short of breath the entire 2+ hours that we hiked up an additional 2000 feet of elevation over 3 miles. So the entire hike was 4 hours, and 6 miles. My body hurt! But the views were spectacular (below) when we got to the lakes. Apparently there is one more lake, a higher up climb, but we didn’t do that. This was enough for this weary ole’ body. But I’m glad we did it. I have an app called AllTrails, and we usually check that for level of difficulty “easy”, “moderate” or “hard”. Well, we didn’t check before we did this hike, but when we got back, I did, and AllTrails notes this trail as “hard”! Next time, I’ll pick the trail!

We also hiked to Mount Sanitas just west of Boulder (below). I chose this hike, because the level of difficulty was “moderate” on my AllTrails map.

 

Another hike we had, level of “easy” was the Enchanted Mesa trail at the Chautaugua trail (below). This trail is located where the Chautaugua park is. Still some elevation, but more of a nice hike. But my body still hurts! HAHA.


The Chautaugua movement was an adult education movement in the US. highly popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Chautauqua (originated in New York) assemblies expanded and spread throughout rural America until the mid-1920s. The Chautauqua brought entertainment and culture for the whole community, with speakers, teachers, musicians, entertainers, preachers, and specialists of the day. The popularity of the Chautauqua movement can be attributed in part to the social and geographic isolation of American farming and ranching communities. People in such areas would naturally be hungry for education, culture and entertainment, and the Chautauqua Movement was a timely response to that need in the late 19th century and early 20th century.

Here is the link: Chautaugua Colorado

Located at the base of Boulder’s Flatirons and one of only 25 National Historic Landmarks in the state of Colorado, the Colorado Chautauqua is one of only a few remaining chautauquas in the U.S. It is considered THE western representation of the cultural movement that swept the U.S. in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and is the only site west of the Mississippi that has been in continuous operation since its founding and with its original structures intact and used for their original purposes. It was a pretty impressive area to see.

One interesting find after a day of hiking is the Dushanbe Teahouse in Boulder. Dushanbe Teahouse Boulder. It was completely built by hand without the use of any power tools, the Teahouse was constructed in Dushanbe, Tajikistan as a gift to the sister city, Boulder. It was dismantled, shipped around the world and rebuilt as a symbol of friendship. Here are some of the elaborate ceiling and walls:

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We also visited the Wild Animal Sanctuary just north east of Denver, and east of Boulder. The Wild Animal Sanctuary is the oldest and largest nonprofit Sanctuary in the world dedicated exclusively to rescuing captive exotic and endangered large carnivores, providing them with a wonderful life for as long as they live, and educating about the tragic plight faced by an estimated 30,000 such animals in America today. Below, a couple prides of lions in their 20+ acre area. Here is their website:  Wild Animal Sanctuary


Above, the Welcome Center of The Sanctuary, which sits on 720 acres, and is located about 50 miles east of Boulder, near the town of Keenesburg. It shelters more than 450 Lions, Tigers, Bears, Leopards, Mountain Lions, Wolves and other large carnivores, it is the first sanctuary of its kind to create large acreage species-specific habitats for rescued animals. (Since January, 1980, The Wild Animal Sanctuary has responded to more than 1,000 requests from private citizens and government agencies to rescue animals from across the United States and around the world. The residents here, were abused, abandoned, illegally kept, or were victims of other terrible situations.). They recently rescued about 25 lions from Bolivia when the government made the circus’s illegal.


It is amazing to see these beautiful animals, enjoying the life of luxury after having been in such dire circumstances (plaques along the walkway describe how these animals lived, and how they were rescued).

The right side of this sign notes examples of Tiger rescues:

  • Two tigers were confiscated from a man that kept them in a horse trailer for nearly 5 years.
  • Five tigers were confiscated from a person that used them to breed and illegally sell their cubs as pets.
  • One tiger was purchased as a pet when he was only 3 days old, and was subsequently kept in a small cage in his owners back yard for over 7 years.
  • Two tigers were kept in a barn for many years by a man that was raising them on his fur farm in order to kill them and sell their skins.


About 1 1/2 years ago, they installed a 1.5 mile walkway above the sanctuary grounds, so you look below to watch the animals. You can leisurely walk to the other end, watching the animals in their own habitat, it was quite amazing.

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Website (not this blog!!) to be inactivated

Well, my lnwellness.com website has come up for renewal on Sept 28, 2017. I’ve decided that I’m going to let it lapse, and will not renew it. Therefore, this blog will be the place for people to stay in touch with us (not my website).

So it’ll remain live, until Sept 28, 2017. Just thought I should let everyone know. At that time, I will remove it as a link here on my blog, as well.

Grandchildren Vacations!

In August, we were blessed to be given the opportunity to go on 2 separate vacations, with 2 sets of grandkids! The first part of August took us to South Dakota (a road trip) with my 2 granddaughters, Tessa (age 9, almost 10), and Kendra (age 7). She is my daughters children and full of life and joy!

Out adventure included seeing Mount Rushmore…

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Swimming and meeting Taylor, a favorite friend from back home!

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Going on a Chuckwagon dinner ride, they even got to sit up front with the driver on the way back! And what appetites! Kendra downed TWO hot dogs AND a steak!

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We went horseback riding! Tessa on YouToo and Kendra on TJ, and we panned for gold!

 

 

We climbed Devils Tower in Wyoming

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and slid down into Devils Bathtub after hiking there.

IMG_4847IMG_4863We had some fabulous breakfasts and dinners on our deck at the units that we rented. We were in 2 different units over the course of 6 days.

 

The last part of the month, we flew to San Antonio, TX, to be with Gregs daughters children, Carmen (age 11) and Nick (age 9). Krisi had to attend a class in Kansas, so we watched the kids.

While there, we were busy swimming…

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and visiting this great water theme park called Schlitterbahn. Even grandpa and grandma had a blast there! Unfortunately, because it was a water theme park, we didn’t get any photos.

Carmen and I went to 3 yoga classes,

 

and I took her to an Essential Oil “Make and Take” class! The class was going to be on the news that night (KENS5 from San Antonio), and after the class, the man videoing the class presentation, asked me for an interview! So Carmen asked if she could have my autograph since I was now “famous”! LOL!!!

We went to a “make your own” pizza bar!

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Seems like we were busy every day while there.

We were so blessed to be able to spend this unforgettable time with the grandkids. What a precious, unforgettable experience! We had so much fun with both sets of grandkids, we just wish we could have gotten all 4 of them together, they would have had so much fun.

Next blog…what has been going on since our return home. We close the sale of the house on Sept 1, so ALOT has been happening! So stay tuned!

 

And so the adventure begins!

The last few months have been pretty quiet on here. What with preparing our home for sale, and keeping close to home in order to have it ready to show to potential buyers (everything put in it place and Toto needed to not be in the house!), it pretty much limited our ability to go anywhere without extensive planning. But this week, all that changed. We received an offer of our asking price on our home, and accepted it. It was a roller-coaster of a week, emotionally!

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We will miss these sunsets on our front porch, but we will have many future sunsets to share!

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So now what? Well, we’re off! Traveling that is! Near term, we are vacationing with grandkids, just us and them (no parents)! First, off to the Black Hills of South Dakota and then to San Antonio, TX. So stay tuned for blog updates on these exciting trips!

Returning after these vacations, we will be busy selling furniture and the rest of our possessions, deciding what goes in to storage, what stays with us in the Honda CRV as we travel, gypsy style, from place to place, and other logistics.

Additional photos of our home earlier this spring, and of course, Toto! Enjoy!

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A different adventure-rock climbing!

This weekend Gregs son and his girlfriend came home, and we went rock climbing at a local climbing wall gym! It took me almost an hour and a half to get so that I wasn’t scared and actually climbed to the top of these climbing walls, and was able to free fall down to the bottom!

Greg took a video of my last climb and I uploaded it to YouTube, and here is the link! Enjoy!

Christmas in Texas

We were blessed to be able to spend some Christmas time with 3 of our kids and their families last week in San Antonio, Texas. Weather was very pleasant, better than in Minnesota (had -50F with windchill on Saturday!), while we enjoyed 75 degrees the same day! We enjoyed some shopping in the quaint town on Gruen, TX one day. Seems many of the towns in that area have German names…hhmmm…probably settled by Germans!

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Grandkids Lane, Carmen, Ramzee and Elly

Also able to enjoy making gingerbread houses with the grandkids, and of course, opening presents.

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It was a house full!

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Having fun with nieces and nephews
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Gregs daughter Krisi with grandkids Nick, Elly and Ramzee
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Lynda Jo’s son Clint (with Izzy), his wife Ashley and Gregs son Kenny

I am so glad we had this opportunity. This coming weekend and the next will complete Christmas with the rest of the family before we head south into warmer weather.

While we were there, Clint made some adhesive stickers with the name and logo of Aquataurus! I put one on my iPad and it looks pretty darn good! Good job Clint!

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