In a normal year, we would not be in Denver this late in the year. But this has been far from a normal year.

It’s hard to believe, but I was formerly a big city girl. Yes, there was a time when I stayed up past 9:00 (or 8:30). I’m not talking Denver – because I know all you who live in real cities laugh at Denver – I have actually lived in big cities: Madrid, Taipei, Santiago, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco, Mexico City. And while I definitely have my favorites, I loved living in all of them.

But now, even Denver feels stifling after a few weeks. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to go out to fun restaurants, try new breweries, and have my choice of multiple Whole Foods stores.

But when I get to the mountains, I feel like I can breath. Funny, considering we live at 9,000 feet, but you know what I mean.

Puck and I are back up in Fraser for a few days. It snowed in Denver – not much, but enough to muck up the trails – so it’s just easier for us to get out in Fraser. There is finally some serious snow coming down! We will spend Christmas back down in Denver. Then I will go home to Montana for a few days. We will ring in 2018 (on East Coast time, if I’m feeling spunky) in Denver. Then all of us – cats included – will head up to Fraser. My husband is on crutches for 4 more weeks, but he has figured out how to navigate up here using a mix of crutches and rolling contraptions.

Happiness is fresh snow on a warm day!

I’ve been snowshoeing with Puck. I had a large (useless) varicose vein removed from behind my injured knee last week, so I am not allowed to get my heart rate up for a couple weeks. A great excuse for some serious recovery weeks! But it means very slow snowshoeing. Slow-shoeing, we’ll call it. It wasn’t so bad today in 24-degree weather.

But yesterday it was hovering around 0, and I don’t think I felt my feet for several hours after we got home! Puck was not happy that I was moving so slowly. He tried his best to encourage me to move faster. If he knew how to herd, I am sure he would have tried that. But the best he could do was jump up and down in front of me, then take off like a shot, hoping I would follow. When he realized I was not following, he would try again. He loves the snow, but he was clearly ready to be back in the warm car.

Today we had a lovely slow-shoe in a picture perfect snowstorm. The warm temps allowed us to savor it a bit more.

And… today I slow-shoed brace free. The excitement!!!

Happy Holidays! I need to go throw a log on the fire.