Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Refreshment for the Soul

I want to start today by thanking Missy for filling in for me last week. It's been a crazy couple of weeks for the Obi family. First the grief and sorrow of saying goodbye to a loved one, immediately followed by a trip to the mountains for a time of refreshment and rejuvenation.
The weather was perfect and the wildflowers were in full bloom. A first for us, since we usually go to Ouray earlier in the season.
Even the Columbines were out to greet us.
Along with some cute little creatures, like the chipmunks at Box Canyon.
And this cute little fella we met at one of the area's many abandoned mines.
Can you see him there in the middle, atop the cinder block?
That's a Pika. A little mountain creature that has no problem telling off those folks who dare intrude on his turf.

We found some secluded spots.
And hubby, who has always had an affinity for trains, got his fix when headed into Silverton for an awesome burger at High Noon.

Oh, and look what I found on Main Street in Ouray.
But, like the dork that I am, I forgot to come back and add a couple of my books.

By now I'm sure you're wondering where the food is. Well, there was a new restaurant in Ouray called Brickhouse 737 that we couldn't wait to try out. So on our last night in town, we decided to treat ourselves.

All of the guys--hubby, our youngest son and our oldest grandson--got the Elk Bolognese with bucatini pasta and rosemary mascarpone.
While I sank my teeth into a melt-in-your-mouth braised, boneless short rib with horseradish whipped Yukon potatoes.
Oh. My. Goodness. I'm drooling at the memory.

Of course, no trip to Ouray is complete without a visit or two to Mouse's Coffee and Chocolates.
Are you drooling yet?
 How about now?
As usual, there were so many good things about this trip. The best thing of all, though, was coming back with some new story ideas.
So now that we are home, it's butt-in-chair time because I have another proposal due soon.
And I can hardly wait to get started.

18 comments:

  1. I think those pikas are what we call rock beepers. They live in the high mountains of the Sawtooths in Idaho where we go hiking. They call to each other across the canyons. They're really curious little guys and a few times would gt right up to our tents and BEEP at us to get out of their turf. Hilarious.

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    1. Interesting, MJ. I've not heard that term. Rock beepers. How cute is that?

      Numerous times we saw them carrying big leaves in their mouth and taking then underground. Apparently they can't eat the green leaves, but store them and eat the dried leaves. Go figure.

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  2. Such beautiful countryside. And those wildflowers are stunning!!!!! My garden is jealous. And that chipmunk looks huge compared to our ones up here. I love chippies but they are awfully shy. You blink and zip, they're gone.

    Glad you got so inspiration for writing -- means more good books for me to read.

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    1. Yeah, that particular chipmunk was pretty pudgy, Kav. Still cute, though. I was surprised when he actually posed for me.

      Ah, the wildflowers. My flowers are withering in the heat. It still blows my mind that those flowers are buried under snow much of the year. I guess that why they're so beautiful, they only have a short time to shine and reach for the sun.

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  3. Hi Mindy, I'm so sorry for your loss. These times are tough. I'm thankful though that you were able to have a retreat in the beautiful Rockies. I love that area. Thanks for sharing the lovely photos.

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    1. Thank you, Sandra.

      Yes, we love that area, too. Such a chore to have to do research there. :P

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  4. Every time I read one of your books or see your pictures, I want to plan a trip to Ouray!

    So, the big question is, has your train-loving hubby ever ridden the Silverton to Durango train? If not, it's a must! I went many, many, many...etc...many years ago, and I remember it so well. It was a fabulous experience. :)

    And I love pikas! We don't have them in the Black Hills (not high enough), but we run across them in the Wyoming mountains. At one pull off along the Bear Tooth Highway, they were begging for food.

    I've never heard them called rock beepers before. How cute!

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    1. Jan, he rode the train as a kid and then again with the family as a adult. He also has a special fondness for Silverton. He was about twelve when he was there with his parents. His dad paid for something and got change back in silver dollars. Hubby thought that was the coolest thing ever. To this day he always asks why they don't do it anymore. Says it would be great marketing and so easy to do.

      You know, in all our trips to Ouray, this is the first time we've seen pikas. Either that or we saw them, but thought they were something else. Whatever the case, it was fun to both see and hear them.

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  5. Thanks for sharing the wonderful photos! I would love to see Ouray someday!

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    1. I'd be more than happy to join you, Missy. :D

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  6. Mindy, so fun to see your vacation pictures. Lucky you to see columbines that late in the season!We made it to Silverton a few times this year, but didn't go on over to Ouray. Years ago, Ouray had a food festival we enjoyed, but I don't think they do that any longer. Did you stop at the Pagosa Bakery for espresso bars while passing through?

    Rock beepers! Perfect name for the little critters!

    Yes, drooling over pictures of Mouse's truffles...which I've only had once, but the memory lives on!

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    1. No, we didn't check out that bakery, Sherida. I'll have to make a note of it for next time. I'm assuming it's in Silverton? I would have to pass on the espresso bars, though. Not a fan of anything coffee flavored.

      No, I don't think they're doing the food festive in Ouray anymore. They do have a Wine, Chocolate and Cheese festival in December that I would love to attend, though.

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    2. Mindy, the bakery is on the main road through Pagosa Springs, Colorado. When I saw on FB you were driving through Pagosa, I wanted to tell you to stop in for a treat. The shop has many different delights. It is a favorite stop of ours when driving between Denver and home.

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    3. Ah, no we weren't in Pagosa Springs long. Contemplated eating lunch there, but the boys were eager to get to Ouray.

      BTW, was the festival you were referring to called ForkFest? If so, here's a FB link for this year's event. https://www.facebook.com/weehawkenforkfest/

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    4. Thanks, Mindy! I'll look at that link.

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  7. I love your pictures, Mindy. I've been enjoying them each day on Facebook - even the death-defying road one!

    Can't wait to see what the new stories are!

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    1. Mary Cate, I took that picture while hubby was driving. We were on the easy side that time. When you've got that dropoff to your right, there's a strong inclination to hug that center line.

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