Great Sand Dunes National Park in a day

The month is June 2017. Summer is approaching as Amy returns from a small trip back to Pennsylvania for a work conference and her birthday. Anxiety and the need to travel creep in like they do just about every weekend that’s calling for nice weather.

Ok enough of that strange narrative speak… but that’s the scene as I approached the first weekend in June last year, and I had a list of places I wanted to explore in Colorado. One of them was the last of the 4 national parks in Colorado that I had yet to visit: Great Sand Dunes National Park.
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San Francisco Botanical Garden

A few months ago, I combined a trip to Yosemite and San Francisco. I posted some snapshots of the two days in San Francisco here back in May! And I shared some photos of my time in Yosemite here!

What I didn’t share yet is my excessive photos of flowers from our trip to the San Francisco Botanical Garden.

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Opting Outside this Black Friday

Last year in Colorado, Kristen and I decided to avoid any Black Friday messiness and go to the mountains. Not that we previously had many shopping outings, but it felt really great to  me to decidedly choose to join the #OptOutside movement and say no to insane consumerism.
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Ricketts Glen State Park

Now that I’m back on the east coast, I sadly do not have access to as many national parks as I once did… I basically live in a national park desert. IT’S TERRIBLE. But really, I was very lucky to travel to so many national parks during my year in the west and I am missing them dearly, BUT Pennsylvania is not a waste land – there is plenty of beauty all over this little state.
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Yosemite National Park: the first of the big Ys

Back in the day before I really dove into the national park world, I had a vague understand what the parks were, knew there were a bunch in the middle of the country, and that Teddy Roosevelt was involved somehow. But when I thought about national parks, I thought of the 2 parks that both had weird Y names: Yosemite and Yellowstone.

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Small Town Colorado: Nederland, CO

Hi! I have a section of this blog called Small Town Colorado. Even though I don’t live there anymore, I still want to share some of the small towns I came across. They really were one of my favorite parts about Colorado.

Every Colorado town kinda feels like a small town to me. While there are certainly some considerably populated areas, every region is typically surrounded by open lands, tons and tons of cows, and big skies. Which makes them all seem pretty tiny and cute and endearing. And of course, there are actual tiny towns around the state, and they are particularly cute and endearing.

This one is all about Nederland, Colorado. Nederland is tucked away just a few miles into the foothills – about 30 minutes into Boulder Canyon.

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