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I love the late summer/early fall in Colorado. Perfect weather is a perfect excuse to get out into the mountains + soak up every last second of this time of year that always seems so fleeting. So, a few weekends ago, my friends + I headed up to Evergreen to hike the Maxwell Falls Upper Trailhead. Because, mountains. Also: waterfalls!

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There is a lower trailhead as well, which we’re hoping to hit up as well at some point, + it appeared to be the more popular choice based on the number of cars parked plus the relative sizes of each lot. Definitely get out early if you want to be sure to find a spot.

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There is something so restorative about being out in the wilderness, listening to the wind through the trees + water falling over the rocks. Add in the company of a few truly wonderful people + you have yourself a practically perfect day.

 

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{ Old Navy trench, similar / scarf bought from a stand in the Madrid Metro, similar }

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Since it’s Throwback Thursday, I thought I’d catch up with some photos that have been sitting around since March from our visit to Versailles.

Everything surrounding our visit to the chateau was a bit crazy: the website wouldn’t let us buy advance tickets, the workers were on strike so there was a delayed open, we got lost driving into town, and there were (of course) huge crowds. Then of course, it was cold + cloudy + too early in the season for any of the gardens to be in bloom or fountains to be functional. But you endure all kinds of crazy for that Hall of Mirrors. And you feel all French + classy in your trench coat while you do it.

  • LilaSeptember 5, 2014 - 3:44 pm

    The pictures takes through the gates are looking really nice :) I have never been to Versailles, but I always wanted to go.ReplyCancel

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{ Madewell shirt, similar / jeans / riding boots }

I got an advance screening of fall two weeks ago, up at 11000ft, and let me tell you – it’s gonna be a good one.

It was six years ago that I picked up + moved to Colorado, so long now that I can hardly believe it. We had a rocky start (no pun intended), Colorado and I. Certainly, the thought of staying long term was far from my mind. But time has a way of changing most things + now, well, to say I am smitten with this new home of mine would perhaps be understating things. Dear Colorado, I adore thee.

Autumn is my favorite season everywhere if I’m honest, but especially here in Colorado. Yet somehow I find part of myself resisting the change, clinging to the last languishing afternoons of summer but still relishing the crisp mornings of this new season. Life is predictable in its unpredictability, is it not?

While it may not feel like fall quite yet (and my own self is in disagreement about whether I’m in a hurry for it to arrive), I’m learning that things happen at their own pace. Tomorrow comes, quite reliably, and today is gone, just as quickly. Seasons change whether you’re ready for them or not. I blinked over Memorial Day weekend + suddenly it was Labor Day. But those blink-of-an-eye moments over this summer have been so full for me: of fear + grief + uncertainty, but also of thankfulness + steadfastness + overwhelming love. I have felt profound loss + also the most powerful friendship. More than I felt capable of feeling. And Colorado has just wrapped all of this up in the most beautiful packaging.

So, dear Colorado, thank you for being wild. Thank you for showing me my own wildness. Thank you for your mountains + rivers + wide open spaces. Thank you for your winding roads + endless trails. For the amazing people you’ve brought here + held on to for me.

Thank you for six wonderful years, Colorado. Happy Anniversary + Happy Autumn.

Party favors: here are a few of my favorite Colorado posts so far. Fall Aspen Drives / Wilkerson Pass / Denver City Guide Video / New Belgium Brewery / Eleven Mile Camping Trip / Mt. Elbert (Colorado’s highest point)

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You’ve already heard me wax poetic about my love for city parks a few times, and this gem in Munich is no exception. (Want more Munich? Check out this post.) It was one of my favorite stops on our visit: the English Gardens.

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Parks with rivers or lakes are even better + the English Gardens delivered. Hearing the sounds of nature, the birds + the wind + the running water, mingled with the sounds of people playing with their dogs + the faint hum of traffic is one of those uniquely “city park” phenomenon. Spring was barely starting to make itself known in Munich so things were a bit barren, but I can just imagine how lovely everything must be bathed in summertime.

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Unfortunately, few things worked out the way we wanted them to during our visit to Munich, and to continue the trend, we discovered that the park’s large beer garden had yet to open for the season. If I ever make it back to Munich again, it will definitely be in the summertime so I can rent a bike + cover more distance in the park. Of course, I’ll end the day with dinner at the beer garden + another meander towards the sunset.

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Because we DID get to do that part, and it was one of the best.

Travel is punctuated with simple moments, and making your way through a city park like this one at sunset on a Sunday evening, people-watching with nowhere to be, may be the exclamation point of moments.

You just can’t get a postcard for something like that.

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I’ll admit, when my lovely friend Amy of Creatrice Mondial asked me to participate in this little blog hop on writing, I felt a twinge of guilt. It’s been quite a while since I’ve been seriously writing + it’s one of those things that your soul misses deeply, but you don’t always realize how much until someone points it out. But the good thing about these creative endeavors is that they wait for you, ever so patiently, until suddenly they are missed + coaxed out + picked back up again. It’s like they know no time (and isn’t it so easy to lose all sense of time when you’re in their midst?). So here I am!

Amy + I met at Alt Summit back in January + immediately connected over our shared travel bug. Living all over the world is a goal of mine + she is out there living it up! I get so inspired reading about other’s creative processes so it was fun to read about why she writes.

And without further ado, on to the blog hop!

What am I working on/writing?

Right now, I’m writing a lot behind the scenes: a website update is in the works for Evergreen Lane, along with a newsletter full of video tips + tricks. I’ve also been doing a lot of personal writing – I’ve heard it said that quiet people have the loudest minds + that is definitely true in my case. Brain dumps into the journal are good for the soul – both when I’m on the road + at home.

How does my work/writing differ from others of its genre?

I think one of the most beautiful things about blogging in general is that there is so much room for personal voice. So I guess I can’t help being a little bit different if I’m being genuinely myself (which I try to be). I loved writing in school, and I think I still look at it a bit academically, but when travel writing, I also try to focus on how a place made me feel, what it evoked + how it inspired more than what restaurants we ate at or tips about buying museum tickets. Although you best believe I will share the love if I figure any of that stuff out. Travel for me is about creativity, inspiration + community, so I hope that I bring that same sentiment in my writing.

Why do I write what I do?

“Stories make us more alive, more human, more courageous, more loving.” – Madeleine L’Engle

For me, storytelling is so intertwined with creativity – whether it’s making videos, taking photos, painting, songwriting or writing. Our ability to tell stories feels so essential to our humanity, doesn’t it? So I write about my travels to remember the humanity of all of these adventures: the emotions, the connections, + the inspirations. And ultimately, I write what I write hoping that it will evoke those same things in the people who read these stories.

How does my writing process work?

I’ve attempted NaNoWriMo a few times (and successfully completely it once), which is a super condensed + lofty endeavor of writing 50,000 words during the month of November. Facing that challenge teaches you a lot about the creative process, but it’s also intense + not something I could maintain long term. Initial writing for me happens best with pen + paper, even better if I can find myself a little spot outside. When I’m working on the blog, I mostly like writing in the evenings, with a glass of tea or wine (depending on the subject matter + my mood). I am a constant editor, which means that writing even a first draft takes me a long time, but I’m also admittedly a bit of a perfectionist.

My auditory environment is also really important when I’m writing (or really any kind of creating) – I love the white noise of coffee shops, classical music or nature documentaries. Yeah, I know! Something about a narrator, music + nature sounds just does it for me. In fact, I have a PBS special about the National Parks on as I’m writing this post. Do you have any quirks to your creative process? I’d love to hear about it!

I hope you enjoyed this little snapshot into what’s happening behind the scenes here on the blog + that it maybe inspires you to get to writing!

To continue the blog hop, I’m passing the torch to my good friend Jaici. She’s definitely in a different niche of blogging than I am, but I love that her writing is so raw. I feel like sometimes I hide behind the stories in my writing, and this girl definitely doesn’t. It’s pretty beautiful. So I can’t wait to hear more about why she writes!

 

  • Amy Lynne HayesJuly 26, 2014 - 7:49 am

    Aww I love reading about your process!! Great idea with the nature documentaries too – I am always looking for nonintrusive things to listen to or have on in the background when I write, but often the words in music interrupts my own thoughts. I’ll have to give that a try. And I agree, the stories are everything! I think we need to start a group of “story tellers” with others who share this interest. I can think of at least a few other bloggers who consider the story to be the most important aspect. Surely there are more! Good luck with the Evergreen update and newsletter – can’t wait to see the results! :)ReplyCancel

    • Annabelle MintzSeptember 6, 2014 - 9:36 am

      Thanks Amy! I’m glad you tagged me :) and definitely try the nature documentary thing – it works wonders for me haha. xoReplyCancel