2017 // Making the West Home























2017 was the year of Making the West My Home. I made friends and I moved into a new apartment and I saw a chunk of my state. I learned to swing dance [well, sort of] and I finished my nights at the Buckhorn, willingly--wore a Surf Wyoming hat to football games, drank from a Nalgene, have clothes covered in red dust that will never come out. I covered branding days and rodeos and pig penning, and I covered school plays and wildfires and community events, all of which are just as Wyoming as the stuff you see in the movies. There's a content-ness, in my bones, that hasn't been there for a long time. I am in a place, and I have been in that place, and it is my home. I know every street like the back of my hand, run into people in the supermarkets, bouncers recognize me, have a church and a gym and a favorite running route. I don't know how long I'll stay, but I'm trying not to worry about it, for the time being, anyways.

I'm not sure what's in store for me in 2018, but I hope it's more of this--more hikes, more books, more long nights, more football games, more tired Wyoming towns, more pictures. More.

accidental offline-ness + other first world problems


the road to medicine bow, wyoming // nov. 26 // canon 6d 

last month, in a weird twist of 'it can only happen to me' --the power was shut off in my apartment so work could be done to a nearby electrical pole, and when it came back on, i couldn't connect my laptop to my wifi. phone? yes. my roommate's xbox? laptop to coffee shop wifi? yes. but not my laptop to my wifi. 

this happened during an insane fall, so, for a while, it didn't really matter, because i was coming home from work at 9 p.m., eating a sandwich, and falling into bed. but it turned out to be, as the days went by, kind of a nice thing. i learned there are some things the internet is essential for [paying bills??? doing research on WHY your computer isn't working???], and there are some things that are simply better done on laptops vs. phones [sending emails, watching netflix, ~tumblr~]. but mostly, i realized how non-essential a computer can be. i spent days without opening it, choosing instead to read [i read five books in october, including anna freaking karenina], hike, spend time with friends, writing, or simply sitting down and watching something on netflix without doing seventeen other things. 

eventually, this golden period came to an end and after seven weeks, five stumped tech support gals + guys, and a password change, i'm back. and it does feel nice to be fully connected again, and to fall back into a routine [because i love routines] of duolingo before breakfast and emails after dinner. but i will miss the silence, the dis-connectedness of everything--just a little. 


Autumn drives









From the snowy plains of Laramie, up over the snowy range [which was, you guessed it, snowy] in the fog and past beautiful foliage and craggy rocks on our way to encampment, wyoming. more pictures + words soon.

Fort Collins | Heritage Courtyard


 







I had never heard of Fort Collins before moving to Wyoming--my Colorado geography wasn't that great, I guess--but I'm glad I have now! It's a great little city--home to CSU, New Belgium and O'Dell's brewery, annnnnnd there's a dunkin donuts! I spend enough time in this little city, so I think it's a safe goal to try and explore // share something different every time I go down, starting with....

The Heritage Courtyard! Located in Library Park, it's a collection of historic cabins and a one-room schoolhouse from the early days of the city. They are well preserved and a lot of fun to walk in and around--and the historical actors are full of interesting information [a little too much information? perhaps]. My sister and I had fun climbing up and down the stairs to the second floor + remembering the olden days of our childhood, when we used to play pioneer. 

The courtyard is only a couple blocks from downtown Fort Collins, so it's a perfect quick side trip from shopping + snacks on College Street. 



laramie in the summer








there's snow blanketing the pass between laramie and cheyenne, so here are some photos from a dreamy summer evening in july, when the sun didn't set until late and everything was warm + wonderful.

Sinclair








sinclair, wy // august 21 // canon 6d

I got off the interstate early on a monday morning on my way to an assignment for work--so early, that I had some time to kill. I had seen bits and pieces of Sinclair from the highway, so I thought it'd be cool to take a quick peek around. 

Sinclair, population 433, is dominated by the massive refinery in town. Even though it's super tiny, the town center is on the wyoming historic register of places--it has beautiful, stucco and red roof buildings with a massive fountain on top. 

Getting to wander around a town at 730 in the morning is a special feeling I won't forget soon, and one I'd recommend--especially when it's a town that small [although, I was a little nervous that someone would call the police!]. The empty streets made it feel like a ghost town, while the early morning light gave everything a warm glow. 

I wasn't in Sinclair long--enough to take these photos, really--but it was a welcome stop. It's always interesting to explore towns of less than 1000, especially when they happen to be so beautiful and interesting. 



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