What’s been happening up at our new home?

IMGP3767Big improvements! First we got the first layer of stucco applied and then all the lights and ceiling fans went in!  Do you know how stucco is made?

IMGP3795Well, I didn’t until I saw the men applying a special mix of concrete, sand, and who knows what else to the outside of our house.

IMGP3797Then they slap this mixture onto every surface of the house. This is only the first layer. After this dries and cures they’ll come back to add the second coat with the color in it. We have chosen a terra cotta color for the outside of our house. Can’t wait to see it! And speaking of color…

IMGP3763the wildflowers are at their best up there right now! I cannot get over how much of a difference six inches of rain can make!

IMGP3791We have millions of these yellow flowers plus native Lupines, and Indian Paintbrush!

IMGP3891And this mystery flower is a lovely purple, my favorite! Thanks to my botanist friend Jan we now know this is the Showy Four O’Clock, (Mirabilis multiflora). It only blooms in the late afternoon and then all night. I’ll try to get a better photo of the flowers in bloom soon.

Colorado Four O'ClockIn the meantime, here is a great photo of it!   Isn’t it amazingly PURPLE?

In the disturbed land around our new home we already have hundreds of volunteers. Lots of sunflowers that will bloom a bit later, etc.

IMGP3776Inside we have most of the tiling done…

IMGP3773Then it’s time to finish the kitchen and baths, and we FINALLY have a move-in date!

The end of July we are out of our rental and into a whole new world up in the foothills. I’m already fantasizing where everything will go in each room.

Now comes the FUN part!

Click on photos for full-size views, and follow us on TWITTER!

Sacred Journeys, Sacred Mountains…

View from our land

After watching an episode of Sacred Journeys on PBS, one which included a bit about the sacredness of mountains in Asian thought, I realized how fundamentally important it feels to now own land with views of our own sacred mountains.

IMGP3555The Spanish Peaks, pictured above, have a centuries-old history of sacredness. Dating back far before the Europeans arrived, this area was a crossroads of the American West. Taos Pueblo, located in northern New Mexico today, has been a major Native American trading center for over 1,000 years. One trail headed north out of Taos into the San Luis Valley, crossing east over Sangre de Cristo Pass, through the gap between Rough Mountain and Sheep Mountain.

Various Native American tribes like the Ute, the Navajo, the Jicarilla Apache and the Comanche passed through this valley regularly. To them the Spanish Peaks stood out because they seemed to emerge out of nowhere up to 13,000 feet running east and west, not north to south like the rest of the Rocky Mountains.

The natives peoples considered this a sacred place of ceremony. As far as they were concerned, this is where mankind first emerged from the womb of the earth. In other words, this was their own Garden of Eden.

The Ute Indians named these two peaks Huajatolla (pronounced Wa-ha-toy-a), meaning the “two breasts” which translates as “Breasts of the Earth”.

I loved learning this ancient history, which I first heard about when Robert Mirabal came here to perform this past July.

We moved here to create a dynamic relationship with these mountains, this landscape and the lovely silence. Mike and I have both traveled to many parts of the world. We now find the inward journey more essential than outward ones.

DSCF1014For us this is a sacred place, one where we can celebrate and appreciate the beauty of nature every single day, while continuing a long tradition of sustainable living.

Want to learn more about our experience of moving from the city to the country to live a quiet, sustainable life? Check it out here and follow us on TWITTER!