Weekend Coffee Share – Thanksgiving Week

It’s almost 6 pm Sunday. This marvelous Thanksgiving week is over. I thought that I was slightly late with my weekend coffee share, just to find out that there is no official coffee share this week. Naturally I can’t let YOU down. Can I offer you some coffee? Or pherhaps tea, since it is so late? There is some leftover pumpkin pie (homemade from scratch of course,) in the fridge. Or if you’d eaten your share of pumpkin pie for this time, I have some warm rye bread straight from the oven, would you like to taste some? Maybe with some cheese?

How was your week? Did you celebrate Thanksgiving surrounded by loved ones? Or maybe you live in a country where every day is the perfect day for giving thanks?

My daughter attended a family reunion on her dad’s side of the family, and I celebrated Thanksgiving with the family I work for, that kindly adopted me into their family. The whole week has been wonderful, so much good food, laughter, and love in the air.

As you probably know, I’m a minimalist. I don’t do a whole lot of shopping, only if I really need something. I had by no means planned to do any Black Friday shopping. Then I got a message that a telephoto zoom lens that I’ve had on my wish list for a long time, was on Best Buy’s Black Friday sale…well that changed the no shopping idea in my head. 

The photos in this post is from when I tried my new lens, in Red Rock National Conservation Area, this weekend.  

I think I’m going to have lots of fun with my new lens! Well, I already am.

There’s a few upcoming events that I’m looking forward to capture with my new lens this coming month, that would not of been the same with my old lens (which was a very cheap lens, and the only one I could afford at the time I upgraded my camera a few months ago.) I feel very motivated photography wise.

I’m getting to know my Canon EOS 6D Mark ii better by the day. Now with my new lens it’s going to be even more fun. The season offers a very comfortable climate, and there’s so many amazing places to explore around Las Vegas, that I haven’t seen yet. I’m due for another trip to Grand Canyon as well. My dog, Gretchen, have made a couple new friends, that she’s been playing with several times these past couple weeks. It’s two other German Shepherd girls. They have so much fun together, and I am happy for her. They speak the same language so to speak, and hit it off immediately. I’m envisioning a photo session with the three of them at a beautiful location in a near future. That would be so much fun!

Can I get you a refill on your coffee? 

As I’m writing this I feel so thankful, happy and completely satisfied with a magical week. I hope you feel it too! If you did write a coffee share post, or another post about your weekend, please feel free to post a link in the comments.  Happy (late) Thanksgiving!

Love,

Ms Zen

Weekend Coffee Share – Gratitude

c (1)

As I am sipping the black magic brew this morning, my daughter is snoozing from the other side of the room. It’s a long weekend, and I’m looking forward to spend three days with her. A feeling of deep gratitude fills my chest this Saturday morning. I am safe, my daughter is safe, the coffee is delicious, bills are paid, I have a roof over my head, I have a working vehicle, I know I’m going to have food to eat today, I have wonderful people in my life, and this gift of a new day is amazing.

Truly every day is surely worth a prayer of gratitude from all of us, but today the feeling is extra intense in my chest. Mixed with compassion, and a deep sadness. Yesterday several of the most amazing people, that welcomed me into their life when I first moved to California, lost everything they have in the Camp fire. The last thing I saw before going to bed last night was video footage of the fire blazing on both sides of the main highway going through the city of Chico (a bigger college town near Paradise, where the fire started.) Someone posted a video on Facebook of horses running down the highway as well, trying to get away from the fire. One of my friends who has ten horses, was forced to leave two behind, because the fire was moving so fast.

I spent this summer, with my bags packed, and living in fear of fires most of the time. I still feel affected by the smoke I inhaled, despite wearing a mask. The more I think about it, the more grateful I feel for the unexpected changes that more or less forced me to move away from the area. A decision that would of been hard to make otherwise.

How are you this Saturday morning? Can I get you some more coffee? How was your week?

IMG_0463

I have not used my Canon a lot this week, but I am going to use it this weekend. I did take the photo above when picking up my daughter last night. Night photography is not my strong suit. Something I would like to change, but of course…I would have to be able to keep my eyes open at night. LOL. I’m usually up very early in the morning, and by dark all I’m dreaming of is my bed, and maybe a good book.

Speaking of books, I have been reading a lot lately. I have far exceeded my goal on Goodreads, of 52 books this year. I really like reading adventurous books about the western states, of place I’ve been to, and colorful people that once lived there (real or fiction.) I also like reading self improvement books, that challenge me to become a better person. I’d say that the books I read is a nice mix of those two, with some completely different books every once in a while, to spice things up a little.

Last night I started a new book A High Sierra Christmas. Naturally the title got my attention, as I love the high Sierras. The Sierra Nevada’s are magical, scary, intimidating, and absolutely fantastic. I love hiking, riding horses, and snowboarding there. In fact one of the photos I posted on Instagram earlier this week, was taken at a ranch I leased there, a few years back.

The book is exciting so far. I’ve read many of William W. Johnstone’s books, since he write about places I love. I know his characters well, and that adds to the value of the book. Are you reading something exciting at the moment? I’m sure there will be a lot of reading, arts and crafts, and probably some baking this weekend.

My daughter and I also saw a cave, from a distance, during a hike in Red Rock last weekend, that we are going to try to climb to, at some point. That will be the adventure this weekend.

Any exciting plans for the weekend? I hope your weekend is everything you wish for. My heart and prayers goes to northern California, and all the good people affected by the fires. ❤

Weekend Coffee Share is a time for us to take a break out of our lives and enjoy some time catching up with friends (old and new)!
Grab a cup of coffee and share with us!

 

Love,

Ms Zen

 

Exploring Red Rock Canyon

IMG_0460

It is true that I live in a big city for the first time in my life, and I’m NOT a city girl. Luckily we’re only minutes from a really cool place, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

IMG_0458

It offers a fascinating desert landscape. It’s an amazing place to explore now, during fall/winter. I’m thrilled that I am able to do that. The desert offers both solitude, and an excitement that is hard to match.

IMG_0446

My daughter found an open, sandy spot that she declared was perfect for a dance party. So we danced. Without music. In the middle of the desert. By ourselves. Laughing our hearts out.

IMG_0429

IMG_0433

IMG_0448

IMG_0449

To me, the fact that she initiated this, is a victory. I love how her brain works. I pray she’ll stay this free spirited.

IMG_0452

IMG_0453

IMG_0455

She is not my little girl anymore. She is her own person, and I am so proud of her.

IMG_0440

Red Rock Canyon is amazing, and I’ve only just scratch on the surface. I’m looking forward to do a lot more exploring.

IMG_0443

IMG_0445

My dog thoroughly enjoyed some off leash time. When we got closer to the trail head I attached the leash again, and worked through some obedience sequences we do several times a day. To keep her tuned in.

IMG_0406

While I was doing that, my daughter borrowed my camera and took tons of pictures. I kind of liked this one, that she took of Gretchen and me.

We saw signs of horses and burros, lots of poop, and hoofprints, but no animals. Hopefully we’ll see some next time. I love watching wild horses play. It’s one of my favorite things. From a distance, of course.

I hope your new week is awesome.

Love,

Ms Zen