Weekend Coffee Share – almost a Las Vegas local…. or not?

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! What’s been going on in your life? What are your weekend plans? Is there a topic you’ve just been ruminating on that you want to talk about? All are welcome! 

c (1)

How are you doing today? It’s Friday, and life is good, right? There’s plenty of coffee, if you’d like a cup? How is your week so far?

I’d say that I feel great, on top of my world great. I have a fun adventure planned for my daughter this weekend. She’s going to be so stoked, and that makes me very excited. I told her about it this morning, but she doesn’t know exactly how awesome it really is going to be. I spent a lot of time planning this adventure, and getting everything ready. As you might remember she asked me two weekends ago why we never go on adventures anymore… (like if moving over 600 miles, to another state, isn’t adventure enough…) When she said that, I immediately started to think of fun adventures. Girl..I’m going to give you a good one! I can give you one clue, and tell you the rest when we get back on Sunday. It will include getting out of the city. (It’s going to be 109 in Las Vegas this weekend, I don’t really care so much for more heat.) Lol, what did you say? You already knew that I wasn’t going to stay in the city during a weekend? So that’s not a good clue? Sorry.. that is the only clue I will give you, for now. I promise a full update afterwards. Well, I guess I could tell you that the adventure will include roasting marshmallows over a campfire. Do you have any fun plans for the weekend? 

4 (1)

It’s been a great week here in southern Nevada. I’ve had lots of fun at work, getting to know the kids better. I’ve had time to work on my photography, learning more about my new Canon EOS 6D Mark ii. I’ve also edited all the photos from last weekends adventure, even though I haven’t had a chance to share all of them yet. The best ones, if you ask me, are yet to come.

I’ve made some new local friends. People seem very friendly, and open here. I take the kids at work out to parks, and talk to other parents, or they talk to me. When I go out on photo excursions I often meet other photographers, that likes to talk. When I work with my German Shepherd a lot of people approach me. I’ve had a few offers from people wanting me to train their dogs, and a few people trying to buy Gretchen from me. I have been offered several thousands for her, even though I didn’t pay a dollar for her when I got her, she is worth a lot now with all the training I’ve put into her. For me she is priceless, and I will never sell her. She is my best friend. Anyways, it seems easy to make new friends here. Actually a lot easier than in northern California. Not that I ever had a problem making friends, but here it seems very easy. The days are just flying by. I might not feel like a local quiet yet, but I do like it here. (As long as I get to do some exploring outside the city every week.)

The sweet family I work for took me out on Wednesday night, to a very good buffet at the M RESORT SPA CASINO. It was absolutely delicious, and everything was super fresh. The casino itself was exquisite. I particularly liked the entry, it had beautiful flower arrangements in a glass wall. I was kicking myself a little, because I knew that the lens I had on my camera wasn’t going to do the sen justice, so I didn’t even try taking the picture. I will be back for that one..

I hope you’re having a wonderful, amazing weekend!

Love,

Ms Zen

Feel Good Tuesday

l (1)

Manzanita Lake, with Chaos Crags in the background. 

How is your week so far? I thought I’d share some feel good photos to inspire your Tuesday. They are from last weekends adventure in Lassen Volcanic National Park, in northern California.

l4

Teaching children about the natural world should be treated as one of the most important events in their lives.  –  Thomas Berry

As we often do in the weekends, we headed towards the mountains. We have three choices, within easy driving distance for a day outing; the Trinity Alps, Mt. Shasta, and Mt. Lassen. If we want to drive a little longer we have the Sierra Nevada’s as well. Somehow we often find ourselves going to Lassen Volcanic National Park. I’d say it almost feels like a second home. This past year we’ve gone hiking there at least twice a month, often every weekend.

If we want children to flourish, to become truly empowered, then let us allow them to love the earth before we ask them to save it. Perhaps this is what Thoreau had in mind when he said, “the more slowly trees grow at first, the sounder they are at the core, and I think the same is true of human beings.”
-David Sobel, Beyond Ecophobia

Two weekends ago we ended up hiking a little later in the day than usual. It was a hot, and my five year old did not enjoy the hike as much as she usually do. There was some complaining, not like her at all. I do take responsibility for that, since I didn’t anticipate it being so hot on the trail. This weekend I made it my business to make sure she would enjoy it very much. I really wanted to give her the best experience possible. I knew it was going to be the last hike we did together, before she takes off to be with her dad for the rest of the summer. It had to be a good memory!

We started out early, and I’d chosen a much easier hike than we usually do. We picked up a Junior Ranger booklet at the visitor center. It had different animal tracks, and photos of animal, and trees, that are common in the park, for kids to identify. It made it interesting on a different level. The hike itself, around Manzanita Lake, is one that we’ve made more times than I can count. It’s only 2 miles, and very easy. My daughter knows this hike inside out, and knew that it wasn’t going to be very hard. (That itself made it more enjoyable for her.) Especially compared to the adventures we usually go on. My 5 (almost 6!) year old can handle 5 miles on a trail rated difficult, and 8miles on a trail with medium difficulty. 2 easy miles is a breeze. More like a stroll. It was exactly what she needed to make it fun again.

Without continuous hands-on experience, it is impossible for children to acquire a deep intuitive understanding of the natural world that is the foundation of sustainable development. ….A critical aspect of the present-day crisis in education is that children are becoming separated from daily experience of the natural world, especially in larger cities.

– Natural Learning, Creating Environments for Rediscovering Nature’s Way of Teaching, Robin C. Moore and Herb H. Wong

l2

Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. – Rachel Carson

This is a scenic hike, around the little lake, located very close to one of the entrances. At times it can be highly trafficked, because of its location, and level of difficulty. It’s accessible, and extremely beautiful all year round. I have winter photos in my gallery.

We stopped and had a wonderful picnic lunch half way around. We played in the water for a while. It was impossible to resist. Just the kind of memory I wanted my daughter to take with her.

Let Nature be your teacher. – William Wordsworth

Thanks for enjoying the hike with us! I hope it was a great experience, and that you had as much fun as we did 🙂 Have a blessed day ❤

Love,

Ms Zen