Mojave in my Heart

From a not-so childlike beginning in New York City to my child inspired world here and now


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ecosystems – foothills (day 2)

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Since we talked so much about the flat grasslands yesterday, today we started our ascent! We went to Rabbit Mountain in Lyons — the lower, initial part of our walk served as a refresher on yesterday’s ecosystem, grasslands. From there we climbed several hundred feet to more of a foothills ecosystem 5700-7000 feet above sea level. The foothills refers to a region of the Front Range where the mountains rise suddenly from flat, prairie, grasslands. The girls immediately noticed the rocks, the incline, the shrubs, the trees! It is pretty incredible that a few miles east or a few miles north yield different landscapes and biological environments to explore. It is challenging to explain that there are transition zones, meaning we’ll see evidence of one ecosystem in another, such as grasslands at Rabbit Mountain although it is “primarily” a foothills environment.

Incredible views since it is the easternmost part of the foothills in the area. It was stunning and the photos don’t begin to capture it. We picnicked under ponderosa pines and had great little talks about grasslands and foothills environments.

This place has a great vibe for the girls–they just love it there.

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Storytelling

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Last night I went to a local workshop on storytelling. If you’d ask me a few years ago if I wanted to go to a workshop on storytelling, I’d have looked at you funny.  Yet, last night it felt entirely natural and timely! The girls love storytelling and I like it too except, well, I don’t know how to tell stories! How to really start them, how to make up a middle..uhm, how to end them?  I often find inspiration for stories from the current season or animals. For the first time in the girls’ lives they are living in a winter wonderland! This is their first truly wintry season and it certainly has provided a bit more magic and background to the magical winter season. I’ll also just say here, I’m SO VERY grateful they haven’t freaked out about the cold. Yet. 🙂

I wanted to learn how to tell funny stories, silly stories, and on the fly stories. I didn’t really know how the workshop would work. How could I “learn” to tell stories in a couple hours? In the end I left with the understanding that if I want to tell stories I need to prepare a little. I should tell stories I like and I perhaps think about why I ‘m compelled to those stories. However, what really brings it all together is to be genuine and invested in your story. Tell it like you mean it and you and your listeners will enjoy it!

The morning was an inspired storytelling time for us all. I retold the story of “Rory the Smallest Reindeer” a tale from Ireland as told to me last night and the girls just loved it. Then their turns. It led to many wonderful variations and some very long stories. Scenes of which are posted below.

It is such a special opportunity to sit with others and share stories. We do it all the time–tell our stories to one another, but here is another angle, storytelling for fun, entertainment, connection and learning. I think storytelling speaks to a deep part of our humanity. I mean how long have we been telling stories to each other? Certainly since we started speaking!

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