Happy birthday to our sweet little Cash. He had a day chock-full of good things–sleeping in, opening presents (art supplies and a marble run!), a Spider-Man birthday cake and root beer floats at the park, a pinata he so tried hard to break (“I’m doing good, right?!!”), an afternoon in the creek, and–sshh, don’t tell Dadda–a very last bit of num-nums after being weaned for two whole weeks. Happy birthday, Cashy-Boy!
Yesterday we went to Aspen, Colorado for the first time!
The drive was about 3 1/2 hours long and very breathtaking. That mountain in the background above is Mount Ebert–the highest peak of the North American Rocky Mountains, and the highest point in the state of Colorado and the entire Mississippi River drainage basin. It towers 14,439 ft above sea level.
There’s Mount Ebert again, in the distance. I took this photo from up on Independence Pass, a paved road over 12.000 ft high. It followed a cutaway cliff, snaking along the very edge of the mountain–with no guardrail. It was a little hairy at times.
Staying as far from the edge as possible. Pardon our lovely bug-spattered windshield.
Indian paintbrush and other wildflowers were everywhere.
Here we are, above the treeline and the snow!
Aspen, at last.
Roberto Dutesco, the Romanian-born Canadian photographer, had an opening at a gallery in Aspen this weekend. We went because he set up an event for kids to annotate the borders of Love, his most well known photo of the Wild Horses of Sable Island. The piece will be auctioned to benefit a children’s non-profit.
After I first saw Love hanging in a house (online) I remembered it for months, and then searched until I found it again. Dutesco’s work became one of my favorites, and David got me a copy of his book last year for my birthday. This spring, I received permission to make an artist’s rendering of his work, and made an oil painting of Tenderness.
After poring over Dutesco’s work for so long, it was amazing to meet him in person and have my kids work with him on one of his own prints.
These are Zia’s drawings, around Dutesco’s signature.
And a few drawings he made with Cash’s hand.
Here we are, in front of a print of the real Tenderness. I think the price tag on it was $28,000, but he had others there for nearly twice that.
By the time the kids finished, we were starving. We walked to Brunelleschi’s Pizza for lunch, then checked out an art fair a block or so from the gallery.
Aspen was nice to visit, but different than I thought it would be. It seemed a bit out of reach and in a world of its own–not a cozy, touchable ski town like Winter Park or Breckenridge. But it was a brief visit, and I could be wrong.
Heading back home–a different route. These high canyon cliffs followed the river and then opened into an expanse of rolling hills and red dirt mountains.
We saw lots of water, both going and coming. The colors everywhere were amazing–red and yellow wildflowers, blue lakes, bright green mountain slopes, every shade of earth from white to red, and light green high-altitude foliage I’ve never seen in lower areas.
We got home after dark, were welcomed by a hungry choir of goats, and fell into bed. Hope you enjoyed this little tour of our Aspen trip!
Just posted this new item in my shop–a handmade cord burning box.
David and I made the box from unfinished pine, and I whittled the edges with a carving knife.
I finished the box by rubbing it in natural tung oil, which preserves and highlights the wood.
You can find this box in my online shop, Poco Leon Studio! Update: Box is now sold.
Here are a few pics of our meanderings from the past week or so.
It’s been cool-ish up where we live, but so much warmer just down the mountain in Boulder.
We spent an afternoon at the park and creek.
Roasting marshmallows at home (on my birthday).
A watercolor by Cash. He’s loving art these days.
Soap carving–Zia is obsessed and has made six animals so far.
A special birthday card from David’s mom.
More creek pics. Caleb skipped rocks, Zia laughed so hard she wet, and Cash was oozing with mud from the armpits down.
Back up in the mountains, our aspens are already turning at the tops. It feels early for summer to be winding down, but hopefully we’ll have a nice warm stretch before that s-n-o-w comes. (I have to spell it–can’t quite bring myself to let that word roll off my tongue yet.)
Pleeeeeeeease don’t go, summahtime…