May was filled with Nick’s family coming to help his sister and her family move to Phoenix, AZ.  His dad came to help with the moving truck then after Memorial Day his mom flew in to help Abby take the girls down to AZ.  In the middle of all of that Nick took Ivan camping in the Great Sand Dunes National Park over Memorial day weekend and I had a wonderful relaxing quiet weekend by myself and with friends.

Here is a short video about the adventures. https://vimeo.com/223233531

 

 

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img_0042This fall has been the 5th warmest in CO history.  We have taken full advantage by getting outdoors and enjoying all the parks and playgrounds near by.  Ivan would still be swimming if it were up to him.  He loves the pool and water.  Thankfully we have indoor ones to enjoy. Anyway, we were able to take a trip up to Bellingham, WA to see my parents and grandparents for a week the end of September. We enjoyed mostly sunny days up there.  We also went to the CO Mennonite Central Committee Sale in La Junta, CO to see Nicolas’ family.  Nick had a great idea of carving a pumpkin so Ivan could sit in it.  It turned out really cute, then it got a happy face, thanks to our neighbor.  Finally I took him trick or treating with some friends in their neighborhood for Halloween. He enjoyed the idea of collecting treats, even though he doesn’t know what candy is and didn’t get to eat any of it.  😉  I can still control that, for now!

Check out the video below for some fun pictures.

Or Click here to see the Video at Vimeo. https://vimeo.com/189885440

P1260065While camping this summer, Nicolas made a comment that he wanted to do a backpacking trip while Ivan was still little enough to carry.  We planned it for his birthday weekend. We decided to go on a trail off a 4*4 road that looked pretty secluded on the map we had. We packed up Saturday morning early and got on the trail about 11am.  We were hiking beside a creek and up in elevation.  We knew after a while we would loose our water source, so we had to decide if we were going back down or continue up.  Nicolas was by then carrying Ivan and he felt good, so we kept going.  The view from the top was beautiful and we enjoyed it. We then needed to find water to set up camp, so we went down the other side of the mountain and pretty much hiked the whole 11.5 mile trail before we found water and a place to tent. We set up tent exhausted and hungry.  We slept reasonably well and packed up in the morning and headed back out knowing we had a long hike back to the car.  We had some great time talking together, listening to Ivan chat and thinking quietly as well.

Here’s a fun picture of Kara and Ivan from our first backpacking trip side by side with this trip. IMG_0359

Check out the video of our adventures below: https://vimeo.com/179750804

 

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We have had a very busy and fun summer already.  June started off with a visit from Grandma Karen Hostetler and cousin Avery’s 1st birthday! We then had lots of time at playgrounds and the splash park.  We have gone to ride the train at Bellview park and enjoyed time at the library as well.  As a family we got out to hike a couple times in Jefferson County open space parks and have gone camping two weekends.  Ivan and Kara also stay busy with the garden and running in the stroller.  Ivan loves being outside and has been sleeping well with all the exercise and activity.

 

Here is a short video of our adventures.  https://vimeo.com/173000479

 

About a month ago, we were able to meet Nick’s family at the Colorado Mennonite Central Committee sale in Rocky Ford, CO.  Family came from all over CO and from KS for a gathering. We enjoyed delicious food at the sale and the musical program on Friday evening.  We hung out on Saturday at the sale, then after naps we found a local pumpkin patch for the kids to enjoy.  We then finished the weekend with dinner together and celebrated Hostetler Grandparents birthdays!

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This year it was Nick’s turn to plan the anniversary trip.  We ended up in Vail Valley, staying in Avon and exploring the entire valley.  It was a bit early to see fall colors but we found some good yellow Aspens! Ivan enjoyed getting away with us as well and we slowed down enough to drive over Guanella Pass on the way home.

A couple weekends ago, Nick and I had our final adventure camping before kido comes.  It was quite the experience as we did some significant off roading. We often like to off road while in the mountains and I had picked up a book from the library of trails.  We found an area that looked promising and headed out for a drive.  We were driving up near the continental divide near the weather closed Webster Pass.  We got into some tough wet terrain and managed to do some serious damage to Fern.  The nice thing was that we only knew about a blown tire until Sunday when driving home did not feel normal.  Thankfully, with God’s protection, we made it home and it was fixed!

The scenery was as always, beautiful!

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