I am the fullness…

Wildflowers in Bonneville Pass, Wyoming

Wildflowers in Bonneville Pass, Wyoming

“I am the fullness in the waft of the breeze

I am the fullness of the scent of the wildflowers

Held gently in your trembling hands

I am the fullness of the warmth in the sunshine

I am the fullness of the perfection in a sunset

Of every good and perfect thing

 

I am what makes the fullness perfect …Read More

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Sneak Peak: A Land of Volcanos and Oceans

Waves crash on the ancient lava flows at Cape Perpetua, Oregon

Waves crash on the ancient lava flows at Cape Perpetua, Oregon (btw, that kid isn’t as close as he looks)

So if anyone’s been wondering where I’ve been (or why I haven’t been) on social media over the last month, we just got back from a 3 week adventure to the Pacific Northwestern US!  It was pretty amazing, filled with volcanos, volcanic formations, and the Pacific Ocean.  The weather was really quite good, too, except that it was 115 in NorCal and Mt. Hood decided to hide its head in the clouds.  But, hey, you can’t have everything, and I think we made out pretty well considering.

 

Wildflowers on the side of Mt. Shasta, Shasta-Trinity National Forest, California

Wildflowers on the side of Mt. Shasta

We started out by visiting the John Deere Pavilion in Moline, IL (almost in Iowa).  Here we got to see big machinery, climb into a bulldozer and …Read More

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Calling Out Your Name

“I feel the thunder in the sky

I see the sky about to rain

And with the prairies I am calling out Your name.”

“Calling Out Your Name” by Rich Mullins.

 

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“I am the vastness…”

Cirque of Towers, Wind Rivers, Wyoming

Cirque of Towers, Wind Rivers, Wyoming

“I am the vastness of the entire mountain range

I am the sight that takes your breath away

I am in the hills and the trees and the very ground you walk on

Because I made it and it sings my praise

That’s part of what the whole earth

Being filled with the Glory of the Lord is about

My glory is all over the earth.

 

I hold the mountains in my hand …Read More

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5 Worst Hiking Mistakes I’ve Made

Sunrise at Cloud Cap Campground, Mount Hood, Oregon

Sunrise at Cloud Cap Campground, Mount Hood, Oregon

You’d think, having traveled across the country more than 40 times in 21 years, we’d be experts at planning and executing hikes.  While it’s true we’ve learned a lot, we still make mistakes.  Some of the examples below came from last summer.  So even those who hike a lot can get into situations they didn’t expect.

And then there are the things no one could have expected, like this cow blocking the trail to Broken Bow Arch in Utah

And then there are the things no one could have expected, like this cow blocking the trail to Broken Bow Arch in Utah


The following are 5 of my recurring hiking mistakes – things that happened so often, by design or …Read More

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Day Hiking the Andy Stone Trail (Tetons)

Zoomed views on the Tetons from the slopes of Beard Mountain above the Andy Stone Trail

Zoomed views on the Tetons from the slopes of Beard Mountain above the Andy Stone Trail

What to do on a rainy day on the west side of the Tetons?  It’s no good wasting a perfectly lovely view on a day when you can’t see it because of the mist and clouds.  So we decided on a little adventure – the South Leigh Creek Trail to the Andy Stone Trail, then a bit up the sides of Beard Mountain to get the best of what little view could be had.  I won’t call it the best hike – or even close to the best view – in the Tetons, but we did have a good time, it didn’t pour on us, and we had a nice little dip in a nearby stream after the hike (after it got sunny).

A ptarmigan we found along the way, Andy Stone Trail, Jedediah Smith Wilderness - Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

A ptarmigan we found along the way

We didn’t realize that getting to the trailhead would be one of the biggest adventures.  I had a topo map which clearly marked S Leigh Canyon Road as a left turnoff from the main S Leigh Canyon Road.  It’s even on Google Maps (Yahoo Maps calls it Beard Road).  The GPS was all set and programed to take us there.  Technically, it would take us to a trailhead that would …Read More

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15 Must Do Waterfall Hikes Across the US

Dundee Falls, Wyoming

Dundee Falls, Wyoming

Waterfalls!  There’s something magical about the cascade of water tumbling over one or more ledges to the river below.  It catches your breath, makes you want to pull out your camera, even though you know you can’t capture the way the falling water makes you feel.

Slide Creek Falls in the Wind River Range of Wyoming

Slide Creek Falls in the Wind River Range of Wyoming

Waterfalls are one thing that every state seems to major in.  Everywhere I go, people talk about the lovely waterfalls at such-and-such place; even in the middle of the desert, waterfalls are …Read More

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DIY Adult Seat Belt Pillow

How to make your own seat belt pillow - it really works well!

How to make your own seat belt pillow – it really works well!

I’ve added a new favorite item to my “must pack” list for traveling!  It’s what I’d call a “seat belt pillow” or maybe “one pillow you can actually use in the car and won’t get lost”.  It’s a simple sewing project that doesn’t take oodles of materials (except filling, which it uses a lot of).  The best part is that it really is comfortable, even in our van, which doesn’t seem to usually fit with normal car accessories.  Another great thing is that I can leave it tied to the seatbelt, so it doesn’t have to find a home when I’m not using it!

The finished seat belt pillow

The finished seat belt pillow

Here’s what you need to make your own Seat Belt Pillow

What you'll need to make the seat belt pillow

What you’ll need to make the seat belt pillow

Two pieces of cloth, cut to 22.25”x5”, or whatever works best to you – this is a bit flexible.  I made a pattern, then cut out the two pieces of fabric.  The fabric should be soft, durable, and comfortable for sleeping on.

Four pieces of …Read More

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Sinks Canyon – Better in August

The Sink in August, Sinks Canyon State Park, Wyoming

The Sink in August

I’ve discovered something: Sinks Canyon – where the river literally disappears underground and reappears, two hours and about a quarter mile later – is much more interesting in August than in June.

Peaceful water after the Rise, Sinks Canyon State Park, Wyoming

Peaceful water after the Rise

‘Way back in June 2003, we stopped at Sinks Canyon State Park, on the very edge of the Wind River Range of Wyoming, not too far from the town of Lander.  To say it wasn’t my favorite stop on the trip would have been a bit of an understatement; I really did not enjoy standing next to a raging, boiling river with a whole bunch of little kids, and the river disappearing into a cave not 20ft. away.  In fact, I was just a wee bit terrified.

High water at the Sinks, Sinks Canyon State Park, Wyoming

High water at the Sinks

Fast forward to August 2015, and we were driving toward Lander after hiking Roaring Fork Mountain.  In the very early morning sunlight, we saw the signs for the state park – visiting was going to be as easy as pulling off the highway into the visitor center parking lot.  It seemed a pity to waste such a good opportunity, so we …Read More

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Creation Waits in Eager Expectation

Alaska Basin, Jedediah Smith Wilderness and Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

Creation waits…

I was reading Romans the other day, and ran across these verses:

 

18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.

22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved.” (Romans 8:18-24a)

 

It really got me thinking.  Here is creation, what we might call the wilderness or nature or something like that, waiting in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed.  Eager expectation.  It knows the promise is sure, and it absolutely can’t wait.  It longs for the children of God to be revealed so it can be brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.

 

What will that look like?  What will it take for …Read More

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