Tuesday, October 29, 2019

A Blanket of White

At high altitude, the change from fall to winter is abrupt.
Several October storms blanket us with snow.
Temperatures drop consistently below freezing.

The trails through the forest are snow-covered.
Evergreens branches bend under the weight of white.

I walk carefully using poles for balance.
Soon there will be enough coverage for touring skis.

My physical therapy appointments are finished, but I have "homework."
Exercises for core strength, flexibility, and balance are a daily routine.
I continue to focus on correct posture.
New habits take the place of old, but mindfulness is necessary.

this bull wears two red ear tags - he's being studied by the forest service

Moose are in rut and roam near the house. 

a cow with twin yearling calves grazes across the street from my house - she's wearing a gps collar
notice how her ruff is raised and her ears are back - she sees me on an upper deck and is in protective mode

When I'm outside, I'm alert.

Bulls skirmish in a quest to win a cow's favor.
I won't stand in the way of love!

I say hello to foxes I see daily.

They stop and wait to see if I'll feed them.
When they don't get a handout, they continue on their way.

A new storm is churning gray clouds over the mountains.

We sit by the fire and wonder:
How can it be winter already?

A warm house is my one good thing today.
I also give thanks for the wildlife that roams so close to my home.

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Saturday, October 12, 2019

Adjust and Adapt

We had a snowstorm on October 10.
About 8" (20cm) accumulated, and temperatures plummeted.
I drove to a physical therapy appointment in town while it snowed.
I guess it's time to get back into winter driving mode again!

I want to tell you a bit about what my PT stresses during my sessions.
He takes me through drills and exercises to improve posture, balance, and core strength.

He's corrected my posture so many times that my brain is finally responding.
I'm breaking old, ingrained ways of standing and moving.
I tended to have my head too far back with my chin raised.
My focus needs to be at the top of my head toward the rear.

I think I was overcompensating too much trying not to adopt an old person's stance. 
(That would involve bending the neck forward and looking down at the feet.)
Poor posture has a negative effect on the neck, spine and lower back.
It also doesn't allow for full vision to help with balance.

I must concentrate on pulling up from the top rear of the head to lengthen the spine.
At the same time, I adjust my chin minutely toward the neck.
From this position, I can see directly in front of me without adjusting my head up or down.
Plus, I have full peripheral vision.

Today, I walked my usual 5 miles concentrating on posture.
It was a chilly, blue sky day.
I felt fantastic being outside.

Changing ingrained habits isn't easy.
However, you CAN teach an old dog new tricks.

I'm grateful for my body's ability to learn and adapt.
Mindfulness is important even in mundane situations.

The photos are of our snowstorm and its aftermath.
Fall is now just a memory at high altitude.

Thank you for visiting.

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Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Leaf Change, Life Change

In October at high altitude, days are crisp and nights go below freezing.
Aspens put on their autumn finery.

Today, Bob and I started at first light to hike the Blue River Trail.

The path meanders along an alpine meadow dressed in fall colors.

Soon, we climb into the cold shade of a spruce and pine forest.

In clearings, the blazing colors of aspens provide visual warmth.

We walk trails strewn with gold.

As the sun continues to rise, the leaves glow with light.

Because we're so early, we're alone in the forest.

We listen to Nature's music:
squirrels chattering, birds chirping, and wind rustling through the trees.

We crunch through fallen leaves.

I hike with a grateful and open heart.

Fall colors are my One Good Thing today.

I'm taking Physical Therapy now 2X a week.
My therapist is working on my flexibility, balance, and core strength.
As you can see from this hike, I'm mobile again - we went 4 miles today.
I carried the Olympus with the zoom lens.
I edit in Snapseed.

Thank you for your healing wishes.
They're helping!

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