Epic Mother’s Day

Today was one of the best Mother’s Day I’ve ever had. The morning started of quiet with just me, the dog, coffee and the laundry I’m ignoring. 


The not so little, little girls woke up and presented me with cards and gifts. So super sweet. My new turtle charm will find a home on my desk at work. And a girl can never have too many kettle bells. 😉



After breakfast we packed up to head over to Terre Haute to have lunch with my oldest. She made grilled chicken salads that were so yummy and the perfect fuel for our hike! 

Yep, I wanted to hike with my girls today and I got my wish minus one. SiSi had to work so she missed out. I promise she wasn’t upset though. She hates nature. 😉

We chose Turkey Run state park. Today’s hike means I get to check off another state park on my 2017 hiking goal, plus add mileage toward my 150mile goal. 

I had planned to hike the easier trails but Alyssa felt that the girls could handle trail three which was labeled rugged. She had hiked it a few times before so I trusted she knew what she was talking about. 

I have never been more proud of my girls! They hiked that trail with no complaints and almost non stop. There were narrow cliff edges to navigate, creek beds to wade through and jump over, boulders to traverse. And let’s not forget the stairs. Holy hell! The stairs!


Turkey Run is such a beautiful state park. If you live in Indiana and haven’t been to check it out! 


Navigating the suspension bridge.



It was crowded heading into trail 3. As we got up to the area where the creek flowed more and the navigating became more slippery it thinned out. 

This was after we made it up the canyon. None of them batted an eyelash walking the edges of the sandstone. 


What has become a traditional shot on my hikes. 

There were a lot of places I would have loved to take pictures but there wasn’t always a safe spot to stop. When I go back and can take more time I’ll try to capture the ledges we walked along. 

We got a break from ledges and running water for a good part of the hike and then we came upon boulder canyon. 


The girls were champs getting through there and when we reached the bottom and turned the corner they were rewarded for their effort.


They were so excited! And this is such a cool waterfall. The area around it is beautiful as well. 

We had a pretty steep climb out of the canyon so Emily and I took a quick break while the other three completed the climb. 

And the rest of the trail……..


We had one wild life encounter. There was a ring-necked snake on the trail. Just a little guy. I’ve never seen one before. 

I can’t forget my random picture of moss…


And our family photo after a very rugged 3miles or so……

We loaded up and headed back to Terre Haute to grab supper before the drive back home. 

When I got home I came in to find these gifts from my 18yo.  Which were so thoughtful. She even let me give her a kiss and hug when I thanked her. Those that know SiSi know what a big deal that is. 


I’m told I have more gifts on the way so I’m looking forward to that surprise in a couple of weeks. 

It was an amazing day!  Checking stuff off of my epic shit list, moving closer to a couple of goals and the best part was I got to do it with my girls. 

Rise strong!

❤️ ya–

Jo-

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Storms

Sometimes parenting happens in the car when one of your kids doesn’t want to come inside because she’s grumpy and it’s too noisy inside. Even the thought of the vibration through her body  if she were to climb the stairs is too much. 

So you bring a snack and you sit next to her and wait for the storm to pass. 

My 150mile goal

At the beginning of the year when I got my new planner I set some goals for the year. One of them was to hike 150miles. I’m 21 miles into my goal.

Today I hiked a local park with my friend Michelle. Eagle Creek Park is a gem of a park in the Indy area. I had been before with the girls to an owl program and to their discovery center but had not hiked. 

So today we opted for the longest trail which is 6miles according to the park map. Given all the rain we had I really expected it to be more muddy than it was. There were a few spots that were tricky to navigate but I love it when agility is needed. 

It was a beautiful hike! I’ll definitely be back to hike it again. 

Breathtaking

It’s three days out from my dad’s birthday. He would be turning 67 this year. He’s been gone almost 10. A decade. It doesn’t seem possible. When the picture below came up in time hop I immediately recalled that breathtaking feeling. I don’t remember the moment specifically but I can describe to a T the feeling of the realization. It’s like getting the wind knocked out of you.

The grief doesn’t go away. It’s always there in some form under the surface. Its intensity may change from day-to-day, week to week. It may not hit as hard as it did a month ago and sometimes, years out, it can hit you as hard as those first mind numbing days did. What has changed for me is how I recover from those unexpected moments. When they hit I grab onto the grief. I feel the feelings, I cry, I yell, I even wallow sometimes. I don’t stuff, I don’t fight, I don’t ignore. I let them swallow me up and then I get up. I call or text a friend. I hike, I remember something about my dad that makes me smile. I press forward. Sometimes the grief subsides quickly and retreats back under the surface. Sometimes it takes a little while. Eventually though, I get my breath back.

 

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Another hike

Because why not? It was gorgeous today. My oldest and I had planned to hike together but her profs decided to add to her work load so I was solo today. 
Another item on my E.S.L. is to hike every state park in Indiana. I’m approaching this from a post divorce angle. I want these hikes to be mine, either solo or with people that I want to make memories with. So while I have hiked more than the three I have checked off so far, those previous hikes will not count toward the goal. 

Today was Clifty Falls State park. GPS took me in through the South Gate so I had a nice drive up to the North gate where the trail head I needed was located. 


I found the parking lot, found the bathroom, packed up my gear and set out on trail 8. Two minutes in and I have a creek crossing that does not offer a way to keep your feet semi dry. So off came the shoes. 


I made a mental note to pack a small microfiber cloth on my next hike. It would have been helpful in drying my feet. Also? I need a pedicure. Should anyone feel like donating I can accept pay pal! 😜

So I’m on trail 8. This is a higher elevation trail. For the greater portion of it you are waaaay above the creek bed. It does eventually take you all the way down to the creek where you can pick up trail 2 if you choose. 

Tiny fall


Along the trail there were several wild flowers blooming. I wish I could claim to be a hiker that can identify flowers and trees like a boss but I’m not even sure I can identify poison ivy and I know I can’t identify poison oak. I’m here for the beauty and the exercise folks! Lol

Down hill!

You can’t see the but there are tiny white flowers on the ground cover

I love moss!


The closer I got to the creek bed the hungrier I was. I was hoping it would be a great place to rest and grab a snack. I was not disappointed. 

Trail crossing over those rocks.

Stayed dry and no longer hangry.

I could have stayed here all day.

North up the creek bed takes you to the base of the Falls.


After crossing the creek the trail was super nice in offering a climb that I would like to refer to as the booty burner. Once you reach the top your glutes will be on fire! 


At the top I picked up trail 3. This was narrow and on the very edge of the canyon wall. No worries though, if you slip off there are plenty of trees to break your fall. 

Trail 3 connects to trail 4 which is easy enough until you get to where trail four connects to trail 5 but there is no sign telling you it’s trail 5. Luckily someone had come from the direction of the unmarked break-off and confirmed that it was trail 5. Dear state park people there needs to be a sign. 

Trail 5 was rugged! Loved it though. Lots of stone stairs, tree root steps and just plain challenging paths. My thighs will be sore tomorrow. 

All along this trail dogwoods were blooming. Sweet reminders of my Grandmother and all the times she pushed me in the swing that was in their dogwood tree. 


Trail 5 also had some really cool areas where the cliffs were exposed and the trail took you up close. 


Then there were the NOPE stairs that led to a memorial that I’m certain has not had many visitors.

Holy stair case Batman!

And this part of the trail that is the dry bed of a waterfall. You can’t tell from the picture but it’s about a 50ft drop off of there and the bottom is full of rocks. No trees to break your fall this time. 


Another cool area where there was a lot of exposed sand stone. 


Tunnel Falls


Trail 5 ended and I had to walk the road around to the trail head for trail 6. At this point my phone is pretty much dead. Trail 6 met trail 7 and I came across a sign that reminded me of my life.


Of course I chose the rugged path. 😉 Shortly after I headed down this path my phone died. So I completed my hike and then charged my phone so I could come back to get these last shots.


So my 5 mile hike turned into a 9mile hike. It was so beautiful. It was a great day. 

What goals do you have for this year? 

Rise strong!

Love ya!

Jo-