New Roots in the Southwest



I haven’t written about the Life Rustic journey for a while, as our scenery has been changing again, quickly as the seasons, and many life events and responsibilities have kept me farther from my keyboard than I would prefer. But since recently settling into a new home, new jobs, and a new community where we have begun to plant our roots, we’re finally able to settle back into a routine, as well.

And after nearly two years of life “on the road” — consisting of stops throughout the Front Range of Colorado and into Kansas and Missouri for days, weeks, or months at a time — Sean and I are ready to exit the semi-gypsy life and begin the next phase of our adventure together. With our wedding approaching, along with another Rocky Mountain winter close behind it, we’ve decided that now is the time to cozy up in the place where we plan to build and make our home.


We fell in love with the San Luis Valley and surrounding areas of Southwest Colorado earlier this summer, and it’s in this valley that we have chosen to permanently stay. The lush, green fields that spot the rugged landscape with crops and grazing cattle evoke a nostalgia for the midwestern farmland from my childhood, while the rising mountain ranges on each side along with the surrounding national forests satisfy the desire to be immersed in the wild alpine that drove Sean and me to Colorado in the first place.

The valley offers many opportunities to explore the outdoors, and is home to stunning waterfalls, a national park with the largest sand dunes in North America, a handful of fourteeners to hike, nearby hot springs, skiing, and many other things that make this area so ideal to us. I’ve grown accustomed to falling asleep to the smooth rustling of Aspens and Evergreens in the wind, but lately in the valley, the nightly lullaby has been performed by a chorus of distant coyotes and owls — and has been just as soothing.

Since my last time of writing, I’ve accepted a position at a local high school, and Sean has taken a new job with the city Parks & Rec. I guess we’re diving right into the whole being members of the community thing that we might have missed a little bit while trekking around. I’m thrilled to be doing something that I love — helping young people strengthen their English skills, and Sean is pretty happy to be spending so much time around the basketball court (and I’m happy he’s not strapped to the roof of a building 🙂 ).

There are plenty of long-term and short-term campgrounds, R.V. Parks, and other sites in the area for travel trailers and tiny homes like our own little Jellybean Shasta, and we were lucky to find more permanent placement here so we don’t have to hop all over the place like we’ve had to in some areas before. And as exciting as travelling around the mountains and plains has been, and even with the many adventures we’ve experienced on the road, the calming feeling of home that’s washed over us since being here has come as a surprising yet welcomed relief.

So in closing one chapter together — the adventure of life on the road — we are turning the pages of a new one.

Newlywedded. Our own piece of earth. A little cabin homestead. — I can’t wait to see everything that this next chapter has in store.

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