At the end of December, Taido and I got to sneak away for our anniversary to a cabin at Devil’s Den State Park.
It was like a little breath of fresh air after the holidays.
The weather was warm the night we were there, too warm actually, causing a tornado to blow through about 30 miles from us while we were sleeping.
It rained all night, but we were able to get a short hike in before it started, and then a longer one the next morning.
We hiked the Yellow Rock Trail, which we’d never been on before.
We’ve been camping with our kids at Devil’s Den a few times. It’s a favorite spot and we always do the cave hikes, but the caves are closed in winter for bat hibernation.
The Yellow Rock Trail turned out to be really beautiful.
I enjoyed the woods in their winter starkness.
Beyond these trees you can see the fog that was draped over the valley. I loved the misty feel of the woods that morning.
Quiet crunching of leaves and warm air.
We stood on this bluff for a while. The trees were captivating to me in their bareness.
Seasons really amaze me actually.
This whole valley just waiting patiently as if dead.
I’ve seen this same valley draped in fall color, and I know it will be bright green in just a few short months.
But then I wondered if the trees had been covered in new life,
would I have noticed the color of these rocks?
Would I have seen that the structure of the mountains themselves, the very ground beneath my feet can hold such beauty?
Great textures and shapes.
We loved spending the morning hiking quietly in a lonely, winter wood.
I couldn’t remember the last time we’d hiked without our kids, who of course, would have loved these rocks.
The night before we had spent hours talking about the years we’ve spent together.
Celebrating all the places we’ve been. Hard things we’ve come through.
Then we looked to the years ahead.
Dreaming, planning and hoping.
We talked about the years leading up to our kids growing up and the years beyond those.
I am excited to think about all the mountains we still have left to climb together.
After our hike, we had a picnic lunch and headed home.
Looking at this picture of my jeans with mud on them reminds me of how utterly, completely content I felt that day driving home.
So incredibly thankful for the life God has carved out for us together.