Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Pursuit of National Happiness

I’ve never been to Bhutan, but I’ve always dreamed of visiting this landlocked country nestled in the Himalayas. One of the most intriguing aspects of this country is the idea of Gross National Happiness. The core philosophy behind the concept of Gross National Happiness is to enable development while promoting the attainment of happiness. The four main pillars of Gross National Happiness are equitable and equal socio-economic development; preservation and promotion of cultural and spiritual heritage; conservation of environment; and good governance which are interwoven, complementary, and consistent.

The concept may not be attainable in a country the size of the United States or compatible with our democratic system, but the ideals are worth considering and incorporating into life and government where possible. Often the pursuit of prosperity doesn’t equate to happiness or the protection of the environment, but maybe it’s possible to strike a balance. To learn more about Bhutan and its Gross National Happiness concept, visit http://www.tourism.gov.bt/about-bhutan/Gross-National-Happiness

Monday, July 24, 2017

Georgetown Loop of Colorado

Most weekends we feel lucky to have a day to get outside and explore, so we look for unique experiences doable in a day. Recently we drove 45 miles west of Denver on 1-70 to Georgetown, Colorado. We wandered the streets of this quaint town, which along with nearby Silver Plume, boasts one of the largest concentrations of Victorian homes in the United States. Georgetown began as a mining camp in 1859 because of the abundant gold and silver in the surrounding mountains. Now people are drawn to the area for its historic significance, picturesque towns, and its idyllic location in the Rocky Mountains.


A few miles outside of Georgetown in Silver Plume (elevation 9,178 feet) we boarded the Georgetown Loop train and visited the Lebanon Mine, both are part of the Georgetown Loop Historic Mining & Railroad Park. The weather was spectacular, we learned a lot about local mining from the 1870’s through the 1920’s during our guided tour 1,000 feet deep into the Lebanon Mine, and the scenery of the Rocky Mountains never disappoints.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Looks Can Be Deceiving

I purchased the three big beautiful raspberries at a grocery store known for its produce. The handful of small berries came from my backyard. If given a choice one might be tempted to reach for the large plump berries. The reality is that the small less-than-perfect berries taste like heavenly little drops of sweet goodness, while the large berries had very little taste at all. Not only have my imperfect raspberries been a surprising treat, but they have reminded me of a couple of old adages we should always keep in mind—don’t judge a book by its cover and looks can be deceiving.


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Cussler’s Classic Cars



Whether you are a classic car enthusiast or a fan of Clive Cussler’s Dirk Pitt novels, I highly recommend a visit to the Cussler Museum located in Arvada, Colorado. The museum showcases approximately 70 of the 100 cars in its collection, and the cars rotate annually, so if you keep coming back you’ll eventually see them all. Cars which have appeared in Dirk Pitt novels are identified by a copy of the novel and a brief note in the car’s description placard. Even though I don’t know a lot about old cars, there was no mistaking the quality of this amazing collection. For more information visit www.cusslermuseum.com.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Contemporary Western Cowboy

What good is a contemporary western adventure without a smoking hot cowboy that makes the reader cheer for a happily-ever-after ending. In Big Horn Storm, Niki finds herself in a fight for survival with her childhood infatuation, Deuce. Here’s a short excerpt from when she arrives at the ranch.

Niki couldn’t see Robert Mitchell Blackburn II, known to friends and family as Deuce, but his deep voice gave away his location. No doubt his tall muscular frame stood just inside the barn door, concealed in the shadows. Even though he was hidden from view, she could describe every detail of his unruly hair peeking out from under his beat-up and sweat-stained straw cowboy hat, the scrutinizing look in his hazel eyes, his tanned complexion, and the scuffs on the heels of his boots where his spurs had worn on the leather. Dark stubble would shadow his chin and above his lip, and his sleeves would be rolled up on his denim shirt. She hated the fact that not only could she see him clearly in her mind now, but she could picture him just as clearly nearly every day of her life no matter how hard she tried to keep him out of her head.