Road Trip: Day 4


After having such a wonderfully fulfilled day the day before, we were beat and slept in a bit. The only real plan we had decided was to take a nice horseback ride. We grabbed a quick bite to eat and headed towards our destination. After about 30 minutes of driving, and no sign of horses, we decided to call to let them know we had arrived to the address on their website, but weren’t sure exactly where they were located. Little did we know that their horseback riding location did not have a formal address. We actually went about 20 minutes too far, and we were at their mailing address, or in other words, their house…

SkunkSo we drove all the way back and finally found the place, arriving right on time. After we got there, there was a little confusion with the payment, but thankfully it was all sorted out and we mounted up on two horses named Skunk (because of her tail and fortunately not her smell,) and Captain (the slowest horse of the bunch.) The people that took us on our tour were very nice, and pretty surprised to hear that a pair of Texans have only been on a horse a few times in their lives.

riley horseThe tour we chose was an hour long and it was through some nice hilly, wooded areas. There were a few clearings with beautiful sights, but it was a little difficult to take photos, as my horse kept trying to steal little snacks the whole way, nearly yanking the reins out of my hands. On our way back, we saw some bear markings on a few trees, and I am thankful we heard about on the way back to the safety of our car instead of on our way into the woods! When we made it back to one of the first clearings, our guide was nice enough to take a photo of us on our ride.

horsesWhen we finished, we decided it was time to grab some more delicious ice cream at Paradise and headed back down to town. We stayed there for a little while, enjoying our last day in Aspen, exploring the shops and buying our souvenir fridge magnet. When we were ready, we left to our hotel in Snowmass where we later had a candy craving and decided to take the gondolas down to the valley in search of some more sweets.

It was a nice spontaneous activity that brought us outside into the wonderful weather, where we enjoyed it for our last night in Colorado.


Road Trip: Day 3


GondolaOn day three of our trip, we covered a lot of ground. We slept in a little bit (being on the road wears you out!) but we were off to Aspen Mountain before the afternoon. We were able to ride the gondolas all the way to the top. The scenery and atmosphere was so wonderful, I never wanted to leave. The ride on the gondola was a nice slow ride, and gave the best view of Aspen right behind us.

Mountain RestaurantWhen we stepped off of our ride, we were at an elevation of 11,000 feet. The air was so fresh, and the smell was amazing. We headed straight for the mountain top restaurant, as planned, and ate the cheesiest and most delicious pizza I’ve ever tasted. I love New York style pizza, and it was the best treat to enjoy as we looked across the stunning view of the surrounding mountains and valleys. After we had our fill, we enjoyed a few games of checkers while we waited for the next nature tour to begin.

Aspen MountainOn the nature tour, we learned about how most of the valleys were formed, the types of mines Aspen used to have, and how to tell the difference between a Fir and a Spruce tree. Even though I had taken the tour before a few years ago, it was still enjoyable. (Most likely because the view was amazing.☺)

After a lovely few hours atop the mountain, we headed down in search of a delicious snack. We were suggested an ice cream place called Paradise. After walking up and down on the same road for about 10 minutes, we actually found one of the hardest license plates. Alaska. I was a little too excited to cross it off our list of plates, and snapped a picture for my app. Finally, after more confusion from the Apple Navigation, we found the place a few steps further than the pin point on the map. It was nestled in between a few shops, a tiny bakery, and it was packed full of people. We ordered a few scoops of ice cream and a sugar cookie. I have to tell you, if you ever visit Aspen, Colorado, you need to stop by Paradise. It was the best ice cream I have ever had in my life. I had a scoop of mango gelato while Riley had the usual vanilla, and they were just so perfectly soft, yet not melting, and not too cold. The flavor was so delicious, we ate them both right away. When we finished our mouth watering treats, we decided to head to the Maroon Bells for sunset.

MaroonWe arrived at the shuttle station, thinking we could only take a bus, and we were told we could just drive ourselves, but the gates closed at 6:00 pm, in just 5 short minutes. So we skipped the fees and ran back to our car to try to make it before they closed. It was just a few miles away, but it took us about 20 minutes to actually arrive! Colorado is full of winding roads that you forget how long it takes you to get to places because you have to drive so slow. When we finally reached the gates, we were surprised to find out that it was still open, and I don’t even think it closes until nightfall because there are campsites there. Regardless, we arrived with plenty of sunlight to spare. It was pretty cloudy and sprinkling a bit when we got there, but one thing we learned on our nature tour was that the weather in Colorado changes so quickly, we weren’t really worried.

Deadly bellsAnd we were right not to be because, in less than ten minutes, the weather cleared up above us, and gave us some nice light to explore by. The view at the bells is so beautiful and breathtaking, it almost looks as if you’re staring at a painting, Most of the views near Aspen look that way it seems. We took some nice shots while enjoying our surroundings, and we even walked on a few trails around the area. We even found a few geese just relaxing by the water with their little goslings. It was such a peaceful sight, I didn’t want to leave.

GeeseAs the sun started setting. we made our way back to the hotel in Snowmass where we walked to the mall and enjoyed a few hamburgers, then relaxed in the hot tub for a while. The day was very fulfilling and I was so happy to be back in Aspen. We talked about our plans for the next day, and finally got some shut eye.

Shop Update: Modern Elm

The moment I have been waiting for is here. My Etsy shop has had a lot of new changes, and it is now, ModernElm. I feel that the name is more fitting. It represents the kind of items I’m selling, the items are for your style and represent you, hence the new abbreviation. I’m also beginning to incorporate more natural elements into my creations, and the name stuck.

The changes are also just in time for the 1 year anniversary of my shop opening, which is tomorrow July 9. And to celebrate, I am offering a one day sale of 20% off all items in the shop! So tomorrow, please visit one of our social media sites for details on the sale!

The Shop: Fine Jewelry Photoshoot

Today was a nice cloudy day outside, giving me good conditions for re-shooting some of my fine jewelry pieces in the shop. The clouds give a nice cover to the sun’s bright rays, while still giving me nice enough lighting for some shots. I decided to re-shoot some of my items because I’m not liking the plain white background that I chose to show case my finest items. I thought that they needed a little nature vibe to them to bring out their true colors and let them shine. I think they came out pretty good considering I’m only shooting with an Iphone!

Here’s a few of before and afters, I hope you enjoy them. Feel free to leave me a comment of what you think of the new backgrounds as well! I love having public feedback to work with, it really helps me know what people are looking for when deciding on whether or not to click on an item.

Sterling Silver Greek Patterned Earrings

Hot Pink Druzy Necklace on 14k Gold Filled Chain

Periwinkle Druzy Necklace on 14k Gold Filled Chain