A Breath of Fresh Air

I’m often asked how many times a year I get to see my extended family in Colorado. Usually we tend to see each other at least once, and if I’m lucky, two times, once in the summer and then occasionally for a holiday. When you grow up living over 1,000 miles from the rest of your family, you don’t know any different. I never had the pleasure of getting to see my grandparent’s or cousins for every holiday, nor were we the ones to just pop over to each other’s houses, but because I didn’t know any different, I never felt like I was really missing out. Thankfully, growing up we were able to spend a more extended amount of time in Colorado each summer since school was out. It was common that we’d fly up with our mom, and then about halfway through the trip dad would meet us there when he had time off work. It just worked that way. Of course, as we got older our summers got shorter, work got in the way, family vacations got smaller and farther apart, because, well, grown up life is different than the beloved carefree elementary years.

All that to say, this past Sunday evening I returned home from a nine-day vacation in Colorado with my family. If nine days sounds long to you, well, it does to me, too! It’s the longest amount of time I’ve spent of there in probably ten years.

When the 2014 LPL schedule came out and Denver had made the cut, I thought briefly about possibly attending with my family, but then completely forgot all about it. Mind you, the schedule was released in 2013, so it was still really off my radar. About three months ago my grandmother sent me an email regarding LPL in Denver that her friend had told her about, and that “if I could possibly go she might attend with me.” A few months of planning, a couple of airline tickets and a handful of conference wrist bands later, I found myself in Denver Colorado sitting on the same row as all of the women in my family. It was a summer miracle, and the kick off of a week in the mountains! The ten of us had a sweet time at LPL. I don’t know if we’ll ever get that opportunity again, so I’m grateful to God for allowing us that brief weekend together.

The women in my family. (Sorry for the multiple shadows.)

And this sums up our weekend together.

The next day, we headed up with my mom’s side of the family to Breckenridge for the week. If you’re an avid skier but have never visited the mountains in the summer, you are missing some deep refreshment. I am equal parts beach girl and mountain girl. I love it all! But, the contrast of the lime green trees and deep blue mountains is unmatched. Not to mention the breath of fresh, crisp air you can only get from the north during the summer. We spent six days resting, reading, hiking, swimming, eating, playing games, laughing, riding the gondola, and being stunned by creation. Beauty right alongside the challenge to keep ten people happy for an extended amount of time. Grin.

Here are a few of my pictures from the week. It honestly was rainy and chilly the majority of our stay there, but when it wasn’t raining, you can bet we were outside enjoying every moment we could. And if you’re not one for photo journalism, feel free to scroll to the end. Grin.

The sunset our first evening there.

The view from our hike the second day was literally breathtaking.

I have found if you keep going, despite the effort it takes to get the top, it’s usually worth it.

On our way down the mountain after our hike, the Lord sent us a moose sighting. Unreal.

And here are a few shots of the little town of Breckenridge.

One morning before the storms came, I made my way downtown to find some local iced coffee, and planted myself near a stream with this view to read. It was heavenly.

This was our last day heading up the mountain on the Super Chair. Soaring over the Evergreen trees on a 10,000 foot high mountain makes you feel really, really tiny in the best way possible.

Cousins that vacation together stay together. Or something like that. Grin.

In my happy place.

Because of the abnormally chilly weather, it was usually cloudy and rainy at sunset, except our first and last evening there. But it was worth the wait.

Until next time, Breck…

Being away also explains why this blog has been so quiet the past week or so. The same week I was gone on vacation, Beth was out as well. Summers are typically crazy for most everyone anyway, but thank you for being patient with us as it has been quieter than usual around here on the Blog. However, you are never off our minds. In fact, I was delighted to meet a handful of you in Denver. I was just telling someone recently that meeting you all in real life makes it all the more real to me. It’s easy to believe the lie that I’m just talking to a screen instead of real live people on the other side of the computer screen. So it’s nice to get to hug some of your necks!

I imagine some of you have been putting your kiddos on the school bus this week for their first week of school! Am I correct assuming that? Either way, summer as we know it is coming to a quick end. (Though we in Houston will still experience summer like temps well into early October.) I’d love to hear from any of you (singles and families alike), that got to take a vacation this summer. Any places I desperately need to know about before I plan my next trip? (I have no idea when that will be, but I always enjoy thinking about traveling. Grin.) Any surprises on your journey? Like a moose?

Y’all are the best.

Happy Wednesday!


35 Responses to “A Breath of Fresh Air”

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  1. 1

    I spent a summer during my college days in Breckenridge. It will always have a special place in my heart. 🙂 <3

  2. 2
    Elisabeth says:

    The trip looks astounding! There is just nothing that compares to the coloring in a sunrise or sunset! You are quite the photographer!

    I’ve been in Houston for a year. I’ve spoken with you multiple times at BCF and Tuesday nights at HFB, plus we’re insta-friends. I mostly stick to my corner and leave you to leading worship on Sundays, though. I don’t wanna bother you. But there’s proof you see Siestas in real life:)

    I’m from CA and will be moving back shortly. I am utterly and totally unhealthily obsessed with Disneyland. I completely think you need to come to the parks someday. And I’m not even kidding right now. I would joyously host you! It will be the experience of a lifetime. (Especially with me. My friends work there so I know every detail of the parks.) The magic. The sounds. The lights. The attractions. The cast members. The way everything is built to feel like you’re not in our world but your own fairytale. It’s indescribable. Just come!
    *sigh* Okay. I’m going to go watch videos of the rides and count down until I go again now……

  3. 3

    We’ve visited Breckenridge a few times, too, Lindsee. So beautiful there. And Fatty’s has the best pizza ever. Especially after a long hike! 🙂

  4. 4
    Donna says:

    Hi Lindsee–I love your photos–just spectacular! We got to go on a great vacation in God’s beautiful outdoors too–a cruise to Alaska for our anniversary. Stunningly beautiful and we were fortunate to have rare sunny days. I didn’t see a moose, but saw bald eagles, salmon, harbor seals, owls, a black bear and a whale tail!

  5. 5
    Diane from Centerville UT says:

    Lindsee, so glad you were blessed to have a sweet time of relaxation, and connection with your precious family; and in a place of such beauty created by the the Lord! May your soul be refreshed! (Living in UT, I understand the breathtaking beauty of the Rockies. What an awe-inspiring gift from our Heavenly Father!)

  6. 6
    Donna says:

    Wow Lindsee; Enjoyed hearing about your trip home. How wonderful to be with family any time. I didn’t go on a long vacation; just a weekend. It was with family also. I grew up close to the Smokey Mountains. My Dad was in the hiking club, he knows the mountains better than anyone I know. My parents are in their 80’s so we don’t hike any more but we do take a pick nick lunch and drive into the mountains. The cold streams are wonderful for putting your feet in when the temps are 90 with 100% humidity. But the best part is seeing family; the kids that grow up too fast and the older ones that grow old too quickly. I Wish TIME had a rope attached to it so I could get a hold of it to make it slow down.
    Loved your pictures!

  7. 7

    Lindsee, we are headed up there this early Saturday morning…cannot wait to
    Spend time with my family (3 girls and my husband, Ryan) and my parents! We feel so close to
    God up there…away from
    The hustle and bustle of things…so grateful for the gift! Glad you had fun and kept it real! Pictures were gorgeous!

  8. 8
    sunshinedays says:

    Oh, I’m jealous (in a good way). Colorado is on my bucket list – one of those places I cannot wait to visit. But luckily I do live near the Great Smoky Mountains.

  9. 9
    Mindy says:

    Loved the pictures of the mountains, my favorite vacation spot is on Prince Edward Island. Small little place on the East Coast of Canada. It’s beautiful with it’s red sand beaches.
    I love summer, though ours is short. LOL

  10. 10
    Sherry says:

    We went to the Grand Canyon! OMG – it was so vast that it was impossible to grasp the “grandness” of it. So long, so wide, so deep with the green Colorado River just a small stream in the bottom – flowing the wrong direction! For those of us who live on the other side of the Continental Divide, it was strange. And so many people from other nations! We heard languages from Germany, Japan, Israel, Italy, Norway, France and Oklahoma (ha – us!)

  11. 11
    Ashley says:

    Thank you so much for sharing – love the pics!

    My vacation was spent with a group of amazing kids from our church, hanging out on a mission trip. This was my 1st time on the 20-odd-year annual trip, although my kids have been a number of times. I never realized how beautiful SW South Dakota is – stunning views of prairies and mountains, albeit slightly smaller than those in Breckenridge! The best part was making new friends, and feeling like I’d known them all for decades. This was a completely, obviously God-ordained, God-blessed, and God-present trip, and I am so thankful for the time. In fact, if I could figure out a way to be there year round, and still get paid, I’d be all over that in 5 seconds flat 🙂

    • 11.1
      Lindsee says:

      Ashley, thank you for giving your vacation time to spend with students! I love that. And even more, I love that you had a sweet experience.

  12. 12
    Lynne says:

    Oh Lindsee, I completely understand the blessing of sharing the LPL events with the ladies of the family! My mom and I attended the LPL in Columbus, OH (where we lived at the time)in 2011 just 40 days into my sobriety journey. Mind you, God dropped the word “prepared” in Beth’s heart for Columbus that year and she spoke of the 40 days of preparation throughout the Bible!! God is SO good! In 2012 my mom, sister, daughter, and family friend saw Beth in Charleston, SC where my sister lived. The next year, 2013, we all went to Charleston, WV to see Beth again with the addition of another family friend. Sharing weekends with these ladies under Beth’s Spirit filled teaching, God’s Great Word, and in Christ’s presence…truly one of my most favorite and prized memories. Unfortunately in 2014 we have not be able to attend a LPL event…but only due to God’s great blessing of moving my folks to Charleston, SC (two years after I made the move). Filled with gratitude that we will all be in the same city after 18 years of being separated in one way or fashion. So, we will see y’all next year when we are settled and my prayers continue over the staff until then! God bless you sweet Lindsee! Lynne

  13. 13
    Darcy says:

    So glad you had a lovely vacation! My husband’s family lives outside of Denver, but we’ve never been to Breckenridge before….maybe we need to start after seeing your pictures! We live in Oregon, and our favorite place is the mountains in Wallowa – it’s just such nice, wide open country, and since we summer cows up there, we are fortunate to get to go there every couple of weeks. I blogged a few pictures of our last trip here

    Of course, our own views at home are gorgeous too. We are blessed!

  14. 14
    Pam says:


    Thanks for sharing. We vacation each year at Daytona Beach Shores, FL with my sister-in-law’s extended family. (They’ve adopted us) This year my husband was unable to be with us and several of the extended family chose not to come for various reasons. It was not the trip I planned, being there without my husband, but God put this dolphin right out in front of our hotel each morning….as if to say, ‘enjoy this even though it’s not as you planned’. My kids and I had a great time with my brothers and their families.

    I love a good mountain now and then, but the beach is my happy place.


  15. 15
    Kristi says:

    I’ve been to Breckenridge during the winter. Thank you for sharing what it looks like in the summer! We took a quick family trip to Atlanta, a city that we used to live in, and visit often. We went to the Martin Luther King, Jr National Historic Site for the first time. It was amazing, and touching, to see those sites and those holy places.

  16. 16
    Grandmamitz says:

    Beautiful. Thanks for sharing a little bit of heaven on this earth.

  17. 17
    Patti Hayes says:

    Lindsee, few others capture God’s beautiful graces through a camera lens like you do. Thanks for sharing your heart and your trip. We’ve been unable to travel for a few years now, but were homebound this summer for a different reason, a sweet little miracle named Hannah Beatrice Hayes, who was fearfully and wonderfully knit together in her mother’s womb with 45 instead of 46 chromosomes. She has Turner syndrome. A devestating phone call with the results of my daughter-in-love’s blood work that came in January, set this summer’s plans in motion for our family. February found me sitting with my son and his wife in a perinatologist consult room, hearing him ask my children if they wanted to terminate the pregnancy. 98%of the pregnancies where this chromosomal abnormality is present, end in miscarriage in the first trimester. We had our first miracle in that Hannah was part of the 2% to make it to the second trimester. By God’s unfathomoable grace, and following a greuling pregnancy of waiting, hoping, and trusting God, and praying, July 8 found us, 2 allowed at a time in the NICU, peering into the tiny isolate of our much anticipated miracle. Our Hannah’s name means grace of God, and her middle name, Beatrice, means bringer of joy. Long before we dared even hope to get to meet her, baby girl lived up to both names. You may not think spending ten days in the NICU is much of a vacation, but having spent so many days prior in God’s Waiting Room, I get teary just thinking that there’s no place I would have rather been.
    Thanks for letting me share our family’s summer miracle.
    Much Love to all of you,
    Patti Hayes
    PS: find me on Twitter if you want to see pictures of our sweet girl.

    • 17.1
      Lindsee says:

      Oh Patti. Thank you for sharing that slice of life with me. You will never forget those days God gave y’all in the NICU. Many blessings.

  18. 18
    Linda Baron says:

    Linda from Bend, Oregon
    My mother, my sister and I attended the LPL in Denver together after visiting relatives in Kansas. It was a precious week. The One and Only!! Great message from Beth.

  19. 19
    Diana A. says:

    Come on up to Canada… we do Green & Wilderness Very Well!!!

    If you ever get the chance British Columbia offers great variety from beaches to mountains; from scuba-diving to skiing!!! Bears, cougars, wolves, skunks, racoons, coyotes are our neighbours and usually in many back-yards! Shopping and eateries are vast in our cities!

    My husband job keeps him most busiest in summer, so we did a 1 day trip and headed to Sasquatch Park, on Harrison Lake … fun, sand, forest and sun!

    Thanks for the pics! Loved the “tour”!
    God Bless you sister!

    • 19.1
      Donna says:

      Diana–our cruise had us briefly in Victoria, and we visited Butchart Gardens in the evening. What a beautiful city and place! I was saying to my husband–I want to move here! We didn’t have enough time….only 4 hours.

  20. 20
    Kim says:

    I was able to spend a week volunteering at Camp Quality. I was a companion for a 9 year old boy. All the kids who attend camp either have cancer or are in remission. It was an inspiring week (albeit EXHAUSTING) but worth it. They have a camp in Texas. Huntsville I believe. I would suggest volunteering if you want to be inspired by some amazing kids!

  21. 21
    Kathy Cooper says:

    I am so glad you were able to spend time in Colorado with your family after the Denver LPL conference. I too was there and came up and introduce myself at the end. I was so thrilled to meet you!
    As I read your post this morning, I was in Frisco/Breckenridge, CO with my sweet husband of 42 years on a two day motorcycle ride before he has to go back to work tomorrow driving a school bus.
    Our amazing trip this summer was a motorcycle trip through the Alps in the countries of Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria and Lichtenstein. The mountains and countryside there is a different type of beautiful to our Rocky mountains beauty, but our same AWESOME God created them all and I am so thankful to have been able to see all we did! (It also rained today while we were going over Kenosha Pass) Keep sharing your heart – I love being able to share your journey and pray for and with you!

    • 21.1
      Lindsee says:

      It was so nice meeting you, Kathy! And I loved hearing about your vacation. Sounds lovely in every way! Blessings your way!

  22. 22
    Shannon Stevenson says:

    I love Breckenridge and the mountains. One of my favorites too. This summer my husband and I along with my cousin and his wife spent two weeks in France. We started in the South of France and made our way north to Normandy and finally Paris. It was amazingly beautiful and the villages in the country are picture perfect. The French definitely have the market on food. I have never eaten such delicious food in all my life. We took pictures of everything we ate because it was not only scrumptious but beautiful in the presentation. I highly recommend the journey if you ever get the chance. BTW, the French have the reputation of not being very friendly….we found them gracious, friendly and very helpful! Loved it!!

  23. 23
    katiegfromtennessee says:

    I did get to go on a couple of vacates this summer. My father-in-law took all the immediate related family on that side to Hilton Head earlier on in the summer. It isn’t the typical beach town, it’s not flashy, but a slower pace than most beach locales. I think I am like you also in that I like the beach just as much as I like the mountains of East TN where I live. There’s no place like K-town. No matter where I go, I always welcome back the sight of rolling, green hills, mountain streams, and windy roads…then I got to go to my favorite place since 2012 when I first visited there, the Emerald Coast of Florida. Destin is a touristy place, but I still love it. Grayton Beach is super pretty to look at. Seaside or watercolor are definitely picturesque. My husband and I got to go alone to Destin this year to celebrate our nine year anniversary. We weren’t sure what our ten year anniversary would look like with number of small children in our home, so we celebrated our nine year anniversary like it was our tenth:). Blessings to you today Lindsee, thanks for sharing your pics with us:) Denver is special to me now too, since my younger sister has moved there about a year or so ago.

  24. 24
    Betty M says:

    I am seeing this Lindseee on a Fri Am a day before we have a huge 300 people plus wedding reception for our son and his new wife named Beth!!! I have a quiet corner to reflect before I dive into a hectic day.
    This story is long, so prepare to read it like a book!
    I have time this AM as noone is stirring yet and it is late by midwestern standards but we have much to do today!
    Our summer started in June, actually earlier than that when you consider all the wedding preps.
    Our son thought he would never find a christian girl to marry and often I could see he was lonely. He works in the Bakken much of the week as a line worker but is home weekends to do what he really loves.. farming and ranching.
    They married in June, in the lake country of Mn.
    Scott always wanted to drive his bride away from the church with his beloved Morgan horse and we needed a larger carriage than just the breaking cart we presently have. So the hunt was on. I found a Meadowbrook in Chapel Hill NC a good distance from the Dakota priaries but did find a transport company that brought it here with stops in Houston and Miami!! The lady who sold it lied and said it was in perfect shape! Not so! The shafts were broken. We got it cheap that is why. So hunted down new shafts, got them I stained and varnished til they were done. Scott thought the whole process of installing them would just take afew hours. The day of his rehersal he was still working on them. Getting the patent leather to wrap around the new shafts took some painstakingly slow work!
    His beloved Morgan named Sassy decided to go lame just afew weeks before this all was to take place. So, had to go to plan B and take our second driving horse out. Now Jill (the horse) is considerably less experienced but is much quieter than our older show horse. Problem was, to clear state lines there is alot of paper work, could we get it done on time? We got it faxed to us the morning we left!!
    The rehersal supper was at a lake side resort. It was a casual affair with about 70 guests. We had to serve which drove me nearly crazy. We bought a freezer to stock 70 lbs of hamburger, 90 brats(with trimmings)afew pans of bars and 30 gallons of premium ice cream. We were dairy farmers once so had inroads to getting the best icecream out there for the wedding!
    This was food for a thought had we had a breakdown on the road.
    Our big horse trailer had all that food plus our wedding clothes, a cart and a horse! It was totally amazing!! Everything got there in perfect shape.
    The wedding went off with a hitch, as even though it rained all day, the elements gave Scott his wish and he did drive off with his bride in the carriage complete with an umbrella. The horse was so good even though she spent the whole day in a church parking lot (you can only do these things in rural America!)
    The organist got ill afew weeks before the wedding so a dear friend stepped up and played the big pipe organ as the bride made her entrance! It sent chills down my spine and we almost all had a catch in our throats it was so beautiful.
    Now we are having a big ND reception this weekend. The little local town of 100 residents is getting ready. We are roasting one of our own hogs (remember in ND we tend to eat animals we raise at times!!!)The local ladies of the American Legion are serving a big meal we have a program in which seven of us will sing somethng we hardly practised but if the Lord shines His love on us like He did at the wedding it was a jaw dropping beautiful number we sounded amazing but it was not without some controversy!! The guys sang too loudly and not musically if you get what I mean so we had a good talk to them and it worked. Day of the performance it all came together.
    Scott is going to drive his bride in the carriage to the hall just before it starts.
    Then, last eve, we all scoured and brushed up an old city hall and strung hundreds of chinese fairy lights so we are decorating that old hall as we have a big band sound 15 piece orchestra coming to play polkas and “In the Mood” an old Glenn Miller song while those who dance try and see if they can still make music together so the town will be rocking Sat eve.
    It has been no vacation this year but alot of celebrating! I for one am happy it is nearly over so I can kick back and enjoy afew days of “dog days” before every thing shifts gears for fall.
    So that is and was my summer Lindsee I doubt many could top the activity we had going but it has been momentous!!
    As Beth always says if you read this all the way to here.. you won’t waste a prayer on us this weekend!!
    Betty M

  25. 25
    Melissa Ford says:

    Great pictures ! Thanks for sharing your special family time. I am a blue ridge mountain fan. I recommend the small town of Madison, VA and a hardy German meal at The Bavarian Chef.

    ~ Melissa

  26. 26
    Sheri says:

    Hey Lindsee!

    I love water and my favorite place is Holland, Michigan – on the shores of Lake Michigan. I get to spend a week there with my daughter and my 3 week old grandson in a week. Can’t wait!!

  27. 27
    Anita says:

    Thank you for the blog entry, One Slender Streak of Clarity … an encouragement to me and a must read for every woman/mother desiring to develop an authetic prayer/love relationship with the Father.

    May God’s favor continue over Living Proof Ministries, and may He prosper the work of your hands (Psalm 90:17).


  28. 28
    Romona Smith says:

    Ah. Girlie – I am so happy for you and your family. What an awesome time to share a LPL event together! Loved the family pics & God’s awesome workmanship. He is so good.
    My husband & I had the pleasure of vacationing in the Olympic Peninsula. Beautiful! And we did get a real close up of a herd of Rosevelt Moose.

  29. 29
    Patti Cocchi says:

    I have done almost all of your studies….just love you and your insight on the Word of God…you bring the people of the bible alive to us. and such detail…I read the Word and then you pick up on just a few words on the same verse and expound on it…where I did not even notice it…love this…you make me really stop and think about what I’m reading.
    Been with the Lord 40 yrs…77 yrs old…and can not get enough of the Word and studing it.
    Doing two of your studies at one time now…Breaking free (which I’ve had for years) and gave to other, but did’nt think it was for me..So we will see. and the other is The Patriarchs….so good!!!
    Thank you again for your love of the Word!!!!!

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