Bryce Canyon

Zion & Bryce Canyon Dream Comes True - DreamsCo

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The wind blew across the canyon as the sun set in pink, purple, and orange. The crowds had left and I sat alone on the edge of the rock staring at the magnificent display of nature. There were stories in the topography of Bryce Canyon. The erosional force of rainwater has shaped the colorful limestone rock into bizarre shapes, including slot canyons, and spires called "hoodoos." As I looked at one angle of the amphitheater it reminded me of the Terracotta Warriors in X'ian, China all lined up to march against the castle on the other side. I saw many castles that looked as if there were dragons wrapped around the gates. As I stared in awe of this magnificent display of nature, I felt like a child again making pictures out of clouds on a hot summer day.

I had always wanted to see the canyons of the west, but there was a part of me that thought I wouldn't love the desert. Being from New England I have a penchant for lush green landscapes and I thought of the dessert as dusty and dry. Little did I know that the high desert is far from tumble weeds and sand. My first glimpse of this area was driving into Zion National park late in the afternoon. The tables of rock met lush valleys of trees and rivers colored with wild flowers splashing the entire area with the look of autumn foliage in New England. The world looked painted in bright colors, the blue sky brighter against the red rock.

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I camped in Zion for two nights, staring up at the stars under the watchful eye of the canyon as streaks of green flew across the sky in a meteor shower. During the day I hiked to the Emerald Pools seeing waterfalls. Then up to Angels Landing where I made my way across the steep path holding onto chains to come to a place where I felt like I stood in middle of the entire canyon. I had no idea when I chose to come to Zion that it was the Yosemite of the Southwest, it's greenery lush and the canyon walls deep.

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My last day in Zion, I hiked the Narrows, a walk through water and narrow canyons. I bought ten dollar water shoes, grabbed a stick from the edge of the riverbed and began my journey. The rocks were slippery and impossible to see in the muddy water. At times the river rushed and I crossed class one rapids, the water becoming waist deep. It wouldn't have been a problem if I wasn't holding my camera in one hand determined to protect it from getting wet. I had journeyed into the canyon alone but quickly met up with a father and son hiking together. I decided I needed a yard stick for how deep the water became in each part and began to follow them up the canyon. For six hours we hiked to come to two small waterfalls. My new friends went further up the canyon, but I had to turn back. The waterway was slick and hard to maneuver at times, but I met up with two more men this time from Germany and we spent the next three hours chatting and walking as we stared at the beautiful canyon and slipped our way along the rocks.

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My dream had only been to see these two beautiful canyons, but once again my journey became better than I could've imagined. A friend of mine had flown in from the East Coast to meet up with me. We thought we'd spend three days in Bryce Canyon, but realized that we only needed a day. We moved on to a small town called Escalante outside of Bryce. There we found wonderful restaurants and a beautiful campground. We hiked to waterfalls and spent time in the town talking with locals. Our first night we went to a restaurant that looked like a cross between a mountain lodge with stuffed heads on the wall and an Amvets hall. Our waitress was a beautiful black woman with incredible style and grace who looked completely out of place in this strange restuarant. It turns out that she was from Paris. Then there was Jay, "Who Had Come to Play", our live music for the evening. He was a one man band in a top hat with a stuffed monkey on the cymbal with a tip jar.

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Sometimes I have no idea why I've chosen certain dreams to have on my list. I go in without expectation and hope that the experience will be worth my time and moneyt. With each dream that comes true, I realize that this journey isn't about checking off items, but allowing the world to unveil it's beauty in every form. Zion and Bryce, the town of Escalante is a treasure, a beautiful painting of how amazing this world and life can be.

Showing Fear Instead of Confidence - DreamsCo

I'm embarrassed to say that it's been two months since I've blogged. It hasn't been for want or lack of things to say, but work has kept me incredibly busy. I've been working hard to launch my new business, writing my second novel, still working on readying my first novel The Lake House for publication, and all and all taking care of the things that need to get done. I did have an incredible moment when a box of my advance reader copies of The Lake House showed up on my front door (Isn't the cover pretty). Then there was the moment when my friends realized my book is now available for pre-order on Amazon and everyone ordered it. You can also catch my guest blogs on Women's Fiction Blog about what it was like to become a writer with Simon & Schuster. I've been going through a tremendous amount of doubt lately. First of all, there's the worry about writing a second book within a years time. I've finished my full synopsis and I'm waiting on my agent to say yay or nay. It's a vulnerable time and fear has taken over my brain like an unwelcome house guest.  I'm starting my new business and I keep wondering what the heck I'm doing. Who am I to think that I can sell high-end fashion? Then there's the doubt that I can make the rest of my dreams come true. Between the money needed for travel and the time because of work, I just can't see my way through to finish. I've been in a funk of depression even when I take the time to go out dancing. I just can't see how it's all going to work out.

Last Sunday I competed in figure skating and as we took the ice for warm-up I realized all the other competitors were a level higher than me. I watched them fly around the rink with surety after so many years of competing and I lost all confidence. My coach called me over to the boards after a few minutes of warm-up and asked, "Where's the woman who goes after everything with everything she has? I know what you can do, and I'm not seeing you out there I'm seeing your fear." Well that was a smack of cold water to the face. I went out and found my legs and my confidence and things improved greatly. I missed the silver medal by one judge and was happy with my program.

In some ways, I think I've been showing my fear to the world and to myself lately instead of the woman who's made over seventy of her biggest dreams come true.

I've said before that our dreams are the road map to lives we are meant to live. As I went through my week I realized how much my life has changed since making my list of dreams. I now write fiction for one of the biggest publishers in the world. My work day includes finding high-end artists of beautiful products. I go to private parties in Napa at wineries on a regular basis. I dance and figure skate and I'm surrounded by people who support and love me. As my book goes to publication I will be writing a second novel, launching my new business, traveling domestically and internationally, figure skating and competing, and trying to make almost twenty of my biggest dreams come true. This is the life I was meant to live and though my confidence gets shaken, all it takes is that cold water to the face to remind me to enjoy the ride.