Wednesday, December 6, 2017

IWSG: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 ~ Hello from Surprise!





It's the first Wednesday of the month:
the day when members of the
Insecure Writer's Support Group
share their writing struggles
and writing successes
and offer their encouragement
and support to fellow writers.





To visit the IWSG website, click here.

To become a member of the IWSG, click here.

Our wonderful co-hosts who are volunteering today,
along with IWSG founder Alex Cavanaugh are:
Julie Flanders,  Shannon Lawrence,  Funny Blue (that's me), and Heather Gardner,.

I hope you have a chance to visit today's hosts and thank them for co-hosting.
I'm sure they would appreciate a visit and an encouraging comment.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Every month the IWSG poses a question
that members can answer with advice, insight,
a personal experience, or a story in their IWSG posts.

Or, the question can inspire members
if they aren't sure what to write about on IWSG Day.

Remember the question is optional.
This month's featured question is:

As you look back on 2017, with all its successes/failures, if you could backtrack, what would you do differently?

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2017 has been an odd year, from beginning to end.  
I'll be happy to turn the calendar to 2018.


About to Enter an Ice Fog
Walsenburg, Colorado, USA
November 28, 2017


I'll finish it where I started, in Arizona, 
with lots of places between Bullhead City and Surprise.


Back in the Sonoran Desert
Land of the Saguaro
New River, Arizona, USA
November 29, 2017



2017:  Great people, fun, experiences, and learning ~
one serious health challenge and one new eye.
Not nearly enough writing.
If I could backtrack, I'd be less anxious.


Near the Summit of Raton Pass
 (7,834 ft/ 2388 m) Mountain Pass on the Colorado-New Mexico Border
November 28, 2017




My life fell into disarray near the end of July,
and everything came tumbling down:
health, order, blogging, writing.
I couldn't get back on top of it.

Navajo Nation
Near Gallup, New Mexico, USA
November 28, 2017




In the last month, I gave up and let it all collapse.
In the last week we drove to Arizona skirting the Colorado Plateau
from Denver to Sante Fe, to Albuquerque, to Flagstaff, to Surprise
through some of the loneliest real estate in the country,
especially when dressed in its late November browns and grays.


Aurora to Surprise




My kind of country,
restorative and soul-filling!

Big Rock Country
Lupton, Arizona, USA
November 29, 2017




Drawing Near Flagstaff
Flagstaff, Arizona, USA
November 29, 2017




Despite all my anxious worrying, the world did not stop turning.
I'm ready to jump in again.
Happy holidays with your family and friends!
And happy writing in December!

Here's to Good Friends and New Adventures!
Jon, Terry, Louise (Me), and Cindy
Surprise, Arizona, USA
November 30, 2017




P.S.  My apologies if you visited my post earlier in the day.
Somehow I managed to post an incomplete draft.
This is my story of 2017:  
If something can go wrong with technology, it will.

Fortunately, I was able to quickly rewrite the rest.
I will not be anxious.  I will not be anxious.
I'm going on a hike in the White Tank Mountains
this morning for some restoration and soul-filling.
If the world stops turning, you can blame me!


117 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing your year with us, there are some awesome photos there.
    Being anxious is one of those things that although it serves no useful purpose (except to make you feel awful), doesn't it make us human too?

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    1. Thanks, Angela! My apologies for the incomplete draft ~ technical difficulties (me). Enjoy your IWSG day!

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    1. Thanks, Patsy! My apologies for the incomplete draft. Story of my 2017 life. If I can screw up technology, I will! enjoy visiting around on IWSG Day!

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  3. What an adventure and gorgeous pictures! I hope you're feeling better. Take Care.

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    1. Thanks, Cathrina! I was feeling well until I woke up this morning and realized I had published a partial draft of my post! I'm sorry. You have a great IWSG Day! Mine can only go up!

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  4. Thank you for the road trip, and for co-hosting. Best wishes to you in 2018.

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    1. Thanks, Lisa! I woke up to discover that I had published an incomplete draft of my post ~ I apologize! Upwards and onwards! Best wishes to you in the new year!

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  5. Snow near the New Mexico border! That must have been a shock. As for 2017 ending, I'm feeling the same way. The year was something else. Hate to wish time to speed up but...

    Best to you in the year to come, Louise. You deserve the best!

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    1. Hi, Joylene! The snow could have been worse in Raton Pass, so we were actually relieved and grateful. It's been very dry in Colorado. You've had a much more difficult year than I have, so have a great time turning that calendar year over to 2018. I was up in Victoria in September, and I had a chance to go out on the Salish Sea in a zodiac. I was thinking of you and your BC origins while I was out on the water (and other times too). I hope all is well with you and that you are feeling like yourself again! Happy holidays and all the best to you in the coming year!

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    2. I haven't been to that part of BC in many many years. Now I'm hoping that one day soon we may see photos of your trip??? Best to you, dear Louise. You are one of my favourite people; but, you already know that. Thank you.

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  6. Health crap is never ever fun, ugg, can sure spoil a year indeed. But have to remember, the less you give a crap, the more crap you can take haha No snow sure is a win, can the cats and I come too?

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    1. By all means, come on down, Pat! I'm sure Orlin and Cassie would love chasing scorpions here ~ LOL! I'd rather tumble into a nice snowbank than a cholla cactus, let me tell you. The hiking group I went out with earlier today really warned us desert newbies to watch out for them. I'm trying to get back in the swing of things! Good thing I'm optimistic. Take care, my friend!

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  7. That's the spirit!
    Great photos. Even in November, the desert is beautiful.
    Thanks for co-hosting today.

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    1. Thanks, Alex! My hike in the White Tank Mountains this morning was glorious. The air was cool and clean and clear, and the cacti were amazing ~ Something to learn in every direction! I know you've spent time in Arizona, so I'm sure you relate to what I'm talking about. Take care, my friend! And Merry Christmas ~ I hope that you and your family have a wonderful time.

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  8. Thank you for co-hosting and sharing all of those wonderful pictures. I'm jealous of the hiking. Best of luck in 2018!

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    1. Thanks, Tamara! The hike today was awesome. Should we move to Surprise, I am definitely joining the Grand Hiking Group. I can't seem to do a post without photos ~ These were all drive-bys at 75 mph. I love the wide open spaces of the west. I hope that you and your loved ones have a wonderful holiday season!

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  9. Such wonderful pictures! I hope you're feeling better soon. Happy holidays!

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    1. Thanks, Megan! After writing, I love photography (even if it's point-and-shoot from the car). Have a great holiday season with your loved ones!

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  10. Thank you for co-hosting and sharing your story of this past year - the good and the bad. Happy holidays and all the best for the coming year.

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    1. Thanks, Ellen! The bad only makes you stronger and enjoy the good more. Happy holidays to you and happy writing in December!

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  11. Beautiful views, but I'd still miss all the trees. Hope 2018 is less anxious for you.

    Thanks for co-hosting this month!

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    1. Thanks, Ken! There are the tree-lovers and the open-space lovers. I never thought I'd get over missing trees, but I have become a big skies gal. Happy holidays to you, and happy writing too!

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  12. Change is always hard, even when going back to something familiar. Here's to hoping 2018 is much better!

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    1. Thanks, Charity! Wishing you and your loved ones a happy holiday season and a very happy 2018!

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  13. Awesome pictures! What a fun journey. Here's hoping 2018 is less anxious for all of us! Thank you for sharing and thanks for co-hosting this month.

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    1. Thanks, Christine! I'm improving at snapping photos at 75 mph/121kph on road trips. I'm going to try a class on stretching and relaxing tomorrow. Maybe I can cultivate an inner calm instead of worrying ~ LOL Yes, the entire world could use a less anxious 2017. I hope that you had an enjoyable IWSG Day!

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  14. You visit all the places I wish I would. And I feel your pain with the incomplete post. Been there, gasped in shock, fixed it, moved on!

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    1. Thanks for the understanding, Jacqui! I hate when I do that! Onward and upward! Have a good one!

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  15. Worry never helps anything, but I can't stop doing it either! I hope your health improves and that you have an awesome 2018. Love the picture of the saguaro cacti. I got to visit those in Tucson a while back and was super impressed.

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    1. Thanks, Joey! I'm definitely looking forward to a bright and happy 2018! I am fascinated with saguaro cacti ~ so different from anything I've lived around in my past. Wishing you an awesome 2018 too! Take care!

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  16. What an incredible journey; both personal and travel. Love your photos and admire your courage. Welcome back to the land of the living. Like others, it's been a tough year and so was 2016. I wish you continued success. Thank you for co-hosting the December blog hop.

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    1. Thanks for your understanding, Lynn! Wishing you continued success and happy writing in December!

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  17. You had quite a journey in 2017. I can understand why a new year looks darned good right now. Here's hoping it's a 180 degrees different from this one.

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    1. Thanks, C Lee! You've had your challenges too! Wishing you a happy and productive 2018!

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  18. I hope you had a wonderful hike! :)

    Happy holidays to you and yours, and best wishes for 2018!

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    1. The hike was awesome, Madeline, and I met a number of great new people. Should we decide to move to Surprise, I know the first group I'll officially join here. Nothing is more restoring to me than getting out in nature. Have a wonderful holiday with your loved ones and happy writing in December!

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  19. Beautiful pictures and I will follow your lead and try to worry less in 2018! I'm glad you're getting back into the swing of things. Thanks for co-hosting and happy holidays to you and your family as well!

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    1. Thanks, Kathryn! I am definitely going to worry less in 2018! I know that worrying too much isn't helpful. Wishing you happy and productive writing in the coming months!

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  20. Great pictures and the message surrounding them are spot on. Thank you for co-hosting today.
    Wishing you all the best and a successful crossover into 2018.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

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    1. Thank you for your kind and encouraging comment! All the best to you!

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  21. Be less anxious--that should be one of my goals for 2018. Love the pictures! Thanks for co-hosting! Happy Holidays!

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    1. Thanks, Cherie! Happy Holidays to you too!

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  22. Thanks for co-hosting this month! Here's to a better end in 2018.

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    1. Thanks, S. E.! And definitely ~ here's to a happy new 2018 to everyone!

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  23. Looks like an interesting road trip, but so cold! Love the scenery everywhere you drove through. Arizona will be soul and body warming. :-) Health is the most important thing in life. You don't realize it until something serious happens to you or your loved one(s).

    Happy writing in 2018 - I wish you a non-anxious new year. Thank you for co-hosting this month!

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    1. Thanks, Liesbet! Yes, our road trip was cold and damp, but I love the Four Corners region in any season. Health is foundational to life. It grows more precious every year. Co-hosting is always a blast!

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  24. Yeah, sometimes Life just jumps up and bites us on the ass. Nothing we can do about it. Next year will be better!

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    1. Thanks, Debra! You're always simpatico! I hope all is well with you! Take care!

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  25. Hello, I'm new to IWSG. Great to meet you. I love these areas too. In Arizona, Sedona is so beautiful. In Utah, the area around Moab is very spiritual. You may not have done a ton of writing in 2017 (nor did I), but you did a ton of living. Isn't that ultimately more important?

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    1. Hi, Cathy! Welcome to the IWSG! I've been a member for around three years, and I have found it to be a very supportive group of people. Living fully is truly important, and I am greedy for experiencing life. I discovered Moab when I was sent from Calgary to sit on a well that was drilling in Bluff, Utah in late October, 1981. I came through Moab from SLC on my way to Bluff and stopped for supper at a little restaurant with a counter. I sat at the counter, and I have never forgotten the anxious waitress. Her husband had just lost his job in a mine in the La Sal Mountains, and she was afraid that the town was going to dry up and blow away with the closing of the mine. Neither of us could see the future that put Moab on the world's notice. I feel a deep spiritual connection to that area as well ~ Perhaps more so than any other place in the world. It is truly special. Wishing you a happy holiday season with your loved ones!

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  26. Gosh, a lot of familiar sites in your photos for this post. Maybe we've passed on the highways at some point because I've traveled some of these same highways over the past year. It all went by too quickly for me, but I've had a good year and wouldn't mind more of it.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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    1. Hi, Lee! I think it's magnificent country, and I'm happy every time I travel through it. The years fly by faster and faster every year it seems. I'm hoping that 2018 gives you much more of the goodness that 2017 did! Happy Holidays!

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  27. Lovely photos! I battle that anxiety demon, as well. And it doesn't help that I live in a perpetual state of rush and chaos. But the writing helps ground me in the end. So glad you're ready to get back at it! Thanks for co-hosting today.

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    1. Thanks, Lee! Even though I am retired, I always seem to be in a rush and fighting chaos. That's probably because I enjoy all that life has to offer and can't help flitting from flower to flower. Writing grounds me too, something I forget at times. Have a happy holiday season and happy writing in December!

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  28. Thank you for co-hosting this month, Louise. You have had a crazy year. I hope your health is better. I know that route you took and you're right about it being lonely. Kind of scary, too, esp. with the snow and fog. Glad you made it safely to your destination. Sometimes we have to let our writing fall by the wayside for a time. Concentrate on your health and family. When you're ready, it will come. Happy holidays to you and your family.

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    1. Thanks for your encouragement, Diane! What a wonderfully kind comment! I have been concentrating on my health which has been challenging because I am a high energy, go go person. I've been gnashing my teeth at forced inactivity quite a few weeks this year. Things are improving, and I am looking forward to Christmas and a new year. Sending you best wishes for a happy holiday season with your loved ones!

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  29. I've always loved the ocean, but your pictures convinced me I'd be equally as happy around that sort of breathtaking scenery. Just gorgeous! I kinda think a town named Surprise should be followed by an exclamation point, and one should always raise one's eyebrows when saying it. :)

    Sorry for the bumpy road in 2017. Let's hope it's freshly paved for the new year.

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    1. Hi, Susan! I grew up by the ocean, and my husband Terry has made sure I get to the ocean at least once a year. The wide open spaces of the west are like the ocean in that there are huge skies stretching to the horizon in most directions. I think its the sky I love the most, the expansiveness of it. I may very well be ending up living in Surprise, and I agree with you about following the name with an exclamation mark! Considering I live my live in exclamation marks, I think it's deliciously funny that I likely will live in Surprise! Here's to newly paved roads for everyone in 2018! All the best!

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  30. When I read this, I read it with your optimistic spirit throughout. You've been through much, but you've continued to keep your spirit alive and in tact. Much love to you and your family and friends. I love those smiling faces! You deserve that happiness going into 2018! Also, thank you for co-hosting on top of all that!

    Elsie

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    1. Hi, Elsie! It's so good to hear from you! And thank you for your kind and compassionate comment! Wishing you a great holiday season with your loved ones!

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  31. That was quite an adventure. I hope things are going a bit better now. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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    1. They are, Anna! Thanks for the well wishes! I love road trips. My geologist's heart loves reading the unfolding story of the Earth as the miles fly by. I never tire of observing landscapes. Happy writing in December!

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  32. You've had quite a year. Wishing good health to you and yours! Thank you for the photos. They're wonderful as usual. Thank you for co-hosting. Happy holidays!

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    1. Thanks for your kind and uplifting comment, Adrienne! I can't do a blog without photos. I love sharing our beautiful world. Happy holidays to you too!

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  33. I hope you enjoyed the hike! We'll be driving from Colorado Springs to Cali this coming summer, so along a similar route.

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    1. I had a marvelous hike, Shannon! Getting out into nature is one of my most favorite things to do. The Sonoran Desert has a unique and striking beauty. Your route from CS to Cali will be HOT this summer. Happy Holidays! And happy writing in December!

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  34. Thanks for co-hosting this month. Sorry to hear about your troubles this year. I'm glad it seems to have turned around. Love your pictures. Thanks for sharing them with us. I wish you all the best in the new year.

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    1. Thank you for your kind and understanding comment, Toi! Things are turning around, and I'm thick in an alder bush tangle of catching up on responsibilities I had to let go of. I have a feeling that 2018 is going to be a very good year. I'm glad that you enjoyed my pictures. I'm as much an amateur photographer as an amateur writer! One day, sooner than later, I'm going to get my book published and then I'll feel like a real writer. Have a wonderful holiday season!

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  35. I, too, get a tremendous lift out in the great wide open. Love me some Catalina Mts in Arizona. You can really breathe deep. May 2018 be your year! Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Thanks, Nancy! I wasn't familiar with the Catalinas, since I haven't spent much time in Arizona. They're gorgeous, and I'm sure that getting out into them is soul-restoring. I love fresh mountain air. It's right up there with fresh ocean air. Have a happy holiday season and a happy writing month.

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  36. Gorgeous photographs! I really love road trips. Thanks for sharing yours, and for co hosting this month.

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    1. Thanks, Karen! I really love road trips too, especially in the west with its wide open spaces and big skies! It's always a pleasure to co-host for the IWSG. I really enjoy interacting with fellow members! Happy holidays!

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  37. love that country you’re traveling. I’ve been over Raton Pass 3 times, but always in a train.

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    1. I think it would be fun to go over Raton Pass in a train, Sage! On the 28th we were just glad to get over the pass safely. The snow was expected to have been much worse. You're blessed (cursed?) with the wandering gene just like me. One of these times over Raton, I'm going to stop and explore the nearby Capulin Volcano. So far we've been on the way to somewhere else with a schedule to stick to. Terry is not as enamored with volcanoes as I am, but he's a good sport! I hope you're having lots of fun with Mimi!

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  38. doesn't seem like it's almost a thousand miles from denver to arizona but dang.

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    1. Hi, Adam! We tend to forget just how big the US is in size, and this route is wide open and largely empty. Absolutely beautiful! I hope all is well with you and Daisy! Take care!

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  39. What an interesting journey 2017 has been for you. Love the photos--thank you!

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    1. Thanks, Jennifer! There was tremendous good in 2017, even if it had its challenges. Wishing you success with the upcoming publication of your book!

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  40. Thanks for co-hosting today! ‘If something can go wrong with technology, it will.’ Oh I understand that feeling all too well. All month long for NaNo I couldn’t get into Gdocs and now that it’s over, just like I thought, it’s working fine again. There’s a three month long writing challenge starting in January 2018 I’m thinking about taking part in. It’d be just my luck if I encountered the same problem again.
    Keep adventuring. And Happy Holidays!

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    1. Happy Holidays, Lidy! Technology has given us the capability of doing things people only dreamed of in the past, but it is paid for with frustration! A three month writing challenge sounds intriguing. You have my well wishes if you tackle it! Have fun with your loved ones and friends this Christmas season!

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  41. Thanks for co-hosting this month. I love your photo-journey. Good luck in the new year.

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    1. Thanks, Olga! All the best to you in 2018 too!

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  42. Thanks so much for co-hosting, Louise! Lovely pics. I hope everything is okay with your new eye. :) Also, I noticed that your Gravatar isn't linked to your blog. If you login to Gravatar and link it, all the wordpress IWSG members will be able to find you. :)

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    1. Thanks, Raimey! My eye surgery was having a cataract removed ~ Not nearly as serious as the other event that precipitated consequences like a stack of dominoes going down. Now the world is vibrant: brighter, cleaner, and clearer with my new eye. It was an interesting and challenging time because my husband and I had our left eyes done back to back just before Thanksgiving and between long trips. We were the first couple the surgery staff had worked on one after the other, and my comical-when-he's-nervous husband kept trying to get a BOGO or a discount for the two of us. I won't even admit to how we managed to drive to Surprise, each with one good eye and prescription glasses that no longer worked.

      I have no clue what Gravatar is, but I'll look into it. Thanks so much for the tip! And a happy holiday season to you and your loved ones!

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  43. Thanks for co-hosting this month, Louise. I, too, love the pics of your travels down to Arizona. Here's to seeing clearly the way to move forward in 2018. You are in my prayers, my dear. Happy Holidays!

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    1. Thank you for your prayers, Victoria! I am doing better, except that I have to sort out the disarray my live has fallen into. Just a next step, next step process that is maddeningly slow. I'm starting to understand that all the anxiety and worry don't accomplish anything constructive or productive. All the best to you in 2018 and Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones!

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  44. Sending positive thoughts as 2017 gears down and you start prep for 2018. Hope you enjoyed your hike! :)

    With Love,
    Mandy

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    1. Thanks, Mandy! My hike was awesome and just what I needed. If my husband and I move to Surprise, one of the first things I do will be to join the Grand Hiking Club. What a great group of people I met! And the Sonoran Desert was magnificent! Have a happy holiday season with your loved ones!

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  45. May your Arizona adventures provide the healing solace that surely is your due. I wouldn't live anywhere else ;-) Wonderful pictures, and memories to match, I hope. Very best wishes from Tucson!

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    1. Best wishes to you Diedre! I'm enjoying Arizona thoroughly right now, but I worry about braising and simmering in the summer sun! I've met a lot of people who love Arizona! Glad to hear that you do too! Wishing you and your loved ones Happy Holidays!

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  46. It looks like an amazing place to heal. Hoping you have a great end to the year.

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    1. Thanks, Susan! Wishing you and your family the best of holiday seasons!

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  47. You are adorable!! Keep going my friend! I have a feeling 2018 is going to be amazing!!! Big Hugs!!!

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    1. Big hugs to you, Stacy! You are an uplifting spirt, my friend!

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  48. Loved the pictures. Happy Holidays and Wonderful 2018.

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    1. Thanks, Juneta! All the best to you! Take care!

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  49. I am so proud of you that in spite of all odds you stood strong and unshaken with your optimism and uplifting attitude dear Louise!

    Loved these places you visited in 2017 ,amazing views !

    my favorite is same as your's "the big rock country" truly appealing and inviting !

    Thank you sooooooo much for this last photo ,this is PRECIOUS!!! with your adorable smile :)

    Wishing you a happy ,less anxious ,more positive new year ahead dear friend!

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    1. You always lift my spirits, Baili! I am looking forward to 2018. I think a few big uncertainties will be resolved; and if not, I'm getting more used to uncertainty, so it will get easier. I love this part of the world with its magnificent rocks, wide open spaces, and endless skies. It is amazing to walk in its emptiness and soak up its spirituality. The Four Corners area is where I feel closest to God and eternity. My mother felt this same way when we explored it together. I'm hoping that you will have a happy and fulfilling new year too! I'm so glad that you are in my life! Sending you hugs!

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    2. wishing you and your precious family a lovable ,prosperous and full of happiness Christmas dear Louise!

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    3. Thank you, dear Baili! Terry and I have had a lovely Christmas. We're away from family, but celebrated Christmas with very close friends ~ Plus lots of time on our phones with family. A whole lot has happened in the past two weeks, which is why I haven't been on blogger. I'll be posting to explain in the next day or two. Sending you love and hugs!

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  50. Love your photos, especially the one of Walsenburg - it brings back such memories for me, since I'm originally from Denver. I hope you are having a good holiday season. Thanks for keeping up with the IWSG. I appreciate you! http://www.dianeweidenbenner.com/iwsg-end-of-year-musings/

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    1. Thank you, Diane! I find those giant wind turbines in Walsenburg compelling and more than a little scary and ominous! I grew up in Nova Scotia and several other parts of Eastern Canada. I came to Colorado when I was 31, and now it's home to me. It is a varied and beautiful state. I enjoy co-hosting for the IWSG because interacting with its members truly enjoyable. Have a lovely holiday season!

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  51. I love those landscapes. And don't feel bad about the partial draft--I messed up the posting time on mine, so it didn't go up until I got around to checking about 10 a.m. West Coast time :p We all have our days :D

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    1. Thanks, Rebecca! It's always nice to know that someone understands! I'm a big fan of the wide open spaces. These landscapes speak to my heart. Wishing you happy holidays with your loved ones, and happy writing in December!

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  52. I am hoping 2018 brings everything you desire.... and then some! So sorry to hear that life sorta fell apart half way through the year - not fun. Good things for you in the future!!

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    1. Thanks, Dreaming! How lovely to hear from you! Wishing you happy holidays and a happy new year!

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  53. Wow! Thanks for your photos, and I hope you are feeling much better now. I need more hiking in my life! Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Thanks, Lisa! Life is improving, and hiking in the White Tank Mountains was awesome! It's always a pleasure to co-host. Happy holidays with your loved ones!

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  54. I'd love to travel the southwest someday. I'm in Australia now, so it's a bit difficult at the moment, but one of these days... Thanks for sharing the awesome pics! Have a great new year! :-D

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  55. Hi Louise :) Your post touched me. :) I'm so glad you have your spirit back. The photos are beautiful. It really does look peaceful there. Nice happy photo at the end!!! :)

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  56. I feel you on the overwhelming year. Maybe I need to make a road trip.

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  57. I'm glad you were able to just stop and take a breather. I think from time to time we should all do that. It looks like you are having a wonderful time on your travels. I've been to Flagstaff, but it was many moons ago. I do remember really loving the scenery there.

    As for me, I can't think of a single thing I'd change about 2017. 2016 was a really rough year for me health wise and I slipped into a small sort of depression because of it. This year I did everything I could to regain control of my health and it paid off quite well for me. Self care has been my top priority for this year and it will continue into the new year as well.

    Stopping in to wish you and your family happy holidays!

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  58. Sounds like you had amazing time. We need to stop and refill our creative wells.
    Happy New Year!

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    1. Happy New Year, Nasreen! Thanks for visiting today. I managed to get January's post up after you stopped by. We just got back from Surprise, Arizona last night. Wishing you all the best in 2018.

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  59. Sorry about your health. Love the photos. Hope this year is much, much, much better for you and your family!

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    1. Thanks, I.B.! 2018 is off to a good start. My husband and I arrived home in Aurora from Surprise last night, which is why I didn't get today's IWSG's post up until after you had visited. I appreciate your stopping by and leaving a kind and encouraging comment. All the best to you!

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Thank you for your comments! I appreciate the time and energy you put into making them very much.