Who Do You Think I AM?

Mt Evans, CO - Sunrise Meditation at !4,265'

Mt Evans, CO – Sunrise Meditation at 14,265′

Who am I? Or, more notably, who am I to you? A loaded question no matter how you turn it! Seems we spend our entire lives in transition developing ourselves into the beings we perceivably want to be all the while retaining the right to make changes at any given time. When do those changes [real and personal] take place, generally out of intense situations. The following is exactly that… real, intense and personal. Are we still in transition, you bet, and most likely will always be. The next time you think you know someone, or feel like judging them or just want to make a quick assessment of why someone is the way they are, you might want to stop and think, we all have our own personal hell we’re either going through or have been through.

Read on at Elephant Journal – “What ‘Be Authentic’ Actually Means”

Peace,

MAD :)

And To Think I Almost Didn’t Go

The Loch, Rocky Mountain National Park

The Loch, Rocky Mountain National Park

Ever had one of those mornings where you didn’t want to get up? Sure, we all have. Today was one of those days, just leave me alone to die. Coffee won’t fix the clouds in my head, Advil won’t get rid of the pain in my body and by and far…I just didn’t feel like being alive this morning. Of course the stubbornness kicked in and I got dressed, put all the gear in the truck and we headed out for a hike in Rocky Mountain National Park that we had never been on before. The Loch [10,200'] is an amazing 6 mile roundtrip hike up to an amazing high country lake surrounded by snow capped peaks! After we made the lake I couldn’t believe I almost didn’t go! Hell, before we made the lake I couldn’t believe it. What an incredible day in Colorado. Awesome weather, great trail conditions and at my side my best friend and soul mate [the "D" in MAD]. See the photos of our outing to The Loch on the MAD Facebook page.

Peace,

MAD :)

How We Made it 30 years: A Letter From My Husband

How We Made it 30 Years

How We Made it 30 Years

It seems that everyone else knows the secret to making marriages last—everyone except for us.

It seems that speculation abounds as to which relationships and marriages will last for any length of time, and for how long.

Everyone has ideas about what it takes to have lasting lifelong love, and what should and should not be taking place in a couple’s life for a relationship to be healthy.

But, what does it take to keep love and a marriage strong?

Now, I know there are a plethora of helpful books, articles and blogs written that discuss just this topic. I should know—I have been reading these since the beginning of our marriage. Well before that, if I’m being honest.

Countless references, I couldn’t even begin to guess how many, from every angle and perspective—religious, spiritual, psychological—and from couples that want to share how they made it to 10, 15, 20, or however many years. I have really appreciated all that they had to say, and I still read them, but from a very different perspective—one where I look to see if we live or have applied any of the suggestions they have made.

It’s dizzying to keep up with it all.

Yu know how it goes…the proper way of conducting yourself during the dating phase, best types of premarital counseling, making sure to stay in shape, always looking your best, saying I love you, not going to bed angry, having date nights, keeping sex alive, developing your own interests, having time apart to miss each other, learning each other’s love languages and so many other dos and don’ts.

Some of these things we’ve done and some we haven’t, and I know that some would definitely not work for us and that we understand some concepts entirely differently than another couple who reads them.

As I sit here, 30 years into a marriage with a man that I adore and love more than I adequately know how to put into words, I can’t honestly give an answer as to how we have been together all these years. All I know is that I love him with every fiber of my being: body, soul and spirit!

Love is more important to me than anything else that this world has to offer, it will be all that will matter to me in the end.

I asked my husband the same question: How have we been married 30 years after marrying so young? His response brought me to my knees, though I’m not sure it provided any clear answers. I’ll let you be the judge.

Click here to read the letter my husband wrote in response [published on Elephant Journal]

Peace,

MAD

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I Wasn’t Thinking at the Time

I Wasn't Thinking at the Time

I Wasn’t Thinking at the Time

How does one speak out against the norm and not incriminate themselves? Standing in opposition to the societal medium that seemingly is at odds with everyone, though accepted by most, perhaps as an acknowledgement to “that’s just the way it is” on the one hand feels like a personal exodus and self realization, and yet on the other hand it feels almost criminal on a communal level to have such private theorizations. And the masses respond, “you’re nuts, you’re just being rebellious or perhaps you’re just envious…” The list of responses [or excuses] from the critics is long and tiring to say the least.

Talking about hanging over a barrel! Are the business and political leaders of the world really driving us into a corner without a fight or are we believing that it’s just all part of change in the way we do things? Sure, whatever. Perhaps feeling like you’re going crazy as a result of living outside the box is just what happens when you give up and let it be. Who’s fight is it anyway? Either blend in and deal the best you can or find your own private Idaho disappearing from time and humanity altogether. Isn’t that what everyone wants anyway, to not make waves, be quiet and blend? Moral justice seems to be upside down and redefined, if it exists at all.

Sell your soul or find yourself is life’s question in a rotten and objectionable culture that seemingly breeds spiritless responses from the masses. Who has the energy to even care? Check in and fight or check out and withdraw are the only viable options, both requiring mass energy output to sustain the outcome, while accepting it as the norm requires little if any response other than dying to self. Where has passion gone? Where is love? Has uniqueness and evolutionary creativity been subjugated to the lifeless abyss along with common decency for our fellow man? The darkness is as cold as the blackest night spent alone without a voice to calm the fears of what our imaginations can produce.

Does not religion and philosophy overcome during our dark times? Or are our great thinkers and heartfelt leaders of our supposed moral institutions delving deeper into their doomsday renderings claiming all is on track with what will be? The end is near therefore do nothing and wait for it. Yeah, well the sun did rise this morning and the energy of that sunrise is telling us another day has dawned and it’s once again time to get up, live and try to overcome what indeed is creeping in as a cancerous and malevolent entity.

The evil man has within him to destroy on all levels of the human existence is no more than a personal choice. Indeed, there is within all people the exact opposite, what are anyone of us influenced by and listening to at any given moment in time is a question to ponder as we all live with the consequences of those decisions. Are the choices we make made from a well balanced and educated approach or do we follow the memes of our culture. Needless to say we all live and die by the choices we make, regardless if they come to fruition or not. Was it a right choice and can you live with yourself after making it is something we will all decide in the privacy of our own minds. To say “I wasn’t thinking at the time” is an impossibility, you were and you made your choice, now we all have to live with it…

What we do in the shadow of other’s choices is our own, we choose how to respond and move forward, we choose to perpetuate the same negative energy or move forward in a positive way. No victim mentality here, we own our choices and responses to how we’ve been treated and should act out of our own and not blame someone else just because they treated us badly otherwise the cycle continues.

Peace,

MAD :)

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Let it Snow!!!

Ascent to Blue Lake in the Indian Peaks Wilderness

Ascent to Blue Lake in the Indian Peaks Wilderness

Our excitement has been mounting lately as the weather in Colorado is beginning its seasonal change from long warm days to short, cold and snowy events. Not to worry, we’re ready for the snow and can’t wait to dust off the snowshoes.

After a quick moving storm dumped several inches of snow in the high country this past week we headed up the first chance we got to check out the conditions and see nature in its raw form. Blue Lake is in the Indian Peaks Wilderness at just over 11,000′ and offers spectacular mountain views. Unfortunately those views were put on hold for clouds, fog and snow squalls moving in unannounced…all the better!

This was just the sort of hike we needed to get our snow legs back on for the fast approaching winter hiking season. Indeed,  an amazing day full of all types of weather and trail conditions. See our latest outing photos on the MAD Facebook page, enjoy.

Peace,

MAD :)

Let Creativity Reign

Birds of a Feather

Birds of a Feather

Birds of a feather flock together…hmmm. Interesting the terms we use on a day in day out basis, but do we ever think about them…challenge them…indeed, are we going to compare ourselves to the animal kingdom? I guess that’s a can of worms, but don’t say that with a bird around! It all sounds like a meme if you really think about it. Interestingly, the very word [according to Webster] is an idea, behavior, style, or usage that spreads from person to person within a culture. Question is, why? Is what’s good for the goose good for the gander really true, or is it what we want to be true?

OK, enough cliche remarks! What we want to know is where’s individuality in today’s society? Be yourself, and by and far, be honest about being yourself. We seem to be so stricken with “what’s acceptable” that we lose self in the process and strive to be what’s popular. Look around, who is doing their own thing on any given level of the human experience? Most of us are so ingrained with societal norms we probably don’t know any better. We’ve all been infected by this mind numbing generator to some degree, and there’s certainly no place, institution or organization that is not exempt from its grasp. We all do what we believe to be acceptable and right through our own upbringing to the nth degree. Flock together if you must, but please, put on your own colors, listen to your own beat and let creativity reign.

Peace,

MAD

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Changing Seasons

Crater Lakes, James Peak Wilderness

Crater Lakes, James Peak Wilderness

In what seemed like a blink of an eye, the amazing gold colors of the aspens in the Colorado high country have given way to signs of winter. Fresh snow is now becoming the dominant feature, not to mention those cool morning temperatures along the trail. Not to worry, each season has its own unique beauty and the experiences that go with them. We eagerly await the full onset of winter, dusting off our snowshoes and hitting the trail with eyes wide open to see what nature has in store in the coming months. As we’ve often stated, the same trail in different seasons always produces different and unique outings, we’ll take them all.

View more photos

Peace,

MAD :)

Exploring Off the Beaten Path

Nevadaville, CO

A recent outing led us through winding and twisting mountain roads high above and well out of site of the Denver metropolitan area. Leaving the hustle and bustle behind for the quiet energy of times gone by we set out on our historical journey. Ghost towns, abandoned mines and rough mountain roads were on the menu today as we lost ourselves in the rich history of Colorado’s mining history. View photos

I Love Watching You Live

Mt Flora

Mt Flora, CO [CDT]

Good morning beautiful, I hope you’re not tired of me rambling on about us…though, to some degree, I suppose it will continue. When you asked me to define “us” it set in motion a complex evolution of curiosities that I’ve determined will keep evolving just as our own relationship is. It’s really a simple matter to me, I love you for who you are, the incredible soul and mind I fell deeply in love with years ago. In a synoptic and uncomplicated approach to defining our relationship [from my own unadulterated view] nothing has changed. Sure, we have children together, we’ve grown older, our bodies are aging… so what. We’re here, you and me, going forward, living and loving, deeply impacted by each other and exploring life as it unfolds one day at a time. Am I ever afraid? Sure! But why would I be? I trust you with all my being! What I don’t trust is you out-living me. Morbid? No, just an honest response to real fear. I don’t want to ever wake up and make coffee for just me. I want to grow old with you, I want to be at your side when the end [of this life] comes, and I want to emerge on the other side with you and laugh about what we went through and how silly it really was in the context of eternity and all the preconceived notions humanity has about what it is. Keep it real I say, be yourself, physically, mentally, spiritually. We’ve lived, learned and grown up together. The only constant I want is you, here with me. Where we are otherwise is not always where we’ll be, or maybe it is…who knows, who cares, let’s just be. I didn’t choose to be with you for any one reason, G-d forbid! You are the complete package of a dream that only I could have had. Your unique being is the other half of my own bizarre and unorthodox self. What standard exists in the known universe that could possibly set a pattern for love? There are no books, nor are there any self-help classes to prepare, explain or allow anyone to grasp what truly develops emotionally on such transcendent and yet perplexing, and might I add, rather esoteric condition of the personal human existence. It just is, we just are, and, as we have experienced and lived out in our own lives, becomes. Mind, body and spirit melded into an emotional resonance of our true beings set forth in motion when we first made contact. But was that physical? Spiritual? Had we not already met in a life before? Were we not just reacting to what we already envisioned in our own dreams? Yeah, it seems a bit complicated, intriguing…though over the top. Indeed, it has made for great conversation, but on a rudimentary level I choose the simple observation of what it, that being us and our feelings that have withstood time and the fact that no matter what happens…it will always be us. Beyond that, I’d love to spend endless evenings with you contemplating the subject even if we come to no conclusion…and I hope we don’t! In my mind, there can be no reason for what is. If you’re ever wondering why I’m just staring at you, don’t worry, you don’t have BBQ sauce on your cheek, it’s purely because I love watching you live!

Peace,

MAD :)

Is Life Just a Grand Illusion?

Indian Peaks Wilderness

Is life just a grand illusion? The more time we spend in nature the more questions come to mind about how we as humans live, treat each other and exist in our daily lives back in the “man made world.” To each his own one might say. It’s funny though, watching nature play out in its private and somewhat cutoff existence from the rest of mankind, “naturally” evolving with time, ecosystems interacting, changing, growing and manipulating itself through the natural order of things, the everyday grind seems to reveal itself as a seemingly out of touch and cold unintended way of life. Granted man continues to chew up more space, always on the hunt for land to develop, there are places still remote and protected where time still stands still so to speak, quietly and almost effortlessly moving forward without notice from the craziness of man and machine. We love such environments where time is meaningless, thoughts are raw and unfiltered, and the reality of our own mortality and how we “choose” to live life stares you down and begs the question, is life just a grand illusion?

Peace,

MAD :)

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