This was one of the most difficult paintings I did with gouache. I nearly gave up. I think it turned out fine, but multiple times I almost tore it up. It could just mean I need more practice with gouache. You might ask why I keep using gouache and not watercolor if it’s such a pain. I wonder the same, but I think I’m drawn to gouache because it’s very smooth when laying it down, it dries matte, and it’s more opaque than watercolor so I spend less time layering paint. There are probably other reasons too but these are the main ones.
Last weekend, our oldest daughter was celebrating her two-year anniversary with her boyfriend in Steamboat Springs and we needed to get some Christmas photos for the year so we decided to join them up there. They had gone up before we did and stayed in a B&B. We stayed at a La Quinta about five minutes from them.
The drive to Steamboat was about four hours. There was a bit of snow as we approached the Eisenhower Tunnel.
Down the other side of the tunnel is steep and curvy. I’ve been down this road many times but each time, I’m always so nervous.
When we got closer to Steamboat, it snowed.
A few minutes before reaching Steamboat, the snow stopped and disappeared.
Where we stayed.
The view from the back window of our hotel room.
We didn’t have time to do too many things. Our one full day there, we had breakfast with our daughter and her boyfriend, and took photos. Then, they went their way, and we went ours. Husband, our youngest daughter, and I went to a hot springs which husband and I loved, but daughter didn’t so much. The sulfur was too strong for her. The sulfur started to burn my eyes eventually so we left. We had lunch and then went to watch Eternals at a really small theater (it’s really small compared to the AMC near our home, but not nearly as small as the one in Craig when I went with our daughters some years ago). Daughter and I liked Eternals. Husband thought it was too long.
It was a nice little getaway to a small ski town. Everyone was friendly and the view was beautiful and peaceful.
The day before Halloween, husband, our youngest, and I went on a road trip to Wyoming to see if we could get a good view of the Northern Lights. From what we learned, the massive solar flare would glow far enough to reach parts of Colorado. We thought we’d go further north for a better chance at seeing it.
It was a four hour drive, which wasn’t bad. The main road was straight and flat, which made the trip easy. A few years ago, it took us at least five hours to get to Ouray, Colorado, but we went through twisty roads and mountains which made the ride longer. Husband and I have been to Wyoming before. We went to Jackson Hole in Teton National Park to see Dr. Wayne Dyer at a speaking event. That was so long ago, and we didn’t stay very long either. It was also on the west side of Wyoming. This time we went straight north.
We stayed at a Holiday Inn in Casper where our daughter did homework while husband and I watched some T.V., and stepped out a few times to see if we could see the northern lights.
Unfortunately, we were not able to see the Northern Lights. We checked between 8pm and 10:30pm with no luck. It was just way too cloudy.
The next morning, we headed home. The car was slightly iced over. It was pretty cold. The roads were wet but not icy, although smaller roads might have been icy. It snowed part way while we were on the road.
The view above was in front of the hotel. There was nothing in Casper. I’m not sure if it’s all farm land, but there was a lot of empty land for miles and miles.
Even though we didn’t get to see the Northern Lights, this short road trip was well-needed. For some reason, I felt as though I could breathe better in Wyoming. I was also extremely relaxed. We stopped in Cheyenne on our way home for lunch and I fell in love with that city. I’d visit it again and stay a little longer. It’s not quite a small town. It’s a city, but a tiny cute one.
The marigolds I planted in the yard didn’t turn out, so I went and bought just a few from Lowe’s and planted them in a pot. There were so many different pretty flowers that I just had to take photos of them.
The family weekend vacation to San Francisco was a lot of fun. We only went for the weekend, but it was enough. We ate at a pho restaurant, hot pot place, a pizza place, and In-and-Out Burger. We drove down the coast to Big Sur and spent a few minutes at Montara Beach just soaking our feet in the Pacific Ocean water. The kids (teenagers now, of course) got a little soaked when the waves came in a little further than expected. There was another beach along the way where we heard, later that evening on the news, a surfer was bitten by a baby shark. We almost considered going to that beach but it was closed when we passed it (due to the incident as we learned later) on our way to Montara. The weather during our stay was cloudy, but the sun did show up for a few hours.
A couple of my orchids are dying and one is already pretty dead. I’m just a little lazy these days and forget to water them. The one that died needed to be repotted like three years ago. I kept saying I would repot, but I kept forgetting to. I still have four thriving ones so I think I’ll be okay.
Daughter wanted a lily so a couple of months ago, I got her one. She said she’d take care of it, but guess who’s been doing all the watering? It’s okay though. Husband takes care of my outdoor plants so it’s a wash. lol
This was taken yesterday evening and doesn’t really depict what it actually looked like in real life. The sun was red. Somehow in photos, it’s yellow with a reddish glow. I just wanted to share how easily it was to look at the sun (and take a photo of it).
I don’t watch the news that much so I wasn’t aware there was a pretty bad fire in New Mexico. Husband had mentioned a day or two before that there was fire because the sunsets had been looking more red and orange than usual. This was the view yesterday evening from the car as husband and I grabbed a quick bite.