A Grown-Up Christmas Tree

2013-12-21 11.13.09Something came over me…a desire to make things with my own hands; to create and construct. I’m still chuckling at the fact that I didn’t act on this instinct until mid-December. Here it is, two days till Christmas, and I’m still painting and cutting, drawing and hanging. Indulging a long-dormant energy of craftiness, my household community and I are enjoying making our own Christmas decorations. Since we’re all well into adulthood, the theme and style has emerged as hilariously adult-ish. I thought of naming this post “An Adult Christmas Tree” and then went with “grown-up”,…just in case. What has manifested is truly a Christmas tree of adult nature and it makes me smile at the feeling that we are extending our years with the child-like spirit of Christmas, applied so enthusiastically to where we are in our life.  Continue reading

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The Legacy of Women

Me with (L to R) Marisol, my mom, and Ivelisse

Me with (L to R) Marisol, my mom, and Ivelisse

You can be around people and not even realize how much power they hold…all the stories of their lives, the love and tragedies, the overcoming and enjoying. I got to spend an amazing weekend and more with three amazing women. Now that we are all off to our own parts of the world, I am realizing the amazing legacy I am a part of because of them and what a gift I have in each of them. This female counter-part to the three musketeers are my mother, Angelines Del Riego, and her two best friends from high school, Alma Olalla (known as Marisol), and Ivelisse de la Cruz. All three are Dominican women, born and raised in the mountains of the Dominican Republic. Today, they each live in different parts of the world, yet…I recently enjoyed their company and even now, weeks later, am still feeling their powerfully, loving presence.  Continue reading

Wise Words from Carmen

Carmen is the one sitting up in the window sill :)

Carmen is the one sitting up in the window sill 🙂

Dear Carmen…she is the small, little lady who has been with my mother’s family long before I was alive. She is from the Dominican Republic and lives there now. I am staying with her while visiting my family. Her stature is short and she is older and grey now, but her personality exudes a big energy and when she speaks, there’s no chance of not hearing her…that little voice of her’s is loud, just as her generous heart is so big. Her faith is Catholic and she is one of the most accepting, loving people I know in my life. On the same hand, she’s the one I learned all the Spanish curse words I know! When she makes a point to speak something to me, I make sure to listen. That is the confidence and energy with which she speaks, sometimes relating what she shares to something God spoke to her, a message she heard from her church, or more often than not, from one of the many heart-touching experiences her life has been filled with.

Today, she came to me in the kitchen and told me this… Continue reading

A Beautiful Start to the Day

This gallery contains 11 photos.

Here are some photos I have taken recently. They remind me of the pure, simplicity of the beauty found in everyday nature that is around us. Since I am in the Dominican Republic right now, I am surrounded by lush green jungles of trees and flowers, gloriously beautiful beaches with stunning sunsets and awakening sunrises, […]

The Magic of the Denver Botanic Gardens

Sometimes, a new beautiful place is right next door and practically “right under your nose” as the saying goes. This was just such a case for me. If you haven’t visited this amazing treasure of Denver, enjoying reading about it and I hope you go experience it for yourself soon.

Amalia Travel

2013-05-28 19.41.49Have you ever lived in a place and realized after years there, that you had not experienced one of its most precious jewels? I have now been living in Colorado for almost thirteen years and just last night was my first visit to the Denver Botanic Gardens. There is nothing like visiting a gorgeous garden and getting outside, to enjoy and celebrate the season of Spring. This came to my mind as I strolled with my dear friend Tom to the gardens, which are excitedly located just a few blocks from my house in the downtown Denver neighborhood of Capitol Hill.

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Arriving at our destination, we entered and immediately realized that we had come at one of the best times possible…the sun was setting behind large billowing clouds in the west, creating a light in the air that was pristine. Cast over everything was a dancing blend of…

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A Home with No Limits – My Neighborhood

I like open spaces, especially in my house. It dawned on me today, that this is why I like to be out in my neighborhood so much…it’s an extension of my home. And what a lovely extension it is. There’s really no walls, there’s nice streets with bike lanes to ride safely in, sidewalks to walk on, trees blooming now with leaves and flowers, and quaint welcoming cafes and restaurants that provide another space for connecting with others. I’ve lived in a few different neighborhoods of downtown Denver in the dozen years that it’s been my home. At this time in my life, the lucky neighborhood to have me is Capitol Hill. Although truth is, the Congress park and Cheeseman Park neighborhoods get to share me as well since I’m right at the border of the two areas. Continue reading

St. Patrick’s Day in Your Town

Today is the day…the green day! St. Patrick’s Day is more than just parades, yet in my mind that is one of the best parts of the festivities. My family and are I enjoying a day in downtown Denver. Our friend Tom will be playing the Irish drums at The Irish Snug on Colfax in Denver around 3pm, so that will be our one place that are scheduled to be at. Otherwise, we’re staying loose and fancy-free so we can be outside and hop in and out between all the fun bars that will be celebrating the Irish holiday.

What will you be doing for St. Patrick’s Day? Do you think your city or town does a good job providing festivities for the day? Share your comments and links here so others can enjoy the green fun. And don’t forget to pinch anyone who’s not wearing green…it’s the rule!