Sunday, October 15, 2017

Most of 2017



It's been a while. I've had friends get married.


Gone on a backpacking trip.


Picked wild berries with friends. 


Gone on fishing trips.


Hiked and backpacked.



Worked on cleanup projects. 


Gone mushroom hunting.


Had dinner by the fire.


Saw the northern lights.


Visited with pregnant friends. 


Witnessed thunderstorms.


Watched beautiful birds, bugs, and flowers.







Seen the sunset through wildfire smoke.


Had snow storms in the summer.


Beautiful rainbows visited. 


Fall came and went quickly. 


Had friends and family for dinner. 


Witnessed parental tenderness. 


Visited national parks with my Aunt and Uncle. 



Been visited by a lot of critters at my house. 


Watched some gorgeous fish.


Had dinner with more friends.


And guests. 


Saw more wildlife. 


Photographed friend's babies.



And friend's weddings.


And watched bears.


Enjoyed more bonfires with friends.


Helped make hay.


Harvested food from the garden.



Watched the total solar eclipse. 


And photographed wildlife with friends. It's been a busy year so far!


Thursday, March 9, 2017

Wall of Friends

 
This post is a bit personal and not the kind of thing I general put online. But I would like to say this to a lot of people publicly. Some of you may, or very well may not, know that aside from living in a tiny house and taking photos of wildlife, the things I usually post, I have a personal life.

And that my personal (mental, emotional, and spiritual) life has pretty much been a disaster for about 4 years now. It started out as a problem between me and God, but left me so shattered that I pretty much dropped my whole life as I'd known it. Quit a job I had loved, stopped hosting a steady stream of couch surfers, no longer invited half the town over for big dinner parties, quit skiing and climbing, etc. The main effect however was that I dropped most relationships with people. Friends and family. I totally get it if people do not understand, this many years later, that it had absolutely nothing to do with any person, including any of you. The problems was simply a total loss of my foundation for how to live. And this made me feel unable to deal with or relate to life in general, as well as all the people in my life. I am sorry that I just dropped so many things, activities, and people with no explanation, but I don't think I was capable of doing anything else. Again, this had nothing to do with anyone except me and my inability to deal with or for the most part, even try to explain what was going on for me. Tiny houses and nature actually provided a bit of an escape from what was really going on inside. But I was just barely hanging on.

Then this past fall came a further crushing blow. This time it did have to do with a person, but no one referenced here. I almost didn't make it. And I mean that very literally. For about five months I was simply frozen in shock. You know the feeling you get if you've ever had a car wreck and every happens so fast, is so unexpected, and so startling, that your mind is kind of hazy about what even happened exactly? Like everything is kind of foggy and you feel frozen? That kind of shock is I think what I spent all those months living in. Trying to move forward felt like tiptoeing across really thin ice over a very deep and dark lake. But the ice was so thin that any movement at all sent me crashing back through and helplessly under all that cold dark water. I am here today only because of a few people who repeatedly jumped in and pulled me back out. I realize at great cost to themselves. As well as the support, which I only pursued at the repeated insistence of one of those rescuers, of my naturopath and his skill at helping support my now many years depleted brain chemistry. Hence allowing my mind to try to function again.

The ice is getting thicker. The cold dark lake has not gone anywhere, but I am gradually becoming more able to move without falling in. This is a very slow process and many days I don't know if I'll ever get off the lake. But after feeling bad for years now about all the relationships I simply dropped, I finally feel strong enough to at least try to say to you all that it had nothing to do with any of you. I'm very sorry if anyone thought that it did because of my years with no explanation.

I also wanted to thank each and every one of you. The people who kept pursuing me even if you had no idea what was going on. The people who called, invited me places, and sent me cards and letters despite being ignored by me. The few people who were close enough to see me drowning and who jumped in to pull me out again and again. My inability to respond does not mean that I didn't notice. I'm trying to go on. Many days this is almost more than I can do. I am not asking for anything further from you all, but just wanting to let you all know how very much it has meant to me that I do have amazingly good caring friends. People who came out of the woodwork who I never dreamed would have cared for me. I'm not asking for any response to all this. There are still days and weeks where I don't feel up to talking to or hanging out with people. So there's a very good chance if you try to contact me, you will not get a response.

However, this week I put up a "Wall Of Friends" at my house. You are certainly not all pictured there. Some of you I don't have pictures of or with. Some of you are not even online. Some names I'm sure I've missed. But from the bottom of whatever remains of my heart, I want to thank each one of you for everything you have done! Please know that if someone is struggling, they do feel your care and concern even if they can't respond. My wall of friends is there to remind me of that all your caring thoughtfulness. Thank you.

~Ariel


Some not pictured or not-on-FB-to-tag folks who I'd also like to thank if any of them see this: Dot Frey, Arthur Auker, Chris Marcum, Aunt Lois Trostle, Nittavone Herr, Elaine Meyers, Greg Orr, Michael Enright, Susan McGlothin, Jesse Wright, Jimmy and Grace Anderson, Karina Walters, Ian Barwell, Lydia Graves, Sasha Izard, Sara Mumma, Joy and Dicky Lundeen, Jason Desrosiers, Danny Bement, Krista Nethercott, Mori Bergmeyer, Amanda Edmunson, and Shawn Lovell.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Visitors and Winter Weather


One of my little brothers Zack, and our cousin John, came to visit and snowboard. But the weather has everything shut down here. Including most roads and the ski resort. So instead they are helping me shovel snow, relaxing, and eating good food. They are a great work crew!


We have over 400 inches of snow this winter and now rain for two days and nights. (It's still snowing in the mountains.) Most major roads are avalanched closed, power is out to thousands of people, several roofs have caved in, schools are having a second snow day this year after more than twenty years with out one, and even in this town that is normally prepared for huge winters, it's pretty much chaos. Snow removal equipment that has been running non stop all winter is breaking down, and no one can keep up.




We are safe and warm and cozy in my tiny house. With plenty of warmth and power thanks to being off grid. And lots of good food thanks to a well stocked pantry.


All that you can see of my house when you pull in the drive now.


My neighbor working day and night to keep several household open, including mine. I'm very thankful for him! And a few links to local news if you are interested....

http://www.jhnewsandguide.com/jackson_hole_daily/local/developing-story-rain-avalanches-close-routes/article_e9cdc39b-d0f3-5b2b-8c8b-825494ec6c6e.html

https://pitchengine.com/buckrail/2017/02/09/exclusive-drone-footage-of-sears-cave-in/002519156311319040055

https://vimeo.com/203174995?ref=fb-share

Saturday, February 4, 2017

January Wildlife


Some of my favorite shots from the past month. In between work and lots and lots of snow shoveling, I have been able to see some pretty amazing animals. Many of them while shoveling too!