i love the kind of hikes that will take your breath away. sometimes that's a good hike to get your heart rate going and other times it's the ones that leave you feeling refreshed and with an overwhelming sense of gratitude. hiking on the east coast has always brought me both moments but it will never compare to the west coast hikes. one of those in particular would be taggart lake. while honeymooning in wyoming, we stumbled upon a pull off with a trailhead and decided to see where it lead. we grabbed our bags just incase we got caught in a storm, the weather was crazy while we were there. we hit the trail and soon were feeling lost in a sea of evergreen trees. we took the long way to the lake. we listened for bears, climbed boulders, and then the forest opened up and we were greeted by the beautiful teton mountain range. there i sat at edge of the lake and looked around me. with my husband standing a few feet away and the cold breeze coming off the water, i quietly thanked god a hundred times for this life. 


currently we are learning to adjust to life in the midwest. after seven weeks in a hotel, we found a home to settle into for the next year while working here in missouri. we are taking each day as it comes. enjoying waking up in our own bed, making meals together, and slowly relearning how to live in an actual home. we've spent most days off discovering new places to eat and explore around town. recently we found the sweetest orchard where we spent an afternoon savoring the beautiful fall weather. we picked apples, raced each other through the orchard, and bought caramel corn for the long car ride home. i'm looking forward to coming back each season for pumpkins, a christmas tree, and fresh fruit during the warmer months. 

if you know of any great places to check out within the kansas city area, please let me know!


one afternoon we went for a drive. one where you keep the map close but you hardly reach for it. we drove through the national elk refuge and through the tiny town of kelly before turning off on to a gravel road. a few miles down, we ended up at historic mormon row. near the turn of the 19th century, leaders of the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints sent families from utah and idaho to establish new communities and support their expanding population. one hundred years later, mormon row was added to the national register of historic places. 

we walked around the homesteads, watched the horses and bison wander about, and admired the moulton barn before heading back. i will forever be missing these views.