Blog

Five Years

Here’s to the man who always makes everything happen – even when the babysitter is 20 minutes out and you need another bike tube to make the epic five-year anniversary bike-to-dinner date happen. There is no obstacle too big, no problem too small for this guy. Love you to the moon and back, Bug!

Every Eleven Days

Every eleven days, the closets of Casa Uva spew forth cams, climbing ropes and quick draws; Nalgene bottles of every color are rounded up, cleaned, and filled. Crusty campfire jackets re-emerge from the depths and canvas bags are haphazardly stuffed with non-frigo essentials like spaghetti, pretzels, dried fruit, and bars. Stéphane parks The Gruffalo out front the day before so we […]

Lake City Ice

We do this drive a lot- cruising through the dry, desert landscape of northern New Mexico heading north to go play. Sometimes we stray only as far as Tres Piedras, camping amongst the pines and climbing towards the sky. Sometimes we cross the border to enjoy the solitude and smorgasbord of routes that Colorado’s San Luis Valley offers up. More […]

To Internet Outages

By five-fifteen Hugo’s morning milk has been warmed and set quietly at the top of the stairs – just outside his bedroom door – ready for  the six-thirty wake-up-pee-and-back-to-sleep call.  By five-twenty the office is warm and cozy, lit softly by the glow from the paper IKEA lamp, and buzzing with the soothing hum of the heater. Tea is piping […]

2018 in 12 Photos

Browsing through our photos from this past year, I am amazed by all of the things we have been able to do! From hosting family and friends at home base Casa Uva to traveling to Switzerland and Detroit to see family; this year we’ve tackled major (and minor) home improvements, sneaked away for countless climbing trips, and logged some quality […]

December Re-Cap

December was a busy month for the Heftis! In between working, house projects, and fun card nights with Tom and Pam (our super fun Cocktail Generation* neighbors down the street), we managed to sneak away for a week to Detroit, chop down our first family Christmas Tree up in the Jemez Mountains, and find time for a short climbing trip […]

“Creeksgiving” 2018

Our tribe used to gather in Indian Creek, Utah to celebrate Thanksgiving in the time before the secret of this amazing place became widespread knowledge among climbers. Before the trailheads of The Creek were choked with Sprinter vans and its quiet nights shattered by generators to power all-night parties, we enjoyed a quieter kind of celebration here. It was called “Creeksgiving”. […]

Two

On October Third, our curious, loving, free-spirited little boy turned two. We have all had quite the year together: moving into our first REAL home (like, actually ours and not rented by the month), potty training, lots of climbing trips, a big international trip to Switzerland, and all the little things in between.   Each passing month we have found […]

Casa Uva gets a Face Lift

Our home, Casa Uva, has been stripped of her weathered, rotting scales; she is now sporting a more edgy, modern look: we call it gypsy boho. It’s not quite the look we were going for (or paid for, for that matter), but at least she is protected from the elements. When all is said and done, Casa Uva will flaunt […]

The Telephone Trail

I like looking at maps and running to random places on them. Recently, I found a paper written about the Jemez Forest Telephone Line, a telephone system that played an integral part in the Forest Service’s campaign against fire in the Jemez Forest from 1906 to the 1940s. The Jemez Mountains/Forest rise over the town of Los Alamos to the […]

My Friend Carley

I lost my dear friend Carley this past March. Her favorite color was purple. She loved researching her Swedish genealogy and was passionate about writing. She had an adopted granddaughter named Lizzy who was her world and she loved going to the casino. She was a loyal, loving friend. We worked together for five years and shared a lot of […]

Six Days in the Desert

Easing The Gruffalo away from the curb of Casa Uva late Tuesday morning, we felt both the anticipation that the beginning of an adventure brings and that light, floating feeling you get when leaving civilization (and work and email and cell reception) behind (is that freedom?). We’ve only had her a few short weeks but in that time, Stéphane has […]

Hugo-stones

“Hugo-stones”: Those milestones that Hugo reaches that are worthy of sharing (the fun, more quirky ones – because do you really care when he first ate with a spoon?) Two fun ones yesterday: March 22, 2018: Hugo’s first attempt at climbing a fence. I demonstrated the proper technique and he was way interested in trying it out. Need to work […]

The Story of The Baby Bison

We moved to Maine in January of 2016. By March of 2016, the realization that Vacation Land was not our cup of tea was in full effect. But you can’t just leave a job after a month because you don’t like the bugs/weather/indifferent neighbors/suffocating trees. Reluctantly pulling on our grown-up pants, we committed to making the best of Maine for […]

Apache Kid Wilderness

So back in the day, mid-late 1800s, lives this Apache guy named Haskay-bay-nay-ntayl (the Apache Kid, for short). He’s kidnapped by the Yuma Indians as a child and is later freed by the U.S. Army, after which he lives as a beggar-boy orphan, running feral around the army camp. A teenage Kid enlists with the U.S. Cavalry as an Indian Scout […]

Camino Uva

  Buying a home in Los Alamos – at least in the current market – is a daunting enterprise. The scenario plays out something like this: Asbestos-ridden, lead paint-filled, temporarily-built-barrack-for-the-Manhattan-Project house goes on the market with professional photographs of professionally-staged rooms. Sellers list the deadline for which they will accept all offers (yes, offerS- plural: because there will be many). […]

Thanksgiving in Escalante

It’s been an annual tradition going on twenty years now. Some folks, like Tom, are solid fixtures – showing up to the campsite (and in most cases claiming it) like clockwork every year. Others make more spotty appearances, their attendance affected by the demands of their lives: children, careers, relationships, health, finances, travel.   Since we started joining in the […]

Catching up in Creede

Creede, Colorado is a teeny little town tucked up in the San Juan mountains. Over the years it has morphed from its silver mining roots into a quaint, clean, funky little town catering to travelers, dirt bikers, hunters, campers, and explorers. It’s traded silver mining for tourism as its economy but has still managed to keep its historic vibe and quaintness. […]

First days in New Mexico

Hidden House is snugged up high among the ponderosa pines- one of a handful of homes scattered around the hills in the Jemez Mountains forty minutes west of Los Alamos. Our neighborhood is called “La Cueva” (the cave; not sure why but I will find out and report back). Our street, a red sandy road, leads to a lightly-traveled two-lane […]

Stopover in Montrose

The wheels sqwaked as they met the pavement and the San Juan Mountains, still snowy at their tips, peeked at me through the window of the little regional jet. Hugo and I had arrived at our almost final destination: Montrose! A short stopover here to see our friends and then off south to our new home in Los Alamos (Jemez […]

Dear Daddy

Dear Daddy, Today is your very first Fathers Day!                         I wish we could be together today but I know that you are working hard out west to make way for mommy and I to come out. We’ll be there soon and we miss you so much. I love […]

In Limbo (I mean, Michigan)

After seven hours of packing the “schnick schnack” (the last little odds and ends that we thought would take only a half hour to square away), multiple trips down the driveway to add to the growing pile of trash bags and recycleables, and a final walk through, we finally loaded up Hugo and Myra and set off on our new […]