The tears are over and I’m just welling with pride from my eldest son’s high school graduation…and now the focus is on summer! As many of you know, we have a ranch in Colorado. Once the heat starts rising and the moment school is out, my husband Andrew is anxious to leave Virginia for the cool, dry climate of Colorado.
What awaits us is a bustle of activity. Our ranch is a working hay ranch (we do three cuttings a summer) in addition to being a favorite spot for weddings. Spring, summer, and fall, it is a flood of ranch machines, wedding planners, tents, and caterers. We are also proud to host veterans there in the spring for their annual weekend. Then throw in our family chaos of bike rides, hiking trips, kayaking, and rafting into the mix and it’s pure heaven!
Planning for three weeks away with kids can sometimes be daunting and I must admit that I have occasionally been guilty of over-packing. I always have visions of beautiful dinners in downtown Aspen, wearing a fabulous outfit, but…I have three teens and their friends. I need to stop packing for those make-believe evenings!
The reality is that I wear workout clothes most of the time that I’m there. I bike every morning and do yoga or a hike in the afternoons. Some days we are horseback riding and covered in fly balm. It’s not glamorous, but it is fabulous, fun, and very casual. We are doing overnight raft trips where sunscreen during the day and a warm jacket at night are a girl’s best friend. I admit to making it to a few Aspen Music Festival evenings, but even then a jumpsuit or sundress are all the fashion.
I live in jeans and cowboy boots spiced up with a fabulous top. Have you ever ridden a horse in shorts? I don’t recommend it!
This year I have vowed to pack less, realizing that I tend to wear the same things over and over. I am going with a navy, black, pale pink, and white theme. Everything is versatile and mixes well. I don’t wear much white on the ranch but my two youngest are eager to visit college campuses out west, so those items will work well for those visits and brighten up my wardrobe.
So if you see me this summer in Aspen or Basalt, at the farmers’ market helping a jeweler friend sell her wares, floating on a tube through the nature preserve, hiking Maroon Bells, picnicking at the Music Tent, or at the Aspen Institute, or Matsuhisu, remember: casual chic is always in fashion!
And always carry a rain jacket as our summer days range in temps from 40-90F and afternoon storms are the norm!
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