A Glimpse of Winter in Paradise   

Growing up in the Chicago, I know how to deal with snow. I can drive in it; I can live with horizontal winds blowing it in my face; I can even join in on the universal frustration from every person on the road forgetting how to drive with only the first dusting. As mentally prepared as I felt for experiencing a Wyoming mountain winter, waking up to 18 inches of snow on September 27th with no power was still a shock. What had I gotten myself into? Walking to work that morning, I saw the rest of the staff throwing snow balls, getting out sleds, and making snow angels. The ranch dogs were bounding and running as though they were in heaven. I wanted to run and join fun, but I couldn't help but think, “if this was September, what was I in for come February?”

   Relief poured upon me when I saw our seasoned owners share my surprise. The storm was unseasonable and melted within a few days. We have had plenty of snow since then, but it has come gradually and we have been able to enjoy it with the wonders of heat, water, and lights! Thomas Edison, I have never appreciated your work more!

    My worries and woes of winter soon turned to smiles and laughs. Snuggled in the mountains, Paradise makes a perfect escape from the intense Wyoming wind. In turn, it creates nothing short of a picturesque scene. Every time it snows, it is as if I am in a snow globe. The snow sets perfectly even on every branch of the pines. It gently falls as though someone is sprinkling us with powdered sugar, coating the roofs of the log cabins. As the summer staff has sadly trickled away and we have had to say goodbye to our guests, Paradise has transformed into a silent wonderland. We miss the laughter and unforgettable memories our guests bring to the ranch, but simultaneously we welcome the magic of winter.

    Before we were married while living in the Midwest, my husband and I always said we wanted to retire in a humble cabin in the mountains. As a Christmas gift, I once made him a fleece blanket with a scene of our dream cabin laden with snow, golden fire light shining from the windows, surrounded by gorgeous trees and mountains. As I walked back from the office a few days ago, I realized I was looking at an identical scene as I approached my winter home. I write this as I am warmed by our wood stove, sipping hot coffee and snuggling under our “dream” blanket. I look out the window at this beautiful paradise and words cannot express how blessed I feel to not only be creating a dream for our future, but to be living it.