My name is H.A. Larson and I am a Woman of a Particular Age. I occasionally write ghostly and horror novellas, as well as some editorials for different publications, from my desk in the Midwest. I'm a hiker, adventurer, and traveler. I'm an ex-pat in-training that likes wine and Renaissance Faires. I'm a music fanatic and I much prefer a book over television.
I'm not going to lie, the past few weeks have been pretty great. I've gotten out and done more things during this time than I have in literal months. Of course, I've taken plenty of photos, so why not share a picture story?
It all started three weeks ago when I bought a brand new car. It hurt to have to go into debt again, but it was a necessary purchase. My old car wasn't road-worthy anymore, except to get me around town, which is fine except that winter is coming and my wanderlust was getting the better of me. Luckily, I had done plenty of research so I scored a great deal. Now that I have good, reliable transportation...it's time to be the adventurer I am again. To that end, I didn't waste any time!
That Saturday, I hit the trails early for a short hike at my favorite spot: Neale Woods.
It was just as lovely as always.
Early that afternoon, my daughter and I drove over to Lincoln, NE, to spend a quick overnight visit with my son who attends UNL. On Sunday, we made our way over to the Sunken Gardens, a real gem in Lincoln. This was my second time visiting there.
Our next stop was the Nebraska State Capitol building.
You can take the elevator to the 14th floor and stand out on the viewing deck. While I've been to the Capitol building before, I'd never been up top, so it was a first for me. What a view!
We were hungry after our sightseeing, so we went to Rutabaga's, a fully vegan restaurant. We ordered onion rings for an appetizer which tasted just as amazing as they look.
The kids both got the nachos.
I got the mac 'n cheese.
Monday after work was warm and typically quiet, so I drove down to Fontanelle Forest for a short but leisurely meander around the boardwalk. I tore the meniscus in my right knee during my move in May, so I've been carefully rebuilding up my hiking prowess.
Much like Neale Woods, you can spy the Omaha skyline from a vantage point within the park.
For the first time ever, I got a closeup, personal view of a deer mama and fawn.
That Friday, after work, my daughter and I packed the car and made the three-hour drive North to my Dad's house. His tree-covered driveway was lovingly created by him when he moved in over 30 years ago and I absolutely adore it.
Dad and I took a walk down the road from his house to the creek.
It's been so dry that the water level is low enough to expose and create little islands.
That Saturday morning, Dad and I took off for some hiking.
Once upon a time, this was a hill for inner tubing in the winter.
The small shack behind my dad was the pulley that moved along the thick wire that people would hold onto to bring them and their inner tubes up the hill.
The view up here was gorgeous.
Later that day, Dad, myself, my stepmom, and my daughter drove up to the Iowa Great Lakes. We first stopped at Big Spirit Lake.
If you go around to the north side of Big Spirit Lake, you're right on the border of Minnesota. Hi there Minnesota!
After that, we went to Arnold's Park on Lake Okoboji to watch a free concert.
The following Friday, my friend Rebecca and I went out for a couple of drinks. We ended up at her house where we were fortunate enough to catch some fireworks from her patio.
It was a pleasant surprise.
Saturday, I did some county highpointing up in Washington County Nebraska. Most county highpoints, at least the ones I've been to, are all on private property so there's not much to see. On my way back home, I made a pit stop at Beaver Creek for a short little walk.
Sunday morning was quite cool, so I hit up Schramm State Park.
I've seen this view hundreds of times, yet I never grow weary of it.
The past few weeks have been a nice return to a life of travel and adventure that I've missed. I have so many things to look forward to that are coming up soon or not far in the future and I'm quite excited. I have lots of plans, none of which include slowing down.