For Memorial weekend, Ryan and I traveled with his best friend and his fiance to MOAB! Ryan's hometown.
Oh Moab. I've SEEN Moab as I once ran through it in the most impulsive relay of my life, and one other time when I stayed at Ryan's parent's house for a quick trip (here). And though I've always admired the beauty of the red rocks, I've never huffed and puffed through them. And that's exactly what I wanted to do for Memorial weekend, so Ryan cancelled his fishing plans, and next thing I knew, we were in his truck, watching movies on Mike's iPad, eating The Most Delicious Chocolate in All The World - some organic reeses given to me by my visiting teacher - and making our way down there.
After a night's rest at his parent's house, we were off hiking! We hiked and hiked all weekend, and I had a really good, satisfying case of verbal diarrhea, where all my thoughts over the last several weeks spilled out to Ryan, and we conversed about them. I told him what I believe about the levels of consciousness and choosing to exist in deeper realms, how our culture is trained to merely skid with our mental capacities. We flop to our screens, we flop to our jobs, then we flop to our beds. It's a whole society of floppers. But I am choosing to be a diver. By allotting time to exist outside of linear time, aka - doing my meditations, I have learned how to exist in a deeper consciousness of body and of soul. Where time is extremely still, empty and nonexistence, and the space remaining is full and very enriching. (This was all spurred from me hiring a meditation coach in New York, and I am not just flickering with benefit, I am dripping with it!)
We stopped, snacked, rested, snuggled, and then we hiked some more, eating packed sandwiches in the parking lots between our trails. We hiked all the places that time would allow in our three-day period. Our legs were throbbing in the most satisfying way, and we soaked them in the hot tub of the Bed & Breakfast Ryan's dad manages. Ryan and I were attached at the hip the whole time and flirted mercilessly. I LOVE being around that man - we are the most blended and balanced and fun and stimulating match. Couldn't have even potioned a better human to be by my side if I had been allowed into the Earthlings Conjuring Room in heaven.
Ryan's parents and two younger brothers graciously welcomed us into their home for the weekend, and we had many moments over the dinner table talking and laughing, even playing a game for Sunday lunch dishes that was so fun! I LOVE being at Ryan's house and around his family. I know it is because of the Spirit and the quality of people they are. But through my observation, I pieced together exactly the kind of Spirit that is upheld within the walls of their home. Because while the Spirit is present in many homes, it manifests differently - kind of like how some people's family's have a very distinct smell. Anyway, in Ryan's front yard is a stone his dad made that has a carving of Moses's commandment stones, a beehive, and a heart. And then some scriptures on the back. This stone in the yard peaked my curiosity. Then later, in their living room corner, I found a little cross-stitch picture that says "A Zionlike community is: (with all those same respective images) Obedience (Moses's stones), Service (beehive), and Love (heart." There it is. ZION. This home right here is part of what I believe to be Zion. I LOVE that. love it.
Because first of all, I believe in Zionlike communities. I believe in them so much. To break it down, this is what I believe: a) I believe Zion to be a community that is created when each member is of the most superior behavioral qualities, specifically: strict obedience to God, freely offering service, and always responding with love and understanding in every situation - exactly the qualities that the Stucki residence is founded upon. b) I completely believe these communities can be created on this earth life with people who are daily and actively working for them. c) I believe the Zion-like attitude is first created in individual hearts, where these principles are lived with great sacrifice to live sustainably above the entropy of the regular human mind and conduct. Then a Zionlike culture manifests into individual households. And many Zion homes together uplift communities - and onward and outward. And because of the great sacrifice involved, these homes will be found few and far between. d) I believe someday God will call all these points of Zion, and we will come together, and we will see greet each other with the most ethereal love, knowing the great effort we all put into promoting and living this sort of a life. e) And then I believe the Last Days will happen, but this small Zionlike community will be safe, and the happiness and love between us will be the closest inkling to celestial life that we will be capable of experiencing while still in our mortal state. I very much believe all of that. And this topic - creating Zions in ourselves and the Last Days - are actually my FAVORITE topics to think about and discuss. So you bet I did with Ryan.
I also love his parents house because they have a full library downstairs, where Ryan and all 8 of his siblings were once homeschooled. I LOVED all of their books - so much knowledge and thought and values on those shelves. So with Ryan's help, we selected some of the best books for me to borrow and read. Ryan and I read an entire book together on the ride home about the US economy and fiscal system - really interesting and liberartianish. And now I'm reading a youngadult fiction about a farming family and such adventures. Love.
It was a full and great weekend, that's for sure! And now, end words, cue images :)
The Corona Arch hike:
The Negro Bill Canyon hike:
Taking a break from hiking for church. It was an AMAZING 3-hour block! Came home with such an inspired soul and two pages of notes.
The Delicate Arch hike (soooo windy - SUPER fun!):
The Wild Horse Slot Canyon hike:
Goblin Valley (where clay/rock formations have formed HUNDREDS of goblin-looking structures - extremely cool!!!):
(trying to smile with the sun in my eyes)
Ryan was the cutest photographer :) Love that guy so much.