Beautiful Moments: Trains Out West, Winter Landscapes, Holiday Season

It’s hard to imagine a more quintessentially American expedition than taking a train out West, a.k.a. our holiday season this year. For those who haven’t had the pleasure of traveling by rail or landing in the frosty winter of Montana, here are a few images to capture the experience.


Photo by Jamey Fauque

This was Jory’s second railway trip across the country. The first was when he was seven years old. Key moments from his first trip: Jamey and I realizing it was okay for him to be a car away from us while playing with a new friend, and later, Jory nodding off on my shoulder in the dining car because we couldn’t get a reservation until after his bedtime.  How times have changed.  Watching the person you have born become an adult with a personality, beliefs and expectations for his own life that you could never have created- that’s a beautiful moment.


Photo by Jamey Fauque

With many, many hours available and limited space, train rides naturally evolve into bonding time. There is something luxurious about spending all of those hours in a world removed from daily life. We filled the time by reading, sleeping, and playing games together.  Sawyer, in his usually expressive way, gets pretty worked up about most things- including competing at Spot It.


Photo by Brandi Lust

In a church on Christmas Eve, Sawyer couldn’t have been happier to be holding fire in his hands during the singing of “Silent Night.” While the magic of the elements in action is often lost on adults, children never forget to be fascinated by the changing of water to icy flakes, the way the leaves can be scooped up and thrown into the wind, the power of holding fire in the palm of one’s hand.


Photo by Brandi Lust


Photo by Brandi Lust


Photo by Brandi Lust

One early morning, the combination of sunrise, extreme cold and condensation created these lovely scenic images (and the one in the header).  I woke up to the family looking out the window at the farm’s morning light and frost covered trees, threw my boots on and headed out into the winter air so cold it froze the scarf covering my face and turned my fingers into fire when I took off my gloves to take a photo.  Worth it though, I think.

I hope everyone had a beautiful season full of rejuvenation and a little adventure.  Happy New Year!


This post is part of my mindful gratitude practice called Beautiful Moments.

What were your beautiful moments this holiday?

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