My Wife-in-Law and Woods Lake

How beautiful is this? It’s Woods Lake in Colorado, and this picture came to me from another Frances along with an invitation to come up there and paint sometime. She won’t have to ask twice. Now Frances is Frances the First, who also happens to be His Grace’s first wife. (For new readers His Grace is my fiancé.) She is coming to the wedding, which is an honor. Also she is fun and funny and smart. The question is, what do I call her? My wife-in-law? We should probably discuss this.

Woods Lake, Colorado
Woods Lake, Colorado, via Frances I

You can catch a glimpse of her here at an Al  Fresco Autumn Dinner with family at the ranch last fall. (Scroll to to bottom of post.)

Meanwhile, I found a few more beautiful photos of Woods Lake, which looks to be very peaceful. And what with all the goings-on it takes around Rancho La Zaca to get ready for a wedding, I’m happy to find a little peace. The one below is by Jack Brauer at It must look like this about now.

Woods Lake, Colorado, near Telluride, by Jack Brauer via
Woods Lake, Colorado, in autumn, by Jack Brauer via

The website also has information about visiting Woods Lake and camping and what not. Camping, however, does not particularly interest Frances the First or Second (that would be me). My idea of camping is staying in a hotel that does not give you bath robes.

Woods Lake in early winter, via
Woods Lake in early winter, via

But this place is so beautiful, I can see how one would be called to commune with nature, immerse one’s self in the elements, hear the call of the meadow lark, eat pine bark and what not. This spring view also

Spring in Woods Lake, via
Spring in Woods Lake, via

But I’m sure the mood would pass.


  1. Dear Frances, if it works for you, you could call Frances I your “sister-in-law”, which is what I call the wives of my ex-husbands. It seems to work for us….. they do become something like sisters. I am so happy for y’all! xoxooxoxxox

  2. How funny that your wife-in-law is also a Frances! I’m widowed now, but my wife-in-law and I are still friends. Friends are always better than enemies, right? Beautiful photos! When is the blessed day, Frances?

  3. Beautiful, beautiful pictures, oh my! I think it is wonderful you two Frances (France-ses?) are friends, that is awesome. With you 100% on the camping deal. My His Grace is very much an outdoorsy type, when we first started dating, 15 years ago, he suggested camping (in the Everglades no less). I told him there was no extension cord long enough to reach all the way out there, thank you very much! Good grief! How would I blow dry my hair??? My idea of communing with nature is grubbing in the garden. Great post, as always, ma’am!

  4. Colorado mountain scenery is hard to beat..thought we had mountains in N.C.! Sure don’t have the Aspens.

  5. Lovely post and pix! Wife-in-law sounds pretty good, but we refer to the one who came before as “our first wife.” My husband and I are celebrating our 39th anniversary today and we’ve shared pretty much everything else, so why not a wife?
    Good luck with your wedding planning and the happy years to follow!

    Linda Shapiro

  6. Frances. . . I soooo look forward to wedding pictures soon as I’m in the wedding planning mode too for my daughter, who will marry next fall. I wish you much love and happiness!

  7. My ex-husband married twice after me. His second wife and I became friends when their marriage fell apart after one year. We shared horror stories over coffee one afternoon and called ourselves ex-wives-in-law. Now, he is married to another woman whose wife is also named Diane,the same as me. He calls her Dee, however, so he won’t get us confused. Heee!

  8. Congratulations on the day! Just call your new wife-in-law ‘friend’ if she is nice enough to be included in the wedding.
    Have a wonderful day-and God Bless.
    xo, Lissy

  9. dear frances……..i wish you such great joy–you deserve it !!–& your happiness comes through in your blog–and sprinkles on us all……………love adrienne

  10. “Priceless” this place is so magical and it has all the comforts of spa. So warm & cozy big over sized robes & towels fires in the cabins. Tall Timbers you would just love this place. More “Priceless” Frances squared I like Wife-In Law yet Frannie is like a sister that is why I call her Sis since 1985. She demanded it because I used to call her Ma Dittmer, Memrie is still Ma Lewis because Frannie beat her to the “please just call me Sis”. I know you have a ton of great family yet having a bit of this family is so GD FUN! Love JuneBug

  11. Frances, dear…with much, much love to you and HG this weekend…and always….a lifetime of happiness to you both! xxx Susie Q

  12. Frances
    I know you feel all the love and warm wishes coming your way from all the blog family. His Grace is a lucky cowboy. That Bridey Boo Boo is too much………
    As we say in the south…You are a sight !!
    Happy Saturday

  13. Frances, My best wishes to you, my little twinkletoed dancing girl. I bet ” Miss Bobbi”will be sending down sprinkles of glitter for you on your big day! Nancy, one of the ” biddies”, said she shared my email with you. By the way if those ladies are ” biddies”, Websters will be changing the definition! Just read your interview with ”The bunny”. It was great. I understand the Tarboro contingent should have arrived by now. We are all so proud of you! Even those of us who no longer live there. Best wishes for a long and happy life together! Cathy Carlisle

    1. Oh Cathy it is so good to hear from you and thank you so so much. Yes the spirit of Tarboro and I daresay dancing teacher Miss Bobbi is very much enlivening the ranch – heck the whole Valley – this weekend. Much love to you, Frances

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