Steamboat Springs Lynne Miller said her favorite times include picking her grandson, Taylor, up from school and taking him to Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory and walking around town, talking about nothing too important.
"With Taylor I can be a kid again," Miller said.
She said Taylor is one of her best buddies. "He just gives me a lot of energy. He takes my mind off my grownup world and gets me back to the simple parts of life."
Longtime friend Marian Engle praised Miller. "She does an exceptional job being a grandmother," she said.
Miller moved to Steamboat Springs in 1963 to attend Yampa Valley College. Enrollment was at 10 students and Miller said she spent her time learning "how to find a husband."
"That was what life was about in the '60s," she said. Miller lived in a hotel behind the current Vectra Bank and said Steamboat was small enough to know everybody in town.
"If you didn't know a person, you knew what car they drove, where they worked or who they were going with," she said.
Miller, who was raised in Colorado Springs, moved to the Front Range for a time and then returned to Steamboat in 1974 with her 6-year-old son, Wade.
She said her desire to live in a mountain town and have a safe community to raise her son brought her back to Steamboat.
Miller's first job was with Central Reservations. She said she was the first person people talked to when they came to Steamboat. For the company, Miller and other employees booked all the hotel reservations for Steamboat.
Through Miller's job, she met her future business partner, Ian Cox, and they started Wild West River Riders together 17 years ago.
Since then, Cox and Miller have started other businesses together, including Steamboat Brochure Delivery and Wild West Balloon Adventures.
Miller said Steamboat Brochure Delivery changed the way brochures are delivered and displayed in Steamboat. She said the brochure racks her company provides ensures all brochures are displayed fairly.
"It's a great thing for the community to have," she said.
Miller said she and Cox own all three hot-air balloon businesses in town. She said she loves going out in the mornings and meeting people about to go on a hot-air balloon ride.
"It's nice to work with people who are happy," she said.
To go on a balloon ride, people do not have to know anything and they do not have to be in any kind of physical shape.
"It's an activity that we get to take people who are not active," she said.
People get to see the area from the same height as the top of Mount Werner.
Ballooning, she said, is a longtime Steamboat tradition.
Miller said her partnership with Cox has been the impetus for all of her business ventures over the years.
"Ian is a big risk taker he will take the risks and I'll make it happen," she said.
Cox said Miller has a lot of business sense, a good mind and excellent morals.
"I liked her right off the bat," he said, remembering the first time he met her 18 years ago. Cox said he and Miller started 16 businesses in 17 years.
"She's really super she's really adventurous," Cox said.
Miller's friendly personality has been an asset to her business ventures, Cox said.
Miller said having her own businesses has been hard work but has given her a lot of freedom
"I'm really grateful for my lifestyle," she said.
She said her son, Wade, also owns his own business and she is glad he can afford to stay in Steamboat.
"She takes a solid interest in her son and grandson." Cox said. He said Miller helped her son build his new home by staining, painting and completing other construction tasks.
Miller's only sibling, Deborah Eck, also moved to Steamboat shortly after she came to the area.
Miller said she and her sister have a typical relationship for siblings. "It's family right now we are in an upswing," she said.
Eck said Miller is a very unique person and doesn't suffer from being uninhibited.
"Once you've met my sister, Lynne, rest assured you'll never meet another like her," she said.
Miller loves the outdoors lifestyle in Steamboat.
She said she tried skiing in her early years and finally matured to confess she doesn't ski.
Miller said she escapes the pressure of owning several businesses by taking a swim at least every other day.
"Even though I love all my jobs, you still have a lot of pressure on you," she said.
She said when she is swimming, she is in a different world.
Working hard and still having a great time is a skill Miller has mastered.
"I love to get together with my girlfriends," she said. She said she likes to take bike rides and go out for margaritas. "I love to have a good time."