Happy Easter! ^..^


Yippee! The sun is actually shining thru my kitchen window! Time to freshen things up, put away winter-y decor, and bring a little brightness into the house. It is so hard to get inspired when it's dreary and gloomy. Now the grass is visibly greener, lots of daffodil, tulip, and iris shoots are peeking out, and I feel like I, too, am “waking up” from a too long nap.

Thought I'd share just some random stuff around the house before I start to revamp a little. Nothing too exciting, just a few things that make me happy when I look at them –

Bruce's great grandpa made this bench (and a lot more) many, many years ago for a meeting hall in the small Czech community he and his family lived in. Recently, they tore down the old hall, and they invited Bruce to help himself to as many benches as he liked since it was his kin that built them. He took 1 for himself, 1 for his brother, and 1 for his cousin. Gosh, if only we'd known we would be getting the cabin he could have grabbed a few more, they are so cute and useful.

I have had a few dogs from my collection out and about. Think I'll trade them out for my little sheep that are presently tucked away.




Eastertime snuck up on me this year. Apparently I was in a bit of a haze, cuz I sure didn't get into the swing of bunny and egg decorating much.

Just put these little guys out and that will have to suffice this year! Besides, I've got the real deal to look at while I'm out raking and spiffing up the yard….



The End ๐Ÿ™‚






The Five Seasons of Montana

Yup, five of 'em – Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring, and Mud!

I went for a short drive a week or two ago and really got a kick out of this little trailer when I saw it! Someone is going to capitalize on our 5th season, and they must really think it is going to be a doozy if they're going to the trouble to start a boot cleaning business!

It's an actual trailer that hooks to a vehicle! I don't have any idea what the real story is behind it, but knowing full well how sloppy, sticky, and goopy it can get here in the Spring, I thought maybe someone was really on to a money maker. It sure tickled my funny bone when I saw it. But I'm not pulling your leg about the mud around here.

We were hoping to be able to get in one more snowmobile run to the cabin since there is so much snow left yet. We actually had a bit of a flurry here yesterday and it stuck, which usually means 2 or 3 times more snow than we get in town lands in the mountains. So Bruce loaded up both the snowmachine and the 4wheeler not knowing what we'd encounter for sure, and off we went. It looked pretty dicey when we got there –

The forest service has had some loggers doing work up there this winter, so they had kept a section of the road plowed. Now that the melt off has started, the road is a wreck. Bruce thought he would try to drive in as far as possible (with the truck and trailer), then if the going got too tough we'd unload the 4wheeler or snowmachine to get in the rest of the way.

Well, I nearly stuck both of my feet thru the floor board in the truck I was so braced. It was too, too scary for me, so he had the monumental task of getting the truck turned around in all this muck, while pulling the trailer no less.


We got back to the main road, unloaded the snowmachine, and thought we could ride in on the snow beside the road. We had to ride double which makes it harder, and that snow was the consistency of snowcone ice, not nice and fluffy which works to keep your machine on top of the snow. Plus, it had melted down enough that the tops of all the sagebrush was sticking out and you had to drive right over them, breaking them off as you went. Some of the tracked vehicles had made huge ruts in the snow which nearly tipped us over when we'd hit them. Finally I said “STOP! I'm getting off!”, and I bailed. Bruce kindly suggested we turn around and head home, such a wise man ๐Ÿ™‚ I was in a bit of a dither by then. So, we drove back down, loaded up, and pointed our noses toward home. It was a pretty day to take the snowmachine and 4wheeler for a ride on the trailer, hope they enjoyed it!

In consolation, it's always a pretty drive up there, and we did see some interesting things, so not a complete loss. The cranes are coming in, and I was able to get a few pics of these guys. We saw probably a dozen overall.


My folks have a pair that come in and nest at their place on the river every year. Mom says that is how she knows when Spring is finally here.

Well, that was my adventure for the week…. I suspect we won't be trying that again in the too near future! Lordy, I don't know how those folks that live up there full time do it! I'm not a sissy for the most part, but I sure didn't want Bruce and I to turn into a Donner Party of sorts – I'm a vegetarian for Pete’s sake.





Historic Districts

I had to bring the truck over the hill to Bruce earlier this week. He had gotten a door from a fellow on Craigslist, but had driven his car to work not knowing that this guy would contact him so quickly and he'd have to pick it up that day. We decided to make a date of it. Those are few and far between in our world, so it was Carpe Diem ๐Ÿ™‚ I pulled into town around 4, went to an antique store I rarely stop at because it is so wretched trying to find a parking place there, spent about an hour looking around, found a bazillion cool things, but didn't spend a dime (so proud of myself). Picked Bruce up (and the door) around 5, and did some fine dining at Burger King. Then we drove over to the Historic District, parked the truck, and started hiking. Bruce just got a new snazzy phone from work, so we decided to take a few pics while we were hoofing it. This is just a tiny sampling of the beautiful historic homes there.


2 shots of the same house, to show the pretty windows.

I felt weird getting too close to take the pictures. Wish you could see the detail of the way they painted these porch posts.

The porch, a couple of the brick walls and their windows on this house are all curved. That includes the glass in the windows. I bet they pray no kids with baseballs get near their house, that curved glass can't be easy to replace!

I love the fretwork on these old homes. It is very detailed.

I am about 97% sure that this house above was in an issue of This Old House magazine several years ago. It was a very interesting article about the near total renovation of this home while they lived in a teeny apartment above the garage on the property.

There are a few brightly colored homes, like the one above, but it seems for the most part in the district, the colors are pretty demure, or the homes are brick.



This house has a very large and pretty side lot that they have meticulously landscaped.

Here is a closer shot of the front of that house.


This plaque stands in the front yard of the home shown in the 2 pictures above this one. There is a lot of history intertwined in this home, the people who resided there, and the extended family.

See the picture window next to the porch on this home? There is a beautiful stained glass window at the top if you look. I felt pretty brazen taking a picture of this in broad daylight so I had decided to skip it, and Bruce just grabbed the phone/camera from me and took it! Nobody came out of the house and chased us with a broom or anything!


This tour only encompassed about a 6 or 8 block radius. There are many, many more homes in this area that are just amazing.

After looking at the above pictures, I decided it was only fair to share the Historic District where I live, so I took my iPad out for a drive a few days later (Glee came with and helped ๐Ÿ™‚ )

Our little town has but one street where the affluent built big, fancy homes around the turn of the century. That was when the railroad really took off and the town started to grow exponentially. Here are a few of the finest –

This is called the Talcott Mansion. You should see this house decorated at Christmastime – gorgeous!

Presently, this house is on the market, listed for $449,500.00, which makes folks around here's eyes bug out. It is very pretty inside, but that's a lot of moolah for an in town house for sure! At least in this town.

A former B&B, this house now has new owners and is a private residence. It used to be the kind of house kids were scared of and was the subject of imaginative, gruesome, made up stories. It was completely covered in some kind of clinging vine type plant, neglected, and just downright scary! When the very old fellow that lived there passed away, a young couple bought it, and really polished it up. I went thru it several years ago during a B&B tour the Soroptomists or somebody had, and it is a beautiful, grand old home.

This is the old Catholic Convent. It has been a private residence for a long time. A girl I went to grade school with lived here and I was invited to her birthday party one year. They had 5 kids in their family. Even tho they did a lot of updating in the house, they left the bathroom the same way as when the nuns lived there, with multiple toilets in stalls, like a big Walmart bathroom! Being a kid, I thought that was a pretty neat set-up! I don't know if they kept it that way or not after all their kids moved out.

I used to babysit in this house a lot. Even as a kid I could really appreciate the beauty of this home. It had a ton of architectural detail inside: wide oak woodwork that had never been painted, a warming fireplace in the entryway, huge pocket doors between the formal dining room and parlor, the original wallpaper that had been hung when the house was built and it was still pristine, phenomenal light fixtures with blown glass globes that if ever broken I don't know how one would replace them. It was truly awesome. That family doesn't live there anymore. I hope the people that live there now kept the integrity of the home intact.

This home had fallen in terrible disrepair, and some lady moved here several years ago, bought it in it's sorry condition, and restored it to it's former glory. That makes me so happy to see an old house restored and loved again.

I hope someone does that with this old place. It was the first hospital in this town and has been a lot of different things over the years. It is currently on the market for $175,000.00. It is huge, right next to downtown, and will take globs of money to fix up.

Some people are willing to take on that kind of monumental task, tho. A few years ago someone bought this old school here in town that had been boarded up for decades. They have steadily been making improvements and it is looking pretty impressive compared to what they purchased. It is somewhat of a mystery as to what it is going to eventually be – I don't know anybody that has the story, which is odd, cuz folks in this little town like to speculate ๐Ÿ™‚

This is turning into a mighty long post, so I'll shut it down for now. I'll do a post someday of the pretty churches we have around here, and also the train depot is pretty worthwhile to look at – they had some really skilled craftsmen and builders back in the day.





Doh – More %{?ยฃ*# SNOW

So, how about some pretty pictures of Hawaii……

Maybe you live in a place where there is actually hope of Spring being just around the corner. That does not seem to be the case here. So, in order to placate my own grumpy, restless, hairpulling self, I'll dust off some of my 6 year old Hawaiian vacation pictures and give myself at least a visual break from the snow, snow, snow around here. Even if it is lovely weather where you live, Hawaii is still awfully darn pretty to look at, any time.


Beautiful, pounding surf.


Whale watching.

Dolphins kept everybody on the boat entertained.

They would swim up to the boat, stick their heads out of the water, and look right at you. I wanted to pet one so bad. I suppose that is the same way tourists feel when they come to Yellowstone, and that's why a lot of them end up gored by a buffalo, or stomped by an elk etc., because they don't want to be petted by no darn tourists. Needless to say, I kept my hands in the boat.

We were on the Big Island, where even being so far away, there were lots of reminders of home. Lots of cows and horses, and open ranch land.


This was the beach at Honolulu. There was not a shortage of people there for sure.


They had some mega goldfish at a downtown shopping center. I don't know if they were considered koi or not; I'm not up on my fish breeds.

There were lots of funky people standing around on the streets in downtown Honolulu, all with different costumes or talents. Each had boxes for you to toss money into as you passed – here is one fella we went by, sitting still as a statue.


This giamongous aquarium was in the hotel we stayed at. You could watch the fish as you ate breakfast. The guy swimming around with them was cleaning the glass inside the tank. That would be a fun and different job, wouldn't it?

They had so many beautiful and different kinds of flowers and birds, everywhere you looked.




Beautiful sunsets.


We went to a Luau, waited a very long time for our dinner, and very shortly after the show started, here came the rain. The show cancelled, and we all ran back to our rooms, getting soaked in the process. At least the rain was warm. I was sad we missed out because they really sock you in the pocketbook for that kind of touristy entertainment, and if Mother Nature interrupts, too bad, no refunds.

We had wanted to go snorkeling, but while we were on the Big Island, a volcano erupted a little, which caused what they refer to as “vog” (volcanic fog). It makes it overcast and the water is dark from the cover, so when snorkeling you can't see the fish very well at all, we were told. So that plan got chucked.

It was a pretty view of town from the balcony on our room. The wind was warm, and it was so nice to sit and listen to the ocean.




So many places we stopped looked just like a postcard.

Had to visit King Kamehameha.

Lots of folks enjoyed this very calm swimming spot.


There, now I feel much better. It's nice and dark out, so I can't see the frozen tundra on the other side of my window. I can go to bed thinking of warm trade winds, sunny skies, and cocoanut drinks ๐Ÿ™‚ Not that I'm griping or anything.