Celebrating Independence Day!

Isn't this just awesome!

Man made fireworks competing with Mother Nature's fireworks! This is the rodeo and fireworks celebration we have over the 4th of July in our little town every year….but with a little extra kick this particular evening. I wanted to be sure and share this wonderful photo since we're not too far out from the 4th. We do have some extremely talented folks that live in our town, and I borrowed this from Facebook to share with you all.

Here are a few more shots I took myself while just moseying around close to home, over the last couple months. Since it'll be Christmas in just a few weeks, guess I'd better share the few warm weather photos I've taken (kidding!…….but not really :-/ )

 

 

The park geese with their new broods, in varying stages – some have newer fluffy yellow babies, some are 1/2 way to looking like their parents.

 

This is the Crazy mountain range.

This is about 7 miles from the cabin. Such a pretty day it was!

About 4 miles from the cabin as you top a hill and look southerly, this is the Absaroka mountain range.

 

A golden eagle in a field near the road.

And a bald eagle on a telephone pole just above the golden.

 

 

 

Hope you all are having a nice summer, and are making the most of it!

TTFN,

Teresa 🙂

 

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Farmward – Ho!

The saga with my folk's farm continues. It looks like this time the sale might be the real deal – possibly. It's been a long drawn out process, drug out since last fall. A couple with 4 little kids want to buy it “for sure”……..contingent upon them selling at least one of three properties they own. And then comes all the hoop jumping and red tape with appraisals, inspections of every sort, what is included in the sale, etc., etc. At least these people don't expect my folks to include furniture, pictures, garden decorations, clothes, shoes, and the family bible in the sale, like the last yahoos did. (Maybe a slight exaggeration, but not by much!) This potential buyer did want them to throw in the backhoe with the sale, which may, or may not, be considered. Depends on what sort of place my folks can find to move to. If they have to start from scratch with a place with no fences or outbuildings, my Dad will need all his equipment to get the job done. Hopefully a place will come up not needing everything from soup to nuts to get ready, before they can move in. I cannot tell you how absolutely insane the real estate market is in this area right now; very little to be had, and a king's ransom in pricing for what is available. We've all been searching like mad, trying to catch things that come on the market immediately, as homes and land are snapped up, literally, within hours after being listed.

I stopped at the farm on the way back from the cabin the other day. I feel like you can't soak in enough of the place, when you know the chance is great that it will belong to someone else soon.

 

My Mom brought me upstairs to see this cactus type plant that is in full bloom.

 

I got to visit all her babies while we were upstairs.

 

 

And get an upper view of the gardens from the bedroom balcony.

 

It will be a big adjustment for the little horses to have only a very few acres to live on. Hopefully it won't bother them too much. They are an elderly lot; the oldest one being about 34 years old, the youngest I think around 22. There are 15 left, and my folks just want to keep them fed and happy til they go to the happy pasture in the sky. Their whole house search is revolving around finding a place where it will work for their old horses, and old barn kitties. Some people call that crazy, I think it's mighty admirable.

 

From last fall

 

Hopefully the geese will get to stay on the farm, as many of them are 30+ years old

It's a beautiful place, and I sure hope the new people will love and care for it as much as my folks have. It will be nice for their little kids to grow up there; the perfect setting for playing and memory making.

As stressful as it is, I guess we just have to remember that the good Lord has a plan for us all, and we need to keep the faith and move forward knowing it's in His hands.

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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Horse Crazy

All my life I have been besotted with horses. Well, all animals really. But as far back as I can remember, horses were my hearts desire. All I wanted in life was a horse. Being a town kid, that made the dream fairly far fetched and hard to attain. So I consoled myself by reading every available horse or pony story I could get my hands on. And I read a lot of them!

I believe it was third grade when our teacher assigned a special project for the whole class, in which we were all instructed to decide what our favorite book was, and write a letter to the author of that book. I chose the wonderful author and artist C. W. Anderson. He wrote many books for children and young adults. His paintings and sketches are so wonderful, just beautiful.

I love this one. I am really partial to pinto horses.

So, I set to task writing a very heartfelt letter to my favorite author and artist. We sent them to the publishing companies of the books we had chosen as our favorites, and asked them to please forward the letters to our chosen authors. From what I remember, most of the kids received either printed info about the author from the publishing company, or a postcard from the author thanking the student for the interest in their work. I, on the other hand, received a lovely, hand written letter on Mr. Anderson's stationary, that also had a print of one of his paintings on it. To say I was thrilled is putting it mildly! It had his return address on the envelope, so I immediately sent another letter. He again responded with another kindly letter. I have both of those letters to this day, tucked away in a scrap book.

With the information available at our fingertips today with the internet, I can see that he would have been quite elderly when he sent those thoughtful letters to a little girl that loved his stories and beautiful paintings of horses. As an adult, that is a regret I ponder – that I didn't continue writing to that wonderful gentleman, so we could have continued sharing thoughts on our mutual love of horses. He would have passed away about a year after our correspondence started.

But kudos to my third grade teacher! What a wonderful thing for a kid to have experienced, and all because of her grand idea to write those initial letters, and take a chance that the publishing companies would forward them.

I had very few pictures to grace the walls of my very first apartment. I had a few antique prints in my bedroom of lovely ladies, that had belonged to my great grandmother (those same prints hang in my little cottage bedroom today). But the one that hung front and center in my apartment living room was the Anderson print (shown below) that I had purchased at a rummage sale when I was about 13 years old, and kept in my cedar chest in anticipation of having my first place.

For the life of me, I have no idea what became of that print after I moved from my apartment, which makes me sad! Even though I have a bazillion pictures now, I still keep my eyes peeled at rummage sales, estate sales, antique shows etc., for C. W. Anderson prints, because I would surely make room for one or two.

 

Thankfully, and happily, the summer after fourth grade I got my very own pony! She was a wiley little Shetland named Cinnamon that I loved with all my heart. For the first 3 months I had her, I knew better what the underside of her belly looked like than what her face looked like, as she spent the biggest portion of our time together schooling me! I was black and blue that whole summer, until I learned the ropes a bit, and was better able to stay on the top side of my steed. She was the first of 10 horses I've had in my life, each wonderful, and wholely loved.

So, if you have a horse crazy young person in your life, I recommend Mr. Anderson's books. I would think/hope they would still have his books at the public library.

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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Happy 4th! Summer Fun!

How did it get to be the Independence Day holiday already?! Sure snuck up on me! This is when our little town really hops. There are lots of activities over the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th. Back in the olden days, I used to partake in all of it. Nowadays, I find it much nicer to stay in my little house on the hill, far and away from the thronging crowds. I do cave a little and go to the “Art in the Park” sale they have at the railroad park. They have a ton of juried exhibitors, and it is an adventure to see all the talent brought to this event. I will post separate pics of that, since all that I took are on Mr. Bruce's phone camera, and he is presently sawing logs (ZZZzzzz… 🙂 ).

So I borrowed a bunch of pics from Facebook to share with you, taken by folks who are far more adventurous than I.

First on the agenda is the big, whopping parade on the 2nd. It's gotten so popular that a few new rules had to be imposed on the process this year. No more throwing candy to the spectators. Too many kids run into the street to fetch the candy, and many folks were concerned for the kiddles safety with all the moving vehicles and livestock in the parade. Also, it is pretty tricky to get a choice viewing spot with the grand amounts of folks that amass throughout the parade route, so some people were cheating a bit and setting up folding chairs as early as the evening before the parade to “hold” their favorite spots (the parade isn't until 3 o'clock on the 2nd). Well, that was causing a bit of discontent among a goodly majority of the locals. So, the City made it official and put their foot down on the aforementioned practices. Nonetheless, there was still lots of fun to be had, apparently, judging from the many pics that were snapped during the procession –

 

 

This is an old retired Yellowstone Park touring bus.

 

 

A mule pack string brought in by a guide service.

 

 

 

 

Get a load of the driver's beautiful cowboy boots!

 

This is just a small sampling of the many delights in the parade, which takes nearly 2 hours to complete. Then, many of the folks stick around after the parade and eat dinner, and mosey around for a few hours, waiting for the infamous rodeo that starts at 8pm. Here are a few shots from the first of three nights of wild rodeo action.

 

 

 

 

 

At the close of the rodeo, they dim all the arena lights, and start the massive fireworks display. The fireworks are ignited on the golf course grounds which are directly behind the fairgrounds. It makes for a pretty spectacular show with them all bursting directly overhead. It's not too shabby taking in the show from our great vantage point here on the hill, either. Mine didn't turn out, so here are a few more from Facebook.

It's been really nice having a few days off to enjoy this lovely summer that is slipping by entirely too quickly!

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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Cowboy Up

I have some fun stuff in my cowboy and indian bedroom.

These are pretty unique, I think. They are kind of like paper dolls, but for boys. Or for girls that like cowboy and indian stuff, like me!

 

I found them all piled in a plastic zip lock bag at a rummage sale, and had never seen anything like them before, or since.

I'm forever keeping my eyes peeled for all things with a western-y or lodge-y twist. This kind of stuff seems to be getting harder to find (folks are hanging onto it now since it's no longer considered “junk” I guess) and when you are lucky enough to run across such things, it is pretty likely to cost more shekels than I am willing to part with. But once in a blue moon I get lucky and hit the jackpot.

My Mom gave me the awesome Skookum doll this last Christmas. I about fainted when I opened the package, and there it was! I have seen some amazing ones at antique sales, but you practically have to take out another mortgage on your house in order to buy one! My Mom has a great eye, got a screamin' deal on this little Skookum, and altogether that makes it even more special! I treasure it.

The Indian on the horse is a wind-up toy. The horse rears up, then drops down, while moving in a circle, it's tail spinning all the while.

The cowboy in the photo is my great grandfather. I have mentioned my great grandmother, who was his wife, in many posts on this blog because I have been entrusted to care for some of their heirlooms, which are most revered in my house.

It makes me happy when I find a pair of little cowboy boots at a rummage sale or one of the thrift stores. I have plans to decorate with them at the cabin when we get everything squared away up there. For now, they look cute in the cowboy bedroom here at home. I could just kick myself when I think of all the cute little boots I got rid of as my son grew out of them when he was little. That was all he would ever wear, and it was not unusual to see him toddling about in just a diaper and usually bright red cowboy boots!

He was sporting some nice black boots for this photo 🙂

This is a really neat lamp. I believe someone spent a great deal of time building it. It has a slab wooden base edged with bark strips. The stand (or body) is wrapped with individual sticks of red twig dog wood and cinched at top and bottom with braided raffia. The shade I think is handmade paper, done in a layering technique. When the lamp is on, the shade looks like a nighttime sky, with moon and stars and light colored shadowy pine trees.

When the lamp is off, the shade is white, and has a row of forrest green pine trees around the bottom – not a hint of a moon or stars showing. I went to a rummage sale and this couple picked it up just as I was running headlong for it. There was no price on it. When they got to the pay table (I happened to be right behind them in line) they asked how much and were told $8. They hemmed and hawed and decided it was too much. I slapped the $8 on the table and said “sold”, and gosh those folks looked surprised. I think they thought the price would come down, but I beat 'em to the finish line. The lady having the sale just smiled and handed the lamp to me!

All the pillows and blankets on the bed came from rummage sales, or antique sales. Gramma and Grandad's neighbor made lodge pole furniture, so I had him make this bed for my son when he was about 5 years old. That was a big splurge for me, but it's a great piece of furniture and I've never regretted it.

Those are bookends on the window sill, but they are cool to look at, so flat against the window, and facing out suits my fancy so I can see them better.

 

This little bronc is made of the same material as the bookends, and sits in the other window.

The horse in the photo belonged to my great grandfather (who's pic I showed you earlier). This was his favorite race horse, and his name was Dewey. They had a ranch in Lauren, MT, and raised many horses, as well as cattle, but Dewey was his very favorite. When all us kids were little, Gramma told us exciting stories about Dewey. I really liked those stories, so I feel blessed to have this picture of him as a reminder.

 

Lots of horses I've found here and there over the years. Some were mine when I was a kid.

Old post cards are another favorite and I just stick them wherever I fancy.

Anyway, there is plenty to keep your eye roving in this little bedroom. I love sleeping in here. It feels like a mini vacation at a Dude Ranch if you use your imagination. I believe I've told you before that I'm easily entertained!

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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This and That

Not much going on, so this is going to be a scattered, random, pretty nonsensical post.

So, Declan has commenced losing her baby teeth. (YAY) It has been pretty hysterical! She lost her 2 front teeth first, and looked every bit a kindergartener. This was followed by the checkerboard look as the others in the frontline followed suit. Now she has a double row of the very sharp eye teeth. The new ones are coming in, and the baby ones remain tightly anchored. She will not sit still enough for me to take a picture of the full effect, but here is a very close likeness! (TeeHee 😉 )

She is growing by leaps and bounds, but is still pretty little! Since I take her to work with me, she gets to visit with a lot of folks. Most ask what breed she is, and I tell them her story, and that it's pretty much a mystery, but that I tend to think she is mostly Jack Russell terrier. Well, that opens the gate to the guessing game, and everyone has their very own opinion as to what they think she may be – I've been told she's everything from chihuahua to collie (?!?, she's only 8 pounds, don't think there's enough room in there for collie!), with everything in between…beagle, corgi, manchester, and on and on. If I was extremely wealthy I would order one of those doggy DNA kits to solve the mystery, but they are about $75! So I believe I will just start telling folks, with a very definitive air, that she is a genuine terrier mutsky.

I got a new phone for Christmas that has a camera. I didn't feel comfortable taking either of my “real” cameras to work for fear I would damage them. It is so darn pretty out there most days, I was just in mourning when something awesome would present itself (or my little beasty would do something adorable) and I was camera-less. I'm finding it's pretty hit-and-miss with this phone camera, but at least I can kinda capture the moment.

The heater was broken at work for about 3 weeks. It was COLD out there first thing in the morning til I could stoke up the space heater. Declan didn't fuss at all when we would go straight in and bundle her tight in her shop blankey.

After it warmed up some, she was ready to visit with folks as they came thru, or wrestle around with her toys. She is so good at work, no trouble at all. It is really nice to have her for company during slow spells.

There is absolutely no zoom on this phone camera. Which is a shame, because if you could see how the light is reflected off the Crazy Mountains bright and early in the morning – it is breathtaking! Magnify this by about 100 (which is how my eye sees it), and this is just a quarter of the 360 degree view I have all around me at work.

I can remember sitting in my cubicle at my old job (where I had spent my entire adult life), stacks of papers and books all around me, feeling overwhelmed and sick with stress, and just thinking “if I could just sit and look out the window for a minute, I would feel so much better”. Thank you, Lord, I've gotten my wish! It is a grand thing for your mind and soul when you have a phenomenal job!

I've not gotten to the cabin yet this winter. Bruce tries to make it worth his while when he goes, so usually leaves Saturday morning and comes back Sunday evening. I work every Saturday, so our schedules are not in sync. But it has been dreadfully cold and windy this winter so far, so guess I can hold out on going and not be too terribly sad. His snowmachine is out of commission presently, so he is grounded til he can get it repaired. Since we had some weekend time together, we went to dinner at the Chinese restaurant last Saturday and did a bit of tourage on the gerbil wheel here in town.

This big boy came over to see what the dickens we were looking at.

 

A couple of old abandoned log homes down on the island. See the doe standing to the right at the 2nd cabin? I can't believe someone hasn't fixed these up. You just don't see abandoned homes in our area much, if ever. I was appalled when we vacationed in New England and saw so many awesome, historical homes boarded up, or in a derelict falling down state. It just made me heart-sick! I told Bruce if we could figure out how to transport them to Montana for cheap, we could plop them on a couple acres, fix them up, and sell them for bazillions of dollars! But that is a far fetch between New Hampshire and Montana.

 

Even when it's cold and blustery, you can still find something wonderful to do if you're up for it. See the fisherman mid-picture? He's not letting the weather slow him down any! We saw lot's of folks walking their dogs, kids sledding, even one couple cross country skiing right on the streets in town!

We stopped and fed the ducks at the park.

FLASH MOB! Boy, were they hungry! Lots of folks feed them, but it's just been so cold, they need lots of feed.
No skaters tho. It's been too darn windy. It makes the ice freeze like ~~^~~^~~^~~^~~ which is a much too rough surface to skate on.

 

 

 

More of these goofs in town. These guys were about a block from my house. They are totally urbanized and not scared a bit.

My favorite giant.

 

Late afternoon New Years Day out at my folk's farm. We had a fun potluck, and my Mom made a kettle of chili and some delish desserts.

That's about all the excitement I have for now! Bet it about knocked your socks off 🙂

TTFN,

Teresa

 

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Spectacular

Bruce had to take a road trip for work last week, and he was kind enough to stop and take a few pictures of this spectacular sight to share.

Horses grazing on the Big Sky horizon. Looks like a typical Montana vista, right? …….. Not quite!

Can you see why now?

These are all sculptures! A wonderful gift to Montana from a very talented artist. Find more of his story here. Check it out! There are terrific close ups of the sculptures, and the artist's story.

Two of the sculptures were stolen from this site awhile back, but thankfully were recovered and returned to the “herd”.

Be sure and bring binoculars if you ever plan to do a little tourage in our beautiful state, and this is just one of the things you'll be able to see up close and personal!

TTFN,

Teresa 🙂

 

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