Sunday, August 30

Day 2 in the woods

We had to drive into town....

Day two:

The nightly crackles and pops brought me to attention on numerous occasions. My knight in a shining down sleeping bag whispered light breaths in and out. Asleep with no apprehensions. He always says that he would rather die in the woods by an animal than by a meth-head in need of his next fix.

Slowly the morning sun sang like a rooster through the window. I lied there cozy in my sleeping bag for as long as my bladder would allow. Rolling from side to side trying to postpone the inevitable, the cold morning air, the dew laden ground and the trek to the perfect potty spot.

Dark clouds danced with the sun for most of the day. Our first narrow road outing prepped me for the next. It is not like riding a bike where you might ride it for a month then not again until the next summer picking up where you left off. It has been over five years of tight rope driving along the narrow, rugged roads and I still have a paralyzing fear when looking over the edge and looking down a couple thousand feet. I am constantly putting my trust in the gravel to grip the tires instead of dancing across. Fast or slow..... We debate over seat belts or not. Without there is a chance of being thrown, which might be beneficial considering the drop or in the event that a tree breaks your fall it would be wise to have the seat belt on....... Is there any other place to completeness such fate?

Without hesitation...I am here to report it took only one full day, I am now into the groove and look forward to tomorrows adventure.

Day 1 in the woods

Day One:

Looking back, I didn't want to leave the ranch which made it very hard to enjoy the first part of the day. My huge love of animals can get in the way of almost all other emotions. A few of the animals looked as if age and use have taken a toll on them. I realize that is just life, but I'm not completely at ease by the thought of this happening to anybody or thing that I love and care for.

When the gravel road began my heart sank deeper. I could feel the need fight or flight. Well, I'm certainly not looking to go Mike Tyson on a mule deer so, my obvious second choice was flight. If only my Cessna was handy. Without a hint or a sign my anxiety can kick in. Here I am surrounded by beautiful pine trees, rolling rivers and my heat is racing as fast as the rapids. Every circle of the tire I was spiraling into panic.

Unpacking the truck put my body at easy (go...go....go....)and created a playground for my thoughts. And why wouldn't it be a bit overwhelming? I am an hour from any form of livable habitat outside of my not always friendly four legged friends.

Into the dark of night both my mind and body started to relax. (Thank goodness!) Without fail (my not so useful thoughts of the bad kind) surfaced, my husband and I heard to sound of enemy invasion. Crack! Snap! Crack! Snap! He sat and watched- waited...while I took off to safety. It never did rear it's head, but it definitely made an impact on me. Bear, moose, elk.... I know I'm a visitor within your home, I will be thoughtful.

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Sometimes all you need is a yard with a view.... I did not photo shop this, it's just that beautiful.

There is a piece of me created here in Montana, on this mountain, at this ranch.(Our little red house.)

More later....I am deep within the woods of Idaho enjoying the silence, the smell of pine and watching wildlife<---hopefully from afar.

(I dated my posts)

Saturday, August 29

Friendly faces and wagging tails

As much as I really enjoyed all the sights of Wyoming and South Dakota....I'll have to skip them for now because, I'm in Montana. I love Montana. (Imagine me shouting at the top of my lungs with a huge smile on my face.) Maybe it has something to do with the ranch we lived on and all the animals that I was surrounded by, but my heart is here.

The 580 acre ranch quickly became home and the animals quickly became mine. Even tonight two years after we moved from here I have two dogs on my bed and three more close by.




Jackson (the newest arrive)

The horses, bulls and cats to come.....

*They miss you too, mom and dad.

Friday, August 28


We are within hours of departing for our 10 day trip into the Clearwater National Forest. Much to my dismay, there is no internet. If you could see where we are going you would be laughing at that....We are deep within the woods. So deep that the average car will not make it to where we are going. So secluded, it will be amazing to see "people" outside of those who work for the forest service. So out there, alone in a little log cabin that the only way to communicate is with a satellite phone, outgoing calls only. Anyone what to join me?

Off to be one with nature... As soon as I get out of the woods I am heading to Seattle for 10 days, I'll have lots to share. Just so you know, I have set up a couple posts for when I am gone, enjoy!

*****Click Here to entry my $15.00 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway!*****

Wednesday, August 26

Wordless Wednesday

We were at Mount Rushmore a couple days ago. What a sight!

Can you name the men in the first photo? I will pick a person at random and send them a treat from the west. (They have yummy treats here.)

***Check out the post below, I am giving away a $15.00 gift card to Amazon.***

Tuesday, August 25

Got Free Ecards $15.00 Amazon g.c. Giveaway

"I love being carded!"(come on over and check it out).....Oh you know that, but you didn't know that I also love to send ecards. Did you know that? If you leave me your email, you will see for yourself how much I like to send them. Be prepared because I can add photos and sound to all the cards. (Huge Smile!)

Recently, I was introduced to Got Free Ecards and I am loving it.

It is easy to use... What a bonus.

It is family friendly with high quality animation and a great selection of free ecards. I love the word free...

They even have Printable Birthday Cards

(Super Cute samples....)

I think you should check it out for yourself. I also think it is time for another giveaway. How about a $15.00 Amazon gift card? Good, we have that settled. Here is how you can win:

*First and most important (you have to do this to receive any entries), check out Free Ecards, Free Printable Birthday Cards, Free Ecards Birthday or Free Ecards Halloween. Come back and let me know what you think. If you go to all four get 4 entries. (Let me know by making a separate entry.)
*If you send a Got Free Ecard you'll get another entry.

Blog About It

*Now, if you blog about this giveaway ABOVE WHERE IT SAYS "BLOG ABOUT IT", (I'm not yelling. I am trying to make this easier.) By clicking above, all the work is done for you. It is also a super easy and pretty cool way to post something.
*What other Got Free Ecards occasions would you like to see? An easy question and it is good for another entry.
*If you want to sign up for my blog that would be super kind of you AND you will be well informed on other giveaways AND subjected to my posts... I mean enlightened by my many words of wisdom...that's not true either...Well, you will get to hear all the random things happening in my life.<--- All that gets you two entries, mostly because you had to read it.

This giveaway ends Friday, September 11th. Now, go check it out, so you can win and put a smile on someones face by sending them an ecard.
Thanks Got Free Ecards for this great giveaway!!! Good Luck-

***If you like giveaway Click HERE! Over 200...***

Iowa and elk

Hours of NPR, books on CD, quiet moments and good conversation took us through the 29th state, Iowa. Swaying grasses and manicured crops were our faithful companions. Fluttering from branch to barbwire you could spot the state bird, the Eastern Goldfinch.

We stopped to give props to our 31st President, Herbert Hoover, but the visitor center was closed.

More crops...a nap or two later we stopped in Newton for the night.

I had no idea what the next day had in store for me....

First, I would like to start by finding my voodoo doll. There is a man out there and he has a lot of friends, but I am not one of them. This man's name is Paul. My husband really likes Paul. Paul, my husband and I spent a good three hours together driving down highway 80.(Clearing my throat) I was the pupil while Paul and my husband were the teachers...I learned how to bugle like an elk. WHAT? A cow (female)...not a bull (male). I'm sure this will come in handy some day... If I had only learned how to bugle earlier in life I would have had a talent making it possible for me to be Miss Something. (Evening wear...)

By the end, my husband was beaming with pride and my head hurt. Have you heard a distressed elk? No worries, with a little pressure I'll give you a clip into my wildlife world, just let me know, something can be arranged.

Off to bugle at the moon....

*For new husband works with elk, so basically he is obsessed with everything about them. :)

Saturday, August 22

Just ask!

I really doesn't hurt to ask...

We started traveling a lot over the last few years. We have also become monetarily challenged since making the decision to attend 4-5 more years of schooling while my husband gets his doctorate. (The two topics coincide.)

Queen of cutting corners, Princess of pinching's all good. I'll take that tiara, the sash and wear them with pride...just make sure there is a splash of pink and some sparkles.

Like the other trips we have gone on, I am doing my part to make it affordable. It is my job to get the hotel rooms. (Rooms when we are not camping...)The first hotel was asking $79.00, the second hotel $99.00 and the third $140.00. We paid $45.00, $55.00 and $99.00...all because I asked if there were any rooms for a lower price or are there any specials that I am not aware of. Just by being honest and letting them know I need a lower price...I got one.

So, just ask...all that can happen is you get a no. That's o.k. there is always another room to rent. The best part is, every time I walk into a hotel I leave knowing the person not the worker..the person working at the desk. Everyone has a story. Like Gwen at the last hotel we stayed. She is Native American and is just learning the value of her culture. It is amazing what you can learn if you are willing to listen. (Thanks Gwen!)

Just ask!

Giveaways at another blog....

Before I post about my day....A Nut in a Nutshell has posted a huge list of giveaways on her blog. It is called the Saturday Parade Giveaway. Click here and enjoy!

Friday, August 21

On the road...

Pit stop at the parents....

Without fail my mother was fluttering (then stubbing her toe and banging the cupboards) around the kitchen when we arrived.(Thanks for the yummy eggplant.) It has only been a month since we have seen my parents, but it is always fun to come "home".

Soon the house was buzzing with friends and family. As luck would have it my aunt and uncle who live in Indiana had arranged a visit while I was there. What a treasured time! I love to hear stories about my dad when he was younger. I also love to see him around her.

Happy Birthday Aunt D...and Happy Anniversary to the two of you! 51 years?

Breezing through the door like a beautiful summer day, my best friend since school and her two boys arrived for dinner. It was hours of laughter and youthful entertainment. (Thanks B. it was sooo sweet of you to travel over an hour.)

The morning opened the door to more company of the family kind...I heart my family! My older sister (I had to put that in there because she looks so young and I got jealous looking at the photo...hee hee) and her three kids drove over 40 minutes to hang out with us. Like a good aunt I taught them how to shop on Ebay.

(Reviewing WAT-AHH, it was a thumbs up...more on that later.)

Through my thin black frames (off for the photo) the white lines stretched from one state to another. (Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa)

First stop...Cabela's (I spent more than my husband- what's up with that?)

Next stop, Hank's down home cookin', but they didn't open for another hour....We then found "The Bright Spot". Let's just say I'm not sure how they got the name.

*We are trying to stop at local restaurants along the way...Today my lunch, which happened to be breakfast food, cost $2.70, but than I ordered a piece of coconut cream pie for the road...with a moment of hesitation, I wanted to eat it all myself, I shared it. What a good day it was! More tomorrow....

What did you do today?

Tuesday, August 18

Another adventure....

BEEEEP....BEEEEP......3:00 a.m.


Scraping the sleep boogies from my eyes I slumbered to the truck. Silently, I gave thanks to my husband for packing the car the night before. Hummm, not really the night before since it was only 5 hours before this exact moment.

It is dark, and early. There is a lady at the bus stop eating chips and a drunk man on a bike- randomness!

Thanks to our strategic - EVIL, departure time we hit Montreal and Toronto with minimal traffic. 14 hours later we were in Grand Rapids, Michigan. My husband, his mom and I watched the Food Network channel while chatting. Finally, I excused myself to bed. Stretching my legs with the soothing hum of the air conditioner...good zzzz's are in my near future.

The tentative adventure plan:
Michigan 2-3 days
On the road 3 days (heading west)
Montana 4-5 days
Clearwater National Forest (Idaho) 10-12 days
Seattle (Yippeeeee- to visit Mona) 10-12 days
Boise National Forest 10-12 day
Travel (to Michigan) 3 days
Visit Family/Friends 4 days
Travel 1 day to Canada
Home in Quebec City ....

I look forward to sharing our pit stops and people watching.

Monday, August 17

Rags to Rug...

My tootsies have found a new place to dwell. Last night, I finally finished my first "big" rug. Check it out. Just don't look too close there are a few, not so perfect spots.

I bought this fabric, but plan to start using old clothing and such.

Sunday, August 16

WAT-AAH! Anyone? ... It's a giveaway for everyone!

Everyone is a winner...with WAT-AAH!

I was contacted to do a survey on the marketing of a new product. Not only did the packaging grab my attention, so did the product.

WAT-AAH! Wants to help promote healthy kids through healthy hydration! Combining the "mom focus" with the kids desire, together they created a cool name, an eye catching logo...a drink without sugar, what? Yes, drinks that promote health, hydration, bone growth, better brain function and energy. WAT-AAH! Brain, Bones, Body and Energy. Click HERE TO VISIT WAT-AAH! to read more.

Join Healthy Kids Drink WAT-AHH! You and your kids will get to sample WAT-AAH...then share your story. I got mine in a matter of days. Just tell them ANN sent you. (I will not receive any form of compensation.) Get started HERE!

What do you think...are you going to take the challenge? I am having a giveaway for anyone who takes the challenge- leave a comment and you will be entered.

MORE...Lots more giveaways HERE!