Friday, October 28

A perfect autumn day has the crunching of leaves beneath my feet,
city windows dressed in the color of pumpkins,
and the smell of apples wafting in the air.
I use words like splender, bliss, luster and harvest.
Breathing in and out replenishes me.

I am in my element when partnered with autumn.


Tuesday, October 25

The Secret Lives of Dresses

Yesterday I was having "one of those days"...
I found refuge in a new book from the library.

The Secret Lives of Dresses by Erin McKean

The stunning yellow dress on the cover is what first caught my eye.
  The story has a little fashion, drama and family paired with surprising twists.  I wrapped up in my favorite blanket and read all day long. It was a fun and easy read that kept me engaged.  It was funny though, while I connected with the main character (Dora), I often found the grandmother using many of the exact quotes that I use. (Her dislike of the word moist had me giggling.)

How often do you look down and say..."how did I get here" with your wardrobe? While I REALLY love fashion (I just watched Coco before Chanel again this morning for the 100th time), I am also realistic. I find myself wanting to blend into the crowd a lot more than I want to stick out in the name of fashion.   

On many occasions I have been tempted to call What Not to Wear on myself, but I'm working with very little right now.  Honestly, I feel a little foolish dressing up when I spend most of my time alone, at the library or trudging through the woods. On the flip side, my Northface polar fleece pants are begging for a break.

I'm a chameleon in my environment, but I'm true to myself.  Wherever I am there will always be a pair of fabulous black heels, an array of scarves and a nice handbag....  ok, there's most likely a pair of flip-flops just in case too.


Friday, October 21

I went to Paris...

Moments of dullness don't exist.

Last weekend we were at Bear Lake which is on the border of Utah and Idaho near the historical Oregon Trail.  While my husband and friends hunted I stayed busy exploring the area.  The shape of the mountains might change, but the beauty didn't. On many occasions I pulled the truck over to marvel at galloping horses in tall grass displaying their effortless strength, to gaze at another breathless vision of nature and to read countless historical roadside signs. 

I thought the title of my post was funny and most likely caught most of you off guard, but it's the truth. I went to Paris, Idaho. Founded my Mormon pioneers in 1863, this small city has an impressive Romanesque sandstone church built by a son of Brigham Young. The LDS Bear Lake Stake Tabernacle seats 2000, nearly four times the population of the town.

Channelling the earlier settlers in a KOA, I built my first fire without the assistance of my male counterparts.That sentence as ridiculous as it sounds fills me with pride.  It's one thing to have assistance, but another to have the ability to bring light into darkness with matches and wood. It wasn't our typical "roughing it" camping experience, I'll be the first one to say that. It has to do with the amount of time I spend alone. After the fourth night, my tent flying across the grounds in an extreme rain/wind storm and cooking off a camper stove I was happy to take shelter at the barracks. (Did I just say that? :)

Over the Memorial weekend we drove 7 hours to visit our friends and previous landlords in Missoula, Montana. The drive there was nothing shy of fabulous and I wish each of you could experience it. With each turn on the winding road my heart grew with anticipation and happiness. We were going home.... 

The ranch hadn't changed. The animals greeted us with their usual lick. Our friends made us feel like we never left. I spent an entire morning sitting on the mountain side next to the horses. No book in hand, no MP3, just me and Big Sky country.

This weekend we are planning to do a few hikes to retrieve some of the collars that have dropped off the elk. Let me explain....  For the last 4 years my husband has been working on his PhD in Wildlife Biology.  Each year collars are put on elk and wolves so he can obtain information. It's not really that simple. The collars help him collect a bunch of information, in return he takes all the data and answers questions for his thesis.  Yesterday, he took a flight to get a better idea as to the whereabouts of the animals and the collars that have dropped off. (He has programmed them to fall off throughout the months of Oct, Nov. and December.)  It looks like one of the hikes will be relatively easy and the other one not so easy at all. I'll be sure to take some photos so you can experience it with me in the comfort of your home.

Until then....

Wednesday, October 5

Email updates....

Day 1:Without question, Idaho is as beautiful as I remember. The night sky danced with lights, the whispering pines spoke gentle greetings, and the flowing river guided us on our short journey to our temporary home tucked tenderly in the woods.

Barracks life...will be an adjustment, (communal kitchen, bathrooms and living area, but we are alone right now.) as was the mobe.(Go to my first months of blogging for life in the mobe posts.) With a little bit of scrubbing, sweeping and scrapping we will be sterilized for comfy living. We do NOT have internet....said with a shaking voice. Thankfully, the new public library is 5 miles from where we are staying. No doubt we will be on a first name basis shortly.

Day 7:Picture perfect 80 degree days abruptly changed for 47 and raining. It's still a vision of loveliness as the clouds peek-a-boo behind the dark mountains. Marveling at the grand scenery makes morning coffee with my husband that much better.

While replacing someone else's dirt for our own we've managed to settle into the barracks.  In all honesty, it wasn't as dirty as my little white gloves wanted to think.  Although, I 'm still wearing shoes everywhere I step, it's mostly a mind game I need to deal with.  The generosity and friendliness everyone around us has shown brings only thoughts of gratitude. To top it off, there are numerous apple trees on the grounds which only means yummy apple goodness to come. (Pies, crumbles, sauce)  Too bad I couldn't bring my canning stuff.

We are filling our days with long drives on heart stopping narrow mountain roads, good books, school work (my husband), hikes, visiting "old" friends and making a few new ones.  There is a nice tv with a vhs/dvd player, so our nights are spent in the company of Hollywood's finest.

If only I could share with you the beauty of the star filled night skies, the sound of the river and the sight of a majestic bald eagle in flight. I write in hopes of capturing a few of these special moments and passing them on to you.

(These are the last two emails I sent to some family and friends. I hope this answers a few of your questions, but feel free to ask me to fill in some of the blanks you might have.)  More soon.....


Tuesday, October 4

Settling in....

I've started typing my first sentence at least 5 times.  It's hard to know where to start since I've been away for so long.  Let's try this short version....

For the last month I've been visiting family and friends in Michigan and Missouri. After a very quick three weeks, last Wednesday, I was reunited with my husband in Boise, Idaho.  This is our 5th and final year doing research in the mountains of Idaho.  (More on that later.)

I have so much to tell you, so many beautiful sights and stories to all I need is for my computer to work so I can post some photos. (Soon...I promise) Thankfully, our new location has a library about 4 miles from were we are staying and I've already become a member.

We are just settling in and you were on my mind.  I can't wait to hear from you......
This post...makes me sad. Photos to come...