Before the cold front ~ SWF

western valley

We had a lot of haze the day before this long-lasting cold front moved in; it gave the landscape a soft touch on that very warm day.   Below a pheasant looks for dinner. I noticed him in the tall grass soon after I took the previous photo.  Join in for Sky Watch Friday!  Thanks to all who make it possible.

sun dogs play
two blades of grass move
pheasant dance


Nanking Cherry


I have three Nanking bushes in the back yard and they all are, every inch, covered with blossoms. I have never seen them so abundantly dressed.  The honey, native,  and bumble bees along with every other kind of bee in the area worked all week on these flowers.  The whir of countless pairs of wings became unmistakable when opening the back door.   Hey, what’s the buzz?

Finn, stop showing off. You are nice looking too… sheesh.

Finn showing off

Sunday ~ OSI

If you ever walk in the woods on a Sunday
you might catch a sigh from deep within
out of nowhere; neither troubled
nor content.

Sundays are like that.
This day is a comma,
separated from all the others.

The sigh may startle you into reflection.
You might have lost any sense of direction this week
what am I doing? what was that all about?

be annoyed with a friend
or miss someone quite profoundly

be unsettled for no reason
because after all
you have it good, you have love,
you have everything.

If you walk where tiny streams run
and spring is waking up green all around you
in the soft undergrowth of fern and vine
then the forest light will cautiously seep into your heart

singing gratitude
and you will remember why, where and how

the mask of the days falling away.


This photo taken last Sunday; the first Trillium.  The prompt this week at One Single Impression is Mask. Thank you to all the poets.


Whatcha' doing?


Judy, from Lilacgate,  mentioned that the Alpacas looked like they are wearing baggy, four-legged PJ’s. I actually think that is pretty funny. They really are adorable – but yes, they do spit! Just a little. And a friend told me they Hum if you pet them. I didn’t pet them because there were two HUGE guard dogs in the field with them. I suppose they are worth a lot of money.  I have a sweater made from Alpaca wool which I love. I guess I will have to be content with that.

This big work horse was in the field prior to us finding the Alpacas.  Matthew took this photo of  Mr. Huge.  He really needs to call in the hair dresser though because the Suzanne Summers look doesn’t work.  Look at the muscles on this animal; now that is real horse power.  On another note, I just discovered that I don’t have a category for pets or farm animals. I guess these are all a little wild…

heavy horse

Surprises on SWF

Two days ago it was snowing like mad and quite cold at 37 degrees F.  Winter was stubborn and seemed to be begrudging us our Spring; apparently winter would never leave.  However, a lot can change in two days.

Today it is 70 degrees and the sun is in full tilt. I was dazzled by it, walking around in a daze. I glanced up to see the pussy willows surprise me overhead. Here we are! Finally! It is about time Spring arrived and all within two days.  BAM!  – a true Montana Springtime. Gotta’ get out in that holy sunshine!  So off we went.


We explored down the road across from town this afternoon after school.  We hadn’t been on this road for years.  We turned a curve and discovered another surprise – what in the heck?   Montana Alpacas!  “Happy Sky Watch Friday“, they say.  Oh my, they are so cute and I have never seen Alpacas up close and personal before today.  Who would have thought such creatures lived only a mile from our house?

SWF is here again and thanks to all who make it possible.


A backyard feeder


~~Spring is making slow advances in a long, drawn-out manner here in western Montana. Our fire insurance finally arrived yesterday in the form of a steady rain which lasted over 24 hours all over the region and planted quite a few inches of fresh snow in the higher elevations.  All counties are still running low on snow pack and stream flow, but this will help. Although the skies are dreary and gray I will accept the rain with gratitude.  That kind of shift in the weather always makes the birds hungry when the temperature hovers around 35- 40 degrees!  Hmm, that might explain a few things… like why I all of a sudden want to make a chocolate-buttermilk cake.

Above a dark eye Junco and below a small downy. My mom has three kinds of woodpeckers at her place (where these photos were taken).


And out front things are greening up, albeit very slowly!

Sailing small

Matthew and I are in the process of outfitting our Red Raven canoe with a small, breeze efficient sail.  This video truly has me excited about the prospect of taking the Raven out on Flathead Lake or even canoe sailing on Lake Ozette when the weather permits. We will only have one sail to start – both of us to be seated in the bottom of the boat with an attachable rudder.  It looks fine and fun, doesn’t it?