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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Family Visit

On Sunday afternoon I called Lonn to see if they minded visitors—nope, come ahead he said and oh, by the way, dinner will come off the grill about 5:30—how cool is that!  We got to see the great grand babies and enjoy a delicious dinner of prime rib!  Oh, yea, we got to see the rest of the family too!Winking smile

Lora is just weeks shy of being two years old—one of her constant refrains is, “read to me, read to me.”  Mimi was happy to oblige--

Lora is simply adorable—wild at times but a joy!  She is starting to speak well—at least we can understand her now!  When asked who that whiskered cowboy was she replied, “Grandpa!” 

While in Arizona I started a quilt for Michael and Katie’s baby.  His early arrival put a hitch in the quilt plans and my recent extended trip to Arkansas really put a hitch in the plans.  But, finally I was able to give the quilt for baby Brooks to Michael and Katie—the colors are more lime green, teal and brown than this photo shows--

JuneBrooks has grown so much since I last saw him—isn’t that hair just the best!

 Out for a little exercise today.

Tuesday I took Emmi to our veterinarian for her yearly checkup—all is well, Emmi wasn’t impressed but then she never is!  Michael puttered with the RZR and the trailer we will use when hauling the RZR behind the truck camper—adventures are being planned—stay tuned!

DSCN2684Sainfoin—growing in the neighbor’s field above our house—it’s a type of hay and has a very pink cast to it—strange.

DSCN2706Lora and Aunt Katie

And after all these years, the peonies are blooming--

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Monday, June 27, 2016

Change In Toys

One evening last week Michael was stacking hay and I had driven the Can-Am up to the irrigation ditch to see if we had water.  Driving back down to the hay yard the Can-Am felt as if it had a flat tire then I lost all steering—nothing, steering wheel turned but wheels didn’t.  Sure am glad I was on mostly flat ground and not doing 40mph on a road or coming down off some of those steep, rocky hillsides in Moab! 

The cowboy/mechanic tore apart the Can-Am finding a bad coupling and then the trouble started.  No parts—no where, none!  Our Can-Am has only 2000 miles on the odometer.  After searching the internet for the part we ended up contacting BRP (Bombardier Recreational Products) via email.  In less than 15 minutes we had a reply.  Seems there is a safety recall for this very issue—loss of steering.  New parts are being manufactured and will not be available until around the first of July.  Repairs will be covered by BRP and we have a slot at the local dealer in Bozeman once the parts arrive.  We had never thought to contact BRP and change ownership so as to receive recall notices. Sad smile

OK—we have plans which involve ATV riding with other people—Larry and Geri plus some Canadian friends.  We’ve been talking about buying a smaller ATV—our Can-Am is 58 inches wide.  Many states are designating ATV trails be only 50 inches wide—we wouldn’t fit in the Can-Am.  So—we didn’t really want to get down to the wire and find out the parts wouldn’t be available by July 1.  Friday we went to Billings and purchased a 50 inch Polaris 900 Trail RZR.  We may or may not sell the Can-Am once its repaired—we will see.

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Saturday we spent the day in Big Timber at the Fest and parade.  Sunday morning we headed up to Mocassin Lake to try out the new toy—not as roomy as the Can-Am—no place for Emmi to sit other than in our laps but otherwise—we like it!  Michael spent the day installing wiring for the GPS and a box in the rear to hold all our “stuff.”  We’ve ordered an after market roof and windshield—should be here by Friday we hope!

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IMG_5219Wild columbine flowers alongside the trail.

IMG_5209The rear end of one huge bear we spotted on the trail out in front of us.

Sunday night we enjoyed dinner with Lonn and the kids—photos on the next blog.

Chuck is improving slightly every day back in Arkansas—still in the hospital but doing better. 

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Small Town USA

In spite of a brisk gale force wind and temps in the high sixties, Big Timber managed to pull off another Sweet Grass Fest today.  Small town USA at its finest.  There was something for everyone—the local sheriff’s department allowed themselves to be dunked into what had to be icy water by folks throwing balls at the drop lever.  A “bouncy house” was erected for the children, there were food and craft vendors plus a huge car show and parade.  At one of the local bars there was a bloody mary bar and music later in the afternoon.  Proceeds from the dunking booth and bouncy house went to our local cancer alliance. 

DSCN2635-001This flag was absolutely huge and those folks were struggling to hang on in that wind—what a fitting tribute at the head of the parade!

Town was crowded and we visited with lots of friends and neighbors.

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DSCN2624DSCN26281957 Corvette belonging to Mary Beth and Bill—folks I knew when living in Powell, WY who have since moved to our neck of the woods.

DSCN2631There were food vendors but the wind was blowing so hard and there was little seating so the cowboy and I retreated to one of the local restaurants for lunch. By the time we finished in the crowded restaurant, it was time for the parade.  We found a sunny spot a little out of the wind and enjoyed!

DSCN2651DSCN2657Ken and Leslie on a motorized buckboard Kenny built complete with oogah horn! Smile

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DSCN2675This young woman is a farrier (person who shoes horses)—take note and look closely, Katie is making sure her little baby girl has the same love of horses!

Emmi stayed with Nat and after the festivities we spent some time visiting with him.  A great day in Montana!

DSCN2638Hey Jeane, recognize that child in the lower right??

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

This And That Days

Michael has finished our haying over the last two days—he’s glad to have that job behind him!  I’ve been quilting—one of my own projects—amazing isn’t it!  It’s a gift and as soon as I find some binding fabric and attach it, the quilt will be finished!

Here’s the t-shirt memory quilt I longarm quilted for a friend--

DSCN2611DSCN2612Just a large stipple—I’ve never quilted a t-shirt quilt and was concerned about the stiffness of the stabilizer and the sticky feel of some of the t-shirt designs.  I shouldn’t have worried, my big ole quilting machine just hummed right along with not one tension problem!

Yesterday afternoon late, Michael and I picked another large container of strawberries—there is no comparison to store bought strawberries and these fresh picked ones!  We enjoyed sliced strawberries with ice cream last night and may do so again tonight!

This afternoon we went to town for hydraulic fluid and to deliver some wood racks Michael created for friends Geoff and Nancy.  The cowboy is busy checking his projects off the list! 

Another beautiful day in Montana, 80 degrees and the wind finally stopped blowing!

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Monday, June 20, 2016

No Internet

DSCN2600Big stick for a little dog!

No, I didn’t disappear again but our internet sure did.  Our local co-op telephone company outsources its technical support and if this weekend was any indication, they need to outsource it elsewhere!  Saturday morning at 7am we didn’t have any internet and service wasn’t restored until 1pm today.    On Saturday morning, the technician walked me through all the normal stuff—unplug, move to different telephone jack, use different telephone cord, etc.—nothing worked so evidently it must be a problem in my home.  Technical support told me over the weekend no outage had been reported. Wrong!  I couldn’t contact any of our close neighbors on Saturday morning and by Sunday I had given up knowing nothing would be done until Monday.  I wasn’t a bit pleased to find this morning a large number of our friends/neighbors had also been without internet all weekend and had reported their problems to that wonderful technical support group. 

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Michael started cutting hay Saturday and finished baling ours today.  He also cut the hay at our neighbors which they give to us for the cutting.  I’ve been busy doing yard work and cleaning house.

Nat and his companion/caretaker Barb came up for Father’s Day dinner Sunday, it’s been forever since he came up the Boulder.  We had a wonderful lunch and afternoon visiting. 

Today I loaded a customer quilt and finished it—a simple meander on a memory quilt for a friend’s grandchild graduating from high school.  The t-shirts were in such great shape I am thinking the mom of this child either wouldn’t let him wear the shirts or she bought extra ones for this quilt.  I think it turned out great and the quilt will be delivered either tomorrow or Wednesday.

DSCN2604Look Claire and Robyn—we have strawberries this year!!

DSCN2605Notice the cowboy’s attire—a coat was required this morning—it was a touch nippy!

On the longest day of the year—another beautiful day up the Boulder.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Getting Back To Normal and Homemade Tortillas

DSCN2580When I left for Arkansas, we were still experiencing cool weather and the flowering shrubs in our flower beds had not blossomed.  Fast forward almost four weeks with some extra hot weather thrown in and we have an abundance of gorgeous flowers and of course weeds!  Over the last couple days we’ve had rain so everything is growing—weeds, grass, flowers—making our little neck of the woods lush and green.

DSCN2582DSCN2585And not only did the grass/weeds/flowers grow in my absence but so did Emmi’s fur—shaggy little thing, isn’t she!DSCN2588A bath yesterday and haircut today.

We eat a lot of tortillas—well, Michael eats more than I do as I really haven’t found a store bought flour tortilla I like—they are all so thick, doughy and tough.  When I make tacos or fajitas, I will frequently just skip the tortilla.  Years ago we discovered the taste of homemade tortillas when we were in Mexico and that experience spoiled us.  As we were driving the truck and fifth wheel to Alamos, Sonora, Mexico we would travel through these small villages.  Each village had at least one huge speed bump—topes—so large we almost came to a stop to prevent causing damage.  When travelers slowed, the Mexican people came out into the highway selling stuff—and tortillas were sold in almost every little town.  Light, favorful, perfect tortillas!

Well, today I made tortillas—and they were absolutely delicious—light, flavorful and just about perfect!  I used a recipe recommended by Judy of Patchwork Times and followed it exactly.  It really wasn’t difficult nor did it take very long, plus I always have on hand all the ingredients.

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Chuck is better and we are so thankful.  We thank all of you readers for your thoughts and prayers.  He is waking up and talking some—progress!

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Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Home

It was a very short night Monday—had to be at the airport by 5am—thus the reason for my staying in a downtown Little Rock hotel which had an early morning airport shuttle.  Arriving in Bozeman after stopping in Detroit and Minneapolis, I was so glad to see Michael waiting with Ms. Emmi in his arms!  Only Ms. Emmi didn’t recognize me! Sad smile Within just a few minutes she realized who I was.Smile  At home she couldn’t wait for me to play ball with her in the backyard.

Today we woke to much cooler temps and rain.  It was even cool in Billings where we had gone for a haircut and to stock the refrigerator and pantry.  Three days before I left for Arkansas we had gone to Costco and purchased lots of fruits/vegetables/yogurt, etc.  Needless to say most of that stuff went into the compost pile.  The cowboy doesn’t cook!

We read with sadness about the loss of Jim and Ellie’s sweet schnauzer Jasmine—it’s so hard to lose a fur kid—very hard.  Jasmine was so tolerant of Emmi when they first met while Mr. BoJangles watched with disgust. 

We recently received an interesting email—a woman contacted us stating she had found in her late father’s belongings a copper Christmas card from a Nat and the X—A dude ranch in Montana.  The post office cancelation stamp was either 1940 or 1941!  She sent a photo of her father for us to show Nat.  Small world isn’t it in this internet day and age!

It feels so, so good to be home!