31 December 2012

Ice, Ice, Baby, Missoula, Montana

Thanks to N., whose little eye did espy this sculptural ice floe.
And the same did then bid me follow her alongst a veritable rabbit trail through Greenough Park's winter-bare shrubbery, so as to gain a better perspective.
(Sorry, I just finished Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter". The language lingereth.)

30 December 2012

28 December 2012

Blue Shadows, Missoula, Montana

There's a song for everything, if you've been paying attention.
The blue of these shadows provoke - to my mind, at least - "I'm being followed by a moon shadow...". 
I know, I know, we're looking at sun shadows, and the verse lyrics are on the sinister side, but it's a catchy chorus - which I'm sure you'll sing repeatedly, all afternoon, in random snippets, when you're trying to finish something important.
You can thank me in person when you come to visit.

27 December 2012

Nighttime Drama, Missoula, Montana

Visit any Montana town that's a historic county seat (please do) and you will find at least one building - the courthouse - boasting architectural finery. Missoula, Montana, has many impressive structures, including the Missoula Mercantile, which is undergoing restoration.  I love that during the early days of what were essentially frontier towns, the founding fathers found it important to construct solid yet elaborate buildings. Maybe this was their visible projection of hope for a prosperous and important future. After all, you didn't typically settle in the wild west unless you were cocksure full of some sort of optimism.

26 December 2012

Winter White Berries, Missoula, Montana

So, any forest traipsers know the identity of these white berries? We ruled out mistletoe because rumour has it the kissing berries grow up high in trees, plus they're parasitical, and don't look quite like the plastic varieties sold in stores.
It would also be good to know if they're edible or poisonous, in case one ever was starving in the forest in winter.
Of course, if you were starving in the forest in Greenough Park, you're within a half hour hike out for a burger and heavenly fries at Five Guys. But if it were some other, non-urban forest, you might stay hungry until Search and Rescue finds you, but they'll probably only offer something on the tasteless side of nutritious. Which is why it's preferable to take your nature in local doses.

Update: 12/28/12: Per the comment below, here's link for info on the Snowberry!

Update: 7/5/2017: Click here for  a crazy-long list of what you CAN safely eat in the forest, thanks to a heads up from author/editor Colin at

25 December 2012

Happy Christmas Decor, Missoula, Montana

Merry Christmas!

(This Christmas ball reflects an eye-catching outdoor decor: the homeowners hung shiny glass balls on their front yard shrubs.)

23 December 2012

Hole-y Fence, Missoula, Montana

Since the walking trail near our neighborhood runs next the railroad tracks that are next to Southgate Mall (i.e. amazing Montana scenery is not up close and personal), it's a perfect place to notice odd details. In an era of clearing growth for ease of construction, I appreciate this fence-builder's attention to detail and desire to preserve a good tree.

22 December 2012

Greenough Park in Winter, Missoula, Montana

Our darling daughter found a Pinterest idea for a crafty Christmas present for her daddo, which required photos. She preferred a nature background, so off we went to Greenough Park - nature in the city's back yard. A hundred years ago, one of the park's great attractions was a bear cage - with a resident bear. Great things to see - and poke a stick at - on a Sunday afternoon stroll.

21 December 2012

Aging Flower Power, Missoula, Montana

Flower photos are typically taken at bloom’s peak, but different details of beauty are discovered if you take a later look.
As I get older, I notice and appreciate more the varied loveliness in people, and often find time has not ravaged but rather revealed. Laughter and sorrow impart warmth and graciousness that gently outshine smoother, less-travelled faces.
Youth can possess a fresh charm but is not the end-all definition of beauty.

20 December 2012

Winter Twilight Reflections, Bitterroot River, Montana

You'd never know to look at the river that US Hwy 93 S is directly left of this view, and busy with end-of-day traffic. Such is the delightful dichotomy of Montana - even in a city, the nearest peace-inducing vista is right out your window.

14 December 2012

Criss-Cross Applesauce, Missoula, Montana

If you jiggle your PC screen gently, this pattern could mesmerize almost as much as a larger-scale herringbone plaid coat on a person  walking down the street in front of you. Today, for some random reason, these winter patterns sparked memory of school bus rides spent creating "baby footprints" with our hands across the scenery Jack Frost painted on the bus windows. It's kinda crazy what kept us entertained, but we managed to never be bored!

13 December 2012

Pinhole Style Snowy Tree, Missoula, Montana

Experimenting with the arty retro settings on my camera results in some interesting images. The pinhole camera effect yields dramatic mood. While there's nothing quite like the original processes to produce warmth and texture, digital mimics sure make it easy to spark your creativity.

12 December 2012

Curvy Snow Branches, Missoula, Montana

A few years back, our neighbor planted this stunted tree with curly branches - I'm pretty sure it's a corkscrew hazel (Corylus avellana ‘Contorta’). Branches from the curvy varieties of hazel or willow can pump up the interest level of a flower arrangement, but they also add texture and varied shape to lingering snow.

11 December 2012

10 December 2012

Outlined Branches, Missoula, Montana

Upon arriving at Friday night's Tree Lighting, I observed the green grass around the tree base and thought, "That's just wrong - a Christmas tree lighting sans snow."  Without even a rub of the genie lamp, the next hour found us in our own little swirling snowglobe - hurrah for a white Christmas
So, I tromped about in the snow this weekend, finding patterns hiding in plain sight, just waiting for snow to reveal contrasts of form and light. Welcome to my winter world.

07 December 2012

More Decor from MissWhoLaVille, Montana

Because it's so fabulous, I had to share a wider perspective of the local MissWhoLaVille decor. Be inspired to create, eat some roast beast, and feel free to sing the song!  And if you're in Missoula tonight, stop by the East Missoula Tree Lighting for cookies and carols and photos with Monte and Santa!

06 December 2012

Miss-Who-La-Ville, Montana

My feelings on arriving at work got escalated from "happy " to "wheeeee!" earlier this week; our excessively talented events coordinator spent a festive chunk of last weekend creating what I call MissWhoLaVille in the company lobby. Out of all the things merry and bright, my favourite is this little orange tree. In addition to unflagging cheer, this winter wonderland has propelled me back to a favourite childhood Christmas pasttime:  hiding in the corner behind the tree. Only now I'm not avoiding work, but rather busily compiling my blog.

05 December 2012

These Boots Were Made For Riding, Missoula, Montana

Last night, before band practice at our friends’ ranch, we walked down the little hill to their mum’s house via a well-worn path, in the dark, through the tall grass and apple trees. Talk about happy throwback to childhood - following the leader through the almost-dark, the clean, just-rained smell clinging to the grass, and a VHS player so we could watch a recently unearthed band video. Coming in the back door, I noticed extra Carhartt insulated coveralls hanging neatly in the closet, and knew there also would be extra boots, scarves, mittens, and hats. This is a commonality in the homes of varied ranching families we’re privileged to know. Besides keeping you warm on the outside, they furnish a warm, fuzzy feeling inside - the kind that comes from knowing you’re always welcome and won’t be left out.
While there's a lot to be said for paring down the contents of your life, this mindset should coexist with the practical complement of having enough to spare. As a dear friend is fond of saying, “Come on over - we can always water down the soup.” 

04 December 2012

Winter Grass, Stormy Sky, Missoula, Montana

Christmastime often takes us back to childhood, sparking memories with seasonal smells, sights, and sounds. Anne Cassidy's post today about Chincoteague, Virginia, pulled me back to winter afternoons wiled away indoors with a friendly sunbeam and one of Marguerite Henry's many horse novels that peppered my childhood with engrossing historical tales.
May all your Christmas memories this year be of the bright variety.
(So, I was just kidding about the swans yesterday. I know, juvenile of me.)

03 December 2012

Big Sky Beauty, Missoula, Montana

Should you actually compile a "Bucket List", be sure to include "View big Montana sky in person."

(If you zoom in to the pond, you may be able to see the swans.)

02 December 2012

Horse Sense, Missoula, Montana

"I can always tell which is the front end of a horse, but beyond that, my art is not above the ordinary."  ~Mark Twain

The sensitivity of horses to the needs of people is an amazing thing. A few years ago, I went schmoozing at the Chamber of Commerce open house for an new equine therapy program in the Bitterroot Valley, and was amazed at the applications, from business teamwork to developmental challenges. Even without ever being an avid rider, I've always felt more grounded in the company of good horses. Kinda like with good people.

30 November 2012

Wood and Wire, Missoula, Montana

Ranching friends remarked last week that they just finished replacing a corral fence that their dad built 25 years ago with help from my husband. Our farm fences always sported loops of jaunty blue and white baling twine on varied posts as a handy repair medium - so you could avoid replacing any segment for as long as possible.
Barbed wire fencing brings to mind cross-country treks with my siblings to pick wild strawberries in the next pasture, or to go sledding on the big hill at Grandpa's farm. It was always nice to have someone hold the wire strands apart as you hunched through to the other side, especially if you were cocooned in a snow suit. But no matter how careful we were, someone invariably snagged the fabric on their backside or pant leg. My mother definitely knew what she was doing when she insisted we change into play clothes as soon as we got home from school.

29 November 2012

Alien Blooms, Missoula, Montana

A lovely work perk of my current job is the delivery of a fresh bouquet of flowers every Monday. (While I realize that they're not for me, per se, they are in my principal work area and I do spend the most time in their lovely presence, so just let me pretend, already.) The arrangements are always fabulous and often feature unique flowers, like this one picture above. As a side benefit, when annoying callers waste our time, the blooms are a demure reminder of the attractiveness of a peaceful mind. (Okay, Jane Austen is now leaving the building.)

28 November 2012

Christmas Decor, Missoula, Montana

My 5:00 drive home in the dark is cheered by an increasing array of Christmas lights. Interestingly, my bah-humbug toward early Christmas music does not apply to the visuals of the season. Bring on the garland, the lights, the shining stars! One roadside business lit their frontage trees with a moving cascade of lights that are dangerously mesmerizing; I have to pay extra attention to my driving in that block.
Attachment to Chrismas decor harks back to when I was small and would scootch behind our luscious fake Christmas tree into a me-sized corner formed by the wall and the large wooden stereo turntable cabinet.  I'd hunker in there for what seemed like hours, happily listening to the weekend sounds of my family bustling about the house. It's amazing what you learn when no one knows you're listening. Eventually, of course, someone would realize I wasn't dusting, and I'd hear the first strains of, "Where's Cinderelly?". That was my cue to carefully ease unobserved back into the room, preserving my hidey place for future reconnaissance, and commence dusting as if I'd never stopped.  But, after a few false starts, my prince did eventually come and sweep me away to a life of love and happily twittering songbirds.

27 November 2012

Keeping Watch, Corvallis, Montana

Gracefully aged barns are not necessarily common in the Bitterroot Valley, but there are quite a few fines ones still in use on family farms. The way this barn is perched on a slight rise overlooking the pasture makes me wonder at some numbers: how many seasons of hay has it stored? How many litters of kittens sheltered in its stalls? Has it lost track of the number of hawks observed hunting small prey in the field below? I often wonder at the stories old houses have to tell, but I think the tales a barn could share might be earthier, warmer, versions of beginnings and endings, small joys and sorrows.

26 November 2012

Cheer With A Vengeance, Missoula, Montana

With no prerequisite for snowfall in the valley, The Dreaded Deluge has begun - rather, is in full swing. Before the turkey was even cold enough to qualify as leftovers, radio stations and shopping malls and department stores commenced with the playing of Christmas music. It's not that I have a problem with Christmas in truth, but seriously, a whole month is too long to be subjected to jingle bells and cheery fa-la-la-la-las.
Da-da-DAH! To the rescue: a new breed of Christmas music that blends smooth sarcasm with tight harmonies. Click here to experience the full audio and visual force of the latest offering from our good friend Chip Whitson and Bob Wire and friends that skillfully play a jug. There's more bah-humbug offered at their site
(In case she views this post, a big thanks for today's title to my not-so-red-headed stepchild, whose personal cheer slogan was too apt to not rip off.)

25 November 2012

Small But Loud, Missoula, Montana

Tromping through a field requires watching your step, unless you don't care if you track home, ummm, unsavoury particles on your boots. After successfully avoiding multiple gucky clumps and piles of bones and fur, my wintry trek was arrested by this bright arrangement of pebbles and moss. Driving home, a snatch of song on the radio made me think of a Bible verse that says the rocks will holler out praise to their Creator if we who have a more available voice do not speak up.
I've heard this passage used to pound hearers into feeling inferior if they're not enacting the pounder's interpretation of this verse. Pounding tends to annoy me. But truth is truth, and if we look at it for what it is, we can see past misrepresentation. The promise is that the sincere seeker will find. These little pebbles, bursting with vibrancy, are already declaring their Crafter's delight in detail and unique beauty, simply by virtue of their existence, being what they were made to be, doing what they were made to do. Sometimes we garner unwarranted anxiety by forgetting that shining our light may not look exactly the same as in the next person.

24 November 2012

Winter Sky, Missoula, Montana

These golden weeds are everywhere in western Montana. Yet, despite their prevalence, I don't know what they're called. Sad, isn't it? They look like they should be "Western Goldenrod" but - no.
More sadness: Google was no help. Yellow wildflowers, yellow weed flowers, golden weed flowers, ..... no hits that match. And, honestly, I just didn't want to spend any more time looking today.
Additional sadness: we've become so impatient, taking for granted the plethora of knowledge immediately available at our fingertips.
So, if you can identify , please take pity on my ignorance  and leave the flower name in a Comment. (Hint: if you Comment as Anonymous or Name/URL, you don't have to jump through any sign-in hoops. And you can leave the URL of your very own blog or site & hope that someone new clicks on it!)

Update: Thanks to Andrei for identifying these (see Comment below)!
If I correctly remember, tansy is often mentioned in Victorian novels as a cure for what ails you.

22 November 2012

Mindful of Heavy Lifting, Missoula, Montana

"Angels do the heavy lifting in God's eternal purpose & must not be taken lightly."
- Philip Comfort/ Daniel Partner, "One Year Book of Poetry", in commentary for poem "To St. Michael the Archangel", by Henry Constable (1562-1613)
Sometimes we forget we are not unaided, and we become discouraged, bitter, perhaps angry.
But remembering and being thankful breeds courage and - hopefully, eventually - joy.
Interesting - encouragement and courage, it seems, can both begin with gratitude.
So, be courageous, starting new on this day set aside for giving thanks.
(I hope you, too, can jump-start your for-this-I-am-greatful list with something as inspiring as, "turkey and my brother-in-law's fabulous stuffing.")

21 November 2012

Shadow Tree, Missoula, Montana

When we were kids, our driveway seemed to stretch a mile back to the house after the school bus dropped us off in the afternoon. Shadow "boxing" was a favourite entertainment to pass the walking time. This involved coordination of body movements so one’s shadow self poked a sibling in their shadow eye, or kicked them in their shadow behind - accompanied by a crescendo of giggling, of course.
Perhaps you’re thinking, “Hmmmm…. passive aggression and suppressed anger….“
But please consider: it was cheaper than therapy and never required a trip to the emergency room.

20 November 2012

Pipe Dreams, Missoula, Montana

While I can credit - or perhaps blame - my six older siblings for mentally indelible song lyrics from divergent sources like Nancy Sinatra and Donny Osmond, I'm not sure what in my childhood birthed a fascination with commercial building materials. If I were a person with masses of money and an inclination to own and decorate multiple houses, at least one of them would feature clean lines in dark wood timbers complemented synergistically with swaths of metal. But, since I lack both profligate funds and the desire to clutter my life with more sources of paperwork, I indulge the industrial yen with digital photos.
I am thankful for railyards and junk lots.

19 November 2012

Grainy View, Corvallis, Montana

A lovely thing about winter in Montana is that one never knows what the weather will bring week to week. Thanksgiving Day is forecast to be in the high 40s F and sunny - a perfect day to hike off some turkey dinner. I hear Mill Creek Canyon calling. Here's hoping I can convince some other feasters to join me!

18 November 2012

Upkeep, Hamilton, Montana

I taught the 5-12 year-olds class at kid's church last night and this morning, which has left my brain trending toward catatonic, so I can't think of anything to say about today's photo. If you've every worked with children, you are probably laughing maniacally with empathy.
The cool thing about the grey building is that the owners replaced the window frames recently. These buildings are in my old walking neighborhood, and this are the first upkeep efforts I've seen in years. In our disposable society, it's refreshing to see the useful life of anything preserved.

16 November 2012

Whoville Charmers

These particular finger puppets are filed in my brain under category “LOLWD” - Laugh Out Loud With Delight. First of all, because that was my instinctive reaction upon first seeing this photo - followed by breaking into the chorus of the Who-ville song . ("Fahoo fores dahoo dores...". Sadly, I always thought they sang, "Wahoo wahoo...". Amazing how a Q-tip can change your life.)
Secondly, they’re finger puppets, which are right up there on the winsome scale with drawing a demure little cartoon face on your thumb and then wrapping a tissue around it to make your very own Thumbelina.
And thirdly, because spreading delight has to be the aim of an artist who successfully strives to capture such sheer Grinchiness, Maxiness and Cindy-Lou-Who-ness in bits of yarn and twizzle wire.
A big “Thanks!” to Marcy Heffernan for sharing this photo, and also for infusing joy and grace into everything she crafts. I like to think that a robust Montana upbringing contributed to these qualities.
Indulge in Marcy’s varied creations at her Etsy shop

15 November 2012

Tree Topper, Missoula, Montana

Now if we could just spin the branches as the clouds go by, we'd have a big big big bunch of cotton candy! And if we wait 'til sunset, it will be pink, just like at the County Fair.

14 November 2012

Boxed Cornice, Hamilton, Montana

With modern construction techniques often focused on weather-tightness, I sometimes am amazed how neglected wooden structures have withstood wind, snow, hail, and rain, over decades. Abandoned homesteads are a familiar sight in the farming region we grew up in. Seeing the old houses, barns, and granaries always makes me wonder at the stories they have to tell.

13 November 2012

Fence Lines, Hamilton, Montana

This well-worn metal fence borders the yard of a historic brick house built by a founding member of genteel society in Hamilton, Montana. In one of her walking tour books, a local historian tells the story of a much revered horse-less carriage safeguarded in a small barn set back from the main dwelling. One dark and stormy night, mischief gone awry ended with an explosion that marked the spectacular demise of the barn - and of the owner’s pride and joy stowed inside. I’m sure there’s a lesson from Ecclesiastes in there… “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, all is vanity.”
This story reminds me of barn story from my mum’s youth, an era before video games and television. For their amusement, young men often inspired each other to new heights of creativity and feats of strength. The result of one such bout of thinking was intended to teach a small lesson to a crabby neighbor. One morning when Mr. Crabbypants went out to hitch up his wagon, it was no where to be found, and no tracks indicated it had been driven away. Scratching his head, he happened to look up, and there beheld his wagon - on the roof of his barn. The head scratching continued along a new vein, I’m sure.

12 November 2012

Leaves of Pear, Hamilton, Montana

Far be it from me to be biased, but the leaves on the little flowering pear tree at our Hamilton, MT, cottage are some of the prettiest I’ve seen this fall. (Bear with me as I wax Seuss-ish: I like them, Sam, come spring or fall, I like these leaves, I like them all!)
Truly, it’s not just because this particular tree was planted by exertion of my own sweat and toil, or that it was nurtured with tender words of hope for survival through the two bitter winters of its young life. From the visual evidence presented , I'm sure you agree that it truly is a beautiful tree.

10 November 2012

Roadside Spectator, Corvallis, Montana

I love the amazing things you can see in Montana - without ever getting out of your car. Granted, mule deer are regarded as a nuisance by many, since they're excessively present, and can do a lot of damage to your car. But as long as they stay on their side of the ditch, they're beautiful. (Just look at those big, brown eyes!)

09 November 2012

Optimism, Missoula, Montana

After most sunflowers have called it a day, this determined optimist ignored the signs of winter fast closing and chose to exist, albeit on a delayed time frame, or so some would say.  I'm guessing there were no worries of not bursting forth as the perfect sunflower. Simply being is sometimes plenty. And when in that space, it's good to find a level of joy, even contentment.

08 November 2012

Rain or Snow Drops, Missoula, Montana

The clouds just can't decide today
 whether to leave rain,
or snow to stay.

So they compromised with a gift of these lovely sparklings. I hurried to my car to retrieve my camera, hoping no one would run over my latest photo subject. Then I had to make sure no one would run over me, crouching out on the asphalt during lunchtime! This was my shortest photo shoot ever - 2 clicks; done. 
With the balmy weather we had up through yesterday, I've been eating lunch outside while I post my photo. Today, I'm in my car. Safely balancing my laptop and lunch recalled a childhood image-memory of eating in one of our vehicles from a handy fold-down tray with a drink divot. I thought it was so cool!  Either that or, in the days before "happy meals", the glorified and rare occasion of eating fries from a drive-thru was the cool thing that imprinted the whole tray snapshot in my brain.
Happy meals - now there's a distinctly American phrase. For the vast majority of the rest of world, every meal is a happy meal.
Wow, major leapfrog in the grey cells. Good thing it's time to go back to work - no telling where we'd end up with another 5 minutes.

07 November 2012

Light A Candle, Missoula, Montana

This hasn't been my lot for a while, but today I wanted to avoid the world and stay hidden and cozy in my dim, downy nest. But, thanks to a healthy sense of obligation to outside commitments, I swung my legs out into the morning darkness and proceeded to my morning ritual of coffee, oatmeal (dosed with chia seeds, thanks to a sharing brother), and a poetry devotional (courtesy of a caring sister!). Ritual is scoffed at by some as a crutch, but embraced by others as life-support. This morning's reading of P. Hately Waddell's Scottish translation of the 23rd Psalm reminded me how words have power to bring life and that light always shines on in the darkness. And so, my whole day was different.

06 November 2012

Morning Schmorning, Corvallis, Montana

I don't know why The Morning People insist on their extra hour of morning light. My husband said it is for the children - so they can safely walk to school - and would I please stop whining.
(Okay, I added the whining bit for effect. Please say you spontaneously snorted so I don't have to repent of embellishment at his expense. To his credit, my husband wouldn't seriously say such a thing, & definitely wouldn't this week since he's still on happy-enhancing muscle relaxants following his recent surgery.) 
Safety notwithstanding, given that my daylight preference is to have more of it when I can be out in it - say, after work - I still think early Daylight Savings Time is a conspiratorial power grab by The Morning People. The more I think about this, the more worrisome this becomes: The Morning People are probably often also known as "they", as in "they say seeing is believing" or "they are taking over the (insert pet faction here)". Egad! The ubiquitous "they"! Of course, there is always the possibility of relocating to Arizona where common folk still resist when The Morning People come around handing out their version of kool-aid.
Hmmmm.... thinking about = proportionately increased worry, hence, I better stop thinking about it.
Ta ta for now!

(Caveat: I am absolutely joking, do not truly hold any positions put forth above, and actually love quite a few Morning People - except for the times they ring me up too early, with excessive chipperness in their voices. Please click the "kool-aid" link to enjoy the full scope of my senseless drivel. And then you can read a potentially useful version here.)

05 November 2012

Persistent Snapdragon, Hamiton, Montana

As a "lazy" gardener, I truly appreciate snapdragons. (And not just because their blossoms double as talking puppets of a sort.) During the rain-less summer, family visiting at out little cottage in Hamilton, Montana, remarked how amazingly the snapdragons bloomed on despite minimal water application. And now, those stubborn little annuals persist even through the seasonal onslaught of falling leaves and at least one dusting of snow. What's not to love?

04 November 2012

Autumn Sidewalk, Missoula, Montana

Our Missoula, Montana, neighborhood had sidewalks put in last summer, way before this year's hotly debated sidewalk funding discussions. Surprisingly, I never saw mention of the sensible, gradual accrual funding method used in our neighborhood, or the point that those of us who've already paid for our sidewalks prob'ly shouldn't be tapped to pay for concrete in other neighborhoods.(And don't even get me started about how the surface of our sidewalks began disintegrating within a month.) The final formula took this into account, but still is tough on homeowners' budgets.

03 November 2012

Not Japanese Maple, Missoula, Montana

Here I've been admiring this bush every workday on my way into the building with the thought that it was a dwarf weeping Japanese maple. A google search for a link disabused me of this notion. So, if you happen to know what it really is, comment & give us the 4-1-1.

02 November 2012

Blue Sky Smiling At Me, Missoula, Montana

"Blue skies smiling at me, nothing but blue skies do I see...." - and you'll be hard pressed to find a bluer, bigger display than in Montana.
Here's a peppy 1927 version of Irving Kaufman singing Irving Berlin's classic. Ella Fitzgerald's rendition is smooth like the best kind of chocolate truffle. And old Blue Eyes lends his own charm to the song - plus this recording includes killer horn solos. And finally, to honour my hubby's favourite hair inspiration, here's a live 2005 benefit performance by Rod Stewart.