25 December 2022

Shepherd Hills - Missoula, Montana

A warmer season Montana view for this brisk Christmas Day. Perhaps the shepherds “watched their flocks by night” in green hills much like these.

Click here to ponder more on their experience with Sis #3.  This Christmas, may we be blessed with eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts open to receive our Creator’s truth & kindness.

17 December 2022

Bee Reminiscent - Missoula, Montana

The puffballs of snow on our juniper branch tips brought to mind this September puff of floral white.  Intimate beauty abounds in each season.

03 November 2022

Magnificent Lowering Sky - Missoula, Montana

Before exiting Natural Grocers’ parking lot yesterday evening, I texted The Best Husband Ever to go look at the magnificent cloud forms  (right now!). This big Montana sky never ceases to amaze.

23 October 2022

Water Lilies & Holiness - Placid Lake, Montana

“I think what people build can be very beautiful, but what God builds goes beyond beauty. 
You stand outside Notre Dame, say, and you marvel at the accomplishment, but you can't really connect. It's artificial, do you see? It's only a representation of something. Spirit, holiness, maybe even God. But it's not the thing itself. 
Out here, it's all there before you, around you. You're steeped in it, the real thing. Spirit. Holiness. God."
- Maria to young Henry Meloux in Thunder Bay, p. 127, by William Kent Krueger (Book #7 of Cork O'Connor Mystery Series)

06 September 2022

Takeaway View - Missoula, Montana

Today’s perfect closer: Takeaway supper from Vietnamese Noodle  with this side of smoke-hazed crepuscular rays. In Montana, even a humble parking lot features beautiful views.

22 August 2022

Rainy Days - Flathead Lake, Montana

They say western Montana’s getting rain this week…here’s hoping…!

 “I loved the rain as a child. I loved the sound of it on the leaves of trees and roofs and windowpanes and umbrellas and the feel of it on my face and bare legs. I loved the hiss of rubber tires on rainy streets and the flip-flop of windshield wipers. I loved the smell of wet grass and raincoats and shaggy coats of dogs. A rainy day was a special day for me in a sense that no other kind of day was—a day when the ordinariness of things was suspended with ragged skies drifting to the color of pearl and dark streets turning to dark rivers of reflected light and even people transformed somehow as the rain drew them closer by giving them something to think about together, to take common shelter from, to complain of and joke about in ways that made them more like friends than it seemed to me they were on ordinary sunny days. But more than anything, I think, I loved rain for the power it had to make indoors seem snugger and safer and a place to find refuge in from everything outdoors that was un-home, unsafe. I loved rain for making home seem home more deeply.“   -Frederick BuechnerThe Sacred Journey

19 July 2022

US Hwy 135 Sunset - Clark Fork River near Paradise, Montana

 #794 - Things I Love About Montana: 
Even on a no-stops-allowed schedule, Big Sky majesty meets you right along the well-beaten path. 
(Safety first, tho’ - the perfectly placed turnout allowed a quick smell-the-roses stop where maximum sunset reflection mirrored the thankfulness overflow in my heart.)

10 July 2022

19 June 2022

Spring Greens and Mountains - Mission Mountains, Montana

Layers of so much greenness near Flathead Lake, Montana, from the ongoing spring rain! But further Southwest, persistent precipitation provoked state of emergency flooding - along with an outpouring of  Big Sky sized kindness to assist families in the flooded communities.  We live, at times, precariously on the fine edge between extravagant  beauty and the fear of too much.

12 June 2022

Mission Mountains Marsh Melody - Near Ronan, Montana

The marsh, to him who enters it in a receptive mood, holds, besides mosquitoes and stagnation, melody, the mystery of unknown waters, and the sweetness of Nature undisturbed by man.” - Charles William Beebe (1877-1962), The Log of the Sun

02 June 2022

Nestled - Bitterroot Valley, Montana

“We do not want merely to see beauty, though, God knows, even that is bounty enough. We want something else which can hardly be put into words  - to be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it.”

-C.S. Lewis (1898-1963), The Weight of Glory

24 May 2022

Light-Seeking Effort - Missoula, Montana

“Even if our efforts of attention seem for years to be producing no result, one day a light that is in exact proportion to them will flood the soul.”

-Simone Weil (1909 – 1943)

11 May 2022

The Road To Town - Missoula, Montana

“Some of the changes in my life were imposed, and some were chosen - if by "chosen ” I may mean that I chose what I seemed already to have been chosen by, desire having obscured the alternatives. And each change has been a birth, each having taken me to a new life from which I could not go back. 
And I have asked myself, "Would I have known such births if, from Pigeonville or Lexington, I had taken one of the paths by which people get somewhere and make something of themselves? " But of course I have no answer.”

20 April 2022

River’s Influence - Yellowstone River, Livingston, Montana

Who looks upon a river in a meditative hour, and is not reminded of the flux of all things? Throw a stone into the stream, and the circles that propagate themselves are the beautiful type of all influence.”  — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), Nature

16 April 2022

Still Wintery Sky - Near Wilsall, Montana

I’ve been hoarding this evocative quote, but the timing is now quite perfect, both to honour an inspiring author AND because it is still snowing fiercely in Montana…!

"I wiped my hands on my apron and went to the window. Outside, the prairie reached out and touched the places where the sky came down. Though the winter was nearly over, there were patches of snow and ice everywhere. 
I looked at the long dirt road that crawled across the plains, remembering the morning that Mama had died, cruel and sunny. They had come for her in a wagon and taken her away to be buried. And then the cousins and aunts and uncles had come and tried to fill up the house. 
But they couldn’t." 
-Anna Witting, in Sarah, Plain And Tall by Patricia MacLachlan

07 April 2022

Full Spring Ahead - Bitterroot Valley, Montana

“…but if you never do, don't be discontented about it. We make our own lives wherever we are, after all . . . They are broad or narrow according to what we put into them, not what we get out. Life is rich and full here . . . everywhere . . . if we can only learn how to open our whole hearts to its richness and fulness." “

-Mrs. Allan to Anne, Anne of Avonlea, Chapter 15 by L.M. Montgomery 

14 March 2022

29 January 2022

Morning Sunshine - Yellowstone River, Livingston, Montana

Rivers are the primal highways of life. From the crack of time, they had borne men's dreams, and in their lovely rush to elsewhere, fed our wanderlust, mimicked our arteries, and charmed our imaginations in a way the static pond or vast and savage ocean never could. “ — Tom Robbins, Fierce Invalids from Hot Climates


05 January 2022

Promising Winter Hollyhock - White Sulphur Springs, Montana

“I used to feel sad on New Year's Eve, clinging to the old year, never wanting it to be over. I avoided good-byes for the same reason, clinging to what was, simply because it was known, whereas the future was unknown and therefore to be worried over. How much fear has controlled my life . No longer!

... I pat my firm thighs and promise to banish further negative thinking...I raise my glass to being big, beautiful, feminine, and forever changing, promising to work with my bones and flesh. After all , bones make new bones if they are exercised, skin sheds itself to make room for fresh flesh, muscles untangle and restore their strength. I truly have rejoined the human race.”

  -Joan Anderson, in A Year By The Sea, pages 90-91