On My Way Back Home

– It rained while driving home from Montana through Idaho. But all was good. I spotted two Bald Eagles, about 30 miles before we got to Butte, MT for the Interstate change.

We were almost to the state line in to Idaho, when I told my husband we need to stop at the next rest stop. I didn’t realize it was the Lima, MT rest stop until we were there. And sure enough, the car just automatically drove to the sandwich shop. Man, I love those sandwiches!

As we are driving in Idaho, my husband says, “Look at those cows running.” I look over and see hundreds of buffalo running. It was so cool. It is hard to see them. They are the dark spot running from left to right near the top of the green.

We stayed over in Ogden, UT and headed out early the next day for Las Vegas. As we are driving, I am looking at cherry trees. Then I spot a sign “Cherries for Sale.”  We exited #242 for The Red Barn.  We bought fresh cherries and Cherry Concentrate Juice. It is a sour cherry juice I plan to use in my lemonade. It is a must stop if you are going through.

The best part of the trip was having and extra hour with the time change. I set the clock back and told my husband we had an extra hour, so we could stop at Zion National Park. My husband looked at me and laughed, “Smooth move.”

The red soil is called “Navajo Sandstsone.” It is found in Arizona, Utha, Nevada and Colorado. We camped at the southern end of Zion last year and since then it has become my favorite National Park. If you have a National Park Pass, this short trip through the park is great. If not, wait until you have time to visit the whole park.

As you leave Utah, you come into a small part of Arizona through the Virgin River Gorge. The drive is a fantastic view.

The Virgin River shaped this canyon. As you can see the river is flowing red. If you would like to see a video of the drive click here.

The drive from San Diego to Butte, MT on Interstate 15 have lots of cool things to see. This is just a small example from our trip to Montana and home. 🙂

Going to Montana

 – My husband and I drove up to Missoula to see my mom. Interstate 15 , I 15, starts in San Diego County and ends at the Canadian border so it’s a “straight shot” to Montana. As we were exiting I 15 for something to eat for lunch, we saw this amazing sight in front of us, a humongous dust devil.

This was one of largest dust devil I have ever seen. As it got closer you could feel the pull of the wind. I had the feeling of Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. Please don’t suck me up! 😎

The next day, we stopped at rest stop just out side of Pocatello, ID. Most of the Interstate in Idaho was built on top of a lava flow, which stretches way to the West where it originated.  There was short hike around the lava flow. It was a great place to walk and stretch your legs.

As we were walking back to the car, my husband spotted this lady bug.


Time for lunch again, so we took the turn off to Lima, Montana. The rest stop is in the town.  A small history of Lima sign informed us that Lima was one of the first rest stops for travelers on the wagon trail from Salt Lake City to Montana. The interstate follows the old wagon trail. The train tracks soon followed the trail.  The town has lots of old, interesting buildings to look at.  This is the hotel in Lima, MT.

As we were leaving we spied a sandwich shop. My husband went in and purchased two. They were the best sandwich I have ever eaten! The bread was to die for. It was a total taste explosion in my mouth and was what made the sandwich.

Q’s and my favorite rest stop is just before we get to Butte, Mt . It’s up on the side of a hill and has a glorious view. You can look across the valley and see small glaciers in the mountains on the opposite side.  A perfect place to build a home. Oh, wait, I told Al we are NOT going to build another home. Had to text this picture to Q with the caption, “At “the spot” where are u?”

Back on the road, we looped-de-looped to Interstate 90, bye-bye I15,  and we were soon in Missoula.

Notice, I’m wearing the t-shirt that I dyed.

More Montana Musings

I hear the train a comin’ It’s rollin’ ’round the bend, And I ain’t seen the sunshine, Since, I don’t know when…” Sitting hear listening to another train. There must be at least a dozen mile-long trains passing by every day. Never just sat “at home” to hear all of the passing trains before. I mean, Mountain Colors is up here! 😎 These rumbling trains are loaded with Montana and Wyoming coal on their way to the Pacific Northwest to be shipped to Asia.  There is a huge brouhaha over this.  I didn’t have any idea! Back in the day when the tobacco use in the US started dropping rapidly, they look at oversea’s markets, guess today’s coal is like yesterday’s tobacco. 😎 Anyway……

Decided it was time for a walk. Such a beautiful, sunny day. Let’s see what critters I can see today. First there is my favorite animal Homo sapiens. My 90 year old mom! She’s feeling so much better since her surgery. In February, I purchased the Amalie’s Log Cabin quilt pattern for mom. Mom told me she wanted to do the pattern in green, this was after I had already cut out blue and brown for her, so I cut out green strips and squares at home and brought up. Now that she’s feeling better she is working on the quilt for me.  Perfect 90 year old role model – you’re never too old to be creative! And yes, I’m cracking the whip and making her work while I go off on a nice walk.

This is a look at all of the critters I saw on my walk, using my point-and-click type camera:

The Robin would follow me all around the yard. I’d sit outside in the afternoon to cool off and he would greet me. He’d fly and land in different spots around me.  Then he’d start a conversation. He really was quite a talker.

For a couple of days now, I’ve seen deer in the lot down the street. Every time I try to take a picture they lope out of sight. Today, I turned onto the main road as two deer were running up the road.  Look closely and you can see them. Small little dots!


I love these sheep! They were watching me walk by.  When I got the camera ready, they had looked away. Reminded me of walking into a pre-school classroom when all the little heads turn your way.  This sheep herd is raised in order to train sheep dogs.  They train dogs from all over the world.  Herding competitions are held yearly at this farm.  The sheep breeds are Barbados, Mouflon and a intermix of the two. I wanted to climb over the fence and grab some fleece! If you look closely at the right hand picture, you can see one of the Magpies that kept tormenting me on the walk.

Was getting very annoyed at the Black-billed Magpie! Every time I’d focus the camera on them, they’d thumb their noses and fly off!  I caught this one unaware!

  Amazed that I could actually capture an image of a Purple Copper Butterfly! I’ve tried different times with my “good” camera and haven’t had one land.

Cabbage Butterfly. Kept chasing after a number of them.  This one finally landed!




Montana Musings

Still in Montana with mom. Went out for a ramble looking for wild flowers, birds, butterflies, and critters.  Mom lives with my sister Lindsay and her husband in an outlying area of Missoula, so there are critters and land. 😎 I did not bring my good camera with me. Flying alone, I just didn’t need the extra burden.  Brought my little hand-held camera doing the best it could.  I also don’t have my wonderful Lightroom program on my Netbook. Hope you enjoy the pictures in their raw form. Headed out in the morning since thunderstorms were expected in the afternoon.

Stepping outside the beginning lyrics of Tammy’s In Love run through my head.  “I hear the cottonwoods whispering above…..” I laugh silently to myself.  I do hear the cottonwoods whispering, but I also see this:

Not snow, it’s the cottonwood seeds.  The air is thick with the flying “cotton”.

These are the culprits:

Next I saw a deer in the “field” across the street.  It saw me and took off, moving so quickly that this is the shot:  (Look closely, it’s further over on the right side of the big tree by the house. 8-)) I saw her bound up the hill to the water culvert I’ll be showing further down.

Headed up the hill:

The wildflowers, grasses blooming, an a horsetail reed thrown in for good measure:

This flower is fabulous! Look at the colors which would make a perfect colorway for dying.

I had to take these large dandelion seed heads:

Culvert, the deer ran down through the brush:

In my jaunt these were the only wildflowers I saw.  I did see some knapweed, nasty stuff, but it was not blooming yet.  Knapweed is considered a noxious weed here and homeowners are required to eradicate it from their properties. Critters will be featured tomorrow! 😎 Thunderstorm started about 4 pm and lasted for hours.  I watched huge flashes of lightening in the mountains across the valley from where I sat.