was able to get a decent photo of our home with the Bridgers in the background.
Now that’s what I call purdy!
was able to get a decent photo of our home with the Bridgers in the background.
Now that’s what I call purdy!
An eagle or a hawk?
Or maybe just a handsome guy? His favorite perch is the crest of my roof. (He rips meadow voles in half and drops the heads onto my deck for me to sweep up.)
And here’s a pick of Dylan checking out the world…
P.S. Just got this one–
XOXO! Sleepy! Julia
moving to Montana and a baby! Our first granddaughter – Dylan Rose.
Here she is~
She came on her due date. Her mommy had the easiest pregnancy in history- and labor. We are so grateful and so very blessed. Dylan Rose A. 7′ 11″. We all forgot to ask how long she is. 🙂
The sale of our home and the move could have gone smoother but one can’t have everything, right? Some things must go wrong. That’s life.
We love our new home in Montana. It’s beautiful. It has amazing views on all sides. The dog loves his full half acre? Three quarters of an acre? Not entire sure. But he stays outside all day long, just enjoying his view through the invisible fence. He can watch sand hill cranes and cows and eagles and deer and super cute bunnies. In Napa Jake rarely wanted to be outside without us and he was territorial about his yard. Here, his yard is just part of the vast open countryside. He seldom barks for any reason. He’s in awe! (As are we!)
So friends, it’s been a challenging yet rewarding year thus far. I’ll try to be more available. (Ha!)
P.S. Do we miss California? Nah-uh. Not one bit.
I know I haven’t posted in a long time. Sorry. Been insanely busy re the upcoming move to Montana. But I have to say something about what happened today, and I’m including Ray because he’s a Midwesterner. Upper Midwest, but that’s okay.
I was chatting with this guy who had a real cute dog, a Scottie. I love Scotties, attitude and all. They are like little bearded hairy men. (Oh, by the way, when big ol’ Jake goes to puppy camp he’s greeted with, “Hello Sunshine!” He’s a happy camper!)
Anyways… I was chatting with this guy. He was here in Napa enjoying the sunshine. He’d driven down from Portland because he wanted a break from all the rain- which we happen to be having for a minute. Our weather has been beautiful.
We discussed the rain. We discussed my recent stop at PDX, landing in the midst of a horrific downpour. If you get off one of the little planes you have to walk through the downpour to get to the terminal. We were all soaked.
I mentioned my parents. Told him that they’d retired to Southern Oregon.
He asked, “Oh, did they move from California?”
I answered, “No, they moved from Iowa. We’re all from Iowa, I’m not a native Californian.” (‘Cuz yeah, I’m proud as heckfire to be from Iowa.)
He said, “Oh. Iowa. Bunch of illiterate evangelicals there.”
And I was like… “Um, what?”
He said, “Yeah, everyone is stupid religious. Nothing there but cornfields and ignorant racist white farmers.”
I asked, “Have you been to Iowa?”
He shrugged. He said, “I’ve read about it.”
Hey Tom, and Ray, I wanted to punch him in the face.
This is what I deal with on the West Coast. People who think they know the Midwest even though they’ve never been farther east than Vegas (or maybe they’ve flown to NYC). People like this dude, who was about as white as a slice of Wonderbread, who think everyone in the Midwest is a toothless dumbass church-goin’ snake-handling redneck filled with hate and vitriol; that we’re uneducated hicks who stupidly refuse to accept the superiority of the West Coast elites who should be in charge of EVERYTHING.
I don’t care if he had a nice dog. I wanted to kick the living shit out of him.
But I didn’t. I said, “You know nothing about Iowa. Have a safe drive back to Portland.” And I walked away.
Tom, you would have been proud of me.
The Loess Hills: I grew up here, played here. My ancestors lived and died here.
Did I mention the University of Iowa Writers Workshop???
Besides, Iowa is home to one of the best bugs in the world – Fireflies! If you watch the video you’ll discover that we’re not all toothless yahoos.
No, not leaving yet, but I’m about to close up shop temporarily.
We’re moving to Montana! I’ve dreamed of this for five years. Oscar saw the light… at last! As his job has become more and more untenable/onerous and California has become an increasingly challenging place to live.
All I can say is~ yes.
About damn time.
We recently returned from a ten day visit to the ranch. We babysat the cows, horses and dogs. Split and stacked two years worth of wood for our daughter and son-in-law, and met with a real estate agent in Bozeman. We put in an offer on a house and lo and behold… it was accepted right off! (Although my husband pulled a Chip Gaines and tried to fool me into thinking the offer had been rejected! Shiplap ho!)
Thus begins the hard work. I have to get our house on the market. Fingers crossed, it will sell ASAP. We had the hardwood floors refinished while we were away. Lookin’ good, I tells ya!
Yes, I do have two twenty-ish kids here, one of whom is pretty flummoxed at the idea of her parents moving. We are leaving the only home she’s ever known. Even though she doesn’t live with us, the idea of us gives her roots. I get it. My kids are the sole reason I’ve stayed.
But, all things must change. Seems like everyone I know is transitioning in one way or another. We wish us all the best!
In the meantime, enjoy the view from my new backyard! I know Jake will!
First, on the home front, I harvested the last of my potatoes today:
I cut back the asparagus. It’s time to prep the garden for winter- will do that this week. And maybe plant a couple rows of garlic.
So I just got back from Montana. Was a busy trip with loooooong weather delays in Seattle. Dang! That airport was like a bad movie. No joke.
On the way out my plane from Sacramento arrived twenty minutes early and then sat on the tarmac for two hours while we waited for a gate. As we sat there I watched my connection to Bozeman, (a little Bombardier), back up and take off. I begged the flight attendants to toss me out the door, but they refused. I spent nine grueling hours in the airport, but I did manage to get the last seat on the last flight to Bozeman. My wonderful daughter and son-in-law waited for me, waited for me so long we were forced to drive back to the ranch in The Crazies in a blizzard. In the dark. Pretty rough. Good thing my son-in-law is a kick ass driver and we were in a tank of a pickup truck. (I haven’t been on roads that bad since I lived in Iowa.)
I didn’t bother to take any photos this time around. The cold was bitter. But despite the cold, every visit to Montana is amazing. I am so grateful for my daughter and her husband. I love sharing their life, to the extent they are willing to share. 🙂 It’s my dream to live there. Cold doesn’t bother me, especially in Big Sky Country. Montana has really big skies.
That wasn’t the punching in the face part.
It was on the trip home that the punching nearly occurred. It wasn’t me, although I wanted to punch him too. I wanted to, in fact, pull him out of his seat and stomp on his head. It was my seat mate who said, “I want to punch him in the face.”
We boarded on time in Bozeman for the trip back to Seattle. I was seated in the back of the plane, just two rows from the rear exit. I had the aisle seat. A young woman with gorgeous eyelashes got the window seat. Across from me was an older white hippie dude with an iPhone and an iPad. Wearing lots of beads. I guessed that he’d come from the Dakota Access Pipeline protest. The beads and his rank aroma and his congested cough and sniffles were a dead giveaway. Not that I cared– about the protest, I mean. He has a perfect right to protest.
What he does not have a right to do, if he values his health and well-being, and the health and well-being of the other passengers, is endanger and piss off every single person seated in the rear of the plane.
He refused to follow any instructions from the flight attendants because he’d “been at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest.”
He refused to put his tray table in its upright and locked position because he’d “been at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest.”
He refused to stop texting via both his iPhone and his iPad (texting multiple people- I could see every text and every recipient) because he’d “been at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest.”
When our plane’s engines cut out on the runway because the deicer people accidentally sprayed the generator and we lost all power and began to freeze in the subzero temperatures he announced to the plane that “we should be grateful we weren’t stranded at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest because he’d just been at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest and it was way colder at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest.”
And don’t forget about “the tribal elders…”
“The tribal elders this…” and “The tribal elders that…”
My seatmate said, “If I have to hear about the tribal elders one more time I’m gonna punch him in the face.”
I wanted to shove him out the back of the plane.
As he lectured, we were towed back to the gate. The plane was plugged in to a generator and we had heat. Then we had to wait for maintenance to decide whether or not the plane could start up and was safe to fly. We really wanted to get out of there because the weather was getting so bad we knew there was a good chance that if it took maintenance too long to decide we’d be stranded at least overnight, maybe for another day or two.
All the while, he kept texting via both his devices, despite the fact that he’d been asked repeatedly by the flight crew to stop. He ignored them, because, you know… The Dakota Access Pipeline protest…
And then, once the engines were restarted and we were on the runway for takeoff, he made a phone call. OMFG. He called ‘Judy’ as we were taking off. Left her a message.
“Hey, Judy, this is R. I know it’s been years, but I just left the Dakota Access Pipeline protest where I was protesting and I’m headed to Seattle. I’ve checked online and it seems my connecting flight has been cancelled. I’m wondering if I can camp on your couch. I’m sure it will be warmer than the Dakota Access Pipeline protest. I’ll have to get up at 5 a.m. to catch a 7 a.m. flight but I figure you won’t mind. That’s sure not as early as I had to get up at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest. Listen, if you get this message, call me back. Again, this is R. Just so you know I’ve been at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest.”
If looks could kill. Everyone within earshot wanted to strangle the guy.
Since the rules didn’t apply to him, he texted and phoned his way through the flight. The flight attendants gave up trying to rein him in, they plied him with wine instead – six glasses of white wine. I think they hoped he would fall asleep, but he didn’t. Dammit.
This was the bad part. This was the really dangerous part. When we landed in Seattle, we hit a patch of ice. The plane skidded to the right, then to the left, then back to the right. It got real quiet because I think we were all praying the plane wouldn’t roll. On that first skid, since the idiot hadn’t put away his electronic devices nor placed his tray table into its upright and locked position, his iPhone and his iPad went flying across the aisle, right into another passenger.
Mr. Dakota Access Pipeline protest didn’t even apologize. Because he’s a special snowflake.
My seatmate, such a sweet pretty young lady, said, “I want to punch him in the face.”
I said, “Yup.”
So, Tom, to make a long story short, Judy never called him back because I saw him wandering around the Seattle airport five hours later. Still texting…
XOXO! Peace out. Julia