Falling in Love with Fall

Editor’s Note: This post was from a few years back, but the colors that inspire us are bursting with their autumn best as we speak. This was also before Rocco the Rockstar entered my life – can’t imagine a time without his Yorkie-self!! I wasn’t exactly able to shoot new images as the Rebel has been put out to pasture since. Sad, I know, now the only reliable photo optimizing tool I possess is the Samsung Galaxy S4 – which does a fair job, all in all.

What view presents itself outside your window today? Shoot it and share it on our Facebook page.

Due to my lack of planning (i.e., ignoring several local flu-shot stations) I spent most of the week in bed. Not only was I illin’ and bored to tears, but my back was killing me from non-stop horizontal positioning. Alas, today was different. Today, I was actually able to stand (and not fall over) and when I pulled back the curtains, I was happily greeted with blue-bird skies and an incredible array of foliage colors. I got inspired for the first time all week. I dressed haphazardly, grabbed the Rebel and walked briskly to the end of the block. It was well work the walk. (And no, these photos were NOT color enhanced. View them and weep, peeps. Yep, this is what we get in Montana in October.)

Autumn Self-Portrait

While I was out snapping away – I was met by the Bridger Ski Foundation members who were out for an early morning practice session. Stretching before the snow flies. Dragon, these photos are for you!

YNP (+ Rocco + Me)

Editor’s Note: Sadly, I’ve fallen off the “blogging bandwagon” and can barely keep up with my television addiction to find enough creative time to spend here, within the pages of my beloved Authentic Life.

It’s not that I don’t miss you, my gentle readers, but since our youngest has graduated from high school, and is on his way to discovering new horizons, I have found more time on my hands than I know with which to do.

I spend much time walking Rocco, feeding Rocco, playing ball with Rocco, and in general jumping through any hoop Rocco demands. Other than that, which consumes my day, my lack of posts and general creative prowess lies solely upon my own shoulders. Honestly, the daily blogging break has proven a good thing. I needed to clear my head. Totally unwind, be bound by nothing. 

This post was scribed many weeks ago, and only tonight, while at dinner with some girlfriends, when a friend mentioned the blog – this blog – I thought, I better dust off my keyboard, and wipe away the cobwebs in my brain and get back to what makes me feel complete. And accomplished. Even if it’s a tiny, insignificant blog post amidst the massive world of Internet greatness, this post is my contribution to summer and Yellowstone Park – two of my favorite things.

It’s good to reconnect. I hope to more often – and hope is a wonderful thing…

Yesterday, we took our inaugural trip to Yellowstone Park.

It was a bee-a-uu-tiful day – and one that prove, summer has arrived.

This was also a first – Rocco’s first time in the park. He loved it (car rides make him very sleepy!) but he was unsure of the large creatures he spied out the window. Oh, he barked plenty, but they didn’t seem to take notice.

Enjoy the visual escape to Yellowstone National Park…

YNP Rocco and me

elk in velvet Yellowstone

A beauty in velvet…

Lamar Valley Yellowstone National Park Buffalo Bison

Bison calf Buffalo Baby Yellowstone Park

I love the babies!

Rocco in the car

Rocco doesn’t seem to care about the babies…

Bear Jam Yellowstone Park

Inevitably, the biggest “jams” are “bear jams” – and this is no exception. All this fuss for an itty, bitty black bear.

(Follow the arrow to black speck…)

Walking Rocco in Yellowstone

Yellowstone Wild Flowers

Early summer is prime wild-flower viewing time! This day was loaded with wild treasures.

Baby white flowers

wild flowers in yellowstone national park

wild flowers in yellowstone national park

rocco standing

Seems something got Rocco’s attention. This is what I refer to as his “bear cub stance” – he stands to get a better view!

white flower

buffalo traffic jam yellowstone national park

A trip to Yellowstone is not complete without a bison traffic jam. This “jam” seemed to intrigue all occupants of the car, and I do mean ALL…

rocco looking at bison

buffalo jam yellowstone

rocco

…ain’t this the cutest “wild” face you’ve ever seen??

KW AAL Logo

Photo-Bomb Among Montana Wild Flowers

I confess, the infamous “Rebel” is a bit “under the weather” so I have been forced to use my trusty back up, which I’d say in this case, did an exceptionally above average job.

Photos taken today in western Montana – from Plains in route back to the Bo-Zone.

Happy Summer my gentle readers.

Montana Wildflowers

Montana wild flowers

dandylion

DSC09336

DSC09340

Hey…and look who photo-bombed this Montana wildflower shot!

KW AAL Logo

Saluting Those Who Served Us

Editor’s Note: This incredibly patriotic local treasure came as a complete to surprise to me (makes me appreciate the opportunities that arise from weak bladders and the need for constant pit stops.)

This post was written a few years ago in honor of Memorial Day, when we discovered this cemetery south of Big Timber, Montana. It was a very wet, drizzly day, yet the flags still hung by the soldiers they served. 

Happy Memorial Day weekend my gentle readers. 

 

A funny thing happened on the way out-of-town…

After we made a pit stop (for those in the car with the weakest of bladders!) I noticed flags in the distance. Lots of flags. I told Sexy Hubby we simply must stop and investigate.

So we did.

And I am most fortunate that we did.

Off the Interstate in the sleepy town of Big Timber, Montana, a most fitting memorial stands on proud display for the soldiers that lie at rest within the stone walls of the Sweetgrass County Cemetery.

There is something patriotically inspiring and tear-evoking about the sight of an American flag. Especially a bevel of them marking a dirt road through an old cemetery.

It was a damp and drizzling day. In fact, when I got out of the car, it was lightly raining, and as I was worried about the Rebel getting wet. Then instantly, I thought of the many soldiers stretched out before me, their grave sites marked with an American flag, in silent gratitude for their unwavering service to our country.

I cannot even begin to contemplate what those soldiers must have endured while serving our country – me – and I was selfishly complaining of a few scattered raindrops.

We take so much for granted.

We have such unrealistic expectations as Americans.

Yet, on this day, in the middle of a cemetery in rural Montana, I was humbled. And blessed. And so grateful for those soldiers, some of whom made the ultimate sacrifice.  It was the least I could do to return the favor of honoring them with a few random photos, and private prayers of thanks, along with a smattering of raindrops.

In loving memory of the untold number of brave soldiers who fought for the life, liberty and pursuit of freedom we have the privilege of enjoying each and every day – I salute you.

And I am most humbled to honor you this day – Memorial Day.

This post is in memory of you.

 

I asked Sexy Hubby, “What are your thoughts about Memorial Day?”

He said, “Thank you to all the soldiers. We wouldn’t be here without you.”

Bozeman Under the Big Sky Stroll

For the 32nd annual Bozeman Christmas Stroll, I had Montana State Bobcat football on my mind…the stroll was a means to an end. Not to mention it was balmy – like 50 degrees. Crazy-warm for December in southwest Montana.

Since I was pre-occupied to get in front of a television screen as quickly as possible, my photos from this years stroll paled in comparison to previous years. So, I’m showing mostly last year’s photos.

They were better anyway.

We had a bit of snow to rim the edges of the photos.

The only new photo is Santa, whom we followed from West Main to East Main, lighting the trees along the way. It was festive and fun to watch all the children strolling along behind…

Christmas Stroll 2012: 

Christmas Stroll 2011:

My favorite photo – walking in a winter wonderland

…and the Bobcats had a big win – advancing to a second round play-off game!

MontanAutumn

Due to my lack of planning (i.e., ignoring several local flu-shot stations) I spent most of the week in bed. Not only was I illin’ and bored to tears, but my back was killing me from non-stop horizontal positioning.

Alas, today was different.

Today, I was actually able to stand (and not fall over) and when I pulled back the curtains, I was happily greeted with blue-bird skies and an incredible array of foliage colors. I got inspired for the first time all week. I dressed haphazardly, grabbed the Rebel and walked briskly to the end of the block.

It was well work the walk. (And no, these photos were NOT color enhanced. View them and weep, peeps. Yep, this is what we get in Montana in October.)

Autumn Self-Portrait

While I was out snapping away – I was met by the Bridger Ski Foundation members who were out for an early morning practice session. Stretching before the snow flies. Dragon, these photos are for you!

Enjoy Today (For Weather, It’s A Changin’)

Editor’s Note: Autumn is greeting us now – and it’s so refreshing! We’ve had such a lovely (albeit heavily smoke-laced) fall…but shit’s comin’. Literally. Today and tomorrow are high 70’s – then (que ominous music) the Canadians are imposing a storm-front upon us.

Must enjoy the goods while here.

Happy Autumn, gentle readers, wherever you call home. 

Early on a Sunday morning, I swung my legs over the edge of the bed and ambled toward the window, wondering what sort of day would greet me. As I gently pulled back the shades, I was relieved to notice a semi-clear day – white and grey clouds laced against the vibrant azure Big Sky.

I was giddy with photographic excitement.

The window of opportunity was already beginning to close on autumn, and today might be my last chance to capture the wild yellows of the deteriorating leaves popping against the cobalt skies.

I grabbed the Rebel, and off we went.

It was beyond gorgeous outside, albeit the wind was moving with gusto, the ability to witness these colors in person was well worth getting blown over.

Editor’s Note: Most of these photos are “as is” – very few were light adjusted but the color of that incredible “dreamy” blue is 100% authentic Montana. 

Looking south to the Spanish Peaks
Autumn Aspens in Montana
Can you find the White Tail deer?

The unbelievably gorgeous cerulean blue skies of Montana
Big Skies glowing in Bobcat blue and gold

 

I love, love, love this little lone leaf.

{Yes, I was sprawled face-down on the cement for this shot. No, I didn’t touch/stage a thing. This shot was waiting for someone to capture it. Someone silly like me.}

These photos were taken in my humble, little neighborhood.

Imagine the untold scenic beauty beyond the Meadow Creek sub-division…

Parade in Perfect Town USA

Don’t mean to brag – 

Don’t mean to boast – 

But our sweet, little town – IS THE MOST!

Bozeman, Montana

I’ve never known a place to have more parades – and yesterday, Main Street was closed – again – in honor of Montana State University’s homecoming celebration.

It was a lovely first day of fall – and the streets were filled with local families and college students and alumni holding Bobcat donned babies of their own.

I love it.

I love being part of this fabulous community – and by the way I cheer and get riled up over the football Bobcats, you’d swear I was an alumni myself!

Bobcat Alum

This was a riot – whatever they were throwing from this truck was worth having…

…hats with Bobcat hair!!!

 

…these little parade goers aren’t quite sold on the pomp and circumstance…

What Labor Day Looks Like in Ennis, Montana

 Editor’s Note: Wherever this lovely, long holiday weekend finds you, I hope it finds you peaceful, healthy and in the comfort of those you love.  Me? Catching up on movies I haven’t seen, and a few stupid chores – but all in all, I can’t complain.

All these fantastic summer images are from the shores of Ennis Lake, Montana – Labor Day 2011.

This is called Turtle Rock.

Not sure I “see” the turtle??

What do you see?

Preparing to Head South
…I’m so glad we’ve had this (summer) time together…

 

Football MSU-Style ~ It’s “Cat”-tagious!

It’s almost that time.

Bobcat Football Time.

Season opener is Thursday, under the lights, at Bobcat Stadium. Kick-off at 7pm (and guess who got an invitation to attend this SOLD-OUT event?? Oh, yeah!!)

The photos below are from seasons past, but the perfect motivation to prepare for a new season of Bobcat Football!

Who says football is a beastly sport with no heart?

It begins with the “Cat clasp.”

And then a sweet prayer to the football Gods.

Then add some spirit, we’ve got some, how ’bout you?

Get your “up-do” spiked and ready…

 

Finally, get your “swagger” on…

Good Luck Bobcats in the 2012 Football Season. You got this.

 

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