We will always remember Ellie for her love for others, her creativity, sensitivity, and delight in life! Ellie's light has spread far and wide... may it continue to shine in our hearts.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The great outdoors!

I just wanted to tell you that, aside from being mired in my own thoughts and feelings, I have actually been enjoying more of the outdoors than ever in my adult life. It's a wondrous thing! After spending about 20 years in the tropics, I'm finding the lack of humidity here to be a wonderful thing!

A couple weeks ago, my Grandma Lois and Uncle Mike (Dad's mom and brother) came from California for a visit. We enjoyed showing them around this beautiful area that we live in! We took them to Glacier National Park and up to the top of Big Mountain. We so appreciated the fact that they drove all the way here from California to spend the time with us!

On Tuesday, John, Ethan, Reni, Raymond (John's friend from work), my friend Jen, Jen's kids Bailey and Cody, and I all climbed to the top of Mount Aneas! Yikees. I guess it's not the biggest climb for those who do that sort of thing (John!) but for the rest of us it was a feat. I was exhausted for the rest of the day when we came down, and couldn't move at all the next day! But it was so worth it. It's a wonderful thing to look out from the top of a mountain and know that you just got there by your own sweat and energy. The only thing that marred the experience were the bugs! They were terrible. Thankfully, Reni and Loretta planned ahead and bought these little mosquito net hats. I used one almost the whole time! The mosquitoes and little black biting flies were all over us. Because of that, we didn't spend too much time sitting still. We got to the top, looked around and took off back down in pretty short order. Ethan walked the entire way up and down! I guess that wasn't as surprising as the fact that I walked the entire way up and down. Believe me, I would have taken anyone up on the offer to carry me! (Actually, Jen did offer at one point...) John had to carry my back pack most of the way up. All told, it was a worthwhile experience - except for the bugs! Next time I think we need to make the climb in the fall (notice I said "next time"). Then the bugs won't be so bad and Loretta can go - she had to stay home this time to look after the Burro.

The other thing that I have been into these days is growing flowers! Now I know that those of you who know me, are just snorting with skepticism because I have a black thumb. But I am determined! I have built a flower bed with my own two sore hands - rock by rock, and filled it by the wheelbarrow full of rich black earth. I then had to buy flowers to fill it. So with all of the work and money invested, I have great motivation! And I have Reni - the best plant growing teacher ever - to guide me. We talked and planned and researched and shopped. And came back with gorgeous flowers that should grow in my little planter. Unfortunately, some of them are yummy to the prolific deer that we have on property. So I bought some spray (that is non-toxic to deer or humans) but stinks - to the deer anyway. I woke up this morning and all my pretty flowers are still intact! Yay. They made it through the night without being eaten. I even bought some basil plants! Those are under a wire fence in the back yard. And I'm going to keep a couple of plants in the mud room. I'm just giddy with delight at my new found skill! Ok, so I guess I can't call it a skill after seeing the flowers through one night. I suppose I have to get them through a whole summer before I can claim it as a skill. Even so. I'm happy. It's a challenge. Now for the watering and weeding... I actually like weeding. It's the watering that I have trouble with.


At 2:05 PM, Blogger sumi said...

I envy you your lovely climate (not the bugs!) from a muggy Florida.

Soething you said grabbed my attention: It's a wonderful thing to look out from the top of a mountain and know that you just got there by your own sweat and energy.

Perhaps there is a spiritual lesson in there? It feels good to be an overcomer, even though we can only do it by God's strength!

looking forward to climbing the mountain in my own life...

At 8:50 AM, Blogger LindaSueBuhl said...

Bugs are such pesky critters - glad you had a mosquito hat to keep them off your face! Ethan is growing into a real mountain boy - sounds like an inspiring day and Woo Hooo about the gardening - learning how to deal with the unwanted visitors is the challenge anywhere - we have had a lot of deer and raccoons helping themselves to our garden produce.

At 12:21 PM, Blogger oneofhisfriends said...

Hi Sarah,

What joy it bring my heart to see you write the words "great" and "outdoors"

1 sequentially,
2 twice,
3 in the same month.
4 in the title of a post.

The fact that it took Montana in general and Glacier National Park in particular to draw this out of you may be interpreted as evidence that God can deal with hard cases. If Glacier didn't work, I don't know what would.


At 12:46 PM, Anonymous Kendra Rickert said...

I have been envying people's pictures of the beautiful mountains out west...thanks for the reminder of the bugs. We have had a terrific amount of mosquitos here and so have not done the hiking we normally do. I guess we will be waiting for the fall frost for that as well. :) I would love to see pictures of your garden! :)

At 12:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So good to hear about the fun you had! Really good to hear some about Ethan--I think of how he is doing often. We'd love to hear more about him in the future!!

much love,

The Gentiles

At 8:22 AM, Anonymous Jen Johnson said...

Sarah ~ As the days have passed since our hike, my memories of it have changed from solid bugs to a grand picture of us all at over 7000 feet above the earth! Like I said when we were up there, hiking Mt. Aeneas is not for the weak. You did an amazing job! You and your family are such a delight! Hope your painting is going well, can't wait to see it!
Much love~Jen


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