And there it goes again

It was sunny yesterday, just a little chill in the breeze [after all is is March]. Montana is reminding everyone it is cold here. Then again March is a schizophrenic month no matter where where you live. It rained two days ago and now it is snowing. This coming week it is going to be in the 60’s again. Talk about whiplash. Make up your mind.

I worked outside all day trying to pull off a job made for two by myself. I enjoyed being outside but the frustration of not being four handed made for a bittersweet experience. I did make it though, just a little worn for the mental exercise keeping my self from throwing things and generally making a fool of myself.

Yesterday just reminded me how much I miss my partner and best friend.

Now that is enough self indulgence.

The green house is on hold, for a week. I have to leave in the morning to keep an appointment with my grandchildren and it is snowing. It is early yet I know but, I am dying to get my finger nails dirty in the dirt. I haven’t had a green house for 20 years and it has been killing me, I just can’t wait for the  seeds to start popping through the dirt. It is a spiritual experience, like seeing something born. It just reinforces that life is worth living for these little miracles.

I have two pet peeves and they have been fed abundantly this week. One is intolerance. I  had a conversation that revolved around the minorities “deserving” to be trod upon, because they are not white and the “don’t think” like whites do. It takes all that I am to not just walk away and disavow any knowledge of that person. The other is bigotry.  I have had conversations that are based on “if they would only do the way I would it would work” irregardless of their culture, training or life experiences.  One of those conversations included “well they deserved it” because they chose to live like they wanted to and not like is acceptable in my circle. I am not sure that any one “deserves” something horrible to happen to them no matter  what they do.

I have to remember that every one has the right to their opinion no matter how wrong they are. I just try to not get too snappish when they start espousing their ignorance.

Now I have to get my mind headed in the positive direction and get ready to be a grandma.



Here it is the middle of February and it is 50 degrees out there. In Montana it is to warm, the trees are showing signs of sap running. It is too early.The Weather Service issued a wind warning of winds possible to 80 mph, that is March weather. So the wind has blown for several days and now it is supposed to rain. Welcome to Montana in March, wait, it’s only February.

Montana has a habit of showing it’s warmer self and then suddenly it remembers that it is Montana and Montana is COLD, so it gets -10 overnight. To say we have schizophrenic weather is an understatement, frozen flower buds will attest to that.

I am truly tired of cloudy skies and would like to see the sun for more than one day at a time. Then, I am a sufferer of SAD. The lack of sun throws me into the blues and prolonged lack of sun throws me head first into the murky waters of depression where it is next to impossible to find the way to the surface.

Today is not a good day for me, I am trying to deal with my handicapped daughters financial affairs and the state intrusion into her finances. I understand the need to be financially reimbursed for their services but when she is unable to pay what they want for reimbursement, and then they increase that amount.  Needless to say the lack of sun is the least of my problems today.

Oh well. I guess I will go lay tile for a little while and see if the State worker will really call me back.

If I were hung with a new rope……………………

Well, I’m in Alaska again and it is raining, again. Funny how, when there is no rain, it is craved for and when there is it is despised. [at least on my part] I can’t go out in the down pour I will get cold and be miserable. Oh well,…….. if I were hung with a new rope………

The 150% humidity leaves me breathless and not wanting to run around much. It is sure green though and much easier on the eyes than the brittle hues of orange and gold we left in Montana. I haven’t been idle since I’ve been here, internet here is slow and iffy, making the downloads of much-needed programs and updates a challenge. I didn’t need to download anything when I left Montana – or so i thought. The program that I updated and installed on my new computer did not install completely – hence, the download. What have I to complain about? I am in a beautiful place and have a new computer ….. if I were hung with a new rope……..

The cat is glad to see us and is hanging around a lot. The horse a.k.a. dog is excited to see a new face too. His one focus is to fetch and will till the ball is lost or worn out. Children are more or less glad to see us, It’s only been a few weeks since they were in Montana so their lack  excitement is understood.  They do recognize.  us though and didn’t run and hide. That is always a plus.

I made supper last night of beef/cheese enchiladas, black beans and corn. That is always a hit, I don’t do seasoning out of a store-bought jar or foil pack, I use things that are more authentic. And, contrary to local  thoughts, HOT is not the goal, it is flavor.

Tonight I made potato soup. A very easy and inexpensive meal made of few ingredients.

The silvers have run, the peak was a week or so ago. We might be able to catch one, then I would have to cook it.

The watermelon berries and blue berries are on, Then I would have to make jelly. …….if I were hung with a new rope……..

The rain is enforcing a rest that is much-needed and yet …………… if I were hung with a new rope……..

Running away – the girl from nowhere in particular.

In 1994 my husband, Chuck, and I pulled up stakes and ran away from home.

After a truly difficult year of the exacerbation that led to the diagnosis of MS and the end of my neurosis,  we felt the need to change our air.

I was unable to do a lot of the things that we had done together, Chuck needed to fulfill his desire to return to his familial home. Our children had reached the age of majority and we were afraid that at one, maybe two were going to be permanent residents.

Charles W [Chuck] and I met in early 1970, from the first date were constant companions. We were matched emotionally and mentally. He was divorced and I was divorce and looking for compatible companionship. We found it and joined his five children and my one son into the state of Holy Matrimony. Soon there was a set of twin girls added. Our house was full, and had a revolving door for his children, they came and went on their whim or their mothers whim. This is difficult for any relationship, our was no different. We were committed to each other and we survived the children. If nothing else it drew us closer, we became joined at the hip so to speak.

The years of my neurosis [That was doctor speak for my many undiagnosed symptoms] were trying. I had spent many months with constant headaches working full a full-time job and trying to raise our blended family. There were times of unexplained numbness and extreme fatigue that would come out nowhere and be gone into nowhere just as quickly. I had just about given up and accepted the neurosis explanation, when I  forgot how to walk in a straight line. I even asked the diagnosing neurologist if it was terminal neurosis that I had. He assured me that it was MS and I should just go home and be glad that I wasn’t any worse than I was. Easy for him to say. He got fired right there on the spot. I had lived with these unexplained things since before we buried my mother who died from complications of MS  twenty years earlier. I found a good and sympathetic Neurologist. I’ve kept her for all these years. They tell me MS is not inheritable. Tell that to my daughter that was just diagnosed with MS a few years ago.

Anyway, back to running away. I was not able to do a lot of things that we had spent our married lives doing anymore and moving to Montana was a lot better than staying in the city. He had inherited the childhood home of his mother, the Central Hotel in Radersburg. This was our destination.

The hotel was more a boarding house than a hotel by current standards. It was built in about 1867 of hand hewed logs and grafted scavenged buildings. At one time in the heyday of the mining boom the number of guests was in excess of 20 men. This, in a small 6 room space, and the family of 6 lived there.  The only way I can figure the accommodations working out is that they slept in shifts and shared beds.

We bought an adjacent property, the closed grocery store. We re-opened the store and ran it for 10 years.

In Montana driving long distances is not a problem, everything is a long drive away. The closest gas station is 20 miles away, we did OK until the wild fires of 2000. The fires forced the closure of public lands, this stopped the summer traffic for two summers due to fire danger and smokey conditions. Summer traffic was the mainstay of the business, losing that was more than we could tolerate business wise or financially.

Then, cancer joined our family. Esophageal cancer to be precise. What a terrible disease cancer is. My big strong husband of almost 40 years did not have the strength to  fight this demon. His 6 ft., 200 pound frame dwindled to a frail shadow of his former self,  it took him less than two years to lose the battle.

I am happy that he had the opportunity to make it back to the family home, it is too bad that he didn’t live longer to enjoy more of it.

I took his middle daughter to decorate his grave today [Memorial Day], she will be buried alongside us in the family plot of the pioneer cemetery that is the resting place of two of his aunts, his grandparents, one uncle and his sister and brother-in-law. His niece and great nephews  are talking about sites there also.

I became a widow in a place that I was not native to but allowed me to be part of. I am grateful for their quiet acceptance of this vagabond girl from nowhere in particular. [Born in Utah, left at three weeks of age and lived in the back seat of a car always headed to the next grand adventure]

That was 6 years ago, I am still on the great adventure. I do like where I have ended up. I am looking to see what is in store for this girl from nowhere in particular.

It Rained

Well, it rained………..

There has been little or no substantial for two years here in our little corner of Montana. It is dry and a topic of conversation at each encounter.

Farmer/Rancher conversations go like this

Farmer John: It’s dry

Rancher Clint: Yup

Farmer John: Well

Rancher Clint: Rained in South Dakota

Farmer John: Yup

Rancher Clint: Sure’s dry

Farmer John: Yup

Rancher Clint: creeks dry

Farmer John: Yup ………..

Rancher Clint will go home and recount this conversation by saying “I spoke to Farmer John and he told me that nothing is going to grow if it doesn’t rain soon. South Dakota is getting it all”

Farmer John will recount the same conversation by saying “I spoke to Rancher Clint and he told me that he can’t move the cows to summer pasture if it doesn’t rain soon. South Dakota is getting it all”

What, The rain dancers weren’t serious enough?  The prayers weren’t sent high enough?

Guess beggars can’t be choosers. It did get cooler, at least the wind stopped. The river is still low, the ground is still dry, the fire danger is still high and we need more rain the soil is still powder dry a 1/4 inch down. “It rained a whole 1/10 of an inch and a 1/2  on the rain gauge” was the reported findings soon after first light   [I didn’t try to figure it out] .

I drove an octogenarian to town yesterday to accomplish two things. One) get the hearing aids fixed. Two) get a pre-need burial plan established so “those kids can’t burn me”.

It rained on the way to town and it rained on the way back from town, it didn’t rain much at home.

These conversations between ranchers and farmers are comical sometimes  and the information they exchange through Yup’s and Well’s is extraordinary. The comments of the elders are hilarious most of the time, they don’t flow through social filters anymore.

I am taking lessons from these special breeds of people. I have to work on my small talk and reduce it to Yup’s and Well’s.  I am going to take full advantage of being 80 plus, if I am so lucky. They have earned the right to speak their mind, and they do.

Do you know your Vitamin D?

I just read an article about Vitamin D. My niece a cancer survivor visited with her cancer doctor and he told her that she had extremely low Vitamin D levels. That could be the explanation for some of her symptoms.

I am aware of the need of sufficient Vitamin D  and the role it plays in Osteoporosis. I read the speculation on MS and Vitamin D. Multiple Sclerosis is more frequent in the northern tier of the earth where there is seasonally limited  sunshine, thereby a lack of Vitamin D.

I do have Osteoporosis. My osteoporosis is a consequence of living past menopause, not being physically active for many years due to Multiple Sclerosis [MS] and some things beyond my control. I take Vitamin D and Boneva for osteoporosis, my doctor says I am on the low-end of normal. That is a norm for me, I am on the low-end of normal in a lot of things.

This article says irritability is a symptom of Vitamin D deficiency, that would explain some things.  I have been like a bear  the last while, I am always growling about something. depression and anxiety are listed as a symptoms.

Many people who are deficient in vitamin D said that in the beginning, they thought their anxiety was caused by something else. Many of these people have been trying to treat depression and/or anxiety with antidepressants and other medications, but it turned out to be unsuccessful. In other words, if your mood problems are caused by vitamin D deficiency, the only way to treat these issues is to treat vitamin D deficiency first.    vitaminddeficiencysymptomsguide

 I have SAD [Seasonal Affect Disorder]. I need to be in the sun for my mental health and for the well-being of those around me. I live in Montana, the winters here are long. Not so dark, just too cold to play outside much. If I don’t have a sunny window I can sit in, then ………….BEWARE.  So I chalk my grumpiness to SAD, maybe it’s tied to both. Because I am a survivor of menopause and don’t make the Vitamin D like I used to and I am on the low-end of normal, Vitamin D deficiency could be the culprit. Then, because I don’t get out in the sun enough, my SAD could be the culprit. Maybe it is a destructive combination of the two. I have to explore this with the neurologist when I see her again.
With the concerns of skin cancer, there is a high use of sun block it even comes in clothes. With all of this sun blocking is there a decrease in the Vitamin D available to us? I can’t help but wonder. Are there more reports of diseases that are linked to Vitamin D deficiency? I would guess so.

Vitamin D is very important for overall health. It takes part in several important processes that take place in the body, some of which are closely related to the immune system. Numerous researches have proven that vitamin D is helpful in preventing diabetes, multiple sclerosis, cardiovascular disease, rickets, osteoporosis, osteomalacia, and certain types of cancer. It is also used as a part of therapy in patients who suffer from these problems.     vitaminddeficiencysymptomsguide

There are many things cited in this article including muscle cramps and fatigue, diabetes and cancer to weight retention.  Check your symptoms and check your Vitamin D.


Dust Devil -or- Dirt Tornado....It's Comming!!!

Dust Devil -or- Dirt Tornado….It’s Comming!!! (Photo credit: live w mcs)





















I am just sitting here listening to the wind blow. It is blowing because it is spring and because it is south central Montana. That is just what it does here. We have not had any beneficial precipitation  in this county since ……………… I can’t remember. Some time in early 2012 if my memory serves me.




I just know, I am dusty. My car is dusty inside and out the house is dusty, there is a fine layer of dust laying all over everything. We not able to get enough moisture to feel like the dust will be settled.




NOW THE WIND. While it is blowing the dust all over it is also evaporating what little moisture was there. The wind blows in circles and deposits dust in every nook and cranny.




It is spring, the farmers are starting to farm. Their tractors stir the dust in huge plumes that follow them around the field, or lead them around the field. Depending on the direction the wind chooses to blow.




My family was among the refugees from Oklahoma during the Dust Bowel in the 1930’s. I remember reading about the devastation of the drought, this dust brings that to mind. I was not part of that, but my grandparents were and my father was 5 when they headed out for California with only the clothes on their back and a car piled high with what possessions that didn’t have to be sold and would fit. My recollections are that this time was quietly spoken of, if at all. I came away from childhood with an understanding that having enough food was a privilege. The only thing I have clear memories of the talk of the migration was the fear that was left in my father of starving. That was a huge impact on me, I felt his fear and it imprinted something profound on my brain. Food was never used as a weapon or threat against us and it still makes me crazy when I hear it being used as such. My own children didn’t have to fear going hungry. Their father had a stable job and enough money to provide enough food. Still, I couldn’t threaten them with going without for any kind of offense except wasting food.




It’s funny, in this country of plenty, we have lost the ability to appreciate the lack of things. Oh, we worry about not having a better car, a bigger house or the special new computer program that promises to repair something that isn’t really broken.




There are the ones that are among the ones that our government classifies as poverty stricken. Where they, by misfortune or mistake, have found themselves on the lowest end of the income bracket. There are safety nets in place for this group. They have the option of reaching out for the help they need. Then there are the ones that have “chosen” this lifestyle, due to addiction or mental illness they stay out of the mainstream and out of public programs. Unfortunately there are children that are drug through this and when they are identified they are helped as best we can.




There are people who truly do not “have”.




Who do you know that truly does not have a place to store their things and sleep at night. Who do you know that hasn’t had a meal of anything but flies because their three remaining children had to have the last piece of bread? How many people on your block froze last winter or starved. This is poverty, I have not met anyone like this, they do not live on my block. If they did, I have enough to share. I have an abundance even though I have little money.




This winter when there is 2 feet of snow, there will be no one in my little town that will freeze because of lack of resources. There is an energy share program available, there are shelters, there are families and there are neighbors.There is the Food Stamp program so that no one will go without.  All of this makes us a rich nation.




All of this, because the wind blows. I am stuck inside dusting and thinking. ……………