7i9a2118 7i9a2126 7i9a2129 7i9a2130 7i9a2137 7i9a2149These early autumn days when the sky sits upon the earth like a bluebird on the back of a buckskin horse.



September Tightens Its Grip

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Wake up. Wash face.  Make coffee or tea.  Go out into the yard and pick fruit.  Re-enter the kitchen, eat breakfast and can a batch of preserves.  Answer time sensitive emails.  Go out to the studio.  Work.  Come in for lunch.  Go out to the studio.  Work.  Come in for a snack.  Change into running clothing or change into hunting attire and pack a bag.  Take the dogs out.  Come home.  Make dinner.  Eat dinner. Can another batch of preserves.  Answer time sensitive emails (if I have the energy).  Edit photographs.  Phone Robbie.  Take a hot bath.  Brush teeth.  Go to sleep.

Repeat the next day.

September has a good grip now and time is of the essence.

Rounding Up The Strays

Twenty four stray images from the past month that never made it to the blog!  Proof of the hard work I’ve been doing with my camera.  I love each and every one for a host of reasons.  Which do you love most?

Well, it’s really over, my friends, summer, fire, lonesomeness, frustration, elation, the north cascades, our stint in the Methow Valley…it’s come and gone.  It’s always bittersweet.  I love it here.  I miss Idaho.  My heart is continually ping-ponging between all the places I have ever loved.  And in between all the bouncing and boinging, I continually pine for Saskatchewan.  I know too many homes.  It’s torture.  It’s bliss.

 I have a thousand things to tell you about our raft, about rivers and boats as modes as transportation, but I am hanging onto (hoarding) those details for a personal essay I have been crafting, word by word.  It will be worth the wait.  I promise.

We watched Out of Africa the other night, one of my all time favorite movies, it’s beautiful, wild and Meryl Streep is just…so…exquisite.  I want to be half the woman she is in that movie.  Half the woman.  I want to face a hungry lion with nothing but my pyjamas and a bull whip to keep me safe.  Gosh.  How about this:

It’s an odd feeling, farewell…there is some envy in it.  Men go off to be tested for courage and if we’re tested at all, it’s for patience, or doing without, or for how well we can endure loneliness.

Doggone it.  That movie is so beautiful.

We’ll be rolling by Wednesday, headed for wild Idaho.  The Noisy Plume will be mostly shut down until the end of October due to adventuring and some big project deadlines I need to meet head on — which I cannot wait to tell you about, when the time comes.  I’ll be capturing life, as best as I can, between now and then.  Thank you all for being here, these past six months.  For your kind comments, for your support, for your presence in my Etsy shop, for your letters in my mailbox and your sweet emails.  Sometimes I falter.  Don’t we all?  It seems like you are always there to catch me with your thousands of hands and gentle hearts.  I appreciate you more than I could ever say.

See you on the other side of this transition, dear hearts.


Oh! Fall!

Yesterday was a day for the dogs.  I took the truck down a grubby, muddy road that led us somewhere we’d never been before.  We eventually pulled off, hopped out and bushwhacked our way up into higher country, to the snow line and beyond.  The weather was atrocious, as it has been lately.  I took my afternoon tea on a cliff, as is my custom, overlooking a river valley, then trudged further upward and stopped a lot along the way to fire my camera.  My camera is tremendously hungry lately.  I feed it all I can, and still it begs for more.  When I reached the clouds and was walking though a filmy white haze studded with the ghosts of trees, I called the dogs in to my side and we made a wide loop over the steady cairns of the earth, swooped up, over and down another ridge or two and found ourselves back at our trusty truck.  I loaded the dogs on the bench seat beside me, fired the Ford up, cranked the heat and gravity pulled us back down into Winthrop where we rambled like the river into Twisp, and rollicked over the misty hills that lead to a hanging valley where Robert was waiting for us at the cabin with hot soup and grilled cheese sandwiches.

Some days turn out to be perfect.  Perfect in every way.

We are preparing to leave for our winter home.  With the government shutdown here in the USA, Robert has been placed on furlough and we are free to leave!  I’m trying to finish up a handful of things in the studio before we begin to fill the Airstream with our lives, say our goodbyes, drift the river a couple more times in our raft and hit the road.  We hope to camp in Montana on the way home and drift the Blackfoot River outside of Missoula.  Once back in Idaho, we’ll ditch the Airstream and head out on one more river adventure before we take the time to unpack and settle into our house for the cold months.  I’m looking forward to central heating!

The world is beautiful right now.  I’m enjoying being with my fella so very much.  I am taking my time in the mornings, rambling through the woods around the cabin with my camera, capturing beautiful details, whispering thanks at the light as it fills my soul.  This was a long, hard fire season for me, for a few reasons.  I’m glad it’s over.  I’m thankful Robert is by my side again, safe and unharmed.  Our family is whole once more and everything is in its right place.

I miss Idaho.  I have missed Idaho.  I cannot wait to get out on the land there, reacquaint myself with my forests and sage flats and have a day like this, with the dogs, where we lose ourselves scrambling through timber and licking the drips off the tips of our noses.

Be well, you wild things.  I will be, too.


…these beautiful, quiet autumn nights that spiral so magnificently into darkness.