Animals Gathered First: Reflections on Advent

It is early morning when I venture outside to feed the horses. LC is at my side, with Labrador enthusiasm even at 5:30 a.m. I gaze up, looking for a glimpse of the Northern Lights but today they remain elusive. Stars shine brightly….

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Oma’s Apron

On a bright sunny day at the Saturday market in Vancouver, Washington last year, I bought a tiny apron for my one-year-old granddaughter, Aurora. My mother was with me at the time and generously bought me an apron to match.  

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Fox Encounter is Reminder of Our Wilderness Backyard

Not long ago, my friend Tina alerted me to a fox den near a trail where we regularly go horseback riding. The fox was there, sitting on top of its den watching as she and her horse passed by. I searched the next time I rode but,

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Biography of Dick Griffith Chronicles Journeys of Alaskan Legend

Canyons and Ice: The Wilderness Travels of Dick Griffith chronicles the journeys of Alaskan legend Dick Griffith. Even before he trekked more than 6,000 mile across Alaska and the Canadian Arctic, he was one of the pioneers of river rafting on the Green and Colorado Rivers.

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Wildflowers, Wistful and Wise

There is a reason that wildflowers evoke flowery, evocative language. On a recent hike through Crow Pass, acres of wild roses filled the air with a scent like sweet honey and raspberries. Each rose’s five pink petals lay open like hands,

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An Ode to Old Boots

I’m not a shoe person like my mom. My stylish mother’s head turns every time we pass by a shoe store or display. She loves pretty footwear; I believe she’d have  a pair for every outfit and occasion if she could.

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Bears of Spring

               At long last, breakup boots and sunglasses have replaced snowpacks and mittens. Bears are shaking off their long winter’s nap and they’re hungry. Last week, a friend and I had the privilege of seeing a black bear walk on top of hardened snow looking for springtime vittles.

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Spring Marks Avalanche Season

A decade ago on Easter Sunday, my sons and I argued about what we should do after church on that warm sunny afternoon. They were still teenagers with swagger and they wanted to climb high and ski down the slopes along the ridge behind our home in Eagle River.

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Not a Toy: Death of Family Dog Demonstrates Dangers of Pellet Guns

He was the pick of the litter. A strong, beautiful pup, Denali had all the features of a fine, pedigreed Labrador retriever. Better even than his physical qualities, was his personality – intelligent, loyal, and affectionate.  He was a surprise birthday gift from Jen Tanner to her husband,

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February Marks Shift in Winter

I was riding through the nearby woods recently when the setting sun spilled rose-colored light across the snow. It was beautiful but it was also 8 below zero. My hands were curled around warmers inside my mittens, I had toe-warmers in my boots,

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