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Archive for the ‘Montana’ Category

Scenes So Lovely


Seeing the falls he named in honor of his queen, David Livingstone wrote in his journal, “Scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight.”

Waterfalls and all God’s natural beauty affect me the same way. This country of Switzerland is so full of those “scenes so lovely.”

Waterfalls and bridges in Switzerland amaze me!
Chalets with lovely flowers abound
This was on the way to Zinal yesterday
But De & André’s is the best!

As we venture out, the lovely scenes are amazing in every season here.

Tania at Hotel Weisshorn – photo by Mike Solioz – taken last autumn
Way back when … we climbed waaay up with DeDe.

Scenes so lovely!

Flowers are abundant in private gardens and public places.
André’s croûtes au fromage (potato or bread w cheese, etc.) is a Valaisan specialty. It’s a “scene so lovely” too!

André and De are so generous as they share their chalet, meals, transportation and their love with us and with De’s best buddy (our daughter #2 Laina) and her daughter Katy. What a grand reunion we had with them here yesterday!

Katy, Laina, me, Bob & DeDe

Hebrews 13:16 “Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.”

Last night Mike & Tania joined us for a fun evening of raclette & karaoke. Chris & Nick and their girlfriends came, too. Ah, we are so blessed with this wonderful Swiss family!

Thanks for joining me and sharing these “Scenes so Lovely” today. Wish you were here in person! Come back tomorrow, okay? See ya then (God willing).

Hugs, JanBeek

Visiting Zinal


What a wonderful way to spend a Monday afternoon in Switzerland! DeAna drove us up to Zinal… just to enjoy the time together, the scenery, and an ice cream. We did all three. Wanna join us?

Mountain majesty

Views usually not seen

Except in movies

Sharing with our De

Made all the more beautiful

By stream and mountains

Blue sky up above

Flowing River at our feet

Life can’t be more sweet

Then add some icecream

And the cows that made the cream

Surely it’s a dream!

Hearing the children

Laughing and playing outside

Yes, it’s Paradise!

Meantime, the Groshongs

Continued their hiking fun

In this same region

Found a gentle cow

Grazing on the Swiss hillside

Up close – personal!

Lucky the bovine

Was feeling cooperative

But don’t press your luck

Here comes another

He’s looking mighty leery

Don’t try petting him

Onward to glacier

Visit before it is gone

Then back to Zinal

What will tomorrow bring? Come back and see! I love sharing with you. Which of my pictures today did you like best?

Love to you from JanBeek (and Bob & De, too)

Sweet Swiss Times


Our weekend began with a cloudy day in Sierre, Switzerland, but soon the sky cleared and the weekend was sunny and beautiful.

It was a beautiful fun-filled time with family and friends. Let me share some highlights with you. We’re having such sweet Swiss times! One highlight of our weekend was a choir festival in Véraz (near Sierre) where our daughter, DeDe, and grandson, Chris, sang with the Chippis choir.

Every day here in this beautiful country is full of the blessing of family and friends. Sweet catch-up time. I love sharing the fun with you.

Me with DeDe at the choir festival
Bob with DeDe

After the festival, we went to André’s brother’s fiancée’s place for a raclette evening. So nice to have catch-up time with Kad & Roger.

Meantime, our friends, Jim & Terry, took the bus from Vissoie up to Grimentz where they are enjoying a few days of hiking in those fabulous mountains. They’re sharing a few photos of their experiences. Have a look!

Wow! Great photo, Terry!
Terry, the hiker
Jim … the trooper
Hah! Listen to Terry’s description of their hike and Jim’s take on this!

Yes, the mountains are alive with the sounds of water and hikers and joy! Once upon a time, a dozen years ago, Bob & I took that hike. Now we are content to enjoy those high Alpine views through others’ cameras! Oh, and from the bus- of course.

Thank you for your responses to our posts. We love sharing our trip vicariously with you, dear friends. Wish you could be here in person.

See ya tomorrow (God willing)-

Love, JanBeek

The Hills Are Alive!


The hills are alive with the sounds of family!

Yesterday our daughter, DeAna, drove us down into the Rhône River Valley, through Sierre, and up into the Alps on the other side to an area called Crans-Montana. It is where she & André lived 30 years ago when they first moved here. On the hillside e hind the restaurant André managed way back then are a few chalets. One of them, built in 1772, is owned by ZuZu & Célia. They invited us to spend the day there with them.

ZuZu (Christian Zufferey) was our AFS son in 1980-81. He is André’s first cousin. He and Célia prepared an amazing meal for us! The first plate was an outstanding eggplant quiche. The second plate was lamb (my favorite) and a ratatouille. All the vegetables they grew in their gardens here in this gorgeous high Alpine place.

The opportunity to be together again with ZuZu was so very special. After the meal we shared various liqueurs – also made by them using various fruits, etc. that they grew.

After our time there, De took us back down into Sierre where we had a nice visit with our friend, Christiane Rielle.

Then (as if day was not already blessed enough), we were treated by our DeDe and our grandson, Nick, to a wonderful dinner at Capri Restaurant in Sierre before returning to Vissoie for the night.

Then today we went on a guided tour of Sierre. Our grandson, Mike’s new bride, Tania, provided the tour. At the Sierre Tourisma Office, my buddy Terry found a hat for a souvenir… and I found a terrific pair of funky glasses that I could not resist!

Now you can see why I didn’t bring a pair of sunglasses with me on this trip. I needed THIS pair!!

Bob, Jim & Terry Groshong, our MT/CA best friends, learned all about the history of Sierre. There is the town hall behind the 4 of us. If you saw my post about Mike & Tania’s civil ceremony, it’s the same place where they were married last weekend.

Then Tania guided us to an old (1700s) chalet. Look at they key Jim is holding. It opened the cellar door where we did some wine tasting.

Next Tania drove us to Chateau Mercier where she explained the history and we tasted more fine Swiss wines.

Lovely Chateau Mercier has beautiful gardens, too. We walked around and admired them before going to Chateau Villa for Raclette dinner. Mike joined us there.

Mike & Tania’s church ceremony is Sept. 20, so we have another couple weeks here to enjoy the hills alive with family. Stay tuned!

Jim & Terry will leave tomorrow – so you can say farewell to them for now nit’s been wonderful to have them with us this week!

I can never tire of these beautiful Swiss Alpine views! Come back tomorrow. We’re going to take the bus down to stay with André’s mom. I’ll share those views with you, too..

Thanks for traveling vicariously with us! Bee 🐝 well, dear friends! See you tomorrow (God willing).

Love, JanBeek (and Bob)

Terrific Tuesday


Yesterday and today we woke to the magical sound of children across the road from our bedroom here in Vissoie, Switzerland. What a joy!

Yesterday evening we were treated to an Alphorn concert. Nine dear people (one being our grandson, Mike) played this age-old instrument. I became acquainted with it when I was a child. My Uncle Hans was my mom’s oldest sister’s husband. He was a young German-Swiss cheese maker when he moved from Switzerland to Washington back in the 1930’s. He & Aunt Evelyn had 3 children. He taught them all to yodel and he taught his son, my cousin, Hanslie, to play the alpenhorn.

Mike is on the left.

My mom would be so proud to know her great-grandson is following in the musical tradition of her family! I get sentimental and cry when I hear these instruments and think of how mom & my aunt and uncle would have adored hearing this!

Today our friends, Jim & Terry, are here to enjoy a few days with us in this marvelous place. Last night they were able to meet Mike & Tania and we all celebrated Jim’s 75th and DeDe’s 55th together. André fixed an incredible dinner of ribs with a medley of vegetables. Yum!!

Here is yesterday’s delicious roast beef lunch.

Last night’s ribs

It is so wonderful to have my forever friend, dear Terry here to share these experiences with us.

This is Vissoie’s Main Street

Later this morning we’ll walk down that street and get a few groceries at the store. Wish you were here to go walking with us!

See ya later! Thanks for traveling vicariously with me. Hugs, JanBeek

Day 2 in Switzerland


Sierre, Switzerland

André and the 3 boys

All were born here

This is the view from our balcony. That’s a beautiful castle on the mountainside

In front of our 4th story balcony we see the roof of the circular Catholic Church and we hear the bells ring every 15 minutes from 8: to 8: I love it!

Yesterday our grandson, Nick (the middle one – the fun-loving guy who has a band called Fluffy Machine) and his girlfriend, Céline, took us to nearby Martiny for lunch and a fun tasting experience at a micro-brewery.

Our lunch spot
Bob, Céline, Nick & Grandmama Denise

When we arrived on Thursday night, we had cheese fondue in Denise’s backyard with all 3 of our grandsons and their girlfriends plus our daughter, DeDe & her hubby, André.

Here is Bob on Thursday morning at Denise’s breakfast table:

The views from our balconies are wonderful – and the terraced vineyards on all the steep Alpine mountainsides here in Valais (the French part of Switzerland) are spectacular! God really worked overtime to create this scenic place!!

This is the house across the road from us. It was built in 1772. The plaque between the windows there tells the years it was renovated.
1772- 1946- 1976

Thank you for traveling vicariously with us for these next three weeks. What would you like me to show you next? Tomorrow is Mike & Tania’s civil ceremony. I’ll share. Come on back!

Love,

JanBeek

Thursday Meditation


Just meditate on this scene;
Let the beauty soak into you.
Thank God for the beauty around you.
You’re blessed. You know it?

No human can recreate what God has done.
Meditate on the wonders of the universe.
Thank God for His many blessings,
And have a wonderful Thursday, OK?

Just 5 more days ’til we leave to go
To Switzerland for our grandson’s wedding.
We are anticipating the beauty we know
We will experience there. Come back…

I’ll share!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
God bless you!
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Your prayers for our wise preparations and safe travel will be very much appreciated!

Click the link below
if you’d like to have an hour or so
of beautiful meditation music
(water sounds, flute, etc.)
while you count your blessings.

Montana Trails with Friends


This is “Lucille.”
Yesterday we joined 12 friends
and went on a trail ride
into the Gravelly Range
above Antelope Basin.

Lucille is our ATV (all terrain vehicle).
Because she’s a redhead
on whom we have a ball,
we named her after the actress/comedian,
Lucille Ball.

Are you old enough to remember her?

Anyway, we met at Antelope Basin
about 50 miles south-west of Ennis,
and took the trails through the Gravelly Range
to our destination of Hidden Lake.

It was a blue-sky-perfect day
with temperatures not rising above 80 degrees.
We had not been up to this site for over a year.
In the meantime forest fires
had ravaged the trees
and changed the landscape.

This tree was lush and green last time we were here.

We stopped and chatted with our friends awhile before taking a lunch break.

Good buds: Sherry Riggs and Penny Hocking

TazE was quite interested
in what Rex & Penny Hocking
were getting from Linda Schott.
Mmm … fresh and yummy Flathead cherries!

TazE was interested in Bob’s Cheetos, too!

After lunch we traveled on up to the lookout above Henry’s Lake.

The wildflowers were prettier
than I have ever seen them this late in the summer.
We had quite a wet spring and that helped!

Traveling back down,
we could see our Madison Valley in the distance.

We gathered to take a group photo of our ATV friends.
And then some couples and quartets, too.

Top left: Kris & Bob (CG’s cousin) with CG & Caroline
Bottom left: Penny & Rex
Right: Sue & Bob Welna

Here are our five ATV’s.
You can see that Lucille stands out
among all those earth tones!

Most of the way to and fro
the trail was a road also traveled
by cowboys in their pickups,
tending the the cattle up in the verdant fields.

Some of the trail was rocky, steep and pretty hairy.
But, we managed just fine…
and I am so grateful that
Bob and I both had
enough stamina to enjoy the trip.

We Thank the Lord for our neighbors/friends
(the Welnas and Hockings)
who came to help Bob prepare Lucille
for the trip, and then
returned this morning to
help him put her back away.
God bless them!!

Maybe you’ll come join us
one of these days
for a Montana trail ride.
Ya think?

I’d be tickled to see you!

Just give me a call
and let me know when you’re coming.
We’d love to see you
and treat you to a Montana trail ride!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
See ya tomorrow (God willing)


Click on the link below if you’d like to enjoy
Dale Evans & Roy Rogers
(my favorite cowboy)
singing “Happy Trails to You.”

Wonderful Weekend


Enjoying Sunday
Remembering Saturday
And Fish on Friday

Sunday began
with this prayer-filled
good morning photo
from my friend Lisa
in North Carolina

After church,
Sunday continues
with our TazE
needing attention
and us
trying to
just relax!

Saturday memories
include a wonderful evening
shared with Bob
and dozens of friends
at the Madison Valley Ranchland’s
annual “Noxious Weed Dinner and Auction.”

Check out
Bonny Morningstar Guzzo
on Facebook
to see her wonderful pictures
of that highly successful event.

Friday memories
include our walk
along the Madison River
in Lion’s Club Park
where this beautiful
painted fish sculpture
greets us.

The painting on the fish inspires the Haiku poet in me.

“Father, please teach me
I want to learn how to fish
To fish like you, Dad“

Back home, the clouds keep the day cooler
as the sun plays peek-a-boo
The trees provide welcomed shade
And the birds serenade you

The breeze causes the wind chimes
To sing a lullaby
Reminding me of my sis, Sally
She’d love this place as much as I

The deer come quietly to rest
Beneath the shade of verdant trees
They promise not to nibble
But who can trust deer like these?

Time to think about a meal
Don’t know what I’d like to cook
Need to go check out the fridge
Maybe left-overs -Have a look!

Mmmm… I can see shrimp
Waiting for the coconut
Time to make the sauce

Hope all is well with you.
Thanks for sharing
my weekend memories
vicariously with me.

Now it is your turn
What are your best memories
Of this great weekend?

Sending love your way…
Hugs,
JanBeek

EAA Art Festival – Ennis, Montana


Hello, dear blogging friends.
It’s been a busy weekend for me.
Saturday was our Ennis Arts Association Festival.

How’s the weekend been for you?
What were your weekend highlights?

Saturday was a beautiful day
In Ennis, Montana for our 26th annual
Ennis Arts Association
Madison Valley Art Festival

The Madison Valley Art Festival is an outdoor event (held rain or shine) on the historic trail between Yellowstone National Park and Virginia City, a path well-traveled by tourists visiting the state’s national parks and historic landmarks, and fly fishing on the Madison River.

Our Presbyterian Women hold their annual fundraiser at the festival.
They sell baked and canned goods donated by the MV Presbyterian Church members.
There were three tables full of goodies, but by 2:00 pm, this is all that was left!
We enjoyed the left-overs at fellowship after church today!

The Li’l Hog Pit had a wonderful menu
and they served the record crowd
with efficiency and delicious food.
We’re grateful to Benny and her hubby
for their expertise and availability.

Bob enjoyed his lunch with our friends, Bonny & Joel.

From 10: am to 5:00 pm,
the Tune Tanglers provided music
for the art enthusiasts.
We’re grateful for their shared talent!
They spread the gospel message
with their musical choices
as well as good ole western songs.

Artists such as talented painter, Kathleen Van Driessche,
come from far and near.
We had 61 artists in 54 booths this year.
Something for everyone!

I walked around and admired all the
paintings,
pottery,
photography displays,
jewelry,
woodworking,
metal sculptures,
etc.

If I wasn’t saving my money
for or upcoming Swiss trip,
I might have convinced Bob
to get this wooden vase
(with a glass insert)
for me.
I love it!

But the price tag said,
“Not this year, Jan!”

As the afternoon wore on,
the shade was especially appreciated.
We had an unusually calm day
(without our typical Madison Valley wind)
and the temperatures reached into the 90s.

We were happy to return home to our home
where we had opened it up to the cool (50 degree) night air
and closed it up during the day. Ah, God is good!
Life is good! Praise Him for our artists, musicians,
Ennis Art Association workers who set up and took down,
and all the people who came out to support the event.

Maybe next year you can plan to come join us for the last weekend in July.
Ya think?

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Maybe later today…

Love,
JanBeek

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