31 October 2015

Winter Hobbies-Kindle Unlimited-Acrylic Painting

Wow, where does the time go? Seems like only yesterday we were welcoming spring. Now, winter is already here again. The days are already growing short and will continue getting ever more short until late December. Here in northwest Montana that means we barely have eight hours of daylight in the winter months, not a lot of time for outdoor activities. Which I suppose is alright since it's so "blasted cold" (Kinsey's words not mine). Personally, I don't mind the cold. My coat is thick and luxurious again. So much dark isn't all that great but it's amazing how quickly one adapts.

Tomorrow we will set our clocks back. That's a sure sign winter is on its way.
Winter coat back in fashion
Kinsey, is always trying to dream up winter projects to keep her busy. Last winter she went on a jigsaw puzzle kick. She did a bunch of them. This winter she is going to try something entirely new, acrylic painting. Beyond her camera I'm not sure she has much artistic talent but you never know.

One of Kinsey's year round hobbies is reading. She reads three or four books a month. A couple of months ago she took Amazon's Kindle Unlimited free trial and she loves it. She can read all the books she wants for $9.99 per month. Granted not all books are part of the program but so far there have been plenty of interest to choose from. Kinsey has no doubt she is getting her money's worth.

Kinsey has started her initial research into getting this painting thing going and discovered something very cool. She can get books on acrylic painting free with her Kindle Unlimited. Just one of those books is more than the monthly fee.  Below is an acrylic painting book Kinsey has downloaded to her Kindle. The hard copy edition is twenty bucks!

Acrylic Illuminations-Kindle Unlimited Selection

Here's the link if you want more info on this book or to check out other acrylic painting selections that can be downloaded for free. Amazon Acrylic Painting Books

To be sure the illustrations on a Kindle leave much to be desired but Kinsey likes to read many peoples opinions and ideas and then follow her own road. The Kindle Unlimited program allows her to do just that without breaking the bank. If she decides she really wants to be able to study on the illustrations she can always buy the book.

If you haven't checked out the Kindle Unlimited thing you might want to take a look see. I'll bet there are free books on just about any hobby or special interest you might have.

As for me, I just go with the flow.

Ciao for now,
Molly Montana

©Kinsey Barnard

11 October 2015

Hungry Horse Reservoir

This weekend we decided to take a drive over to Hungry Horse to check out the fall colors. There is the town of Hungry Horse, Hungry Horse Dam and Hungry Horse Reservoir. Hungry Horse is a local favorite for hiking, fishing and camping. Hungry Horse is about fifteen miles from Glacier National Park. If you're visiting from out of state you should check it out, especially if you are here in the Fall. Glacier is beautiful but there are so many other beautiful places with less traffic and Hungry Horse is one of them.

On the way over we crossed the Flathead River and it was looking mighty pretty all dressed up for Fall. If you look closely there is even an intrepid fisherman on the river.

Flathead River

As pretty much everyone knows the West has been plagued by drought conditions and northwestern Montana is no exception. All I can say is I'm mighty glad we are up river. In any event the reservoir was pretty low. Below is a photo taken this weekend and one taken at full pool.

Hungry Horse October 10, 2015

Hungry Horse at full pool. Tiny speck in the middle is the same little island in the photo above.
We traveled down the west side of the reservoir and only went as far as Doris Creek, which isn't very far at all. If you have the time and an adventurous spirit you can drive around the whole reservoir. It'll be over a hundred miles. It's 58 miles to Spotted Bear which is a the far south end of the lake.

We were only out for a walk in the woods in the autumn and had gotten a bit of a late start. So we hiked up 895A which goes along Doris Creek. Along the way we came across a young family cutting firewood. There was something very lovely about the scene. A family together out in the forest, in the beauty of a Fall afternoon, providing for themselves a warm and toasty winter. Also, warming is that the heat will cost them $5.00 for all the wood they can cut.

There's not a lot more to tell other than we had a really wonderful, colorful afternoon. I'll let Kinsey's photos do the rest of the talking. The point of this exercise was finding color and that we surely did.

Cottonwoods in full Fall color

A walk in the woods at Hungry Horse

Aspen in Fall color
Me stuck in the car whilst Kinsey fools around

Sometimes it's hard to believe we live in such a beautiful part of the world. We are grateful we walk in this world with our eyes open. It's truly a gift. Soon the snow will fly and all this amazing color will only exist in photos and memories. But, the gods willing, we will be able to experience it again next year.

And, would you believe this is the sunset we were treated to at the end of the day? If you are color junkies like we are it just doesn't get any better than this! Oh, how we love Montana!

Sunset over the Flathead Valley
Ciao for now!
Molly Montana

©Kinsey Barnard

02 October 2015

Flathead Reservation

So, we had to cancel our trip to South Dakota and it took twelve days to get Clementine road ready. We just couldn't let the Fall pass without some kind of adventure. We decided to make the Flathead Reservation and the Mission Valley our destination. We are very glad we did!

The Flathead Indian Reservation is home to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribes. The tribes are a combination of the Salish, the Pend d'Oreille and the Kootenai. Of the approximately 7,753 enrolled tribal members, about 5,000 live on or near the reservation. It covers over one million acres.

The Flathead Reservation is somewhat unusual, least wise in our experience, in that more white people live on the reservation than Native Americans. If you are interested in how this came to be check out this check out this article in the Missoulian.

Highway 93 runs through the reservation, down to 90 and Missoula and is really the only way to get anywhere if you hail from our part northwest Montana. Kinsey has been traveling down that stretch of road for 15 years and really never thought of the area as anything but a place to drive through. We found out on this adventure we were very wrong about that.

Much of the reservation is in the Mission Valley. The Mission Mountain Range is one of our favorites. You will also find the National Bison Range and Ninepipes Wild life Refuge. If you are a nature and wildlife lover you will love them both.

Mission Mountain Range as viewed from Ninepipes

We also visited the towns of Polson, Ronan and St. Ignacius.

The next few posts I will be going into more detail of each of the places we visited.

Ciao for now,
Molly Montana

©Kinsey Barnard