Friday, December 9, 2011

Well, it's been a great sweet little cottage on Townline Lake is the Heaven on Earth that I pictured it would be.  I just love it here.  The summer included a 2 week trip for flyfishing the Madison River in Ennis, MT.  This was on my Bucket List since May of 2006.  What an amazing dream come true.  Friend George and I caught Rainbow and Brown Trout, as well as Whitefish!  It was Heaven on Earth.  I loved every exciting minute of it, including the interaction with our fabulous guide, Charlie Graham.  With his guidance and artful steering on the rapid rocky Madison river, we were able to catch more fish than I could count.  George got the thrill of his life as he brought in his share of these beauties. This trip was absolutely unforgettable for its beauty and its firsts.  Before we went fishing, we both ordered our 2012 Harley Davidson Trikes, saw a great Griz Football game (they are now playing for the championship), and explored other beautiful MT towns.

The next trip out to MT had me signing the papers for my Trike, and then George and I headed out in his big Fleetwood RV to warmer winter climates in Gold Canyon for the winter.   On the roadtrip to AZ, on all small highways, we made the most fabulous stopover for 3 days in Bryce Canyon, and I got to photograph and hike this natural wonder of the U.S.  I call it God's Playground, since it looks like he sat in a big wet red clay valley, and squirted up formations (known as HooDoo's) in the most amazing shapes I've ever seen!  On the way back to Montana in April, we also got to see Capitol Reef National Park (not to be missed) as well as Grand Escalante Staircase National Monument, Vermillion Cliffs, Canyonlands, Arches National Park, Moab, and other beautiful sights.  Wow!!!  Now I can hardly wait to see all the other National Parks that I haven't seen yet, while getting off the beaten path onto all the most beautiful roads in the U.S.  It's a GREAT year of life!

 It is now 13 degrees out, here in Lakeview, MI, and snow is predicted for tonight and for the next few days, as it adds to the smattering of it already on the ground.  But I'm told we will have a heatwave of 36 degrees by Sunday.

As time and the internet connections allow, I'll post pictures of my adventures, write notes on travels, and document this year on the road.  Next summer I'll ride from MI out to Sturgis, SD, Montana, Wyoming, and wherever else to road takes me!  I can hardly wait.

One other trip that gets wedged into my winter is my very first Mardi Gras celebration in New Orleans for a couple of weeks, followed by a stay on Anna Maria Island in FL while I catch up with family and friends in that area!

Life Is Good!  Lets keep it that way!

Dream BIG, my friends...what I've learned for sure is that there is absolutely no difference between creating "buttons or castles"...there is certain size of things that we are allowed to dream of, and we don't have a limit on what we may expect from the Infinite Spirit that lives through each one of us!  So pull out ALL THE STOPS, and dream BIG!  And always say "this...or something better"...

You have no idea what this will do for your life!

Love Everybody!

Kathryn O'Gould
Sunset at my cottage-Lakeview, MI

Heaven on Earth Cottage


Dragonfly Cottage
Backyard on the Lake

Thursday, June 30, 2011


Crazy about Montana. Landed in Missoula after an easy drive out of rainy Seattle. Blue skies broke open in Ellensburg and stayed in place every single day. I get why they call it Big Sky... It's gorgeous there!

Took off for a few days in Glacier National Park and fell in love with the breathtaking views of glaciers, mountains, trails, and wildlife. Wow! One morning, around 9 am I look out the window of my motel room in the park in time to see a momma black bear with her cub about 4 feet from my door, just strolling through to the woods right beside my room. I stuck my Nikon D90 out the cracked open door and got a couple of amazing shots. The cub stood on it's hind legs to stare at me, and momma bear cuffed him and moved him along. Great luck to be so close and have it turn out well!

"Going-To-The-Sun Road" was only partially open from both sides of the Park, which meant turning around about 17 miles into the drive at the West entrance and back tracking out and then entering again from Two Medicine for another short drive and then entering from the East entrance for another 15 miles that were open before coming to the closed signs due to about 50' of uncleared snow! Many Glacier drive was open, and what a beautiful lodge there! Very
impressive lodges at Lake McDonald, St. Mary's and Glacier Park Lodge! Perhaps the snow will be cleared out by the end of July...a very wet winter sure leaves this park buried

Fell head over heels in love with Ennis! Actually think I could live there! It's a perfectly complete year 'round town filled with sweet bars, restaurants and great possibilities of easily meeting the locals! Met one cowboy who even went out to his truck to bring his 00 flyfishing rod into the bar to show it to me! He could bend that rod into a knot and it
didn't break!

Also really liked Helena and enjoyed a tour of the Capitol Building there as well as getting to meet new friends for dinner and drinks! One friend, George, was born and raised there and it was fun to find his old house, hear about life back in the day!

After a great flight to Chicago today (getting bumped up to First Class) I'm ready for sleep and then the Cubs vs Sox baseball game at Wrigley Field on July 1st! I have the best friends in the world! Thank you Carol and Dave for this next leg of my trip and for all the fun about to happen!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Well, the moving day has arrived.  My few treasures are being loaded on a moving truck in about an hour, and I'm unplugging this computer for packing!  My how time flies.  MY how dreams do come true!

By tonight, I'll arrive in Kalispell and by tomorrow, I'll finally get to see Glacier National Park for the first time!  I hear that driving the "Going-To-The-Sun Road" is stunning.  Just the name has me excited!

Meanwhile, let me say that the Inside Passage Cruise through Alaska's Glacier Bay, Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan and even a stop in Victoria, BC.  My travel mates (Susan, Laurie, Lily, Sam and Celina) were the best in the world!  We ate luscious meals together aboard Ms Oosterdam and even won travel mugs and champagne because we knew all the fun trivia facts on the ship!  We rocked that ship!  Saleem, wherever you are with your 5 don't need another one so "no, I will not marry you at midnight"!  LOL!

Blessings on ALL of our journeys through this life, yours AND mine.


Friday, June 10, 2011

A True Journey, No Matter How Long It Takes, Has No End

Let the travels begin...again!  Magic has happened on my behalf...I call it My Bucket List.  I created my first Bucket List in 1980, which might explain my world travel and my 35 moves around this country. The latest bucket list was written down in May of 2006.  It is a simple yellow lined piece of paper, with about 69 items on it, many of which are now crossed off.  Number 6 was "Buy a Cabin on the Water for CASH".  May 23, 2011, I did exactly that!  It is located in Lakeview, MI on Townline Lake, right across the street from my sister, Julie's, cottage.  I've stared at this little cottage on the water for 12 years, wishing it was mine.  It comes to me completely furnished and even has a dock!  When my sister called to tell me that the owner had dropped the price by $35,000, I jumped on it and purchased it in a matter of days.  This has been a lifelong dream of mine since I was 16.  BOTH of my sisters attended the closing with me, and sister Mischelle even helped me begin gardening about an hour after my deal closed!  In my absence until I get there, I have tomatoes, peppers, roses, sweet alysum, and zinnias growing!  We had a slumber party for two days together, and planned our summer and all the things we will do!  I have the best family in the whole wide world, and I've missed them terribly during the 40 years that I've lived elsewhere.  This next chapter of my life will help me write the last chapters in my book, "My Life In Boxes", which spans my 35 moves since I turned 17.

I begin this next leg of my journey by heading out on an Alaskan Inside Passage Cruise, 1 day after my 58th birthday.  Seeing the Inside Passage has also been on my Bucket List as Number 53 since May of 2006.  I don't care which order things appear for me.  I'm just grateful that they appear!

Question:  Does the fact that I have a Bucket List bring my most treasured and hoped for events directly to me?

Due to the generous friendship I have with Susan Silver, she is treating me and a few others to this cruise from June 12-19, and I can hardly wait to experience it.  My life is truly blessed.  My Bucket List truly works.

After returning from this cruise, I will pack up the moving truck and head to my new little "Dragonfly Cottage" on Townline Lake to enjoy a long Summer and part of the Fall with my MI family!  My stops along the way will include exploring Glacier Park, Missoula, Montana; and I can't miss seeing The Million Dollar Cowboy Bar and drink an Indian Drink while sitting on a saddle at the bar there in Jackson Hole, WY.  I'll write more about my travels from the road.  When Fall hits, I'm off to Maine to eat lobster, working my way down the Eastern Seaboard to Naples, FL, where my dear friend, Roberta Baird, will house me and where I will enjoy the winter.  After this, my plan is to attend Mardi Gras with another friend, and be in New Orleans to celebrate Donna Swanson's 60th birthday there!  After that, its off to San Antonio and Austin, Texas, and a few other places I've always wanted to see.  Then on to CA, where I will visit friends and enjoy some time there.  Finally, I'll head back up to Seattle and then ask myself whether or not this Female Nomad will turn this 1 year sabbatical into a lifetime of years that resemble this one.

Let me just say "Happy Trails To You, Until We Meet Again"

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sunshine and Happiness

So, I've actually begun my one year sabbatical, having sold my Seattle house after 10 months of waiting... turns out I needed to stay put to welcome my first grandchild, Lisette, who arrived Feb. 4, 2011. What a beautiful, peaceful, wonderful addition to my life and to my daughter and son-in-law's life! I'm glad that Universal timing made sure to keep me in my place long enough to get to know this sweet angel and spend time smooching her up!

Now it is March, gray and rainy here in Seattle, and I'm free to I'll begin with a trip to FL to help my friend, Roberta, say goodbye to her husband and my dear friend, Bob Cesped. We will treasure hunt for the important items that represent their life together, and create a memorial service to remember this dear funny wonderful man in Naples, FL. Then I'll go into a 2nd part of my sunny trip to spend time with my MI sisters, Mischelle and Julie, and have a fun and fabulous visit with my parents in Venice and visit other Sarasota area friends. I suspect that soaking up the sunshine that FL offers, walking the area beaches, eating great seafood and relaxing and laughing with those I love will be the great entrance into my one year sabbatical, and my attempt to live in 4 places that I love dearly: FL, MI, CA, and WA! Can it be done? Yes it can... and I'll be writing all about it!