When we first moved to our home in Montana it was Fall, just a month later than where we’re at now. The nights become deliciously cold, perfect for sleeping, while the days are warm enough to make you question why you’re splitting wood. Never question why you’re splitting wood, one should always be splitting wood, when winter comes you will constantly question whether or not you have enough wood. If you’ve read any of the Virgin River series with Jack and his morning wood splitting addiction, you begin to get the idea about just how much wood you’ll need. More. Always more.

The homestead is a bit brown this year, it’s been dry and hotter than usual, less rain since Spring than last year even though there’s currently no huge fire like last year. So thankful and grateful and relieved there’s no huge fire like last year. Although there’s always a fire…in fact, there are currently multiple fires all within an hours drive of us. But that feels like forever when there are mountains in the way, rivers. It’s not far enough though, not really.

The windows of this house are too small. You wouldn’t think so from the outside, or from spending an hour or so inside. There are lots of windows, plenty of light, a skylight in the kitchen even. The house is nice and bright and feels open when you’re passing through. Spend a year here though and you begin to notice the windows are narrow and a bit short from the ceiling, lopping off your view. Nothing wrong with their length to the floor, however, they nearly touch the carpet, but please, don’t look at the carpet, enjoy the view out the windows.

In the winter the blinds are up until evening, when we lower them to trap in the warmth and keep out the cold. In the summer it’s the opposite, blinds down all day in a desperate attempt to keep the heat out and trap the cool in. I prefer when the blinds are up and also when the windows are open. This only happens in Spring and bits of Fall. Spring and Fall are my new favorite seasons. Windows dictate much of my life.

I dated a man briefly, very briefly, more than once to my distinct frustration with myself, who had the blinds closed all the time. 24/7. The blinds were always down. The blinds had to be down because sunlight physically hurt his eyes. I can understand that mentally and of course I empathized, who wants to be in pain when something as simply as lowering a blind could solve your problem. It turns out I can’t live in the dark. I require sunlight. I require a view. I look out the windows and see trees. Beautiful tall green trees. So many trees. I didn’t realize I required those too.

When we moved to Montana I told my husband, “I want to look out my window and from the safety of my home see a bear.” You can laugh at my specificity but I find that when putting things out to the Universe it’s best to be very specific…you never know what the Universe will provide as it has a wonderful sense of humor. At any rate, in less than a year I got my wish. Looking out my bedroom window, just before my children got into their bath, I saw a bear. A large black bear. The photo on this post is said bear.

I never expected I’d live in Montana. Never. Even five years ago, if I’d been told “you’ll live in Montana one day,” I’d have laughed. I’d likely have said something like, “I wish!” and I’d have laughed and laughed.

Sometimes you’ve got to change your view. Sometimes you’ve got to raise your blinds, even if it hurts. Sometimes you don’t know what you need until you have it, or until you don’t. I will always need more wood, less fire, blinds on my windows to raise and lower, a view that stops my heart and then sends it racing, windows.

This post was written as a thirty minute writing exercise, no editing, no stopping and was inspired from a writing prompt in Bryan Collins’ “Yes, You Can Write!” book available here.

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