July Summer Adventures

Saturday, August 13, 2022


Oh the lazy hazy days of summer... they run together warm and humid, oozing delightful memories of outdoor delights, cook-outs, watermelon feasts, and then comes the August moon sunset rising... and as I took this photo, a cool breeze nipped the air, reminding us that the next full moon will no doubt bring a frost with it... so  I am determined to enjoy the spice out of every moment available left in summer.  Join me as I share some of our exciting summer adventures with you... 

This was my garden on July 4th.  Still in the "baby growth" stage, there was a lot of progress being made, but much more to come.  Later in this post, I will share with you an updated view of my garden. 

Our son and his bride went to Yellowstone for their honeymoon. 
They sent us this picture of the Tetons. 

They had a wonderful time together, despite part of the park being closed for flooding.
It did reopen while they were still there. 

My husband and I, off on an adventure of our own - we kayaked up to the Upper Priest Lake.  It was a beautiful 4-hour excursion where we got to enjoy so much beauty.

A picture of us as we had stopped at one of the many beach areas to explore. 

It was a beautiful day to kayak, and enjoy the beachside view. 

The joy of the open waters in a kayak! 

Yours truly... 

There was an incredible visitation of the migrating Monarch butterflies
 on the sandy beaches. 

They have the most incredible colors, and I just love their gentle fluttering beauty.  

This was a new one for me! Just about as far north as you can go in Idaho, on Upper Priest Lake, this water snake swam by my kayak! I had no idea we had water snakes up here. Thank goodness.... it was in a hurry to get away from me, and the picture is blurry as I was trying to get away from it too, while snapping the picture! 

I did some research and found that this snake is a 
Terrestrial gartersnake which are often found near water where they feed on small fish and tadpoles. They are also found in drier habitats. They are greenish brown with small black patches and a pale yellow stripe down their spine.

This is an osprey that flew overhead searching for its next meal. 

On July 4th, we watched the fireworks from a friend's deck overlooking the river. 

Our little town puts on a great show, but the neighbors all up and down the river, also do fireworks, so it is a great show to see!

Always wonderful to celebrate this great nation and enjoy the fireworks! 

Another weekend in July, Dan and I went camping.  Dan had a friend who knew some of the back logging roads, and he took us out on a ride.  We rode down to this abandoned dam.  This project was abandoned back in the 50s for a variety of reasons and some of the infrastructure still remains. 

 We climbed down to the dam area, around the rocks, and in fact through the dam where the boiler room would have been. A creative soul turned the would-be boilers into a train engine! 

Another view of the "train".

I'll not lie... this hike stretched us both! We crawled through the pipes that would have held the water coming through the dam so we could get down to the boiler room.  

Dan's friend grew up in this area, and had climbed here many times, and was very entertaining as he regaled us with many stories of the local area.  

We would never have found this place on our own, and were so grateful he showed us around. It truly is a hidden gem, and the locals apparently want to keep it that way. There are no signs, no markers, and it is out in the middle of nowhere.  

Another view of the dam with the waterfall in the distance. 

A closer look at the waterfall. 

Our last view of this beautiful place as we were climbing back up the hillside. 

We camped on the Moyie River. 

Such a beautiful river! Because of all the rocks, and the rushing water, I really think it should be called the Singing River, or maybe Musical Rock River... or something along those lines! It is just an incredibly beautiful river to visit. 

Camping breakfasts are the best! 

In my morning devotions, this passage in Isaiah spoke to my heart. 

We found a few huckleberries to bring home with us.
Most of them weren't quite ready. 

We enjoyed sitting by the river bank, just watching and listening to the sounds of the river. Glorious! 

Back home... the garden is growing by leaps and bounds! 

I will have a bumper crop of tomatillas this year! 

We enjoyed a bumper crop of strawberries this year!  They were very late, we didn't start picking until July, when normally we pick them in June. 

Lots of strawberry jam for the pantry! 

My garden just last night as the sun was setting.
It has made a lot of progress in one month! 

Many of my readers may remember a couple of years ago, where I shared about the fire that burned down my grandparent's home.  My grandmother was home alone, is blind, and walked through the fire and escaped the fire, completely untouched, while the home burned down to the ground in minutes. You can read more about that in this post here.  It is an incredible story, that is still being written.  


We continue to praise the Lord for His goodness in spite of such an awful event, that we still have our grandmother here with us today. The blessings of the Lord are rich, in time of sorrow, in time of trouble, in the good times, and in the bad, He is faithful.  Our story continues to be written, and while we may walk in troublesome times today, He has greater plans for tomorrow that we can't see yet.

I made this most recent video using some of the pictures from our July adventures.  I hope you will enjoy the video, and be blessed knowing that we can put our trust in Jesus, He will take care of us, even when life brings difficult situations, as we walk with Him, He is with us.  My grandmother is a testimony to this :) 


  1. I love this…fantastic

  2. Your grandmother's story is truly inspirational. This must be her new home...so cute and just her size.

    All those beautiful photos prove to me once again that you are living in God's Country. Glad that you and your hubby were able to have a number of July adventures. (Gosh, your son looks so much like his dad.)

    May your August be every bit as wonderful.

  3. Wow! Beautiful scenery. I love seeing those racing rivers.You certainly have been on some fun adventures.

  4. As usual, your photos are stunning! Your camping trip looks wonderful and I enjoyed that outing to the abandoned dam.
    My sister and family were also at Yellowstone and actually left for home the day before the flooding started. I'm glad your son and DIL got to enjoy it after the flooding.
    I do remember your grandmothers story and am happy to hear that she is still enjoying the house.

  5. All the photos are so beautiful and what a wonderful area to camp in! Your garden is awesome and you certainly do have an abundance of delicious fruit and veggies!

  6. You are truly blessed to enjoy all that beauty of your MountainTopSpice, Marilyn. I’m always in awe and thankful that I can enjoy it through your lens. My late beloved and I visited the Grand Tetons and. Yellowstone. Your grandma’s story is an amazing one. Loved your video!

  7. Such a beautiful post, my friend. Thank you for the many smiles.

  8. Hello! Such a beautiful post!!! Your photos are always so clear and showcase God's gift of beauty. Congrats to your son and his new bride. They look so happy!! And I smiled at the huckleberries. My dad always told us stories about picking them in metal buckets when he was young. Have a cozy Sunday, my friend.

  9. A wonderful post.
    Always a joy to see your beautiful photographs.

    Take care, my good wishes.

    All the best Jan

  10. Beautiful photos Marilyn. Love your garden! Amazing story about your grandmother. Blessings my friend.

  11. Oh Marilyn... what wonderful places you've been this summer so far!!!! I loved your photos of the rivers and forests and mountains.. and you guys kayaking and enjoying the water. I'm so jealous!!! My son and his fiance and her son just were up in northern Idaho at Priest Lake and did do some kayaking. He said it was so awesome. He loves it up there! Your first photo of the garden and the purple sky is priceless... well all of your photos are priceless! What kind of camera do you use? Your photos are so clear and gorgoues... even the distant ones. I loved seeing your grandmother's new home. Such wonderful blessings for her to have the new home. And oh.. your garden's bounty is awesome.... that strawberry jam looks so good. My strawberries are still green, but a few are reddening up. Thank you for sharing your Heavenly life! xoxoxo Marilyn

  12. Aw, it was good to get an update on your little, sweet grandmother! And I just love her blue house! So pretty and homey looking. You have surely had an adventurous summer season, and your garden is just beautiful! May the Lord's continual blessings be upon you and your family!

  13. Hello,
    Thank you for the update regarding your grandmother. I always enjoy your posts and your photos. Happy August Adventures,

  14. what a wonderful glimpse into your summer. I love kayaking and haven't been able to go YET this summer but next week when we are in the mountains, I will finally have the time to go.
    wow...that dam is something!! Exploring it would NEVER be allowed in the "nanny state' of New York!! hahahha.....glad you could poke around cause it looks fun!
    I love your garden pics and that's amazing about your grandmother.
    congrats to your son!!

  15. MariIyn: I finally accomplished putting your face to this blog! Your garden is really wonderful and such a source of food. Canning is hard work but so rewarding and comforting! I enjoyed seeing everything!

  16. Hi Marylin !
    Summer is almost over and I am just now on my computer. That's a good thing! But not good for connecting with friends.
    Your camping adventures are so captivating! Along with all your pictures, I'm absorbed with all of them.
    Also, I appreciate looking at your garden. It's huge! I realized this year how busy you can get with even a small garden.There is so much to learn!


Your comments are blessings to me, and I appreciate each and every one, they are precious to me! I appreciate you taking the time to comment on my blog... this is what makes blogging worthwhile! Have a blessed day!


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