Friday, July 30, 2010

Fashion Friday

With all the pictures around the NoDak trip this week, I'm going to use fashion Friday to talk about what I packed. When traveling by motorcycle, there are a couple things to consider.

1. We have 2 saddlebags and a pack for the back. The pack is to fill with our jackets/leather vests when we inevitably take them off (but you don't dare travel without them, because you WILL need them!). It also holds our bag of toiletries (which is a packing conundrum in and of itself!), the netbook, and we each have a side pocket. I use mine for wallet and extra sunglasses. If I don't have my camera around my neck, which is rare, it goes in there too.

2. like shoes? Forget about it, there is no room. I wear boots that I can pull off with a skirt if I need to. I pack the smallest, most functional pair possible for my second pair: Tevas. They are flat and take minimal room. They have to work for exploring, going to a river (this time, we spend time in 3 of them), and jogging (I ran 7 of the 11 days). The bonus on this trip is for the days in NoDak, I can borrow my mom's shoes if I want to rock a heel or something. ( I did borrow some black wedges when I was there.)

3. We had the advantage of being able to do laundry since we were spending the few days at my folks'.

4. I want to look cute. I only see my family once a year and I know that I'm also going to take a lot of pictures. Plus, I like it when JJ tells me I look nice, and I want to look nice when I'm on vacation with him.

Here's how it worked:

I wore one pair of jeans and took one with. In theory, I could survive with one pair. But, if we get stuck in rain, I need that other pair. Also, when you wear a pair of jeans on the bike, you kind of want to change them after the day is over. I had riding jeans and going out jeans and they did not overlap.

I took 8 tanks tops. I did better than last year, but still could have lived with 2 less. The only problem is that you don't know what to cut out ahead of time because you don't know what mood you'll be in once you get into your trip. I did not wear what I expected to. The tank top range has to be from river wear to dinner wear.

I opt for skirts instead of shorts, I think they are cuter. I took a jean skirt and a skirt I made out of one of JJ's t-shirts.

Workout wear: I know myself well enough to know they I will have to work out on the trip. I took one pair of shorts, one tank style sport bra top, and my lightest pair of workout pants (more to combat mosquitoes than cold). These would also have to double as pajama pants if I needed them to.

2 swimsuit tops, one swimsuit bottom. The swimsuit tops would also double as a bra if needed. I didn't pack a real one.

essentials: 3 pairs socks, 4 pairs undies.

Since my look on the bike is basic black and jeans, I packed 4 different colored bandannas to have some color flair and not look exactly the same in every picture. On a similar note, I packed one make-up case of jewelery. I pick pieces I know that I'll wear and it's a good way to make a basic shirt different from two nights earlier. I also pack minimal makeup: eye shadow, mascara and lipstick.

As much as you hate to pack big things, you need a few, so you have to keep them as small as possible. I packed one thermal and one hoodie. I was glad to have both. I also had to have a pair of leggings to wear under jeans if it got cold. They were unused on this trip but a life-saver last year.

Last but not least, the leathers. I have a vest and gloves and a jacket.

If this was any other trip, I'd have left home with about three times this much stuff. Plus a shoe bag :)

Thursday, July 29, 2010


I woke up at 5 am on Saturday morning after arriving in Fairview and couldn't sleep. I decided to take advantage of my energy and go be a part of one of the most amazing things from home.. sunrise (sunset is also spectacular)... I put on jogging clothes, grabbed my camera and headed down the road.
There were some birds that kept pace with me by flying and landing on the telephone wires ahead of me, only to take flight to join me again every couple hundred feet. I got a couple harmless raindrops, and heard the low roll of far off thunder over the crunch of the gravel under my feet.
sugar beets on one side and wheat on the other....
The air was filled with the smell of the distant storm, the remnant of night, the beginning of day, and the life growing all around.
you'll want to watch this with sound :)

Obligatory motorcycle video

So last year, I did these fun videos of us riding and people liked them. I took some this year too, but as I was going through the videos on my camera, I found something much better to share with y'all....

wow, indeed.

and to be fair, one from the road:

NoDak and Back: Part 3

We were ready to head out to the 3rd part of our vacation, Part Adventure!, on Wednesday, but forces beyond our control delayed us by a half hour...
We finally gave up and drove a mile down the road to go behind it, it was parked there for as long as we could see it :)
We had a beautiful drive through Montana....
As we got closer and closer to Livingston, we noticed a wee little storm to our left....
We pulled into Livingston and found ourselves a hotel where we could put the bike under cover just as the rain started to fall... This meant we had to walk to the bar... We took cover under this nifty outside shed-style bar waiting for some of the rain to pass before we ventured to our destination bar. (it doesn't look very rainy, you say?)
It was...
On our fist night by ourselves in quite a while, we sat in the bar in Livingston and had some beers and a nice dinner and a bottle of wine and caught up and laughed and kissed and planned our next day and had a generally delightful time in this quaint little town. The next morning, we grabbed some coffee (and a scrumptious scone) and hit the road towards Idaho.
We took the Lolo pass last year and didn't hesitate to do so again. We were worried that we might be doing a little storm dodging, and made a bet as to whether we'd get rained on or not. I won, and we stayed dry :)
It even got nice and super warm as we hit our destination in Orofino, ID. We scored a killer hotel on the river and took full advantage of it. I even washed my hair for the second time on the trip (in the hotel, not the river) while JJ took a dip in the pool. Refreshed, we got dressed and went to the bar for dinner on the river. Afterward, a trip down the riverbank to do some exploring...
John got more than he bargained for....
We had so much fun... Orofino, you will see us again.The next morning, we were off for a ride down the middle of Idaho, to see some sights we've never seen. Right off the bat, road construction....
Then we got going and had a day of spectacular views. and smells. The one thing you don't realize if you don't travel by bike is that there are amazing things to smell in beautiful places (and sometimes, some dead things too)
I can't even begin to explain the view from up here but the pictures don't do it justice.

After a long day, we landed in our favorite home away from home, Pendleton. We were tired, but had a nice dinner and hit the hay. We had one more day before we had to get home so we spent it bopping around Pendleton to our favorite haunts. Of course, that means a trip to the waterpark!
We love the waterpark.
After many trips down the slides, some swimming and diving and laying in the sun, we decided to head back for one more night out.

Finally on Sunday, we had to make that final stretch to home. We hopped over to Washington to take the long way and had another joyous and gorgeous day on the bike. This trip could not have been nicer and we came home refreshed and happy. ...and already planning our next journey :)

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

NoDak and Back: Part 2

We landed in Faiview on Friday afternoon and stopped to have a beer at the Waterhole before heading to the farm. There's nothing quite like the feeling of driving into town and seeing the Oldtimer's banner (likely the same one they've used since I was a kid) and pulling into the bar. Then we hit the gravel road out to the farm. We got settled in our room for the weekend (John's favorite sanctuary: The Bougainvillea Room, complete with a giant bed, AC, and satellite tv), had a couple beers and then headed back to town with some of the family to enjoy the Friday night reunion crowd at the bar. I didn't realize until we got home afterward that not only had I not looked at the mirror since my arrival and was wearing three day jeans, I didn't put on makeup and had simply finger brushed my hair out of it's braid. Nothing like looking your best in front of folks who haven't seen you in a million years :) We made it home early enough to get a reasonable night's sleep before a big next day.

Parade Day! We had breakfast and then gathered the horses to primp them for exciting day. I made my horse, Bud, some fancy ribbon and feather clips for his hair. He was very handsome. Mom and I rode and Dad took his Belgian team pulling the wagon, from which John and my brothers (and cousin Cheryl and SIL Kim and nephews Brock and Jake) threw candy. Here we are, ready to go.
Part of the parade tradition for us is to ride to town, go through the parade, and then ride home. Here's where I had to make a pit stop on the way....
Bud before the parade, with a little bit of stage fright, nervously biting my foot to make sure I'm still there.
I must have seen 100 cameras during the parade, but didn't manage to get a picture of us in it :) Afterwards, we rode home and everyone gathered in the tack room to chat and have a beer. Here's the men's corner....
Checking to see if Bud had a good time before I take his saddle off...
Horse treats....
Hugs for Uncle John...
We rested up for a few hours and then cleaned up a little (muchly needed by that time) and went to town to join the festivities.
Open container in the middle of main street, leaning on a cop car with the cops in the background? home sweet home.
We were smart enough to come home before we rendered ourselves useless the next day, good for us! We are getting smart.... or old... We had a fun family night on Monday and gathered everyone at my folks' place. As usual, the horses are interested in what we're doing...Less so after the fireworks start....

Baby Jake likes Uncle John.. and his drink...
On our last day, we went down to the river with Casey and Kim and had a great time.
As with all good boating trips, we ended up back at the bar :)
The time at home always goes fast, but I can assure you that we enjoy every single second that we are there. Especially this time, as my dad had sprayed for bugs and we had absolutely perfect weather. It couldn't have been better...

Monday, July 26, 2010

NoDak and Back - Part 1

Hi guys! We are back after 11 blissful days on the road. We left at noon a couple Wednesdays ago and headed towards Spokane for our first night. We scored the coolest room downtown (and a killer deal:)) and went out for beers and dinner and strolled through a little of downtown and then hit the hay in our swanky hotel room. In the morning, we got an early start with a quick jog around the city....
John loves to run....
After feeling like our giant success in Spokane was just a hint of the awesomeness to come, we went out to cross Idaho and begin the conquering of Montana, mile by mile.
We made a quick stop in Livingston to have a beer and say hi to a friend of a friend and then spent the night close by in Big Timber.
We had gorgeous weather the whole time and enjoyed every mile.
By the time we were ready to turn left at Glendive and make the final hour towards home, we started to look forward to everything the weekend was going to bring yet still relished those last few miles with the bike.
and every stop along the way :)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

In case you were wondering....

Our destination:
Specifically, here:
If you want to give yourself a little Googlemap tour around the valley, click here.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Friday night sailing date!

We got invited by our old and dear friends, Justin and Kerstin, to join them for sailing and dinner (literally) on the water Friday night after work. You may recall that I went with Justin last fall when he was a little newer to the sport, but this was JJ's first time. The weather was super hot , which made for a very enjoyable night on the river.
We sailed down under the bridge and on the way back barbecued fish and Kerstin made fish tacos. Here JJ is steering the boat, manning the bbq (hooked to the boat behind him) and drinking his drink. a natural born sailor.
It's fun to have friends that we've known for so long and who we've shared so many different experiences with. We've seen each other through different phases and hobbies and goals and probably share some secrets :) While we ebb and flow from each others' lives, when we get together there' a wonderful, comfortable, fun friendship that we'll probably have for the rest of our lives.

sailor's delight indeed.