Welcome Summer 2015!



Summertime…when the livin’ is easy…

once you get to the top.

Which I did in Sun Valley, Idaho a couple of times last week, thank you very much.

It was so great to be back again.




Idaho received a ton of rain this Spring and wow, did it show.




The river was high, fast and noisy, the mountains emerald green as far as the eye could travel.




My first hike was with my husband, my second with our younger son.  They both like to forge ahead, but my husband usually stays within hearing distance.  I trot merrily along at my own pace because that’s how I roll.  As I mentioned in a previous hiking post, I’ve developed certain diversional tactics over the years, such as stopping to smell wild flowers that, I like to believe, throw my fellow hikers (God bless them) off the fact that I’m moving at a snail’s pace.




Unfortunately, I was to discover that July and August’s little tricks don’t work so well in June, when the entire damn trail is literally covered in flowers.









I was forced to switch up my game and search for more obscure roadblocks.




such as this inside out toadstool.




and this little known but deadly yellow, blue & blood-black Mothicus Catchmybreathicus butterfly.




Screen Shot 2015-06-14 at 8.04.30 PM


Having exhausted all natural diversions, extolling the architectural significance of this teepee in the woods was good for another minute or two of respite. Until the mosquitoes started to catch on.  As I said, there’d been a lot of rain.





But oh, the view from the top was crazy good.  Just look at that.




My husband slowed down and offered to take a photo of me (a rare occurrence) at one point but I declined.

Actually, his real life words were “That’s quite the outfit you cobbled together. Do you want me to capture it for you to ping?”

Seriously?? He thinks that’s ‘blog speak’

I didn’t tell him there was a mosquito on his arm.





I thought I was rocking a bit of a boho vibe but in retrospect I guess my look was more ‘Hank Fonda in Golden Pond goes to Coachella’

The damn hat was the deal breaker.




There were mushrooms everywhere, including wild morels, though we are so not even close to being 1) knowledgable or 2) daring enough to eat any fungus (fungi?) we find growing outside of Atkinson’s grocery store.





We did buy some morels though. I fried them in leftover Applewood smoked bacon fat with fresh garlic and shallots and served them on Idaho baked potatoes smothered in butter, sour cream and spring onions.

They tasted exactly like escargot on a big bed of heaven.  I’m thinking about them still.

As you can tell.




Fear not. A good healthy salad cancelled out the naughtiness.




And as it stayed light until after 10pm, there was still plenty of time after dinner to work off calories by reading and watching old movies.


Screen Shot 2015-06-22 at 10.21.10 PM


and enjoy my freshly picked flowers.




BTW-for those of us who live in Southern California, this is a field of pure gold 🙂


Wishing everyone a happy, healthy, beautiful summer filled with as much or as little adventure as you desire.

I will be checking in to chat and hear what you are up to!

Happy Trails!!

xoxo S.P.


You might also like;   Anatomy of a Hike




  1. Most enjoyable! Your out fit actually looked quite fetching. Aren’t husband’s cute? Is it ,perhaps, a testosterone thingy that they must forage ahead?
    Looking forward to your next “Ping”!

  2. Dear Slim,

    So great to hear from you. I know you have a very full life, but, I do miss you when you are MIA. Idaho…state of my birth. The peace, the beauty…you captured it all in your beautiful, funny, Slim-ish way.

  3. YOU ARE MY HERO!!! I SO NEEDED a laugh this morning as we go see a young gal (w/a 4 year old) preparing for hospice. Thank you, Slim. franki

  4. Such a wonderful post…made me feel more relaxed just reading and seeing the beautiful pictures, so tranquil. You made me laugh imagining the “photo op” scene between you and your husband (sounds familiar) and love his blog jargon, as only a husband would speak it:)
    Hope your summer is off to a wonderful and relaxing start…it goes by fast.

  5. Your photos are inspirational! Sun Valley is such a beautiful place and you certainly captured some of its glory. Thanks for sharing with all of us!
    PS – My hiking “agendas” sound very similar to yours! After all, one needs to remember to “stop and smell the roses” (pines needles, sage brush, mountain air….) on a hike!

  6. I miss your blogs Slim! They are so beautiful, fun and filled with interesting information. Thanks for your time to produce them

  7. I hope you were joking about that butterfly, Slim. That was a Morning Cloak butterfly, and quite harmless. I am sure your husband was only joking with you (as you probably already know.)

  8. Beautiful! This reminds me of my visit to the Rose Haven Garden here in Temecula. Every year they celebrate the Summer Solstice and let residents walk through the gardens to “stop and smell the roses” on the longest day of the year. I saw my very first lavender patch!

  9. Slim I can see why you love to visit Sun Valley!! It is so lush and green! My nephew is an expert on which mushrooms are edible, I would have no idea though!

    The Arts by Karena

  10. Hey Slim,
    Didn’t you mention a couple years back in a post that one should not
    eat mushrooms raw? Do I spot some chopped raw white mushrooms in your salad?
    I stopped eating them after you posted that because I believe everything you say!

    Your cute outfit would definitely help search and rescue find you if you
    ever became lost, that’s fur shure!

    • Yes Susan, I absolutely did! I occasionally fall off the ‘raw mushroom wagon’ as it were. I could do a lot worse than that though, right? At this point, it’s the least of my eating transgressions. xx

  11. Dear SP! Another lovely post. This is the funny thing. Visually we are probably as far apart as two women could be. I am short and sturdy, live on a small farm in Ohio and have short grey hair. That is where our differences end. I LOVE your sense of humor. I totally “get’ your serious messages. I absolutely adore your life style at home, work and play. Thank you for sending out your your sentiments, it is meaningful and enjoyable to me!

    • What a sweet comment Tina- Thank you! !
      I’ve never been to Ohio (yet) but it’s so nice to hear we’ve connected and share similar sensibilities (if not heights- and the grey hair?? Who knows at this point?!)
      Happy Summer to you!

  12. Slim – thanks for another wonderful post. I can always count on you to brighten my inbox with your lovely photos and humorous tales. The mountains looked so cool and inviting – and made my long for some of that since we are sweltering in 90s humidity in the South. BTW – I’m sure you rocked the outfit and besides, it’s vacay. Time to chillax.
    Hugs from Music City!

  13. OMG: ‘Hank Fonda in Golden Pond goes to Coachella’ So good!! And the ensemble is excellent. I mean, these outfits happen when one is off duty in the (serious) country. Mine tend to look more like rags in shades of moss and dirt, though, so I appreciate all the fun color. Looks like a truly lovely time and for the record, you have made me quite hungry. Enjoy the rest of your summer! xx

  14. Your hiking pace sounds perfect to me! My hubby and son now go on hikes with me as “a little stroll” after they have already done their hike. Hope you are enjoying the green! 🙂

  15. Slim! You might want to consider one of our hats – cloud cover hats. Sold in very few places and indispensable for those who know how light and pack able they are.

  16. Welcome back, slim! I have missed the posts and so happy to see you back. What a great post on Sun Valley. More please!

  17. oh hahaha lol, are you sure that wasn’t your husbands hiking outfit?! 🙂

    happy summer, i am busy moving my daughter to SB, she is so happy! (me too cuz i get to visit my ol’ stomping grounds)

  18. My favorite kind of post from you!! Love your hike and how you see things. The outfit comment! I died. Too funny about the hat! I have one of those and my husband hates it and now with the Hank Fonda vision in my brain… I was thinking more Lauren Hutton. Boy was I off.
    Enjoy your beautiful Sun Valley! Keep smelling the flowers. xo Kim

    • Ya- Sorry to have spoiled the Lauren Hutton vision for you Kim, but I was definitely feeling more Hank than Jane 🙁

  19. Oh my goodness, I’ve missed this blog. So funny- great to hear from you. Looks beautiful in Idaho, at least from here in the sweltering upstate SC- and that baked potato? Oh my…you had me at applewood smoked bacon

  20. Sigh. The scenery and flowers, the delicious food photos and most of all, that cozy, candle-lit den….Sigh, sigh, sigh. I enjoyed it all simply reading along. You “cobbled together” a great post. Thank you. Have an amazing summer, Slim!

  21. Yup, I live in Sun Valley and the spring and current summer have been as gorgeous as stated. The mountain biking at Galena Lodge, cross biking on the Harriman and the trail running at White Clouds have been heaven. Throw in a breakfast or two at Cristina’s, a swim at the YMCA and you have a perfect week. Our garden is in a state of 52 shades of green and the BBQ and Sangria pitcher have been well used. Life in the Wood River Valley pretty much guarantees a perfect summer.

  22. Reminds me a little of your post when you first went “glamping”!! glad to hear you are still keeping your Sun Valley digs as it is often one of the first things sold off when children leave home. I live in Idaho and have really enjoyed this very very warm Spring but in Southern Idaho we have not had much rain. Wonderful photos as always but missing your fantastic photos of your roses……..

    • Thank you Linda
      I miss my roses too!! I’ve planted some new bushes here on our new property, but unfortunately, some of the older, really special roses are no longer available. I’m going to start a vegetable garden again and hope to devote more time to gardening when I’m home.

  23. Genevieve said it all:
    Traveling through your eyes is such a gift!!!”

    Live for your posts. Pure joy.

    Best, Leslie

  24. Beautiful and hilarious. I think you nailed the Hank Fonda look perfectly:)) The scenery is stunning!! Beautiful photo’s. Just spectacular. Don’t tell him ping isn’t blog speak. It’s more fun to know they’re clueless about it. Just so glad you’re back!!!

  25. Great post Slim, you always make me laugh:)

    Sun Valley is a very special place, I have wonderful memories of my time spent there.

    I was totally sucked in at first thinking that really was a deadly butterfly with a hard to read name, till I went back and read the description again.

    omg that potato…

  26. So beautiful there! Thanks for sharing your trip and adventure up the mountain. Made me laugh that you didn’t mention the mosquito on your husband’s arm and wow, that potato looks amazing!

  27. It is so wonderful to see someplace that is not in drought, and the Sun Valley area is just possibly even more beautiful swathed in green than in snow. And those lupine…it is difficult to do them justice in a photograph, but you have done just that. Thank you!!!! P.S. That potato…wow!!

  28. What a breathtaking place! I had to look for the exact location on a map (Sorry …i’m european)
    I’ve been to Hawaii for my wedding 5 years ago…..but i would love to see some more of the USA.
    Dear Slim, this time is of non importance at at all what you wear…because nobody can compeat with this landscape!
    Lots of love from (a very flat) Holland x

  29. You’ll have to see Robert Redford’s new film ‘A Walk in the Woods’, based on Bill Bryson’s bestseller (out Sept 2015). The trailer looks very funny, although Emma Thompson has a permanently pained look. The hiking shots in the film remind me of this post, although your get-up looks far more glam! It looks beautiful there. Have a wonderful summer.

  30. What heavenly scenery! I have officially added Sun Valley to my USA travel bucket list.

  31. You must’ve been joking about the mourning cloak butterfly being deadly. They’re nothing of the sort, and they used to be common as houseflies in California.

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