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Photo: Chloe Nostrant

Though Christmas has come and gone, there’s finally snow outside my window. It’s been a particularly warm fall/early winter up North. Isaac, my husband, hasn’t minded in the least bit, being as he works outside for most of his week. Complaining isn’t on my agenda either with having to drive across valleys quite frequently for gigs. Though, even in the warmth, I’ve found myself on Bozeman Pass twice, barely visible roads and ripping winds; my average mile per hour clocked at a blazing thirty.

That’s just how it goes during winter in Montana. The season forces you to slow down and not just on the road. Though it sometimes seems burdening, I’ve decided for myself it’s for the better.

Most of my summer gigs and work at the studio have faded for the time being and I am enjoying getting back in touch with writing and singing to my two lab mutts. They curl up on the couch, snoring to my practice; I’m sure dreaming of their next walk. I’ve also really enjoyed having the time to get my turntable working again and listening to some older records.

I found The Judds Heartland and Eddie Rabbitt Horizon! I’m sure Isaac and the dogs know all the words by heart at this point. When listening to “Driving My Life Away,” I think of my Grandpa LeRoy. Truck driving was just one of his many occupations. He died driving when I was six months old, September 1990. The more I learn about him, the more I imagine he’d dance around my 500-square foot apartment with me. We’d sing at the top of our oxygen intakers if he were still around.

Family time over the holidays was much needed. Playing with my two little nieces and spending nearly a week with Isaac off work was glorious. We spent Christmas Eve with my family in town and headed up to Elliston, MT for some Christmas day in the mountains with his family. The animals romped, presents were opened, games played and memories made; however, lazy days cannot go on forever.

With the new year rounding the home stretch faster than ever before, I have a lot on my plate for the coming January. I am in the process of recording my first studio EP at Live From the Divide in Bozeman and I booked a small tour down to Austin, TX. I am ecstatic and nervous; though I am so fortunate to have this opportunity and have been working towards this for some time. Songs considered for the EP will be played along the way in Montana, Colorado, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming. A kickstarter for my album will be launched mid-January while I’m on the road. It’s been one great adventure so far, I’m excited to add to it.

As for now, it’s Thursday morning and the thermometer reads 10 degrees. Time to bundle up in my scarf and hat and take the dogs out to achieve their dreams.

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